Forgiveness with Boundaries – David and King Saul (by Joe Pote)
Here is a segment of Joe Pote’s post Forgiveness with Boundaries, from his blog Redeemed.
It’s an excellent biblical example of how forgiveness need not entail reconciliation with the person who has hurt you, especially if that person is still likely to be dangerous.
Then Saul said, “I have sinned. Return, my son David, for I will not harm you again because my life was precious in your sight this day. Behold, I have played the fool and have committed a serious error.” (1 Sam 26:21)
Saul expressed words of repentance, confessed his sin, declared his love for David, asked David to return with him, and promised not to harm him again.
David replied, “Behold the spear of the king! Now let one of the young men come over and take it. The Lord will repay each man for his righteousness and his faithfulness; for the Lord delivered you into my hand today, but I refused to stretch out my hand against the Lord’s anointed. Now behold, as your life was highly valued in my sight this day, so may my life be highly valued in the sight of the Lord, and may He deliver me from all distress.”
David responded with forgiveness. Although Saul had repeatedly attempted to kill him, David was quick to forgive. He declared his love for Saul, returned Saul’s weapon to him, and did not seek vengeance against Saul.
But look at what David did not do…
So David went on his way, and Saul returned to his place.
Confession and forgiveness were followed not by reconciliation, but, rather, by each going their own way.
Read the full post on Joe’s blog here. I’m also adding this link to our resources page.