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The Price of Pride

Understanding the consequence of our sin and the mercy of God
This sermon is part of the sermon series "Remembering Who We Are (part 2)". See series.


You've probably heard the expression, "Into every life, a little rain must fall." I was reading an article about a movie star who was having some difficulties, and the writer quipped, "Into every reign a little life must fall." I thought right away of King David.

In our study of 1 Chronicles, written 500 years after David lived, it looks like he lived a charmed life. We know from 1 and 2 Samuel that that was definitely not the case, but in Chronicles there's not a peep about the heartaches and sins of his life, until we stumble into 1 Chronicles 21. You'll remember from last week that things had been going swimmingly for David. God had made an astonishing and wonderful covenant with him followed by three chapters of military victories—some tougher than others, to be sure, but nary a defeat in sight. But, "into every reign a little life must fall."

The "life" that fell into David's reign was the temptation to a colossal moral blunder. Maybe you know the feeling. Maybe you've messed up your life royally. Sometimes it is a long, slow slide to disaster, and sometimes it is one horrible fall. There are all kinds of struggles and griefs in life, of course, but when someone committed to God blows it big time, that causes a unique kind of pain and a unique kind of trouble.

You've heard the story from 1 Chronicles 21 already—a strange, unsettling story about a census that David insisted on taking, despite the pleas of his general Joab, and the terrible consequences that followed. It seems so far removed from our lives, but it really isn't. There is a sense, as with so many parts of Scripture, where each of us could say, "That's the story of my life." I'll show you. Let's start with verse 1.

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Lee Eclov recently retired after 40 years of local pastoral ministry and now focuses on ministry among pastors. He writes a weekly devotional for preachers on Preaching Today.

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Sermon Outline:


I. Satan lurks in the weeds of our insecurity and the shadows of our successes.

II. Setting things right with the Lord can be very painful.

III. God provides an altar at the junction of judgment and mercy.