2 Samuel 19 – Become a Kinder and Gentler You

There are some things in life that can change a person.

  • Going through a war.
  • Having a stroke.
  • Being victimized.
  • Going through a divorce.

Things like these can impact a person to the point of changing how they see and react to people and life.

In 2 Samuel chapter 19, you see a changed David. There, rather than exercising military might, David offers kindness and mercy to those who had rebelled against him.

What was it that prompted this kinder, gentler David? Perhaps he felt he had brought on their rebellion because of his actions with Bathsheba. (2 Samuel 12:11-12)

But perhaps David was keenly aware of the undeserved mercy he had received from God, and it prompted him to be more merciful to those who had wronged him and were undeserving of mercy.

We’re told that of those who are given much, much is required. (Luke 12:48) We’re also told that those who have been forgiven much should love much. (Luke 7:36-47) David knew how much God had forgiven him. He also knew how much mercy God had shown him. This awareness led him to be more merciful and forgiving to those who had rebelled against him.

When’s the last time you stopped to think about how much God has forgiven you, or how much mercy He has shown you?

If you make a habit of remembering God’s mercy and forgiveness toward you, it will change how you respond to others; especially those who have wronged you.

2 Samuel 1 – Are We Talking About the Same Person?

I’ve been to funerals where they were eulogizing the “dearly departed” and thought to myself, “Are we talking about the same person?!” Now I know it would be in poor taste to bad mouth the deceased…even if they were a mean and difficult person in life. But sometimes the things that are said about a person at their funeral barely resemble who the person was in real life. When this happens, you can’t help but wonder, “Are we talking about the same person?”

I feel like this when I read 2 Samuel chapter one. Saul was a man who was egotistical, prideful, paranoid, and homicidal. Yet to hear David’s funeral song, Saul sounds like a cross between Billy Graham and Dudley Do-Right. Saul was a man who repaid David’s bravery and loyalty by incessantly hunting him down to kill him. Still, David sings his praises and morns him as he would his own father. Why?!

Perhaps it was because David saw the bigger picture…the broader plot. David was able to see beyond the injustices that were done to him. He was able to take the wrongs of Saul’s life and see them through a spiritual lens. David related to Saul as God would relate to Saul…with grace, compassion, and mercy.

We need to remember that we only have a small and narrow picture of the person before us. Consequently, we should respond to everyone with the same grace, compassion, and mercy that we ourselves receive from God. Otherwise, these people may attend OUR funeral and think, “Are we talking about the same person?!”