A HEART OF HONOR

Scripture Reading: II Samuel 1:1-27

“Saul and Jonathan, beloved and lovely! In life and in death they were not divided; they were swifter than eagles; they were stronger than lions…How mighty have fallen in the midst of the battle! Jonathan lies slain on your high place.” (I Samuel 1:23,25)

After defeating the Amalikes, David remained in Ziklag two days (v. 1). On the third day a man from the camp of Saul came with the news that the Israelites were defeated and that Saul and Jonathan were dead. The man fabricated a story about Saul’s death (vs. 2-10). He thought David would be relieved to get the news about Saul. He brought Saul’s crown and armlet to David (v. 10). The man claimed that he had helped Saul kill himself.

David and his men mourned the death of Saul and Jonathan. They wept and fasted until evening (v. 12). Afterwards David ordered that the bearer of the news be put to death (vs. 13-16). He saw through the trickery and said to him, ” Your blood is on your head” (v. 16).

David wrote a lament over the deaths of Saul and Jonathan. He wanted it to be taught to the people of Judah (v. 18). The lament shows David’s heart. In spite of the way Saul had treated David, he stilled loved and honored him. He always respected Saul’s position as the Lord’s anointed. Instead of being happy over Saul’s death, he mourned the loss. David had a heart of honor. He continued to honor Saul after his death.

You can also see David’s love for Jonathan reflected in the lament. He had a very special friendship with Jonathan that was life-long. The lament he wrote honored this friendship with Jonathan — “I am distressed for you, my brother Jonathan; very pleasant you have been to me. Your love was extraordinary” (v. 26).

David had many reasons to resent Saul. Instead, he always honored him, even after Saul’s death. Paul wrote these words about honoring those who are in authority over us — “Pay to all what is owed to them: taxes to whom taxes are owed, revenue to whom revenue is owed, respect to whom respect is owed, honor to whom honor is owed” (Romans 13:7).

Lord God, first of all, I honor You for being my Lord and King. You deserve all honor and respect for You are the sovereign Lord of all. Give me the grace to honor those who are in authority over me. It is not easy to honor some who are in positions of leadership; but You have called us to honor them because You have ordained their authority. Give me a heart of honor, I pray.

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