That night, the Bible says, "the word of the LORD came to Nathan, saying, 'Go and tell David my servant, Thus saith the LORD, Thou shalt not build me an house to dwell in'." (2 Chron. 17:3-4) God did not want David to build the house because David had shed too much blood. (2 Chron. 22:7-8) So, Nathan was wrong. He spoke too soon. He told David what he thought God wanted, but did not ask God about it first.
Have you ever done that? Have you done things or said things that you thought would be God's will, but it turned out to be against His will? Have you ever heard a preacher do that? Here are just a few observations we can make from this account.
1. Just because a man is wrong on one point, it does not mean that he is wrong on every point. Nathan was still the prophet of God, even after this mistake. Just because a man of God makes a false statement, it does not mean that all he says and does is false. We often will not hear others if they do not agree %100 with us. If we only listen to people who are exactly like us, we will not learn much.
2. God can use whomever He wants to use to get His work done. If you read on in this account, you will learn that God allowed Solomon, David's son, to build His house. Solomon was not exactly the model Christian. Although he was the wisest man ever to live, apart from Jesus Christ, he was ensnared by the cares of this world. None of us are any different. If a man had to be perfect to be useful to God, He would not be able to use any of us.
3. When you mess up, get up and go on! David did not waste any time sitting around the kingdom pouting because God would not let him build His house. Nathan did not get mad at God and quit because God did not want what Nathan thought He would want. When God says, "No," to what we desire, we need to accept it and go on. When we say something or do something we should not do, we need to seek forgiveness, put it under the blood of Christ, and go on for God.
4. Look for the blessings of God and praise Him for His goodness. After Nathan told David that he could not build the house, he went on to tell David how God was going to bless David's family and his kingdom. David then worshipped the Lord in prayer. He acknowledged that he was a servant of the Lord and he accepted God's will with joy. (read 2 Sam. 7:18-29)
Remember that God has a plan and we would do well to follow HIM.
Not as though I had already attained, either were already perfect: but I follow after, if that I may apprehend that for which also I am apprehended of Christ Jesus. Brethren, I count not myself to have apprehended: but this one thing I do, forgetting those things which are behind, and reaching forth unto those things which are before, I press toward the mark for the prize of the high calling of God in Christ Jesus. Philippians 3:12-14