Giving Leniency When It’s Not Deserved
Posted: Saturday, June 2
2 Samuel 19:11-20:13
Verse of the Day:
“Who asked your opinion, you sons of Zeruiah!” David exclaimed. “Why have you become my adversary[c] today? This is not a day for execution, for today I am once again the king of Israel!” 23 Then, turning to Shimei, David vowed, “Your life will be spared.” (2 Samuel 19:22-23)
If you and your friends were walking down the street and some guy started throwing rocks at you and calling you mean names, how would you feel? Probably pretty ticked off and like, “What’s your problem man?” That’s not a very nice thing to do.
Well, that’s David’s situation. This man named Shimei sees David with his troops walking to the city of Bahurim and comes out just to say mean things and throw rocks at them. Why? Because Shimei was related to King Saul who was killed at war at the end of 1 Samuel. Shimei, understandably, wasn’t a fan of David becoming King of Israel and taking that role from his family line. Still, throwing rocks and swearing at someone isn’t going to get much done to correct the royal bloodline and just gets people angry.
David tells his troops to let Shimei do his thing and not to kill him. We fast forward 3 chapters and reenters Shimei not throwing rocks, but instead throwing himself before David and begging for forgiveness and mercy. What would you do? You're the one person with ultimate authority - whatever you say or do is ok because there’s no one to stop you. Do you give Shimei what he deserves, a whooping?
David’s life is admirable choice after admirable choice. Instead of giving Shimei what he deserves, David decides to give mercy and let Shimei go forgiven. If there’s anyone who had reason and the capability to give swift justice, it was David. Yet, his example of leniency spoke so much more to Shimei and the people he was leading than giving Shimei a beating. Even when people deserve our impartiality, how much more we will be like David and like Jesus when we instead show mercy. I guarantee today after reading this that there will be many tests for you, from driving, to the restaurant, at work, or even with your family to show leniency. Be Christlike and show mercy, even when they deserve otherwise.