Christian Devotions

Nothing Civil About War

Focus verses: 2 Samuel 18:29 – 19:4

David’s battles were essentially family battles. David’s enemy in this reading was his son, Absalom. The commanders of their armies, Joab and Aman, were cousins. No matter who would win this battle, they all would lose.

David expressly asked his fighting men not to kill Absalom. But when Absalom was found in the tree, Joab killed him. David grieved loudly, openly. And that grief demoralized his own army.

Discord in the family is a no win situation. No matter who wins, everyone loses. This is true not only of Israel, but of our families and the family of God.

Small discords, when allowed to grow, become real battles. Bitterness and hatred abound. Relationships are severed. And God is grieved.

God created mankind for relationship, relationship with Him and with one another. In the best sense, when we are in proper relationship with God, we are also in great relationship with the remainder of the body of Christ, the universal church. While we seldom attain and maintain this state perfectly, we can work toward it consistently.

Father, God,

Help us to see that relationship is more important than self. Grant us the wisdom not to let the sun go down on our anger. Help us to apologize and forgive as needed in order to keep Your family together.

In Jesus’ most precious name.
Amen.
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