King David. Israel’s greatest king. A man after God’s own heart. The standard by which every other king would later be measured.
King David. Liar. Adulterer. Murderer.
Sounds like the scandalous headline of a supermarket check out line tabloid doesn’t it? No fake news here, though. David was all of those things. Though a great leader, he made a BIG mistake. He lusted for a woman who was married to a righteous man named Uriah. He slept with her and then tried to cover it up by having Uriah killed.
When confronted with his sin, David repented and God forgave him but the child born from the sinful act died. Though there was forgiveness there was also consequence.
“…for all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God, and all are justified freely by His grace through the redemption that came by Jesus Christ.” Romans 3:23-24
Because of this grace provided for all of us, sinners like David, like you, and like me can be forgiven. If we confess our sin to Jesus and repent we will receive His free gift of eternal life.
So guess what that means? David and Uriah are both in heaven together. Now that would be an interesting meeting! As David enters through the pearly gates, there’s Uriah waiting to say hello. How do you think that went down? Probably very differently to how it would have gone down for most people on this side of heaven. “David, have you met Uriah?” “Uh..yeah…I have.”
But in Revelation 7 we see a picture of heaven where David and Uriah are now. There are multitudes in white robes crying out together in a loud voice “Salvation belongs to our God, who sits on the throne, and to the Lamb.” Revelation 7:10 David and Uriah are there in that crowd, singing together. Their praise was so overwhelming, the angels followed their lead and started worshipping. Imagine being the worship leader of an angelic choir!
David and Uriah are a picture of Kingdom unity. Outside of God’s Kingdom, unity is often attempted by dressing alike, looking alike, talking alike, or going to the same church. But in the Kingdom, what unites us is that we have been washed by the blood of Jesus and been made holy by His salvation. It’s not by anything we have done.
The Church is a representation of God’s Kingdom in this present age. It is heaven on earth. Jesus taught us to pray, “Your Kingdom come, Your will be done on earth as it is in heaven.” Matthew 6:10
We, the Church, can live with the same unity that is in heaven right now. We need more of heaven.
The Church has a long history of focusing more on what divides us than what unites us. Blacks vs. Whites. Protestants vs. Catholics. Charismatics vs. Cessationists. Democrats vs. Republicans. Some local churches are still characterized as a black church or a white church. I even know Christians who today won’t worship with others because of who they voted for! David and Uriah would be shocked and these divisions grieve the Holy Spirit.
But Kingdom unity can happen in our cities when we realize that what unites us is stronger than what divides us.
Unity is possible when who you are worshipping is more compelling than who you are worshipping with. It’s possible when we all wear the white robe of a freed prisoner, without spot, wrinkle, or blemish. Uriah couldn’t see David’s sin because it wasn’t there anymore. David was so completely forgiven that God put His own Son in David’s lineage. In the genealogy of Jesus in Matthew 1, David is listed as the father of Solomon, whose mother had been Uriah’s wife. Religious and judgmental Christians have explained that this passage is a reminder of David’s sin. Its not. It’s a reminder that God’s grace is so complete that even the worst of sinners can give birth to a Savior.
If we want to live united in God’s Kingdom here on earth, it’s time we stopped seeing each other’s sin and focus on who we are worshipping — Jesus. When we do, God promises to send a commanded blessing (Psalm 133). Let’s be committed to seeing God’s Kingdom come, to see more of heaven, and to see His blessing.