Then David said, “Is there yet anyone left of the house of Saul, that I may show him kindness for Jonathan’s sake?” (9:1).
“There is still a son of Jonathan who is crippled in both feet.”… “Behold, he is in the house of Machir the son of Ammiel in Lo-debar,” (9:3, 4).
I so love the story of Mephibosheth, the lame son of Jonathan, living in Lo-debar. Lo-debar is translated by Bible scholars as meaning “without pasture” or “without order;” either way, not a desirable place to reside.
In Mephibosheth, we see a picture of ourselves, lame and unable to walk with the Lord in truth, living in a place without rest or stability.
And in David, the man after God’s own heart, we see the beautiful picture of our most kind and benevolent God, Who intentionally seeks us out that He might show us His Profound Kindness.
Consider His Profound Kindness
His Profound Kindness, beyond description, is magnificently portrayed in this narrative between the royal king and a man many might consider, unworthy of his time and consideration.
This word, Profound, so suitably describes His Kindness as we examine its meaning in our own language.
- originating in the depths of one’s being
- having deep insight or understanding
- being or going far beneath what is superficial, external, or obvious
- thorough, all-encompassing
- originating far down, or far beneath the surface
- of great and broadly inclusive; pervasive or intense
- difficult to fathom or understand
- 1. His Profound Kindness originates in the depths of Who He is and moves Him to seek us out.
- Then David said, “Is there yet anyone left of the house of Saul, that I may show him kindness for Jonathan’s sake?” (9:1).
- 2. His Profound Kindness expresses His depth of knowledge and understanding of our desperate need for Him.
- “There is still a son of Jonathan who is crippled in both feet.” 4 So the king said to him, “Where is he?…” (9:3-4).
- 3. His Profound Kindness goes far beneath the superficial, reaching far beneath our obvious external condition.
- Then King David sent and brought him… (9:5).
- 4. His Profound Kindness is all-encompassing in His restoration.
- David said to him, “Do not fear, for I will surely show kindness to you for the sake of your father Jonathan, and will restore to you all the land of your grandfather Saul;” (9:7).
- 5. His Profound Kindness reaches far beneath a surface relationship; it is His invitation to intimacy.
- “…and you shall eat at my table regularly,” (9:7).
- 6. His Profound Kindness is great and broadly inclusive, pervasive and intense.
- Then the king called Saul’s servant Ziba and said to him, “All that belonged to Saul and to all his house I have given to your master’s grandson. 10 You and your sons and your servants shall cultivate the land for him, and you shall bring in the produce so that your master’s grandson may have food; nevertheless Mephibosheth your master’s grandson shall eat at my table regularly.”… So Mephibosheth ate at David’s table as one of the king’s sons, (9:9-11).
- 7. His Profound Kindness is impossible to fathom or understand.
- So Mephibosheth lived in Jerusalem, for he ate at the king’s table regularly. Now he was lame in both feet, (9:13).
How do we respond to His Profound Kindness?
His Profound Kindness… though we cannot explain it, though it is all-encompassing and is impossible to fathom, He has distinctly shown us His Profound Kindness in Jesus.
For we also once were foolish ourselves, disobedient, deceived, enslaved to various lusts and pleasures, spending our life in malice and envy, hateful, hating one another. 4 But when the kindness of God our Savior and His love for mankind appeared, 5 He saved us, not on the basis of deeds which we have done in righteousness, but according to His mercy, by the washing of regeneration and renewing by the Holy Spirit, 6 whom He poured out upon us richly through Jesus Christ our Savior, 7 so that being justified by His grace we would be made heirs according to the hope of eternal life, (Titus 3:3-7).
Shouldn’t we too respond as Mephibosheth?
Again he prostrated himself and said, “What is your servant, that you should regard a dead dog like me?” (9:8).
Mephibosheth was overcome with his master’s Profound Kindness. But can you imagine if he had refused the king’s invitation? Who would ever…?
We too have received an invitation from a King, the King of kings…
“Come to Me, all who are weary and heavy-laden, and I will give you rest,” (Matthew 11:29).
Today may we hear Him Who beckons us to come and receive His Profound Kindness. Let us leave our Lo-debar, those places in our lives without pasture and order, and come and receive our rest in Him.
We don’t have to explain it; in truth we are unable, for His Kindness is Profound.
We only have to come.