Lectionary Year B
August 3, 2003

II Samuel 11:26-12:13a
Contemporary Address

Step VI - Contemporary Address

A. Goals

(JFC) An exposition of this text might find some ways of dealing with inevitable human sinfulness in ways that might help people cope with their frailties and to learn to trust God's merciful grace.

B. Describing the Audience

(JFC) Any congregation needing comforting in the face of sinfulness could appreciate a proclamation of this text's truths

C. Address

(JFC) A sermon entitled for this working draft, "Sin, A Reality Show". I need some help here because I have never seen one of these popular TV shows!

One of the commercial TV networks contracts with you to write a new Reality Show featuring "sin" as the topic. You know about sin, by experience you are sin's intimate acquaintance. Sin might be "your best friend".

I. The Scene
A. God blesses us as He did David, so, the scene for the show features God's beautiful creation, formation of families of people (Abraham on) and nations of covenant settings. In verses 7f of today's text, God lists some of David's Divine blessings.

B. God judges us as He did David, so, the new Reality show can highlight how guilt is a natural response to misbehavior, about which we all know full well. Guilt seems, in Scripture, to separate sinners from God and it isn't fully until the New Testament that we are reunited with God through Christ's self giving on our behalf and for our sakes and in our stead as well. Guilt can motivate sinners to repent and confess and realize God's unqualified pardon. Even for adultery and/or murder? What about our sinfulness? Has God forgiven us in Christ? YES!

II. Action
A. Still, David's misdeeds seem a bit extreme until we recall that there are no degrees in sinfulness, "all sin and fall short of God's glory", remember. Evil is an original part of creation, Genesis 2:9. It is with the Old Testament throughout; see Genesis 6:5 and 44:4 as well as Job 1:1 where it is to be relinquished. Psalm 34:13f recommend avoiding evil speech and prescribes doing good and seeking and pursuing peace instead.

B. Our sinfulness might exclude adultery and/or murder, yet we might have behaved almost as disrespectfully as David did to his contemporaries. We might cite Mark 7:21 where Jesus tells the disciples of what He calls, "evil intensions: fornication, theft, murder, adultery, avarice, wickedness, deceit, licentiousness, envy, slander, pride, folly."

III. Eventual Developments

A. David's repenting and confessing might comfort and/or inspire us. See Psalms 32, 51 and/or 103. These Psalms are filled with remorse, regret, and other emotions we can feel comfortable sharing with such an understanding God.

B. Our repenting and confessing could bring us closer to God than heretofore. Is that where participants in this new Reality Show want to go? Is it where we want to go?

Citing Hertzberg, page 314: "The Lord does not desire the death of a sinner (cf. Ezek. 18.23, 32; 33.11) but rather that he should turn from his wickedness and live." David's sinfulness forgiven inspires us to do so, to turn from wickedness and live, or even to turn from apathy and live.

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