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Repay Me With Good

Daily Reading: 2 Samuel 16


Scripture Focus: It may be that the Lord will look on the wrong done to me, and that the Lord will repay me with good for his cursing today. (2 Samuel 16.12)


Devotional Thought: The mayor of Bethel, Ohio, is a friend of mine. He attends a sister church in our community. We sing in the community choir together. I know that he has had to make decisions unpopular with some members of the community, but I was quite surprised last fall when he was running for reelection in our little town. His opponents came out swinging. I would think that people would be grateful for anybody willing to take that responsibility. But, the negative things that were said, the misrepresentations that were advanced, were hurtful. I thought, “What a thankless job! I wouldn’t take that kind of abuse!” I was impressed with the mayor’s spirit, however. He was not hateful. He was not vindictive. He simply pursued the office he felt compelled to fulfill.


David had to go through verbal abuse as a leader. Shimei confronted David and cursed him as a man of blood, a usurper, and a worthless man. Shimei illustrated what one person told me: “It’s easy to throw rocks at the people in charge!" One of David’s generals sought permission to kill Shimei, but David would not allow it. He responded that he would rather trust in the Lord to right this wrong.


Have you ever been wronged? Of course! We all have. Perhaps you have even been cursed. Where should we turn when we are made to feel worthless by our adversaries? Or worse yet, when the Shimeis – our own countrymen – defame us? It’s so tempting to take the matter in our own hands, but the Bible teaches us: “Do not repay evil for evil or reviling for reviling, but on the contrary, bless, for to this you were called, that you may obtain a blessing” (1 Peter 3.9).


Prayer: O Lord, help me to heed the words of Paul in Romans 12.20: "If your enemy is hungry, feed him; if he is thirsty, give him something to drink; for by so doing you will heap burning coals on his head." In the face of abuse, may I show love in the name of Christ. Amen.


Psalm of the Day: Psalm 104.24-35

24 O Lord, how manifold are your works! In wisdom have you made them all; the earth is full of your creatures. 25 Here is the sea, great and wide, which teems with creatures innumerable, living things both small and great. 26 There go the ships, and Leviathan, which you formed to play in it.

27 These all look to you, to give them their food in due season. 28 When you give it to them, they gather it up; when you open your hand, they are filled with good things. 29 When you hide your face, they are dismayed; when you take away their breath, they die and return to their dust. 30 When you send forth your Spirit, they are created, and you renew the face of the ground.

31 May the glory of the Lord endure forever; may the Lord rejoice in his works, 32 who looks on the earth and it trembles, who touches the mountains and they smoke! 33 I will sing to the Lord as long as I live; I will sing praise to my God while I have being. 34 May my meditation be pleasing to him, for I rejoice in the Lord. 35 Let sinners be consumed from the earth, and let the wicked be no more! Bless the Lord, O my soul! Praise the Lord!



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