A Story of Specks and Logs

Series: MasterClass | Week 8: Is There Ever a Time to Judge?

Day Three 2 Samuel 12:1-9

So the Lord sent Nathan the prophet to tell David this story: “There were two men in a certain town. One was rich, and one was poor. 2 The rich man owned a great many sheep and cattle. 3 The poor man owned nothing but one little lamb he had bought. He raised that little lamb, and it grew up with his children. It ate from the man’s own plate and drank from his cup. He cuddled it in his arms like a baby daughter. 4 One day a guest arrived at the home of the rich man. But instead of killing an animal from his own flock or herd, he took the poor man’s lamb and killed it and prepared it for his guest.” 5 David was furious. “As surely as the Lord lives,” he vowed, “any man who would do such a thing deserves to die! 6 He must repay four lambs to the poor man for the one he stole and for having no pity.”

7 Then Nathan said to David, “You are that man! . . .”
– 2 Samuel 12:1-7 (NLT)

Learn From the Word
God used the prophet Nathan to point out a sin in David’s life using this parable of a lamb and its owner. This story is a perfect example of what we so often do ourselves – judge the sins of others harshly while completely overlooking our own. David responded to Nathan’s parable with fury, pronouncing an extreme punishment on the rich man for his actions, not realizing the man Nathan described was him.

Put It Into Practice
David’s response to the conviction God brought through Nathan is an example we can all follow. Read the rest of the story in 2 Samuel 12 and David’s response recorded for us as Psalm 51. Ask God to point out any logs that need to be dealt with in your own life, and take time to confess those to God. Use David’s words as a guide for yourself. Conviction is a gift from God that, when followed by confession and repentance, keeps our hearts soft and draws us closer to our heavenly Father.

For Families with Kids at Home
God will let us know in our hearts when we’ve done something wrong, and that feeling is called “conviction.” Conviction doesn’t push us away from God (that’s called “shame”); conviction draws us closer to God, because God wants to teach us a better way! Talk to your kids about the difference between shame and conviction, and when was the last time they felt convicted.