2 Samuel 1-4: Showing restraint

In these chapters I see the beginning of the rise of King David’s reign.  Saul and his son Jonathan died in battle.

The soldier who killed Saul brought the news to David personally.  Was Saul’s hatred for David so famous that everyone in the area knew about it?  Did the soldier expect David to praise him for killing his enemy?  If so, he was mistaken.  David had Saul’s killer killed.

Later, when two brothers murdered Saul’s son Ishbosheth, who was Israel’s king (David was the king of Judah — the tribes had divided into two kingdoms), David had them killed as well.

David took the Lord’s ordination of a leader very seriously.  Even when he could have taken the matter into his own hands and killed Saul — who was actively trying to kill him — David showed restraint and trust in God to take care of his safety.  David showed no qualms about killing the Philistines or other enemies in war…but he would not allow a leader appointed by God to be killed without punishment.

There’s a lot I can learn from David.  I have a tendency to over-react…restraint is not exactly one of my character traits!  My biggest sins are committed by my mouth.  I say I forgive, but then I speak of it again.  Or I lash out in anger when I am frustrated, saying things that do not build up and honor others.  I’ve also been known to say negative things about myself, wallowing in self pity — all of which deny the fact that I AM redeemed and made new by the blood of Christ.  I need to stop doing that.

I saw a facebook prayer today that said:

Lord, make my mouth smaller so my foot won’t fit in it.”

Amen to that!

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