…Psalm 15: The Kindness of David

O man, what is good,  and what does the Lord require of you but to do justice, and to love kindness, and to walk humbly with your God.  – Micah 6:8

“Love and mercy,” “loyal love,” or “loving-kindness” along with justice, wee commanded of Israel if they were to walk humbly before their God.  Both justice and mercy are foundational to God’s character (Psalm 89:14). God expected His people to show love to their fellow man and to be loyal in their love toward Him, just as He had been loyal to them.

“Walk humbly” is a description of the heart’s attitude toward God. God’s people depend on Him rather than their own abilities (Micah 2:3). Instead of taking pride in what we bring to God, we humbly recognize that no amount of personal sacrifice can replace a heart committed to justice and love. David’s life was an example of this kind of love.

David’s Kindness to Mephibosheth—Jonathan’s Son

David never forgot his love for Jonathan.  Their’s was a  friendship as deep as life itself.  David was thinking about Jonathan one day and wondered if there were any descendants of Saul left to whom he might show mercy for Jonathan’s sake.  He inquired and found  that Jonathan had a son still alive, and learned  of his being lame in the feet.  His name was Mephibosheth.  David sent for him.

Mephibosheth had every reason to be afraid of David. It was the custom in those days for any new king to destroy all of the descendants of rival dynasties. He fell on his face before David, but David assured him he had nothing but kindness for him. He promised to restore to him all of the lands that had formerly belonged to Saul, and he would receive the income from the lands as long as he lived.  Mephibosheth would always be a guest at David’s table.  Love will continue in spite of all circumstances. Not even death could make David forget Jonathan. Through Jonathon’s son, David  found a way to honor the house of Saul. He never got away from that awesome respect he had for “God’s anointed.”

What a beautiful picture this represents for us.  From the first man Adam, to us, the children of the one who made himself an enemy of Godby his sin he crippled his descendants, and suddenly we are taken from our helpless state and brought into the household of the Lord. We are made rich in Jesus, and through Him have direct access to the King of kings.  How great and wonderful is this kindness?  Not only David, but the kindness of God, in whom David represents!  The lame, the wounded, and the forgotten are one with the King of Glory.

Psalm 15

1     Lord, who may abide in Your tabernacle?  Who may dwell in Your holy hill?
2     He who walks uprightly, and works righteousness, and speaks the truth in his heart.
3     He who does not backbite with his tongue, nor does evil to his neighbor,
      Nor does he take up a reproach against his friend—
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4    In whose eyes a vile person is despised, but he honors those who fear the Lord–
     He who swears to his own hurt and does not change,
5     He who does not put out his money at usury, nor does he take a bribe against the innocent.
     He who does these things shall never be moved.
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—The passage   (2 Sam. 9:1–13)
Now David said, “Is there still anyone who is left of the house of Saul, that I may show him kindness for Jonathan’s sake?”
 And there was a servant of the house of Saul whose name was Ziba. So when they had called him to David, the king said to him, “Are you Ziba?” He said, “At your service!”
 Then the king said, “Is there not still someone of the house of Saul, to whom I may show the kindness of God?”
And Ziba said to the king, “There is still a son of Jonathan who is lame in his feet.”
 So the king said to him, “Where is he?”
And Ziba said to the king, “Indeed he is in the house of Machir the son of Ammiel, in Lo Debar.”  Then King David sent and brought him out of the house of  Machir the son of Ammiel, from Lo Debar.
 Now when Mephibosheth the son of Jonathan, the son of Saul, had come to David, he fell on his face and prostrated himself.
Then David said, “Mephibosheth?” And he answered, “Here is your servant!”
 So David said to him, “Do not fear, for I will surely show you kindness for Jonathan your father’s sake, and will restore to you all the land of Saul your grandfather; and you shall eat bread at my table continually.”  Then he bowed himself, and said, “What is your servant, that you should look upon such a dead dog as I?”  And the king called to Ziba, Saul’s servant, and said to him, “I have given to your master’s son all that belonged to Saul and to all his house.  You therefore, and your sons and your servants, shall work the land for him, and you shall bring in the harvest, that your master’s son may have food to eat. But Mephibosheth your master’s son shall eat bread at my table always.” Now Ziba had fifteen sons and twenty servants.
 Then Ziba said to the king, “According to all that my lord the king has commanded his servant, so will your servant do.”
“As for Mephibosheth,” said the king, “he shall eat at my table like one of the king’s sons.”  Mephibosheth had a young son whose name was Micha. And all who dwelt in the house of Ziba were servants of Mephibosheth.  So Mephibosheth dwelt in Jerusalem, for he ate continually at the king’s table. And he was lame in both his feet.

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