Category Archives: Anger

Joy Thief!

August 29, 2017

Scripture Reading – 1 Chronicles 15-19

I discussed in an earlier commentary the well-meaning desire of David to move the Ark of God to Jerusalem.   The employment of an ox drawn cart for that purpose; however, was a violation of God’s command and ended in tragedy when Uzza touched the Ark to steady it (Numbers 13:9-10).  David’s first response to God striking down Uzza is insightful– “David was displeased [angry; grieved], because the LORD had made a breach upon Uzza” (13:11).  David’s anger was soon followed by a righteous response, “David was afraid [reverential fear; in awe] of God that day” (13:12).

Our scripture reading begins with David’s second attempt to move the Ark of God to Jerusalem; however, this time he was wiser and made sure the Ark would be transported as God directed (1 Chronicles 15).

1 Chronicles 15:2 – Then David said, None ought to carry the ark of God but the Levites: for them hath the LORD chosen to carry the ark of God, and to minister unto him for ever.

Knowing the Ark represented the presence of the LORD in Israel, David commanded the elders of the tribe of Levi to “sanctify yourselves…that ye may bring up the Ark of the LORD God of Israel” (15:12).   Skilled singers and musicians led the celebration as the Ark was carried to Jerusalem (15:16-24).

With the Ark of God in the place David had prepared, the shepherd king and poet delivered to “Asaph and his brethren” a psalm of praise and thanksgiving (1 Chronicles 16:7-36).  When the celebration ended, David entrusted the daily ministry of worship and sacrifices to “Asaph and his brethren” (16:37-42).  With his heart filled with joy, “David returned to bless his house” (16:43).

1 Chronicles 17 introduces us to the prophet Nathan who will have a major role in David’s life and reign in the years ahead.   No doubt in a reflective mood in the comfort of his palace, David’s thoughts turned to building a temple for Israel to come to Jerusalem and worship the LORD (1 Chronicles 17:1-9).  Nathan gave his blessing to David’s desire (17:2); however, that same night the LORD revealed to the prophet that the king would not be permitted to build a temple; however, his son and successor would build a temple (17:3-12).

We find two covenant promises expressed to David in 1 Chronicles 17.  The first, that God would bless David, subduing his enemies and establishing his lineage on Israel’s throne forever (17:7-11).   The second promise, that David’s son and successor would not only build a house of worship to the LORD, but his throne “shall be established for evermore” (17:14); a promise fulfilled in the Messiah Jesus Christ.  The balance of 1 Chronicles 17 is a record of David’s praise and thanksgiving for God’s covenant promises (17:16-27).

1 Chronicles 18 memorializes David’s battles and the spoils of victory.

Acting as a statesman on behalf of Israel, David sent ambassadors from Israel to the Ammonites to express his sympathy to Hanun who succeeded to the throne of Ammon after his father’s death (19:1-2).   Younger counselors (“princes of the children of Ammon”) convinced the new king David’s ambassadors had come as spies (19:3).   In an act of provacation, Hanun shamed David’s servants shaving their beards and cutting off their robes to humiliate them, David and Israel (19:4).

Realizing their ill-treatment of David’s delegation was an offense, Hanun hired Syrian mercenaries to wage war with Ammon against Israel (19:6-7).  David sent Joab, his veteran general, to battle against the Ammonites and the Syrian mercenaries fled from Israel’s army (19:8-14).   When the Ammonites realized the Syrians had abandoned the battle they also fled from Israel’s army (19:15-17).   Receiving news from the battlefront, David personally led the armies against Syria (19:18-19).

In closing, permit me to draw your attention to 1 Chronicles 15 and an incident recorded at the close of the day of rejoicing when the Ark of the God arrived in Jerusalem.  While David and all Israel celebrated the arrival of the Ark, there was one contrary spirit…David’s wife (1 Chronicles 15:19; 2 Samuel 6:15-16, 20-23).  We read:

1 Chronicles 15:29 – “And it came to pass, as the ark of the covenant of the LORD came to the city of David, that Michal the daughter of Saul looking out at a window saw king David dancing [leaping for joy] and playing [rejoicing]: and she despised [had contempt; distain] him in her heart [mind and thoughts].”

David returned to the palace rejoicing, desiring to bless his home; however, he was greeted by a bitter wife who mocked and reproved him (2 Samuel 6:20).  The catalyst for Michal’s resentment in the hour of David’s joy is not stated; however, she may have resented David criticizing her father’s neglect of the Ark (1 Chronicles 13:3).

Friend, after 38 years of ministry I have learned some in the midst of the saints will not share my times of joy, rejoicing or vision irrespective of the evidences of God’s providences, blessings and leading.  Some will harbor a root of bitterness and poison others with their venom (Hebrews 12:15).  Some are proud and hold on to offenses, refusing to allow love to cover the sins of others (1 Peter 4:8).

Be forewarned friend, carnal saints and sinners are joy thieves who, at the height of your joy, will strike a blow to your soul!

Copyright 2017 – Travis D. Smith

Millennials and their “Temper Tantrums” Are Threatening to Destroy the United States!

I once again have the privilege of preaching and teaching God’s Word in Hillsdale’s 10:30 AM and 6:00 PM services this Sunday.   I am continuing my series in Genesis titled “Lessons on Faith from the Life of Abraham” in the evening service.

I am in the midst of a Sunday morning series titled “The Commandments of the LORD” and my focus this Sunday is on the 5th Command:

“Honour [glorify; boast] thy father and thy mother: that thy days [time; years] may be long [lengthened; prolonged; draw out; endure] upon the land which the LORD thy God giveth thee” (Exodus 20:12).

Never one to shy away from difficult and controversial subjects, I plan to make some relevant observations regarding this Millennial generations’ penchant for throwing what one dear saint observed is nothing more than “Temper Tantrums”.

For nearly 50 years, America has made idols of her children and we are beginning to reap the consequences.  Parents of my generation failed to teach their children to “Honor thy father and thy mother” and now they are creating chaos and threatening anarchy!

This is the generation that was kicking and screaming in WalMart’s toy aisle, except now they are screaming in the public square.

This is the generation that was not taught to respect authority, to be quiet and listen…now they are shouting down every voice they don’t want to hear and willing to shed blood and destroy the lives of any who get in their way.

I have a prophetic warning for this nation and our politicians: 

Continue to capitulate to the demands and temper tantrums of this generation and they will not stop with demanding the removal of monuments they dislike… They will eventually silence and eliminate the voices and people who stand in the way of their demands.

I invite you to join me at Hillsdale this Sunday as I exhort parents to teach their children and challenge children to “Honor thy father and thy mother”.

For those who follow this years’ scripture reading schedule and my daily devotional commentary, the following are readings scheduled for today and Sunday:

Saturday – Scripture Reading – Gospel of John 7-9

Sunday – Scripture Reading – 2 Timothy 1-2

With the heart of a shepherd,

Pastor Travis D. Smith

Copyright 2-17 – Travis D. Smith

Attitudes are an External Indicator of the Bent or Direction of One’s Heart and Thoughts

Thursday, July 27, 2017

Daily reading assignment – Proverbs 13

Our society defines attitudes from an emotional perspective and deflects personal responsibility.  If someone exhibits a bad attitude, psychologists deem them victims—victims of poverty, neglect, rejection or abuse. Rather than taking responsibility and self-correcting one’s bad attitude, people find it easier to cast dispersion upon a peer or an authority figure they feel has failed them.  In the process of deflecting responsibility for one’s attitudes, they dig a deeper emotional and spiritual rut!

Today’s devotional will challenge you to look into your own heart for the cause of attitudes that beset you.  More than emotions, attitudes are an external indicator of the bent or direction of one’s heart and thoughts.

Proverbs 13:1  “A wise son heareth his father’s instruction [correction]: but a scorner [scoffer] heareth not rebuke [firm reproof].”

Notice the heart attitude of the “wise son”—he hears and heeds his father’s correction, reproof and rebuke.  His attitude toward his father’s discipline is that of a learner, unlike the scorner. The scorner “heareth not rebuke”—he mocks the authorities in his life and holds them in derision. He blames others for his attitudes and justifies his rebellion by focusing on what he perceives as their failures. He is a slave to “stinking thinking”, a pattern rooted within the bent of his heart and thoughts. Allow me to illustrate this truth with a childhood memory.

I remember NASA illustrating the entry of space capsules into earth’s atmosphere in the 1960’s and emphasizing the attitude of the nose of the capsule.  Attitude was the word NASA used to define the direction of the top or nose of the capsule as contrasted with the heat shield at its base. If the attitude of the nose were right, the heat shield at the base of the capsule would deflect the fiery heat of earth’s atmosphere. If the attitude of the capsule were wrong, the capsule and its occupants would burn up upon re-entry. Life and death were directly related to the attitude of the capsule’s nose.

That same principle is true concerning our attitudes. A pattern of bad attitudes will drive one emotionally and spiritually down a path of self-destruction.  However, the answer to a life of bad attitudes [anger, rebellion, resentment, jealousy, etc.] is not to merely confess and correct negative attitudes or emotions…it is to get to the heart of the problem, which is the problem of a sinful heart! In other words, as goes the heart so goes the attitude!

A Right Heart/Mind/Pattern of Thoughts = A Right Attitude

A Wrong Heart/Mind/Pattern of Thoughts = A Wrong Attitude

My friend, if you are waging war with sinful attitudes, the solution is not for others to change, but for you to change. Too many look outside themselves for a solution to enslaving attitudes…a different spouse, different school, different job, different church…foolishly thinking different will make a difference! Not so!

If you are weary of battling with enslaving attitudes, look to the bent and direction of your own heart and “stinking thoughts”.  Take a few minutes and do an honest, spiritual heart check-up and take responsibility for your attitudes! Get control of your thoughts and you will overcome your attitudes (Philippians 4:8; Proverbs 23:7).

Copyright 2017 – Travis D. Smith

“Chickens Invariably Come Home to Roost!”

Tuesday, May 16, 2017

Daily reading assignment: 2 Samuel 15-19

2 Samuel 14 concluded with David being induced to bring his wayward son Absalom back to Jerusalem (14:1-14).   Discerning Joab, his trusted advisor, had contrived a woman’s fictional tale (14:15-20), the king accepted his counselor’s flawed inducement to bring Absalom home (14:21-23).  Regardless of his good-intentions, the king’s decision set in motion an unfolding of events that proved tragic for David and the nation when he refused to receive Absalom upon his return to Jerusalem (14:24).

Absalom soon became the favorite of the people (14:25-27); however, his banishment from his father’s household inflamed his angry, rebellious spirit (14:28-33).  Absalom soon used his celebrity in Jerusalem to garner the affection of the people, setting in motion events that encouraged a rebellious uprising and David’s flight out of Jerusalem (2 Samuel 15:1-30).  David soon realized the breadth of the conspiracy against him when he learned one of his trusted advisors, Ahithophel, was one of Absalom’s counselors (15:31-34).

David received news from Ziba, a servant of Mephibosheth, the surviving son of Jonathon and grandson of Saul whom David had honored and enriched when he became king (2 Samuel 9:6), that his master (Mephibosheth) hoped to seize upon Absalom’s rebellion as an opportunity for him to ascend to the throne (2 Samuel 16:1-3).

Heaping shame upon shame, Shimei, a relative of Saul, the former king, cursed David and cast stones at David as he fled Jerusalem (2 Samuel 16:5-14).

Ahithopel revealed the depth of bitterness in his heart toward David when he counseled Absalom to disgrace his father by going into David’s harem and lying with his concubines (16:15-22).  For a time, as it often seems with the enemies of God’s people, it seemed Ahitophel’s counsel would stand unchallenged (16:23).

Hushai, a trusted friend of David and a spy in Absalom’s household (2 Samuel 15:23-37), worked to undermine Ahitophel’s counsel and turn it against him (2 Samuel 17:1-14).   Ahitophel recognized Absalom’s decision to heed Hushai’s advise and pursue David and his men would prove disastrous, went to his home and hanged himself (17:22-23) rather than suffer the shame of falling into the hands of David and his men.

David mustered his men to go to battle against Absalom and those who were confederate with him in 2 Samuel 18.  In spite of the great harm Absalom had committed against his father and Israel, David interceded that his generals would, “Deal gently for my sake with the young man, even with Absalom” (18:5).

Setting the armies in array against one another, the veteran generals and soldiers with David were victorious, slaying 20,000 men (18:6-8) and giving cause for Absalom to flee the battle where he was slain by Joab (18:9-17) contrary to the king’s orders.  When news of the victory came to David (18:18-28), rather than ask concerning the welfare of his generals, David requested news of Absalom’s welfare (18:29-32). Learning Absalom had died, David wept over his son saying, “O my son Absalom, my son, my son Absalom! would God I had died for thee, O Absalom, my son, my son” (2 Samuel 18:33).

Receiving news that David’s response to the victory was overwhelming sorrow for Absalom, Joab rebuked the king and reminded him of the shame and sorrow his son had wrought against him and Israel (19:1-6).  Heeding Joab’s counsel (19:7-8), David gave the people an opportunity to come together and bring him back to Jerusalem as their king (19:9-15).

Evidencing he was a man after God’s “own heart” (1 Samuel 13:14), David extended grace and amnesty to the men who joined Absalom in the uprising.  When Shimei humbled himself before the king, David even spared him, the man who had cursed him when he fled the city,  (19:16-23).

Mephibosheth, knowing his servant Ziba, had slandered him and given David an impression he was disloyal to the king during the uprising, sought an audience with the king to declare his loyalty (19:24-30).

David also honored the men who had come to his aid in the midst of the uprising (19:31-40). The closing verses of 2 Samuel 19 (verses 41-43) give insight into the reality that, although David was returning to reign as king, all was not well in Israel.  Strife rose between Judah and the other tribes in Israel, even as they accompanied David to Jerusalem.

We have begun to see the fulfilling of Nathan’s prophesies that David’s adultery with Bathsheba and his murder of her husband Uriah would have far-reaching consequences (2 Samuel 12:9-12).  Sadly, the fulfillment of those consequences will haunt David the rest of his life.

An old adage states, “Chickens Invariably Come Home to Roost”; such is the same with sin…its consequences are unavoidable.

Copyright 2017 – Travis D. Smith

Unforgiveness is a Bitter Fruit

Saturday, April 22, 2017

Daily reading assignment: Mark 11-12

Today’s reading in the Gospel of Mark records the beginning of the final week of Christ’s earthly ministry.  Tradition states the “Triumphal Entry” of Christ (Mark 11:1-11) into Jerusalem occurred on Sunday, although there are many that believe it most likely occurred on the Monday before the Day of the Passover and our LORD’s appointment with the Cross.

Christ’s cursing the fig tree that bore nothing but leaves and driving the money-changers out of the Temple are both recorded in Mark 11:12-21.

Two topics, “Faith” and “Forgiveness”, are the subject of Mark 11:22-26 and the LORD’s instructions are both beautiful in their simplicity and convicting in their application (Mark 11:22-26).  Many profess faith in God; but how many believe God will not only hear our prayers, but will answer them?

Christ’s challenge on faith and prayer precedes the admonishment: if ye do not forgive, neither will your Father which is in heaven forgive your trespasses” (Mark 11:25-26).  Thirty-eight years in ministry has taught me there are many church members who bear about in their souls a spirit of bitterness.  In my opinion, one of the most besetting sins in the 21st century church is an unwillingness to deal with offenses in a biblical manner motivated by love for God and love for others.  Too many allow bitterness to fester in their soul and, like cancer in the body, spread until it infects spiritually, emotionally and physically.

Some reading this devotional harbor bitterness toward parents for what you perceive were slights during your youth.  There are parents struggling with bitterness because their child has disgraced the family by foolish, sinful actions.  Hurting words and broken vows have embittered marriages.  Church members are bitter with fellow believers and pastors are hurt by slights and offenses.

You need not wonder why you have lost your joy and your prayers go unanswered if an unforgiving spirit haunts your soul!   I challenge you to meditate on this truth:  An unwillingness to forgive others is not only a seed that will eventually bear bitter fruit; it is indicative of a soul that has never entered into God’s forgiveness (Matthew 18:23-35).  Harbor an unforgiving spirit and you do so at the sacrifice of  your prayers going answered (Psalm 66:18).

Believer, you are commanded to be “kind one to another, tenderhearted, forgiving one another, even as God for Christ’s sake hath forgiven you” (Ephesians 4:32).  Grasp the magnitude of the sins God has forgiven you and you will find no excuse to not forgive others!

Copyright 2017 – Travis D. Smith

Warning: Sin will rob you of everything you hold dear.

Tuesday, April 18, 2017

Daily reading assignment: 1 Samuel 26-31

Today’s scripture reading sets the stage not only for the death of Saul, Israel’s first king, but also his son Jonathan who was in line for the throne (although we know David had already been chosen by the LORD and anointed by the prophet Samuel as Saul’s successor).

Integrity, a rare virtue among 21st century men, is descriptive of David whom God described as “a man after His own heart” (1 Samuel 13:14).  He was not a perfect man; however, integrity was a dominant characteristic of his life.  David loved God from His youth; he was a faithful son, loyal friend, and a great soldier. He was a man of courage; heroic in his deeds and humble in his walk.  When a second opportunity to kill king Saul presented itself in 1 Samuel 26; David, in spite of the appeal of his servant to take his enemy’s life, refused reasoning it was a grave sin to “stretch forth his hand against the LORD’S anointed” (1 Samuel 26:9-24).

Observation: Men of integrity are not driven by opinions or political correctness; their foremost concern is to honor and obey God.

1 Samuel 27-30 is, in the words of John Bunyan’s “Pilgrim’s Progress”, a “Slough of Despond” in David’s life; a representation of sin—portrayed by Bunyan as a deep and muddy pit into which “Pilgrim” falls while on his way to the City of God.  It is the place where Christians stumble when they take their focus off God and view trials through the eyes of fate rather than the eyes of faith.

Life’s trials and troubles present us with two choices: 1) We can walk through life living by our wits and human reasoning and find our dwelling in emotional and spiritual pits; 2) Or we can look at trials and troubles through the eyes of faith and obedience and choose joy.

A spirit of despair grips David’s heart in 1 Samuel 27.  He had overcome the temptation to kill Saul in chapter 26, but we find him in chapter 27 struggling with a spirit of pessimism and anxiety (27:1).  Allowing his fear of Saul to become greater than his faith in God’s promises (Proverbs 29:25), David departed from Israel and encamped among the Philistines (27:1-3).  For 16 months, David and his men appeared to prosper in the midst of the Philistines (27:8-11); however, tragedy struck while the men were away from their families when the Amalekites attacked their city, destroying their homes by fire and taking their wives, sons and daughters captive (30:1-4).  Distraught and overcome with grief, the hearts of David’s men became bitter and turned to revenge: “David was greatly distressed; for the people spake of stoning him…” (30:6a).

David had lived away from Israel and the LORD and, for the first time in 16 months, we read “David encouraged himself in the LORD his God” and “enquired at the LORD” (30:6, 8). God answered David’s prayer and restored to him and his men their families and possessions (30:17-19).

One might feel a certain human empathy for Saul in the latter years of his life and reign.  The king is old and the strength and vitality of his youth has faded.  David, the man who has served him faithfully, Saul has made his enemy.  Worse of all, because of his sin and rebellion, Saul knows the LORD is no longer with him (16:14-15).

(c) Paintings Collection; Supplied by The Public Catalogue Foundation

Paralyzed by a spirit of foreboding (38:5-6) and desperate for a word of reassurance, the king adds to his spiritual failures consulting with a “witch diviner” seeking a consultation from the dead prophet Samuel (28:7-15; Exodus 22:18; Leviticus 19:31).  The LORD allowed Samuel to appear to Saul; however, rather than hope, the prophet warned the battle that would follow against the Philistines would bring the death of Saul and his sons and the throne would pass to David (28:17-19).

1 Samuel 31 brings us to the inevitable, inglorious end of king Saul.  The battle went against Israel and Saul received word his sons were dead and the army was in disarray (31:1-2).  Having suffered a mortal wound from an arrow, Saul commanded his armor bearer to slay him, but he refused.  Knowing he would soon fall into the hands of his enemy, Saul fell upon his own sword (31:3-4).  Adding to his ignoble death was the humiliation that followed for Saul and his sons (1 Samuel 31:8; 1 Chronicles 10:8-10).

1 Samuel 31:8-10 – “And it came to pass on the morrow, when the Philistines came to strip the slain, that they found Saul and his three sons fallen in mount Gilboa. 9  And they cut off his head, and stripped off his armour, and sent into the land of the Philistines round about, to publish it in the house of their idols, and among the people. 10  And they put his armour in the house of Ashtaroth: and they fastened his body to the wall of Bethshan.”

1 Chronicles 10:13-14 leaves no doubt why Saul and his sons suffered such a tragic end: “So Saul died for his transgression which he committed against the LORD, even against the word of the LORD, which he kept not, and also for asking counsel of one that had a familiar spirit, to enquire of it; 14 And enquired not [no desire to repent] of the LORD: therefore he slew him, and turned the kingdom unto David the son of Jesse.”

The life and death of Saul affirm you can be certain, “your sin will find you out” (Numbers 32:23b) and “sin, when it is finished, bringeth forth death” (James 1:15b).

Sin and rebellion cost Saul everything…his army (31:1), his sons (31:2), his life (31:3-4) and his honor (31:9-10).   My friend, sin is hard, cruel and merciless.  Sin will destroy your marriage, strip you of your crowning achievements and leave you despairing of life. Sin will rob you of everything you hold dear.

If you are in the midst of sin, it is not too late to turn back to the LORD who is “full of compassion, and gracious, longsuffering, and plenteous in mercy and truth” (Psalm 86:15).

2 Peter 3:9 – “The Lord is not slack concerning his promise, as some men count slackness; but is longsuffering to us-ward, not willing that any should perish, but that all should come to repentance.”

Copyright 2017 – Travis D. Smith

Caution: Revenge straight ahead!

Tuesday, April 11, 2017

Daily reading assignment: 1 Samuel 21-25

Some of the Bible characters in today’s reading in 1 Samuel are not only engaging, but also rich in color and character.  It is impossible for me to adequately cover the spiritual principles and applications found in each chapter; alas, I must focus my attention on but one chapter, 1 Samuel 24.

Revenge, it is said, is “Life’s most subtle temptation.”  Revenge and envy, like conjoined twins, has been the haunt of man since Cain rose up and slew his brother Abel (Genesis 4).  Revenge overtakes us when we nurse an injury we feel was unjust, allowing that injury to fester into a wound of bitterness and, when our enemy is unsuspecting, raises its ugly head in a venomous bite crushing dreams, ruining friendships, and destroying lives, marriages and families.  We would be wise to heed Paul’s admonition to believers in Rome:

Romans 12:19 – “Dearly beloved, avenge not yourselves, but rather give place unto wrath: for it is written, Vengeance is mine; I will repay, saith the Lord.”

In today’s reading, David is a man on the run! From national hero and celebrated warrior to a fugitive hiding in desert caves, David finds himself continually stalked by king Saul who has vowed to kill him.  What began as envy, festered into bitterness provoking the king to attempt to spear David on three occasions.  Realizing Saul would not rest until he is dead, David fled into the wilderness where he would spend the next ten years living in exile.

We find David and his band of 600 men seeking shelter in an oasis named Engedi, a beautiful retreat in the midst of limestone mountains with hundred of caves carved out of the hillsides by periodic rainfalls.  Located in southern Israel and overlooking the western shore of the Dead Sea, Engedi made a perfect hiding place for David (1 Samuel 23:29) until Saul learned he and his men were hiding in its rocky crags (24:1).  Choosing 3,000 men, Saul set out to find and destroy David and his men once and for all (1 Samuel 24:1-22).

With Saul and his army encamped in the valley, David and his men retreated into the darkness of a large cave overlooking Saul’s encampment.  Lacking a delicate way to address the setting, suffice it to say Saul turned David’s cave hideout into a “Royal Porta Potty” to relieve himself (24:3).  With his guards standing outside the cave, Saul was unaware he had retreated into his enemy’s lair and had an audience of hundreds hiding in the darkness of the cave.

David’s men urged him to strike a mortal blow to his enemy (24:4), but his refusal stunned them (24:7).  Indeed, David’s heart was so tender that the mere act of cutting off a section of Saul’s robe troubled him (24:5).

Why? Why was David troubled for having cut a strip of cloth off the king’s robe?  In spite of Saul’s flaws and abuses, David heart was tender toward the king.

1 Samuel 24:6 – “And he said unto his men, The LORD forbid that I should do this thing unto my master, the LORD’S anointed, to stretch forth mine hand against him, seeing he is the anointed of the LORD.”

My friend, if you want to know the character of a man, observe his actions when his enemy is vulnerable.  Vengeance is God’s business (24:8-12).

In spite of the king’s faults, David reflected humility and honored the king in four ways (24:8-10).  The first, he addressed the king with the respect due his office, “My lord the king” (24:8).  The second, he honored the king in his manner when he “stooped with his face to the earth, and bowed himself” (24:8).  The third, he entreated the king with a question, not an accusation when he asked, “Wherefore hearest thou men’s words, saying, Behold, David seeketh thy hurt?” (24:9).  Finally, he proved the evil reports the king had entertained about him were false by his actions…when he had opportunity to kill the king he spared him (24:11).  Rather than revenge, David turned Saul over to the LORD to deal with him (24:12, 15).

Caution: Revenge is the course sin takes when anger and bitterness rule the heart.

Ephesians 4:31-32 – “Let all bitterness, and wrath, and anger, and clamour, and evil speaking, be put away from you, with all malice: 32 And be ye kind one to another, tenderhearted, forgiving one another, even as God for Christ’s sake hath forgiven you.”

Copyright 2017 – Travis D. Smith