Our Daily Bread 4th August 2020 Devotional – God’s Mercy At Work
TODAY’S TOPIC: GOD’S MERCY AT WORK
Bible in a Year: Psalms 66–67; Romans 7
Key Verse: May the Lord judge between you and me. – 1 Samuel 24:12
Today’s Scripture: 1 Samuel 24:1–10 (NIV)
1 [a]After Saul returned from pursuing the Philistines, he was told, “David is in the Desert of En Gedi.” 2 So Saul took three thousand able young men from all Israel and set out to look for David and his men near the Crags of the Wild Goats.
3 He came to the sheep pens along the way; a cave was there, and Saul went in to relieve himself. David and his men were far back in the cave. 4 The men said, “This is the day the Lord spoke of when he said[b] to you, ‘I will give your enemy into your hands for you to deal with as you wish.’” Then David crept up unnoticed and cut off a corner of Saul’s robe.
5 Afterward, David was conscience-stricken for having cut off a corner of his robe. 6 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.” 7 With these words David sharply rebuked his men and did not allow them to attack Saul. And Saul left the cave and went his way.
8 Then David went out of the cave and called out to Saul, “My lord the king!” When Saul looked behind him, David bowed down and prostrated himself with his face to the ground. 9 He said to Saul, “Why do you listen when men say, ‘David is bent on harming you’? 10 This day you have seen with your own eyes how the Lord delivered you into my hands in the cave. Some urged me to kill you, but I spared you; I said, ‘I will not lay my hand on my lord, because he is the Lord’s anointed.’
Insight: Our Daily Bread 4th August 2020 Devotional
Twice David spared King Saul’s life—first as recorded in 1 Samuel 24:1–10 and again as described in 1 Samuel 26. The setting in 1 Samuel 24 is a large cave in the wilderness of En Gedi. This cave is one among many in the region, some large enough to hold thousands. Saul and his soldiers were pursuing David with the intent of killing him when Saul stopped to relieve himself in the very cave where David and his six hundred men were hiding. In chapter 26, Saul continues to pursue David. Once again, David is close enough to kill Saul but shows him the mercy that Saul lacks.
Message: Our Daily Bread 4th August 2020 Devotional
My anger percolated when a woman mistreated me, blamed me, and gossiped about me. I wanted everyone to know what she’d done—wanted her to suffer as I’d suffered because of her behavior. I steamed with resentment until a headache pierced my temples. But as I began praying for my pain to go away, the Holy Spirit convicted me. How could I plot revenge while begging God for relief? If I believed He would care for me, why wouldn’t I trust Him to handle this situation? Knowing that people who are hurting often hurt other people, I asked God to help me forgive the woman and work toward reconciliation.
The psalmist David understood the difficulty of trusting God while enduring unfair treatment. Though David did his best to be a loving servant, King Saul succumbed to jealousy and wanted to murder him (1 Samuel 24:1–2). David suffered while God worked things out and prepared him to take the throne, but still he chose to honor God instead of seeking revenge (vv. 3–7). He did his part to reconcile with Saul and left the results in God’s hands (vv. 8–22).
When it seems others are getting away with wrongdoing, we struggle with the injustice. But with God’s mercy at work in our hearts and the hearts of others, we can forgive as He’s forgiven us and receive the blessings He’s prepared for us. By: Xochitl Dixon
Reflect: How can trusting that God is perfect, loving, good, and in control help you when sin seems to be prevailing? Who do you need to forgive and place in God’s mighty and merciful hands?
Today’s Prayer: Merciful God, please help me trust You to determine how justice prevails.
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