My wife read a devotional this morning encouraging her to compliment three people each day which would help build a heart of generosity and kindness. She is already so complimentary, generous, and kind. When she told me this I just smiled real big and waited for my compliment. Sharing God’s kindness with others is crucial as a Christian because it’s the very nature of Jesus Himself! Titus 3:4 says God’s kindness appeared in Jesus and brought salvation to us! Ephesians 2:7 declares God shows us His riches of grace in kindness through Jesus Christ! The ultimate example of kindness is God’s expression of it through Jesus in our lives!
An Old Testament picture of kindness can be found in 2 Samuel 9. David promised Saul and Jonathan he would not kill their descendants when he became king (1 Samuel 20:12-17, 42; 24:21). David showed extreme kindness towards Jonathan’s son Mephibosheth. Mephibosheth was lame since childhood (2 Samuel 4:4) but this was not the main reason for show him kindness. David did this to honor his friend Jonathan and fulfill his promise (1 Samuel 20:11-17). Mephibosheth was now in his early 20’s and even had a young son (v.12). David asked if there was a relative of Saul to show kindness to and found Mephibosheth through Ziba, a deceitful man who cost Mephibosheth half of his land (remember this for later). Kindness is the word hesed meaning loyal love or covenant loyalty. Now Mephibosheth was a prince living in Lo-debar, which means “place of no pasture”. It was a place where outcasts went to hide and be forgotten. Mephibosheth didn’t think much of himself, even calling himself a “dead dog” – useless and contemptible (v. 8). Aren’t we too “dead” in our trespasses before God – unworthy of the King’s presence? But God makes us righteous and royalty (2 Corinthians 5:21; 1 Peter 2:9).
Someone had to help Mephibosheth to the palace. I’m sure he had mixed emotions. His grandfather Saul would have told him David would kill him while his dad Jonathan would have told him David would bless him. When Mephibosheth arrived at the palace he fell down on purpose and cried out, “Here is your servant” probably in fear (v. 6). David showed extreme kindness towards Mephibosheth by restoring to him land and providing a secure place at David’s, the King, table. David reached out to Mephibosheth first. That reminds me of how God reached out to us first – “God demonstrated His own love toward us in that while were still sinners, Christ died for us” (Romans 5:8). It cost David some land to be kind to Mephibosheth. It cost Jesus his life to display ultimate kindness to us. What a better inheritance – eternal heaven over temporary land!
David adopted Mephibosheth into his own family and provide for his needs. Think about this – when lame Mephibosheth sat at David’s table his crippled legs were covered. He looked like everyone else! David told him to eat at his table four times (vv. 7, 10, 11, 13). Jonathan’s son was now David’s son! He was royalty! We sit on the throne with Jesus scripture says (Romans 5:17). God also gives us a better inheritance – adoption, redemption, forgiveness, wisdom, salvation, inheritance, hope, the Holy Spirit (Ephesians 1:3-14), mercy and grace (Ephesians 2:4-7), and unsearchable riches in Christ (Ephesians 3:8). That’s so much better than any earthly riches!!! Because of God’s kindness and love lavished on you (1 John 3:1), show the kindness of the Lord to someone else today!
Stephen and his wife Haley have called Arkansas home all of their lives. Stephen has served in several ministry roles over the last 25 years and as a lead pastor for the last 8 years. Stephen attended Williams Baptist College and earned a BA in Biblical Studies from Ouachita Baptist University, an MA, MDiv, and DMin in Christian Leadership and Pastoral Ministries from Liberty University. When not pastoring, Stephen enjoys running, cycling, reading, writing, camping, fishing, and spending time with his family.
Thank you for sharing! I needed it very much!