"And it came to pass in an evening-tide, that David arose from
off his bed, and walked upon the roof of the king's house."
--2 Samuel 11:2
At that hour David saw Bathsheba. We are never out of the
reach of temptation. Both at home and abroad we are liable to
meet with allurements to evil; the morning opens with peril, and
the shades of evening find us still in jeopardy. They are well
kept whom God keeps, but woe unto those who go forth into the
world, or even dare to walk their own house unarmed. Those who
think themselves secure are more exposed to danger than any
others. The armour-bearer of Sin is Self-confidence.
David should have been engaged in fighting the Lord's
battles, instead of which he tarried at Jerusalem, and gave
himself up to luxurious repose, for he arose from his bed at
eventide. Idleness and luxury are the devil's jackals, and find
him abundant prey. In stagnant waters noxious creatures swarm,
and neglected soil soon yields a dense tangle of weeds and
briars. Oh for the constraining love of Jesus to keep us active
and useful! When I see the King of Israel sluggishly leaving his
couch at the close of the day, and falling at once into
temptation, let me take warning, and set holy watchfulness to
guard the door.
Is it possible that the king had mounted his housetop for
retirement and devotion? If so, what a caution is given us to
count no place, however secret, a sanctuary from sin! While our
hearts are so like a tinder-box, and sparks so plentiful, we had
need use all diligence in all places to prevent a blaze. Satan
can climb housetops, and enter closets, and even if we could
shut out that foul fiend, our own corruptions are enough to
work our ruin unless grace prevent. Reader, beware of evening
temptations. Be not secure. The sun is down but sin is up. We
need a watchman for the night as well as a guardian for the day.
O blessed Spirit, keep us from all evil this night. Amen.