Conquer evil by doing good

I read in the first three chapters of 2 Samuel that David mourned the loss of Saul and Jonathan, that David was publicly crowned as king at last; he was anointed as king by Samuel years earlier and that there were lots of different battles which I can’t quite get my head around!

The opening story of a man who arrives to see David is interesting. This man claims to have killed Saul, although we read in 1 Samuel, that Saul finished himself off on his own sword. This man appears to think that he might find favour for his actions, but David is not impressed and has him executed for killing God’s appointed king. The daft thing is the man lied about killing Saul and died as a consequence. The amazing thing is that in spite of the fact that Saul had been trying to kill David, David kept his respect for Saul’s position, given to him by God. I guess this is a real challenge for us today when we look at our leaders and we are tempted to be angry or despairing of them. I guess we need to maintain respect for the positions they hold, that’s the government, our bosses and I guess our church leaders.

I am also reminded of what Jesus said about loving our enemies. Saul was clearly David’s enemy; you can’t get much worse than someone wanting to kill you, but David respected his position, encouraged the nation to mourn his loss and even wrote a beautiful song for Saul and his son, Jonathan ( 2 Samuel 1:19-27). Now, that’s an example to follow. No wonder he was known as ‘a man after God’s own heart’.

Jesus said:

“Listen, all of you. Love your enemies. Do good to those who hate you. Pray for the happiness of those who curse you; implore God’s blessing on those who hurt you”

(Luke 6:27-28)

And in Romans 12:19-21, it says:

‘Dear friends, never avenge yourselves. Leave that to God, for he has said that he will repay those who deserve it. (Don’t take the law into your own hands). Instead, feed your enemy if he is hungry. If he is thirsty give him something to drink and you will be “heaping coals of fire on his head”. In other words, he will feel ashamed of himself for what he has done to you. Don’t let evil get the upper hand but conquer evil by doing good’

Jo


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