Weeping Even When Wronged

Krista Williams

Day: 32 | Plan: 1-2 Samuel

Today’s Reading: 2 Samuel 1

2 Samuel 1:12 (NIV) “They mourned and wept and fasted till evening for Saul and his son Jonathan, and for the army of the LORD and for the nation of Israel, because they had fallen by the sword.”

Are you tempted to rejoice when tragedy strikes those who have wronged you? Does their sorrow bring you relief or even make you smile a little? Most of us have experienced this reaction before when offended. However, we find a different response from David in today’s lesson. 

As we open to 2 Samuel 1 we find David mourning over the news of Saul and Jonathan’s deaths. He truly weeps and mourns. Not just for his friend, Jonathan, but for Saul as well.

The prophet Samuel had already announced that Saul’s doom and death were sure. But David, like God, found no pleasure in the death of the wicked. (Ezekiel 18:20-23, 32)

In fact, David continued to show great honor and respect for Saul after his death. David’s tears communicate he valued Saul’s life, even though Saul sought to harm him.

As we continue reading this chapter, we discover David wrote and recorded a lament for the people of Judah to learn. A lament is an expression of thoughtful grief or structured sorrow that can be written, read or recited. It’s a self-conscious, deeply reflective expression where our thoughts and words meet with God’s miraculous power to help heal our hearts, our sorrows and our wounds.

David honored Saul in spite of all the harm and distress Saul inflicted upon him. Reading this lament, we find David had only good things to say about Saul. He was generous and celebrated the praiseworthy character traits in Saul. David praised Saul for being a mighty warrior who was brave, bold, swift and strong. 

David’s reply toward Saul in life and death was tender, heartfelt, forgiving and gracious. It points us to the grace and forgiveness of Jesus Christ towards sinners. And David’s humble reaction reminds me of the sufficiency of God’s grace to handle the difficult people in my life.

Jesus knows the pain inflicted by hurtful taunts, rejection and murderous threats. And His example causes me to say, Lord Jesus, help me respond with Your grace and forgiveness … even when I encounter suffering at the hands of others.

Prayer: Oh Lord, I want Your grace to prevail in my life and my relationships. Break my heart with the things that break Yours. Show me where my heart is hardening under the power of bitterness … convict me when I long to respond in the flesh … and work Your forgiveness out in me. Keep me sensitive to Your Holy Spirit and give me wisdom through Your Word. Renew and guard my heart and mind. Lord, help me take captive every wrong emotion and enable me to respond to those I encounter today with Your forgiveness and grace. In Jesus’ name, amen.

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