Scripture Nugget 5.23.2017
Scripture Read 2 Samuel 20-24
Nugget 2 Samuel 24:10-16
“But afterward, David was stricken to the heart because he had numbered the people. David said to the LORD, ‘I have sinned greatly in what I have done. But now, O LORD, I pray you, take away the guilt of your servant; for I have done foolishly.’ When David rose in the morning, the word of the LORD came to the prophet Gad, David’s seer, saying, ‘Go and say to David: Thus says the LORD: Three things I offer you; choose one of them, and I will do it to you.’ So Gad came to David and told him; he asked him, ‘Shall three years of famine come to you on your land? Or will you flea three months before your foes while they pursue you? Or shall there be three days’ pestilence in your land? Now consider, and decide what answer I shall return to the one who sent me.’ Then David said to Gad, ‘I am in great distress; let us fall into the hand of the LORD, for his mercy is great; but let us not fall into human hands.’ So the LORD sent a pestilence on Israel from that morning until the appointed time; and seventy thousand of the people died, from Dan to Beersheba. But when the angel stretched out his hand toward Jerusalem to destroy it, the LORD relented concerning the evil, and said to the angel who was bringing destruction among the people, ‘It is enough; now stay your hand.’ The angel of the LORD was then by the threshing floor of Araunah the Jebusite.”
Devotional Thought: When leaders, those who are responsible to lead others to follow God, sin, it affects those they lead. The sin may be personal but it is potentially devastating to the masses. David’s pride once again got ahold of him, he wanted to confirm his greatness so he ordered a census, a counting of “his” kingdom. He realized and felt the sin in his heart; he prayed for forgiveness. Sin has consequences, someone (many) must pay. God offers three choices, David chooses to trust in God’s mercy; followers of God, David demonstrates Over-the-Horizon faith. God stops the pestilence short – identifying Jerusalem as the Holy City. Praise be to God for sending Jesus to suffer the consequences of all sin, stopping short the pestilence which we deserve.