Posted by: Bill Hornbeck | May 7, 2015

The Kindness of God

Today’s devotion comes from 2 Samuel Chapter 2.  Here is a link to this chapter – https://www.biblegateway.com/passage/?search=2+Samuel+2&version=NASB

I quote only the following verses.

“1 Then it came about afterwards that David inquired of the Lord, saying, “Shall I go up to one of the cities of Judah?”  And the Lord said to him, “Go up.”  So David said, “Where shall I go up?”  And He said, “To Hebron.”  2 So David went up there, and his two wives also, Ahinoam the Jezreelitess and Abigail the widow of Nabal the Carmelite.  3 And David brought up his men who were with him, each with his household;  and they lived in the cities of Hebron.  4 Then the men of Judah came and there anointed David king over the house of Judah.

And they told David, saying, “It was the men of Jabesh-gilead who buried Saul.”  5 David sent messengers to the men of Jabesh-gilead, and said to them, “May you be blessed of the Lord because you have shown this kindness to Saul your lord, and have buried him.  6 Now may the Lord show lovingkindness and truth to you;  and I also will show this goodness to you, because you have done this thing.  7 Now therefore, let your hands be strong and be valiant;  for Saul your lord is dead, and also the house of Judah has anointed me king over them.”  2 Samuel 2:1-7.

—————–

David praised the men of Jabesh-gilead who buried Saul saying:  “… you have shown this kindness to Saul …”

But, how can someone truly show kindness to someone who is dead?

Some doctrine focuses on the kindness of the men of Jabesh-gilead.  But, Reformed Doctrine focuses on the kindness of God.

Reformed Doctrine points us to God Who can and did show kindness to those dead in sin.

As dead as Saul was with his head cut off and his body fastened to the wall of Beth-shan (1 Samuel 31:8-10), we were that much dead in sin.

“But God, being rich in mercy, because of His great love with which He loved us, even when we were dead in our transgressions, made us alive together with Christ (by grace you have been saved), and raised us up with Him, and seated us with Him in the heavenly places in Christ Jesus, so that in the ages to come He might show the surpassing riches of His grace in kindness toward us in Christ Jesus.”  Ephesians 2:4-7.

“For while we were still helpless, at the right time Christ died for the ungodly.  For one will hardly die for a righteous man;  though perhaps for the good man someone would dare even to die.  But God demonstrates His own love toward us, in that while we were yet sinners, Christ died for us.”  Romans 5:6-8.

Saul could not do anything to motivate the men of Jabesh-gilead to show kindness to him.  He was dead and his lifeless body was fastened to a wall.  Likewise, we could do nothing to motivate God to show kindness to us.  We were dead in sin.  We could supply no condition to motivate God to save us.  We needed the “Unconditional Election” of “TULIP”, the Five Points of Calvinism, the Reformed Doctrine of Salvation.

Saul was still dead after the kindness of the men of Jabesh-gilead.  But, in sharp contrast, we were made alive and raised to the heavenly places after the kindness of God to us.  Ephesians 2:5-6.

In conclusion, we receive every kind of kindness from God summarized as “surpassing riches of His grace toward us in Christ Jesus.” Ephesians 2:7.  “He who did not spare His own Son, but delivered Him over for us all, how will He not also with Him freely give us all things?”  Romans 8:32.

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