We all have parts to our stories that we are not proud of and looking back we wonder what exactly we were thinking when we made those choices. We are all human and therefore we all sin. Even the greatest heroes of the faith have moments of selfishness, pride and doubt. It’s what we do after we sin that speaks volumes about who we are in Christ. Do we try to cover it up or openly confess our sins and ask for forgiveness? Do we FEAR the Lord and believe who He says He is? Yes, there may still be consequences for our actions but God, in His perfect grace, wants to extend forgiveness and offer us clean hearts.
Having the right view of God’s perfect justice, grace, and authority
“And now, Israel, what does the LORD your God require of you? He requires only that you fear the LORD your God, and live in a way that pleases Him, and love Him and serve Him with all your heart and soul.” Deuteronomy 10:12 (NLT)
Having the right view of God means understanding His perfect balance between justice and grace.
This week we’re continuing our look at God’s justice and grace throughout the life of King David. When all his men were away at war, David saw a beautiful woman named Bathsheba and he wanted her to be his wife. He didn’t care that she was already married. David stole her anyway and had her husband killed to cover up his sin. He thought no one would ever find out, but God sees everything and sent His prophet Nathan to confront David. David confessed his sins and asked God for forgiveness. He wrote Psalm 51 as a song of repentance knowing that only God could give him a clean heart. Because God is just, there were consequences for David’s sin. But God, out of His grace, forgave David and kept His promise that someone from David’s family would rule forever.
Just as David confessed his sins and asked for a clean heart, you too can ask God for a clean heart when you sin. Because God is perfectly just, there may still be consequences for your actions. However, God is also full of grace and will forgive you when you ask Him too. Romans 6:23 says we deserve death because of our sins BUT God offers us eternal life with Him forever when we believe Christ took that punishment we deserve!
Head outside and give each kid an uncoated paper plate. Make some mud and let your kids “decorate” their plates with it. Ask them if they want to eat off of the plate now. Is there anything they can do to make it new again? What’s the only way they can get a clean plate? Explain that the only way to get a clean plate is to give you the dirty one and you’ll give them a clean one. This is like our sin. We get dirty but we can’t clean ourselves. We have to turn in all of our sins to God. He will forgive us and give us clean hearts.
David wrote Psalm 51 out of this time in his life and we can see how he viewed God and how he viewed himself. If you were to write a Psalm today, what would it say? Get your family together and begin by writing down words that describe God. Then write down things you’re thankful for that God’s given. Put these two lists together and you have a psalm!
What’s in the Bible?, created by Phil Vischer, does a fantastic job of walking kids and parents through the entire Bible. The story of David is told on Disk 5, Session 2 and the kids got to watch part of it in their ministries this Sunday. Set aside time this week as a family to go thru some of the videos you can find on their website. Watermark members also have access to Right Now Media where you can find What’s in the Bible’s? complete episode on King David.
Thank God for being patient with us and forgiving us when we confess our sins. Thank Him for giving us clean hearts just like He did with David. Ask God to continue to show you more of who He is so you have the right view of his perfect justice and grace.
Just as God uses both justice and grace with his children, parents also have to find a balance between the two when disciplining their children.