But because by doing this you have made the enemies of the Lord show utter contempt, the son born to you will die. (2 Sam. 12:14)

IT HAS BEEN SAID, “Live in such a way that you would not be afraid to sell your pet parrot to the town gossip.” King David may not have owned a parrot, but word of his affair with Bathsheba and his murder of Uriah slipped out and spread near and far. When the Lord’s enemies heard the news, they showed utter contempt (2 Sam. 12:14).

When I was a young pastor of the only Bible-believing church in a small town, it was obvious that the community was keeping a close eye on our congregation. Would our walk support our talk?

One day two members of our youth group told me with great sorrow that they had been having sexual relations and the girl was pregnant. They wanted to get married, but recognized they had sinned against the Lord and sullied the church’s testimony. They said they had asked the Lord for forgiveness.

I advised them to confess their sin to their parents and to the entire church.

Soon they appeared before the church membership, confessed their wrongdoing, and asked for forgiveness. Their humble actions told the community loudly and clearly that sin pays bitter wages. Their actions also stopped the community from ridiculing the church’s testimony.

Sin should be confessed, not covered.

Keep close accounts with God!

Jim Dyet was born in Scotland and grew up in Canada. Married fifty-eight years, he and his wife Gloria live in Colorado Springs, where Jim enjoys golf and daily walks with their dogs.

© 2018 Wesleyan Publishing House. Reprinted from Light from the Word. Used by permission.