The letter instructed Joab, “Station Uriah on the front lines where the battle is fiercest. Then pull back so that he will be killed.”
2 Samuel 11:15 NLT
It is the height of foolishness to reason that the only way to get rid of temptation is to yield to it. It is easier to get off sin’s slippery slope at the top than midway down. Better yet, stay off the slope!
King David did not go off to war, yet he fought another war—an internal civil war between passion and purity. Unhappily, he lost his battle with temptation. In hand-to-hand combat on the front line, Uriah died—a casualty of an arrow shot by an enemy archer. And David died spiritually when he sinned with Bathsheba—a casualty of an arrow shot by the enemy of his soul.
Seduced by his own evil desire, he let himself be dragged away and destroyed. Desire conceived and gave birth to sin, leading to death. Moral fighting was savage; but instead of combating evil impulses, he flirted and lost the struggle.
When David saw Bathsheba bathing, he should have turned around and gone inside his palace; instead, he gazed on her with lust. David should have occupied his mind with the battle against the enemies of Israel; instead, he occupied his mind with Bathsheba’s beauty, asking for trouble.
Retiring prematurely, he lazily stayed in Jerusalem while his valiant warriors deployed. With much to eat and drink and no noble task, he committed moral suicide.
David should have canceled his sexual plans when he learned Bathsheba was married; instead, he sent for her with a losing proposition. David should have stopped when he saw Bathsheba; instead, he slept with her. Adultery and murder were crimes against people; and they were sins against Me. What the king should have done—and what he did—were two vastly different matters.
Uriah was not the only man on the front lines of intense fighting. Though Uriah died physically, his death was more honorable than David’s spiritual defeat. David had done as he pleased, but I was very displeased. Iniquity with impunity is an impossible combination. Forgiveness does not cancel consequences.
Avoid mental adultery. The act is wrong—so is the fantasy. Be loyal to your spouse with your mind, as well as your body. When you meet temptation, turn to the right and see My exit sign. When Satan aims fiery arrows of temptation at you, use the faith shield to extinguish them.
With My help, you can win even the fiercest battles. I am on the front line fighting right alongside you.
© 2013 Johnny R. Almond
Pastor, Hull’s Memorial Baptist Church
Author, Gentle Whispers from Eternity