Proverbs 28:9 – The prayer God refuses to hear

david_bathshebaReaders familiar with the life of King David are well aware of his transgression with Bathsheba, the wife of Uriah (2 Samuel 11).  David’s army was deployed to war; however, the king had foolishly stayed behind in the comfort of his palace. With his advisors away from the capital and his heart and conscience seared to the presence of God, David wandered aimlessly to the roof of his palace and spied beautiful Bathsheba bathing. One of David’s household servants courageously informed the king the woman he desired was the daughter of Eliam, a trusted warrior (2 Samuel 23:34) and wife of Uriah, one of David’s mighty men (2 Samuel 23:39).

David’s adultery with Bathsheba, his futile attempt to hide his sin and command to sacrifice Uriah’s life on the battlefield (2 Samuel 23:6-21) is one of the great tragedies of the scriptures. To conceal his adultery after Uriah’s death, David took Bathsheba as his wife and anticipated the birth of his son born of their adultery (2 Samuel 11:27). His plot to cover his sin appeared successful, with one exception; we read: “…But the thing David had done displeased the Lord” (2 Samuel 11:27). Perhaps Solomon had in mind his father’s waywardness and season of futile prayers when he wrote Proverbs 28:9.David and the prophet Nathan

Proverbs 28:9“He that turneth away [depart; remove; turn aside; avoid] his ear from hearing [hearkening; understanding; obeying] the law [statutes & precepts of God], even his prayer [supplication; intercession] shall be abomination [loathsome; detestable; repugnant].”

David maintained his outward appearance as king and arbitrator of justice in matters of the law until the prophet Nathan unmasked his spiritual charade in the king’s own court (2 Samuel 12:1-12). Hearing the dreaded judgment of God on his household, David humbled himself and confessed his sin (2 Samuel 12:13a); however, the consequences of his sin followed him the rest of his life (2 Samuel 12:13b-18a).

David describes his spiritual, physical and emotional plight following his sin in Psalm 32.

Psalm 32:3-4When I kept silence, my bones waxed old through my roaring all the day long. 4  For day and night thy hand was heavy upon me: my moisture is turned into the drought of summer.”

How many reading this devotional are harboring unconfessed sin and living in the way of spiritual futility? You pray, but God does not hear your prayers (Psalm 66:18; Proverbs 15:8). You keep up appearances–go to church, serve in a position of ministry; however, your soul is as dry as a desert lakebed.

Confess your sinYou do not have to stay there, but you must be sincere and transparent before God to know the refreshing joy of His forgiveness. Will you not pause now, reflect on God’s mercy, confess your sin and ask His forgiveness?

Psalm 32:5 – “I acknowledged my sin unto thee, and mine iniquity have I not hid. I said, I will confess my transgressions unto the LORD; and thou forgavest the iniquity of my sin. Selah.”