Tonight I’ll be teaching from 2 Samuel 24 about the census of Israel, the resulting consequences, and David’s repentance and obedience. It’s a powerful chapter about the price of disobedience as well as obedience.
I had planned to teach something else tonight (we’re starting a new book next Wednesday), but felt like the Lord was steering me in a different direction for tonight.
100% of the counseling we do at Awaken deals with disobedience in the life of the person we’re counseling or someone close to them. So often we want the effects of obedience (blessing, reward, peace) without the expense of obedience (honesty, repentance, consequences). That’s not how it works though.
In 2 Samuel 24, David was told to build an altar to the Lord, but to do so, he had to purchase a field. He had the opportunity to receive the field for free from its owner, Araunah, but when Araunah proposed the deal, David said something that I pray more of us learn to say…
“…I will surely buy it from you for a price; nor will I offer burnt offerings to the Lord my God with that which costs me nothing.” – 2 Samuel 24:24
He recognized that a true offering would cost him something. He wasn’t in to re-gifting.
You know what re-gifting is. You open a package at Christmas with a candle and a picture frame that you’re not into. You smile and thank the person who gave it to you while mentally thinking who you could give it to after you re-wrap it. It’s not much of a gift if it didn’t cost you something. David got that. He understood that his sacrifice to the Lord had to be just that – a sacrifice.
Obedience comes with a price tag, but so does disobedience.
The price for disobedience is far greater, though. The best thing to do when it comes to sin is to make whatever sacrifice is necessary to obey. It will cost you something, but the expense will always be worth the effects of obedience…
…So the Lord heeded the prayers for the land, and plague was withdrawn from Israel. – 2 Samuel 24:25