Monday, August 6, 2012

Betrayed by Martin Wiles

He was in cahoots with his arch enemy, and now he had betrayed him.

Israel’s throne was David’s; the reigning king just wasn’t ready to concede. In the meantime, the king was making his life miserable-including several jealous attempts on his life. Finally with the help of the king’s son he escaped.

At Nob, David met Ahimelech the High Priest who gave him food and a sword.  Unfortunately, the sinister Doeg witnessed the whole affair and told the king. In a fit of rage, he murdered the priests and their families as punishment for helping David. Only Abiathar escaped.

From an earlier encounter, David knew he’d be betrayed. That day, when Doeg the Edomite was there, I knew he would be sure to tell Saul (I Samuel 22:22).

Doeg was David’s enemy, but it’s not always enemies who betray us. More often it’s our friends, work associates, children, spouses or other family members. Betrayal hurts, but it’s especially painful when coming from those close to us. And it’s tempting to take the wrong course responding to the hurt.

Forgiveness is always the right response to betrayal. True forgiveness is immediate, and while we can’t forget the wrongs we can choose not to dwell on them. If seeing that person causes anger to boil inside us, it’s a clue we haven’t forgiven or that we need to forgive again.

Forgiveness may have to be repeated for complete healing to occur. Some hurts cut deep, and at other times the person simply isn’t interested in continuing the relationship. Even though it’s not always possible, restoration is the ultimate goal of forgiveness.

Unforgiveness destroys emotionally, physically and spiritually. Have you forgiven your betrayers?

Prayer: Merciful Lord, give us strength to forgive those who hurt us as You have forgiven us for hurting You.