A Contrast in Attitudes

Inspiration MinistriesBy Inspiration Ministries2 Minutes

“Abner was making himself strong in the house of Saul . . . Abner was very angry over the words of Ish-bosheth . . . ‘Today I show kindness to the house of Saul . . . yet today you charge me with a guilt . . . May God do so to Abner . . . [if] I do not . . . establish the throne of David.’ 2 Samuel 3:6-10 NASB

Even when King Saul sought to kill him, David demonstrated respect for the king. Why? Because he was “the Lord’s anointed,” the man chosen by God. After Saul’s death, many assumed that David would take the initiative and claim the throne. Instead, he continued to respect Saul’s son, Ish-Bosheth.
But not everyone was so respectful. Consider Abner, who had been leader of Israel’s army. After Saul’s death, he had “gone in” to a woman who had been Saul’s concubine. Ish-bosheth saw this as a power play, assuming that Abner was seeking to gain power for himself.
Abner reacted angrily to this accusation. He claimed innocence, but didn’t stop there, and decided to switch sides and give his loyalty to David (who believed that the change was sincere).
But Joab, the head of David’s army, was incensed. He could not forget Abner’s past actions (for he had killed Joab’s brother). Under the pretext of peace, Joab sought out Abner and killed him. David was furious by Joab’s actions, insisting that Abner be buried with full honors.
From our perspective, we might not know Abner’s true intentions. But clearly his attitude was different than David’s. David knew that he had been anointed king, yet continued to honor Ish-bosheth: He was committed to honor “the Lord’s anointed.” In
contrast, Abner was quick to change sides for his personal gain.
Many in the world are like Abner. Willing to do whatever seems expedient, as long as they benefit. But, as David demonstrated, God looks at the heart. He seeks those are humble and who seek first His Kingdom.


Prayer: Father, give me Your attitude toward others. I humble myself before You. I seek first Your Kingdom. In Jesus’ name. Amen.