DCLM Daily Manna 2023: DCLM Daily Manna 19 May 2023: Doing Good Wrongly
Key Verse: “And his servants said unto him, Behold now, we have heard that the kings of the house of Israel are merciful kings: let us, I pray thee, put sackcloth on our loins, and ropes upon our heads, and go out to the king of Israel: peradventure he will save thy life.” – (1 Kings 20:31)
TEXT: 1 Kings 20:31-43
31 And his servants said unto him, Behold now, we have heard that the kings of the house of Israel are merciful kings: let us, I pray thee, put sackcloth on our loins, and ropes upon our heads, and go out to the king of Israel: peradventure he will save thy life.
32 So they girded sackcloth on their loins, and put ropes on their heads, and came to the king of Israel, and said, Thy servant Benhadad saith, I pray thee, let me live. And he said, Is he yet alive? he is my brother.
33 Now the men did diligently observe whether any thing would come from him, and did hastily catch it: and they said, Thy brother Benhadad. Then he said, Go ye, bring him. Then Benhadad came forth to him; and he caused him to come up into the chariot.
34 And Ben-hadad said unto him, The cities, which my father took from thy father, I will restore; and thou shalt make streets for thee in Damascus, as my father made in Samaria. Then said Ahab, I will send thee away with this covenant. So he made a covenant with him, and sent him away.
35 And a certain man of the sons of the prophets said unto his neighbour in the word of the Lord, Smite me, I pray thee. And the man refused to smite him.
36 Then said he unto him, Because thou hast not obeyed the voice of the Lord, behold, as soon as thou art departed from me, a lion shall slay thee. And as soon as he was departed from him, a lion found him, and slew him.
37 Then he found another man, and said, Smite me, I pray thee. And the man smote him, so that in smiting he wounded him.
38 So the prophet departed, and waited for the king by the way, and disguised himself with ashes upon his face.
39 And as the king passed by, he cried unto the king: and he said, Thy servant went out into the midst of the battle; and, behold, a man turned aside, and brought a man unto me, and said, Keep this man: if by any means he be missing, then shall thy life be for his life, or else thou shalt pay a talent of silver.
40 And as thy servant was busy here and there, he was gone. And the king of Israel said unto him, So shall thy judgment be; thyself hast decided it.
41 And he hasted, and took the ashes away from his face; and the king of Israel discerned him that he was of the prophets.
42 And he said unto him, Thus saith the Lord, Because thou hast let go out of thy hand a man whom I appointed to utter destruction, therefore thy life shall go for his life, and thy people for his people.
43 And the king of Israel went to his house heavy and displeased, and came to Samaria.
It is a sad paradox that some people’s good qualities become their undoing. It is not usually expected that people will suffer defeat and become victims for being good. Unfortunately, the undoing of some people is attributed not to their moral weakness or any bad quality they may have, but rather and that strangely, to what supposedly should have been their strength – their good qualities.
Benhadad, the king of Syria took advantage of this seemingly good quality in Ahab, king of Israel. Having been defeated and their army routed, the surviving servants of Benhadad advised him to capitalise on the reputed good and merciful nature of the kings of Israel, approach Ahab with a show of remorse and plead with him to spare his life.
Ahab foolishly accepted their plea and made a covenant with him. For this reason, God sent a prophet to him with a message of His displeasure and judgment. Many Christians have had their good nature taken advantage of to their detriment. Some have been swindled by supposedly fellow brethren who came for help. This is because they were too trusting to do necessary due diligence and checks. In the attempt to help strangers in need, some have accommodated criminals who turn around to hurt them severely. Some others who are too compassionate have failed to give out appropriate disciplinary actions to those who have erred or sinned.
While it is Christian character to be merciful and kind, we must be careful that our good does not become a weakness, which people can abuse. We must not disobey God’s word in order to show mercy or be good to others. The Bible warns us against letting our good to be evil spoken of.
THOUGHT OF THE DAY: Kindness and prudence are not mutually exclusive.
BIBLE IN ONE YEAR: Ruth 1-2
Thank you for studying today’s Daily Manna – Doing Good Wrongly – by Pastor W.F Kumuyi
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Daily Manna 19 May 2023