David’s Great Sin!

2 Samuel 24:1-25

Studies in 1st & 2nd Samuel – learned many lessons – seen many high points in David’s Life – 2 Samuel ends on a Low note : Notice 3 things

A) #1 David’s great Sin - RD V.1

B) Now at first glance this seems really odd that God would move David to do something that was Sinful – Forbidden to # the People

1) Confidence was not to be in #’s but in the Lord!

James 1:13

13 Let no one say when he is tempted, "I am tempted by God"; for God cannot be tempted by evil, nor does He Himself tempt anyone.

C) So this doesn’t make sense – Why would God lead David to do something that is wrong – The answer is He wouldn’t – he didn’t

D) Now if you have a newer translation- like the NKJV which I am reading from the He in v.1 is capitalized – that is unfortunate

  1. Many of you are aware that when the OT was originally written there were no capital letters –

E) So it was up to the translators to determine whether or not to capitalize any given word

  1. In the Old KJV it is not capitalized and that is correct –

You see it has been said that the best commentary on the Bible is the Bible itself – And in the Book of 1 Chron. 21 given good insight

A)1 Chronicles 21 is the parallel passage to 2 Samuel – 24 – another account of this story/ given further insight & details & we find who the he is { turn

1 Chron 21:1

Now Satan stood up against Israel, and moved David to number Israel

There is the answer: this wasn’t something that God inspired it was something that Satan inspired that God allowed

A) That is the Difference – Much like in the story of Job – God didn’t afflict Job – But he allowed Satan to. – Test

B) Job passed the test – David doesn’t! Rd v. 2-9

C) Now 1 Chron 21 puts this event after the last defeat of the Philistines by Israel in 2 Sam 21

D) Insight into the possible motive of this action by David – Pride

1) After a great victory he is tempted to see just how great he has become and he falls for it –

David here was taking stock in how Big his Kingdom had become – that is the Sin of Pride – David’s greatest Sin

A)Pride is nothing more than taking the middle letter of the word PRIDE and exalting it.

B) It is no wonder that Satan used this particular sin, because it was THIS sin that knocked Satan out of HEAVEN

Isaiah 14:12- 12 "How you are fallen from heaven, O Lucifer, son of the morning! 13 For you have said in your heart: ‘I will ascend into heaven,

I will exalt my throne above the stars of God; I will also sit on the mount of the congregation on the farthest sides of the north; 14I will ascend above the heights of the clouds, I will be like the Most High.’

C) NOTE: What Satan is saying is the essence of pride I will be like God.

  1. Pride means: "I can do it myself.... Even as God makes His sovereign decisions I WILL make my own sovereign decisions. I’ll call the shots.

D) I don’t need to pray or seek the Lord. I don't need to depend upon the Lord.... I can take care of myself...... I will be INDEPENDENT

And that is just the beginning of where pride will take us.

William Barclay said, "Pride is the ground in which all other sins grows and the parent from which all other sins come"

A) That is so true. That is why pride is at the top of the list of things that God hates. Did you know that there are things that God hates? Proverbs 6 says,


16 These six things the LORD hates, Yes, seven are an abomination to Him:

17 A proud look, A lying tongue, Hands that shed innocent blood,

18 A heart that devises wicked plans, Feet that are swift in running to evil,

19 A false witness who speaks lies, And one who sows discord among brethren.


B) Seven things that God hates and right at the top of His list is Pride, because it is out of this sin that all of the other sins flow.

C) The Bible is Clear that Pride Comes before DESTRUCTION & a Haughty Spirit before a Fall – Clearly seen in David’s life here

D) Now Joab tries to warn him – Joab begs him to reconsider – David ignores the word of Joab

1) Ignores wise counsel – No accountability !

E) So Joab comes back and reports to David – in Israel 800,000 and in Judah 500,000 – total 1.3 million notice David’s response – v.10

2 Sam 24:10

And David's heart condemned him after he had numbered the people. So David said to the LORD,"I have sinned greatly in what I have done; but now, I pray, O LORD, take away the iniquity of your servant, for I have done very foolishly."

After committing this sin – David is convicted – His heart condemned him: #2 David’s Conviction

A) Condemned = attacked or assaulted – it conveys the idea of being wounded and crippled and that is how we should feel after we have sinned / Conviction {Assaulted or attacked {unrest

B) That is how David felt – Deep inside his inner man there was the disturbing reminder of God’s displeasure

C) If that is lacking – it is only an indication that your heart is getting hard & that is a dangerous place to be!!!

  1. Heb 4 given a Warning to not harden our hearts like Israel who missed out on entering into the Promise land – because of their hardness of heart

D) Your heart when you sin – Sensitive – or Hard and calloused

1) Resist = Hard / Sensitive – Respond – Lady Sunday – retreat – EXCITING WAY TO LIVE

C) So David’s inner man was disturbed – because of what he had done in causing displeasure to the Lord


David confessed his sin. First of all, there was the conviction of sin, followed immediately by the confession of sin.

A) A lot of times when we’re convicted of sin, we seek to cover it.

B) The bible said, "He who seeks to cover his sin shall not prosper".

1) We try to cover our sins many times by lying, cover up. But the bible says, "You can be sure your sins will find you out".

C) David doesn’t do that here: He confesses his sin – showing his heart of Repentance

1) Not excuses – I have sinned – I was wrong – Lord forgive me

D) Confession simply means to agree with someone or something, that is exactly what David is doing here.

1) He is agreeing with the conviction that the Holy Spirit has placed in his heart.


E) And with his confession, here is what David expects, he expects his God to forgive him. He expects his God to wash away his sin.

1) Which is exactly what God will do.


I love 1 John 1:9. "If we confess our sins, He is faithful and just to forgive us our sins and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness."

F) This is one of the great promises of the Bible, a promise that David knew to be true. – Happy is the man whose sin has been forgiven!!!!!

Now we could get this far into the story and you might think, well that’s great, David sinned, he repented, he learned a good lesson in the process.

A ) All is well that ends well, let’s move on. Oh but you see that is not the way sin works. With sin there are always what? Consequences.

B) There is forgiveness but there is always consequences – ramifications

C) This is why God hates sin, He knows what it does to us, and He knows the consequences that it brings.

1) David has been forgiven of his sin, his fellowship with God has been restored by his confession, but he still has to face the consequences of his sin.


D) What we are going to see next is truly amazing, God actually let’s David pick the consequence that he will have to endure.

1) #4 David’s punishment!

RD V. 11-17

As far as I know, this is the only time in the Bible where this happens, where God actually lets someone pick the consequences for their sin.

A) Not that this makes it any easier because what we have here are three hard choices, Famine, Military defeat, and Pestilence.

B) The Prophet Gad tells David to think it over and he will come back in a couple of days for a decision. This left David in great distress.

C) One of the things that Satan always does when he is tempting us and walking us into sin, is to blind us to sins consequences.

1) He will never show us what the sin will ultimately cost and make no mistake; there will always be a price to pay for sin.

D) The Price for sin is always too high – The HS is always trying to open our eyes to that – Satan tries to keep them shut –

1) Don’t think about the consequences

E)  If David knew that what it would cost him to give into his pride, he would have never done it. Neither will we. . – Toby

"Sin does not serve well as a gardener to the soul. It landscapes the contour of the soul until all that is beautiful has been made ugly, until all that is high has been brought low, until all that is promising is wasted. Then life like a desert is parched & barren. It is drained of purpose. It is bleached of happiness. Sin then is not wise but wasteful, it is not a gate but only a grave!"

Here David sees every ounce of payment that sin demands. He sees the ugliness, he sees its devastation & its horror

A) And he is a broken man facing the consequences of his sin – Cries out Lord why them – when it was me!!!!!

B) That is the heart of the shepherd: "Spare the sheep".

You might be thinking "That is pretty heavy that 70,000 people should die for David’s sin" Doesn’t seem Fair

A)NOTE: In v.1 of Samuel’s account of this story a very important perspective given to us.

2 Sam 24:1 And again the anger of the LORD was kindled against Israel, and he moved David against them to say, Go, number Israel and Judah.

B) The nation had fallen into sin..... It was NOT just David.

C) Satan was the one who tempted David to number Israel. But God is the One who was angry with the nation of Israel as a whole.

  1. What David did here was merely the means that God was going to use to deal not just w/ David but the nation as a whole

D) God requires more from His Kids! – Heathen get away w/ more

1) Whom the Lord loves He chastens - Standard is Holiness


So Plague hits Israel from Dan to Beersheba – 70,000 perish

A) Comes to Jerusalem where David was – the Lord calls it off

David begs to be punished personally – v.17 let your hand be against me

Rd v.18-25 #5 David’s sacrifice lifts the Plague

A) David makes an interesting statement to Ornan - I will NOT give to the Lord that which costs me nothing."

B) This is the Principle: SACRIFICE always COSTS. Really if it doesn’t cost me something it is not a true Sacrifice

1) Cost: Time, resources, energy in ministry, ridicule

C) Ornan’s threshing Floor – place to build the temple – Place for Sacrifices to be offered in yrs to come

D) Ornan’s threshing floor – Mt Moriah – Abe – son –

1) God will provide himself –

E) 2,000 yrs later he did – David’s one Sacrifice stopped the plague

When the world was plagued – God said – I will give a Sacrifice

A) Jesus – Gave the greatest sacrifice

2 Cor 8:9 For you know the grace of our Lord Jesus Christ, that, though he was rich, yet for your sakes he became poor, that you through his poverty might be rich.