YOU BROUGHT IT ON YOURSELF                                                                                               Andy Hollifield 2-20-18

2 Samuel 12:7-14 And Nathan said to David, Thou art the man. Thus saith the Lord God of Israel, I anointed thee king over Israel, and I delivered thee out of the hand of Saul; (8) And I gave thee thy master’s house, and thy master’s wives into thy bosom, and gave thee the house of Israel and of Judah; and if that had been too little, I would moreover have given unto thee such and such things. (9) Wherefore hast thou despised the commandment of the Lord, to do evil in his sight? thou hast killed Uriah the Hittite with the sword, and has taken his wife to be thy wife, and hast slain him with the sword of the children of Ammon. (10) Now therefore the sword shall never depart from thine house; because thou hast despised me, and has taken the wife of Uriah the Hittite to be thy wife. (11) Thus saith the Lord, Behold, I will raise up evil against thee out of thine own house, and I will take thy wives before thine eyes, and give them unto thy neighbor, and he shall lie with thy wives in the sight of this sun. (12) For thou didst it secretly: but I will do this thing before all Israel, and before the sun. (13) And David said unto Nathan, I have sinned against the Lord. And Nathan said unto David, The Lord also hath put away thy sin; thou shalt not die. (14) Howbeit, because by this deed thou hast given great occasion to the enemies of the Lord to blaspheme, the child that is born unto thee shalt surely die.

One of the most hated things that my dad ever said to me and my brother was this statement; “You brought it on yourself.” I guess the reason that it always bothered me so much was because I knew that I had been exposed in my stupidity and now I was going to have to pay the price for my actions. Getting grounded or a good old-fashioned whipping with a belt across the backside was bad enough but to be told that the punishment we were receiving was entirely our fault and could have been avoided completely was like pouring salt into the wound. Now, while some would call that mean on his part, he had some God-given wisdom that guided him in what it took to get our attention. To be found guilty with no valid argument or justifiable reason for doing what we done was downright demeaning and frustrating. There were a lot of things that just took only one time to learn but there were others that we kept trying because we thought we would get away with them. After all, we only did them because it seemed like a good idea at the time. Dad was so good with the judge type lecturing that the mistake was made by at least one of us, I won’t say who, to ask dad if we couldn’t just go ahead and get to the whipping part and the grounding and get it over with and just skip the lecture. Oh, we got on with it alright, right after the lecture, and that whipping is still remembered till this day because we have talked about it. Needless to say, that was one of those one-time mistakes.

While that may sound like it might have been a little hard on a couple of young boys, that was likely part of what kept us from getting into any more trouble or mischief than what we did. There was a far more valuable lesson that I took away from those lectures and punishments. I have never really been sure if “lecture” was the appropriate word until I looked it up on while writing this. One of the meanings said “to rebuke or reprimand at some length.” So, I guess lecture really was the right word all along. But, there was also another side to it. We learned what it was to make a case for what we had done because dad always gave us a chance to explain ourselves and try to justify our actions. Oh, he almost always immediately shot our reasons full of holes in short order but the fact remained that he had been fair enough to let us talk man to man in our own defence. We learned a lot from that and like most kids with good parents; we both to an extent grew up to become our dad.

I am not griping about the discipline part of our upbringing because as I got older I realized that it was something to be thankful for because as hard as it had to have been on him at times; it showed that he truly loved us and was going to raise us to be men of character and integrity whether we liked it or not. After all, his job wasn’t to be our buddy but his responsibility to God was to be our dad first and our buddy second if we would allow it. The reason I mention all of this is because I think of my dad’s statement every time I read the story of Nathan and David. If you notice in verses 1-6, Nathan tells David a story summarizing the basic events of David’s life concerning Bathsheba. David, being the good king that he was, immediately went into somewhat of a rage and started pronouncing judgment upon the man who had taken that man’s only sheep and slaughtered it rather than one of his own. Well, as you read in the scripture above, Nathan told David those ominous words; “Thou art the man.” Those words were all it took for David to realize that just as the bible says in Numbers 32:23 “….behold, ye have sinned against the Lord: and be sure your sin will find you out.” I have stood before my dad in the same place that David stood before the Lord, but mine was on a much smaller stage. But, to be found out and guilty and especially knowing that you knew better, made you feel; well, stupid is probably the best way to describe it.

Now, with all of that said let me mention that there were times that I got off of the hook but even those times left a lasting impression of how close I had come to judgment had it not been for the mercy of my dad, I would have suffered the consequences. This whole entire article has led up to this point right here. Just as dad had both wisdom and mercy, so does our Father in heaven. By the way, did I mention that on the definition for lecture that applied to me was the fifth one. The fifth one; “to rebuke or reprimand at some length.”  Five is the number of grace. Isn’t that just like God? He has us dead to rights and there is no reasoning our way out of it because we know that he knows we are guilty. I learned this once when I went to court on a speeding ticket. I had been given advice to enter a plea for leniency. When I did, the judge asked me “On what grounds.” When I told my story he said he was inclined to go easy on me and he did. The reason I mention that is because it is always better to repent and throw ourselves at the mercy of God. I still had a price to pay for that ticket but it was not near what I deserved to have to pay. We may still have to suffer some of the consequences for our actions but if we repent on our own, God will always be just and forgive us and restore us into his fellowship.

Just as my dad and that judge dealt out my punishment but was merciful to me in the end, I still had a price to pay. I don’t know where anyone stands with the Lord except me but I do know that wherever and whoever you are, judgment will come. God is rich in mercy (Ephesians 2:4) and as it says 41 times in the bible “his mercy endureth forever” but you do have to pay. You may have brought it on yourself, but isn’t it better to repent and have God’s mercy than to refuse and face his wrath? Have a blessed day in the Lord!!!


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