But the king said, “What does this have to do with you, you sons of Zeruiah? If he is cursing because the LORD said to him, ‘Curse David,’ who can ask, ‘Why do you do this?’ ” 2 Samuel 16:10
Taking offense at what someone says is a very common reaction among many people. People do not like when someone else says something negative to them or about them.
In the process of taking offense, it is common to say or do something back to the person. When a person curses or bad-mouths another person, the common reaction is to curse or bad-mouth him right back. Some will resort to physical fighting or injury. Those with money, will take the person to court suing him for defamation of name or character.
While many think that this is just common among children, it is also very common among adults.
As David was traveling along, a man, from Saul’s family line, came out and started throwing rocks towards David and cursing him. Some of David’s men wanted to kill the man for his disrespect towards David. Yet, David turned away from the man and said leave him alone. He said that the man may have been speaking upon the command of God. He would not take offense against the man for his actions or words.
The action that David said, was what Jesus had said years later, to love one’s enemy and not curse them and to turn the cheek when struck.
Some believers are very quick, as the world is, to take offense and strike back when cursed. They want to sue the enemy or fellow believer who did them wrong. This is not showing the love of God to their enemies, but the hateful heart of this world.
If someone is cursing you, God could be using that person to build some character in your life. Teaching you to turn the other cheek or to love the enemy.
How you react will show what type of person you are. You can stoop down to the world’s ways and take offense, striking back, or you can be the bigger person, like Jesus, and love the person, ignoring the remarks or actions.
Taking the time to take offense does not help anyone. It is only wasting time on some small event, that will quickly pass.
Take time today to show love and not take offense at someone’s words or actions towards you.
I pray today that you will know God’s love for you and your enemies; that God will strengthen you to turn the other cheek; that God will strengthen you to make the right choice in dealing with the enemy; and that the world will see God’s love in you.
He said to his men, “The LORD forbid that I should do such a thing to my master, the LORD’s anointed, or lay my hand on him; for he is the anointed of the LORD.” 1 Samuel 24:6
Showing disrespect for someone else is a common sight to be seen or heard among most people. This will occur even more, when the person is not liked really well.
In the name of freedom of speech, people will say things that will disrespect a leader, regardless of who the leader is or what his position is. Although it happens in all areas of life, one of the more common areas that people show disrespect to is the government leaders. People are very quick to cut down and condemn a leader because of some stand he has. They will show no respect for the position.
David was being chased by King Saul, who had been anointed by God to be the leader of Israel. He was hated by Saul. At one point Saul was in a cave and David snuck in and cut a corner of his robe off. Immediately David felt remorse for what he had done. He realized that he had disrespected God’s anointed leader and was wrong.
Every leader on this earth is appointed by God. No one can become a leader without His hand in it. This includes those ‘bad’ leaders. Believers are to love every person just as God loves them. This also includes those ‘bad’ leaders. In showing love, they will not disrespect the person or his position.
A believer may not agree with the person, but still needs to love the person with God’s true love. God will not disrespect anyone, but shows a caring, loving heart towards all.
Talking bad about a person is showing disrespect, just as David cut off a portion of Saul’s robe showed disrespect.
Take a moment to think about how you treat others and those in leadership. What words are you speaking? Do those words build up or tear down a person? Are they condemning or building up?
Work to show God’s love to every person, regardless of their position or ideologies. You may not agree with a person, but you can still love and respect the person.
God put them in that position for a reason. Allow God to show His love and light into their lives, rather than just condemnation and disrespect.
I pray today that you will know God’s true love for all people; that God will show you where love is needed; that your love for God will strengthen you to not disrespect others; and that your love will be a witness of who God is.
But Samuel replied: “Does the LORD delight in burnt offerings and sacrifices as much as in obeying the LORD? To obey is better than sacrifice, and to heed is better than the fat of rams.” 1 Samuel 15:22
Obedience is something that most people find difficult to do. Wanting to do their own thing, the majority of people choose not to be obedient. They want to twist or bend the rules to their own favor. People want to do their own thing, their own way, in their own time. It is about self, not about God or others.
Saul had been told to completely destroy all of the people and animals of the Amalekites as he and his army went to battle against them. Instead of destroying everyone and everything, the men kept some of the animals for a sacrifice. Saul thought it would be good to keep those animals to be able to offer a great sacrifice to God. However, that was not what God had commanded him to do.
Although most people do not like to sacrifice anything, they will quickly sacrifice something rather than obey. In churches there are people who will donate a lot of money to the church or organizations or they will offer help in some ministry on a regular basis. Yet, at home or work, they do not live for God or obey His commands on purpose. They feel that their large offerings cover up their sins and puts them in right standing with God.
God does not want sacrifice if there is no obedience. In this case, sacrifice is trying to earn one’s way into heaven, rather than trusting Jesus for salvation. Believers are to obey everything God says and trust what He says first. Once the obedience occurs, then sacrifices can be done to worship and honor God.
Take a look at your own life and see how well you are doing at obeying what God has told you to do. God is interested in you obeying His every word, His word in little things as well as in the great things.
If there is no obedience, there is no love. Jesus said that if you love Him, you would obey Him. Love is greater than any sacrifice.
Once you love and obey God, then you may do the sacrifices as God leads you. Not the other way around.
Are you obeying God today?
I pray today that you will know God’s commands for your life; that you will obey what God tells you to do; that you will trust everything God tells you; and that your heart and life will obey God first before any sacrifice.