May 23

2 Samuel 2:12-3:39; John 13:1-30; Psalm 119:1-16; Proverbs 15:29-30

Unforgiveness is a powerful and destructive force. It clouds one’s judgment and causes one to act in vengeful ways. This is what happened to Joab. David’s forces, led by Joab, were in constant battle with Saul’s forces (led by Abner). They met on the field of battle and Joab’s brother, Asahel, was killed by Abner. Joab never released this offense.

Some time later, David forges a truce with Abner so that the Kingdom of Israel can be united. Abner and David meet and they are at peace with one another and moving forward with a plan to reunite Israel. When Joab hears that Abner was with David, every ounce of unforgiveness arose in him and he, without David’s knowledge, tricks Abner into returning to Hebron for a conversation. Joab kills Abner by breaking the truce that David had just made. What was the end result of all this? David curses Joab and his descendants. Was it worth it? Maybe for a minute but not for several generations of poverty, sickness, and untimely death.

If you are holding onto any resentment or unforgiveness, I implore you, “Please let it go.” It will only cause you to derail your own future. Regardless of what they did, hear the words of Jesus, “Put away your sword… Those who use the sword will die by the sword.” Let it not be so for you!

Tomorrow’s Reading: 2 Samuel 4:1-6:23; John 13:31-14:14; Psalm 119:17-32; Proverbs 15:31-32

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