Saint Paul's Lutheran Church of Irvine

2nd Wednesday of Lent, February 29th, 2012: “Our Need: Living As Sinners-Saints” (2nd Samuel 12)

I thank God for this section of Scripture. The Lord knew I would need it. We all do. It is astounding to take inventory of all that the Lord says of King David. Can you imagine God calling any human being one after His own heart? But this is exactly what the Lord calls King David in 1st Samuel 13:14! What is more, I am blown away to take into consideration God’s eulogy of King David to King Solomon as recorded in 1st Kings 3:14. God says that David walked in God’s way, that David kept His statues and commandments! I want to remind you about this context…David had already died when these words were being spoken by God to Solomon. So what’s up with that? I thought God was omniscient?! Certainly the Lord realized that this David is the same guy who lusted after Bathsheba, and after learning that she was married, had her brought to him anyway, the same David who committed adultery, the same David who acted with deceit in order to deceive Uriah her husband, the same David who became more desperate in this deceit and when his plan didn’t work the first time, got Uriah drunk — ironically, Uriah proved to have more self-control while drunk than David did while sober — and finally, this is the same David who murders Uriah. Again, this is the same David!

The Lord, however, forgot all about David’s sin after the ministry of His Word had been applied to David. And this is the great great message of hope and encouragement for us poor sinners who are all-so-just-like David! First of all, be mindful of the fact that there is a considerable time lapse between 2nd Samuel 11 and 12. About a year goes by in order to demonstrate what sinful man does with his sin. For about a year, David’s coping mechanism was to hide his sin…at least try to. That is what we do, and it doesn’t work very well. Let’s just say it: it doesn’t work period. In Psalm 32 David confesses his futile attempts: “For when I kept silent, my bones wasted away through my groaning all day long. For day and night your hand was heavy upon me; my strength was dried up as by the heat of summer (Psalm 32:3-4).”

In mercy, the Lord granted this process.

Then about a year later, David was ready…he was ready for a visit from the Prophet Nathan.

David’s sin was revealed to him and he was cut to the heart. What followed is testimony of what confession must be…it is not giving an excuse, it is not qualifying this or that, it is not blaming someone else, it is not watering anything down; it is straight-forward and puts and keeps blame squarely on one’s self. When David was cut by the Word, his confession was simple and direct: “I have sinned against the Lord (2 Sam 12:13).”

The Lord was also crystal clear in His holy absolution (as Nathan announced): “The Lord also has put away your sin (same verse).” The Lord forgave David and cancelled/blotted out David’s sin to the extent that the Lord truly had no memory of it so that by the time the Lord recounted the life of David to Solomon, the sins were no more. All that was left was the memory of the saint!

The Lord sees your duplicity, He sees your contradictory nature…and He knows what it does to your consience and to your heart. We are a mess. He knows it. But He gives you this account of David so that you would not lose heart. He doesn’t come to tell you to fix yourself, but He comes as the Gracious Absolver to hear your confession as one cut by the Law…and then telling it just as it is: “I have sinned against the Lord.” And then, in love and mercy, through Jesus whose blood was shed to cover all of your sin, God pronounces, “I have put away your sin.”

Yes, you are a sinner-saint, but to the Lord, you are a saint. This is the one He sees, this is the one preserved in Christ, this is the one who has a place in the Kingdom here and now and into eternity. Thank God that the Lord knew what to do with our inconsistency, with our Dr. Jykell and Mr. Hyde-syndrome. We are recipients of the saving blood and resurrection of Jesus Christ and for eternity, God will remember the saint, the saint, only the saint.


In Christ,


Dr. Espinosa


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  1. Very interesting info!Perfect just what I was looking for!

    • Thanks Deise! I’m glad you connected to us. We are excited about getting the Word out about our Risen Lord and Savior Jesus Christ!

      In Name that is Above All Names Christ Jesus our Lord,

      Dr. Espinosa

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