2 Samuel 12:1-13
David burned with anger against the man and said to Nathan, “As surely as the LORD lives, the man who did this must die! He must pay for that lamb four times over, because he did such a thing and had no pity.”
Then Nathan said to David, “You are the man!
Then David said to Nathan, “I have sinned against the LORD.”
Nathan replied, “The LORD has taken away your sin. You are not going to die.
2 Samuel 12:5-7,13
You Are the Man
In the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit. Amen.
“I don’t know. Maybe it was Kylah,” Caleb said. His heart was racing so fast you could almost see it beating through his Spider Man T-shirt. Caleb couldn’t even look at his father as he was talking to him. He felt terrible.
You see, Caleb’s father was very upset when he came home from work and noticed that every single light switch in the entire house had been circled with a black Sharpie permanent marker. He had been asking Caleb for five minutes about it, but Caleb kept insisting, “It was Kylah! She should be punished!” One problem though… Kylah was a baby and couldn’t even walk yet!
“No, Caleb, it was you. You did it.” Caleb couldn’t take it anymore. He felt too guilty. Finally he said, “Yes, dad. I did it.”
Have you been in a situation like that before? Sometimes when we sin, the last thing we want to do is admit it. We make up excuses. We blame other people. We even lie at times.
King David found himself in that situation. He had done some very sinful things. He took another person’s wife for himself, he had that man killed, he lied about it, and he hid his sins. Finally the prophet Nathan came and told David a story about a man who had done something wrong, too. David was angry and said the man should be punished and die! That’s when Nathan said the famous words, “You are the man!” David finally realized his sins and repented, “I have sinned against the LORD.”
During this time of the year we call Lent, we remember what we have done. We have done so much wrong by what we think, say, and do. We need to join David in saying, “I have sinned against the LORD.”
But dear friends, do not worry! God is merciful and gracious and compassionate. During Lent we also remember that Jesus came to take our sin onto himself. He paid for our sin at the cross and has washed us clean in God’s sight. Because of our Savior Jesus, what the prophet Nathan said to David is the good news that we can rejoice in every day, “The LORD has taken away your sin.” Thanks be to God for his forgiveness for every sin!
Dear Jesus, I have sinned so many times in my life. I am so sorry. Thank you for washing me clean in your blood and forgiving all I have done. Amen.
The questions below are to help families discuss this devotion. The questions are divided by age group as suggestions, but anyone could reflect on any of the questions as they desire.
Questions for Younger Children
- In the story today, why did Caleb blame his sister for what he did?
- When we do sinful things, why shouldn’t we lie to others about it?
Questions for Elementary Age Children
- What does it mean that someone feels guilty?
- How did Jesus make us to be not guilty in God’s sight?
Questions for Middle School and Above
- Describe how people feel on the inside when they hide and lie about their sins like David did.
- What are ways that we respond to the good news of God’s forgiveness when we are at church?
Hymn: CW 304:1,6,7 – Jesus Sinners Does Receive
Jesus sinners does receive; Oh, may all this saying ponder
Who in sin’s delusions live And from God and heaven wander.
Here is hope for all who grieve—Jesus sinners does receive.
Oh, how blest is it to know, Were as scarlet my transgression,
It shall be as white as snow By your blood and bitter passion,
For these words I do believe—Jesus sinners does receive.
Jesus sinners does receive. Even I have been forgiven.
And when I this earth must leave, I shall find an open heaven.
Dying, still to him I cleave—Jesus sinners does receive.