I see things. I hear things. All around me. All the time. At home. At work. At church. In the neighborhood. In the family. In the newspaper. On the television. On the radio. On the Internet. Wherever people are, I see and hear things. I’m just a little more aware than your average bear.
My keen observations reveal to me precisely when people are not thinking and acting biblically. I can see the wrinkles and faults and failures of others from a long country mile away. Not much escapes these hawk eyes. If sin stirs the grass, I can see it; I can hear it.
It’s like the story that Nathan told King David is being lived out every day everywhere. It is the world, in a nutshell. Remember the story: “There were two men in one city, one rich and the other poor. The rich man had exceedingly many flocks and herds. But the poor man had nothing, except one little ewe lamb which he had bought and nourished; and it grew up together with him and with his children. It ate of his own food and drank from his own cup and lay in his bosom; and it was like a daughter to him. And a traveler came to the rich man, who refused to take from his own flock and from his own herd to prepare one for the wayfaring man who had come to him; but he took the poor man’s lamb and prepared it for the man who had come to him.” (2 Sam 12:1-4)
That is what I’m talking about: selfish, self-centered, self-serving sinners all around me! “Lovers of themselves, lovers of money, boasters, proud, blasphemers, disobedient to parents, unthankful, unholy, unloving, unforgiving, slanderers, without self-control, brutal, despisers of good, traitors, headstrong, haughty, lovers of pleasure rather than lovers of God…” (2 Tim 3:2-4) And so on and so on. I see it; I hear it, why I can even smell it! It reeks!
I am so with King David when told what that rich stinking sinner did to the poor man and his innocent lamb. “As the Lord lives, the man who has done this shall surely die! And he shall restore fourfold for the lamb, because he did this thing and because he had no pity.” (vs. 5, 6) That sounds good to me. I am sick of seeing and hearing and smelling the stench of people and all their callous sin. I want justice! I want righteousness!
Then Nathan pointed his finger and said to David, “You are the man!” (v. 7)
Nathan still points down through the centuries to the one who is more aware than your average bear. To the one who sits like a hawk high on his perch watching, listening and sniffing at the wind: Seeing nothing, hearing nothing, smelling nothing of the sin in and upon himself. Nathan points to the one who is satisfied to compare himself to other people rather than to God where he would sure to be found woeful and wanting. When David stood facing Nathan’s pointing finger, he responded in this way, “I have sinned against the Lord.” (v. 13)
As I face the same truth how shall I respond? Shall I say, “God, I thank You that I am not like other men…” Or do I lower my eyes and beat my breast and plead, “God, be merciful to me a sinner!” (Luke 18:11, 13)