2 Samuel 12

Talks for Growing Christians

Nathan the Prophet Confronts David

2 Samuel 12

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Lesson Number 12

Background Notes

Doctrinal Point(s)

  1. There are consequences to sin that is forgiven.
  2. There is hope for infants who die.

Practical Application

  1. You’ve got to move on!


  1. In what way does this chapter mark a transition point in David’s life?
  2. What insight do we gain from Psalms 32 and 51?
  3. Summarize the story that Nathan told David. What was David’s response?
  4. List the fourfold consequences for David’s sin.
  5. Can 2 Samuel 12:23 be used as a proof-text that children who die before the age of accountability go to heaven?


  1. From this point on, for the rest of David’s days, he suffered the consequences of his terrible sins.
  2. We see that David’s conscience was overwhelmed by guilt, and the hand of the Lord was heavy upon him.
  3. Nathan, the prophet, presented David with an account of a rich man who had many sheep, but robbed a poor man of his one little lamb in order to kill it for a meal. David at first believed it was a real case and was very angry.
  4. 1) The sword would never depart from David’s house. This is seen in the violent deaths of David’s sons, Amnon and Absalom.
    2) Absalom, David’s son, would usurp the throne.
    3) David’s wives would be taken from him and violated publicly.
    4) David and Bathsheba’s child would die.
  5. Probably so. When David said, “I shall go to the child,” he probably meant that he would join the child in heaven. Matthew 19:14 also supports this position.


  1. Discuss the principle “There are consequences to sin that is forgiven.” When we confess our sin, our forgiveness is sure and complete (1 John 1:9). But we might still have consequences from our sin in this lifetime. Have you seen this to be true?
  2. David was diligent in fasting and prayer while there still was hope of a changed outcome. Look at verses 22-23. When the outcome was complete, David graciously accepted it as God’s will and worshipped Him. This is an amazing attitude! Discuss how we oftentimes approach similar issues in a backwards way. How can you apply David’s example to your life?


  1. Are you guilty of a grievous sin like David? Confess your sin. Get restored to fellowship with the Lord. Face the consequences of your forgiven sin. Let the Lord pick up the pieces. And move on in life!

Key Verses

  • “Then Nathan said to David, ‘You are the man!’” 2 Samuel 12:7
  • “Now therefore, the sword shall never depart from your house, because you have despised Me, and have taken the wife of Uriah the Hittite to be your wife.” 2 Samuel 12:10
  • “So David arose from the ground, washed and anointed himself, and changed his clothes; and he went into the house of the LORD and worshiped.” 2 Samuel 12:20

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