Originally posted: 1/03/2020
“Perhaps the Lord will look on my affliction and return good to me instead of his cursing this day,” (16:12).
David was accused of getting just what he deserved; that everything was coming back on him as a result of his behavior, in return for his actions.
Thus Shimei said when he cursed, “Get out, get out, you man of bloodshed, and worthless fellow! 8 The Lord has returned upon you all the bloodshed of the house of Saul, in whose place you have reigned; and the Lord has given the kingdom into the hand of your son Absalom. And behold, you are taken in your own evil, for you are a man of bloodshed!” (16:7-8).
Everything Shimei said about David was true. David was a man of bloodshed. And he must have felt like a worthless fellow as he fled from his own son’s murderous conspiracy to overthrow the throne; followed by the stinging (though unfounded) news of betrayal by Mephibosheth, the one he had so benevolently loved.
David’s emotions seemed unable to withstand the cruel accusations thrust upon him by the relative of Saul. But the king said, “… If he curses, and if the Lord has told him, ‘Curse David,’ then who shall say, ‘Why have you done so?’” (16:10).
But it was what Shimei said about the Lord that completely missed the mark. Once again David appeals not to his own merits, but to the One Who is merciful. “Perhaps the Lord will look on my affliction and return good to me instead of his cursing this day,” (16:12).
David turned to the Lord in humility, without expecting anything in return. But he did so knowing that the LORD’s Return often goes against human reasoning. His Return is in accordance with His will, compassion and lovingkindness, and not according to what we may or may not deserve.
Remember, O Lord, Your compassion and Your lovingkindnesses,
For they have been from of old.
7 Do not remember the sins of my youth or my transgressions;
According to Your lovingkindness remember me,
For Your goodness’ sake, O Lord, (Psalm 25:6-7).
“Reliable Return” is a term often applied to the stock market. It’s a term that looks to the probability of a good outcome for an investment made. And after a little research, I learned economists tout the single most important question everyone should ask before investing is, “what’s the worst thing that can go wrong?”
But investment portfolios are loaded with variables requiring close attention to detail on the part of the investor. In other words, there is chance and risk involved. But what if Someone offers a foolproof, guaranteed, bona fide Reliable Return for the investment?
Someone has. The Lord God has extended His Reliable Return, foolproof and guaranteed. And the investment required? Faith in His Son, Christ Jesus.
“…that if you confess with your mouth Jesus as Lord, and believe in your heart that God raised Him from the dead, you will be saved;” (Romans 10:9).
Consider His Reliable Return
- There’s no gambling or risk. His Reliable Return is guaranteed in Jesus.
- “For the Son of God, Christ Jesus, who was preached among you by us—by me and Silvanus and Timothy—was not yes and no, but is yes in Him. 20 For as many as are the promises of God, in Him they are yes; therefore also through Him is our Amen to the glory of God through us,” (1 Corinthians 1:19-20).
- There’s no condemnation. His Reliable Return sets us free in Christ Jesus.
- “Therefore there is now no condemnation for those who are in Christ Jesus. 2 For the law of the Spirit of life in Christ Jesus has set you free from the law of sin and of death,” (Romans 8:1-2).
- There’s nothing lacking. His Reliable Return freely gives us all things.
- “What then shall we say to these things? If God is for us, who is against us? 32 He who did not spare His own Son, but delivered Him over for us all, how will He not also with Him freely give us all things?” (Romans 8:31-32).
How do we respond to His Reliable Return?
Investing faith in His Reliable Return is not leaving anything up to chance; for He is good and merciful; whatever His Return, we can trust He is faithful and Reliable.
The Lord is righteous in all His ways
And kind in all His deeds, (Psalm 145:17).
He is Reliable; we are not. We waver. He does not.
“If we are faithless, He remains faithful, for He cannot deny Himself,” (2 Timothy 2:13).
When we are faithless it is likely we, like David, will hear the accuser’s voice, pointing out our sins and worthlessness. His Reliable Return will silence the voice of our accuser.
Then I heard a loud voice in heaven, saying, “Now the salvation, and the power, and the kingdom of our God and the authority of His Christ have come, for the accuser of our brethren has been thrown down, he who accuses them before our God day and night,” (Revelations 12:10).
When we find ourselves in the trials and afflictions that so often accompany life, let us rest in His promises, trust His compassion and lovingkindness, and wisely invest our faith in His Reliable Return.
“… Giving them a garland instead of ashes,
The oil of gladness instead of mourning,
The mantle of praise instead of a spirit of fainting.
So they will be called oaks of righteousness,
The planting of the Lord, that He may be glorified,” (Isaiah 61:3).