Then he said to David, ‘You are right, and I am wrong. You have been so good to me, while I have done such wrong to you! Today you have shown how good you are to me, because you did not kill me, even though the Lord put me in your power. How often does someone catch an enemy and then let him get away unharmed? The Lord bless you for what you have done to me today! Now I am sure that you will be king of Israel and that the kingdom will continue under your rule.’ (verses 17-20)
Read 1 Samuel 24:1-22
The farmer was dead. Brutally shot, his home looted and burned. His wife stunned, numb in shock with the horror of a beloved life taken, a life reduced to rubble. On TV came her opportunity to publicly even the score. But, dismissing vengeful acts, she said, ‘What would be attained by my not forgiving the perpetrators?’
Today we meet David, who had been given the opportunity to blow Saul off the face of the earth, to get rid of the one who had wronged him, once and for all. But David chose a better way. In love he continued to honour Saul. Even Saul was amazed: ‘How often does a man catch his enemy and let him get away unharmed?’ David refused to believe that God wanted him to use this situation for his own advantage.
Saul pushed his luck to the furthest. He asked David to be good to his descendants. Throughout his life David honoured that promise. Wow!
God is good to you too beyond what you deserve. Instead of taking revenge on you, he forgives you.
Lord, I was once your enemy. I nailed you to a tree. Help me always to seize the opportunity to forgive and serve others in generous love. Amen.
by Eunice Freiberg in ‘Renewed Hope for each Day’ (LCA, Openbook, 2000)
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