The Root Issue of Sin

II Samuel 12 relates how Nathan the prophet boldly confronted King David after his adultery with Bathsheba. In :10 he tells the king: “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.” The words here, “because you have despised Me” are key, for here we discover the real issue involved in David’s sin.

The root issue here was not lust, or adultery, or even murder, or any other sin. The heart issue of all sin is despising God, so that we ignore His commands — whatever they are in our particular case. Jesus said, “If you love Me, you will keep My commandments.” (John 14:15) There He teaches us that obedience springs out of our love relationship with God. If we love Him, we will obey Him. Thus we also understand that the opposite is true: when we disobey Him, it is because we did NOT love Him. So the heart of our disobedience — whatever form it takes — is not merely that particular sin. Where we really missed the mark was in not loving God as we should have; in not finding our joy in Him instead of in the sin we thought would fulfill us; in not considering Him to be our highest good, and ordering our lives accordingly.

Our sin takes many forms, but its root is all the same: NOT loving God. Every other sin stems from the breaking of the Great Commandment: to love God with all our our heart and soul and mind and might. Whatever your particular sin is, it can be said to you, like Nathan did to David, it is “because you have despised Me.”

About Shawn Thomas

My blog,, provides brief devotions from own personal daily Bible reading, as well as some of my sermons, book reviews, and family life experiences.
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