What do you sense the Lord saying to you in this passage?

“Tamar lived in her brother Absalom’s house, a devastated woman.” (2 Samuel 13:20)
Sin is not just about the bad things we do, but the devastation we cause.
Every selfish action has a devastating impact on others, whether we realize it or not.
We need to FEEL both the horror of Ammon’s sin and of Tamar’s desolation.
We need to be sickened by the devastation still happening all over the world.
Every sin causes devastation and a ripple effect of consequences.
Multiply this for every person ever, and we see why the world is such a mess.
Do we really appreciate how serious sin is, and how horrible its effects are?
Do I feel how others are hurt by things I did or didn’t do?
Forgiveness is not all we need, we need rescue from sin’s bondage and misery.
We need to feel the awful truth of sin, and how desperate we are in it.
God knows every Tamar, and is devastated for them, with them, like them.
This is what the cross shows: how bad sin is, and how far God goes to help us.
Every Good Friday we see in Jesus’s suffering the devastation of all humanity.
God hates the devastation of sin, and God is devastated in order to set us free!
Lord, we cannot appreciate Your sacrifice until we realize the horrible devastation of sin. Force me to watch the crucifixion, that I may see what sin does… but also what love does!


  1. Sin festers – like a rotten apple in a basket – the rot spreads. Evil thoughts and intents leading to sinful action. Sin is already in the thought – as Jesus clearly indicates – committing adultery when looking lustfully! Lord, help me control my thoughts – let me not go down the thought trails that lead to no good. As the song goes: Oh be careful little eyes what you see – add Oh be careful little mind what you think! Consider also the advice – Ammon’s advisor fueled the flame – encouraging/enabling Ammon to act on his fantasy. So I need to be a careful influencers – helping those I have the privilege of advising/befriending – to seek what is good and right!

  2. Do I want helpers like Joab who look out for me and arrange for wise counsel? How would one look out for the treachery he later caused? Your forgiveness is embodied in how David forgave Absalom but he raised the nation in rebellion against his father! What about Tamar’s devastation? Even after being raped she wished to make things right by law, but she lived a half-life in her brother’s home. Thank you God for including the horror in with the celebration and hope, so we can appreciate what you’ve done for us.

  3. The effects of sin are far reaching upon people, destroying the lives we live. It changes who we are and what we do. Only the King can set it right again. I can not. I need to live for Jesus and not for myself. All for Him and walking in His way and not my way. May His Spirit continue to lead me and guide me each day anew as I live this day in His presence.

    When we walk with the Lord in the light of his Word
    What a glory he sheds on our way!
    While we do his good will, he abides with us still,
    And with all who will trust and obey.

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