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March 13, 2012

The Mercies of David

If you recall the post I wrote on the Bible story of Michal? I was asked to explain the part where I mentioned Michal was neither a very good Aunt nor step-mother. (You are right, Dear, that sort of just popped into our story. That part of the post needed some explanation for understanding. This is for you, dear Reader).

To start explaining this side of Michal, we will have to first take a look at David. David sang the praises of the Lord, he sang of the kindness and the goodness of God, and of the Lord's mercies. 
Gerrit van Honthorst (1590-1656), King David Playing the Harp (1611)
David said of the Lord, "His praise shall continually be in my mouth". David was the first in the Bible to state the words, "I love Thee, O LORD, my strength". These precious words are the words the Lord longs to hear from us. I love You, Lord. As we continue to read the Word we learn what David said of the Lord. 

Psalm 23
 (Good News Translation)
The Lord is my shepherd;
I have everything I need.
He lets me rest in fields of green grass
And leads me to quiet pools of fresh water.
He gives me new strength.
He guides me in the right paths,
As he has promised.
Even if I go through the deepest darkness,
I will not be afraid, Lord,
For you are with me.
Your shepherd's rod and staff protect me.
You prepare a banquet for me,
Where all my enemies can see me;
You welcome me as an honored guest
And fill my cup to the brim.
I know that your goodness and love will be with me all my life;
And your house will be my home as long as I live.

(Who wouldn’t want to be with someone that takes care of us and makes our lives this wonderful?)

What else do we know about the Lord? God, we know, is merciful and kind. We know He is faithful to forgive our sins and that He is willing that none shall perish. We know He has our best interest at heart. We know He will never leave us nor forsake us. But, there are times when we fail. There are times we hold a grudge or we spoke some things perhaps we should not have said. We justify our resentments when we have erected the walls of despising and the root of bitterness has entered our soul.
The most beautiful gift the Lord provides us is repentance. A repented heart God in no wise shall cast out. Because we have set a wedge between us and the Lord, in our need to make it right with Him, He does not look at our repentance as a frivolous thing. “Here she goes saying she is sorry, again”. No! He wants our hearts to be clean and filled with His spirit. He welcomes our desire for His presence. And when we acknowledge our sin in repentance He draws us nearer to Himself. He loves mercy, delights in mercy and to give mercy.

Lamentations 3:23, Great is His faithfulness; His mercies begin afresh each morning..” Jesus says to forgive seven times seventy. Micah wrote in chapter 7, 8Who is a God like unto Thee, that pardoneth iniquity,… He retaineth not His anger for ever, because He delighteth in mercy. 19He will turn again; He will have compassion upon us…

We know that the Lord is merciful and ready to forgive. And in David, God saw the reflection of Himself in David’s heart.

What did the Lord say of David? 1 Samuel 13:22:
"I have found David the son of Jesse,A man after My own heart , who will do all My will."

Do you mean to say that everything we just read of the Lord was found in David?

David was a merciful man. He did not revenge himself of his enemies. He never justified any reason to defend himself nor to harbor bitterness. A man after God's  heart.

Okay, now that we have looked into the persona of David, here is the heart of our story.
Charles Emile Hippolyte Lecomte-Vernet, (French artist, 1821-1900) La Tricoteuse
I truly believe that if Michal would have gone to David and made it right with him they would have continued being together. I believe even if she never asked for forgiveness for her attitude toward him, if she had asked David to extend mercy to her own nephews, he would have granted the request. For mercies sake he would have done so and the young men would have been spared of their lives because Michal would have asked for David to, “Have mercy”. It is what any mother or aunt would have done immediately to seek mercy in place of judgment. But, my friend, we have no record of Michal ever showing any kindness to anyone. She wrapped herself in the garments of resentment and drank from the cup bitterness. Michal knew the heart of David was good, she knew he loved the Lord, she also knew he never avenged himself of her father when he could have done so. He had the opportunity but he never sought revenge. He was not an evil king and Michal resented all of this good that was in David's heart. I believe David would have been merciful because David knew what is was like to be in need of mercy and would have remembered the mercy God shown toward him. He was a man after God's own heart. If Michal would have asked for mercy...

A clip from the original post:
Friend, Michal never gave birth, but God gave Michal a duty as an aunt, the opportunity to be a stepmother. Merab was Michal's sister who had passed away, her children now motherless were hung, but where was selfish Michal when her nephews were dying? She did not fight to keep the birds of prey away from their bodies. She could not love anyone but herself. (2 Samuel 21:7-12). Michal was an embittered woman and the bitterness ruled her as her constant companion.
(click on the picture to read the original post)
O LORD God, turn not away the face of thine anointed: remember the mercies of David thy servant.
P.s. Read about what Rizpah did when her sons were hung in 2 Samuel 3:7-11; that is what love would cause us to do. After I read this I wondered if David asked himself, "Where was Michal when her nephews were dying?"

(I want to be a woman after God's own heart)


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