Anger

When the Lord takes pleasure in anyone’s way, he causes their enemies to make peace with them
— Proverbs 16:7

My bible reading took me to 1 Samuel 25, the story of David and 400 of his warriors going through the countryside in search of Nabal, a rich brutish man who had crudely refused to give them food.  You need to read the chapter to get the details in full.

When David got word that Nabal refused to give them help, he was furious.  David would have murdered him if Abigail, Nabal’s wife hadn’t intervened.  Without Nabel knowing, she packed up enough food to feed an army and traveled out to meet the troops, hoping to head off disaster.  She reverentially reminded David that guilt would torment him if he followed through with his plan of revenge (1 Sam. 25:31).  David realized she was right and blessed her for her wisdom and good judgment.

I can relate to David because I can have one of those spells in situations like David had with Nabal.  David’s anger was legitimate, he had protected Nabal’s shepherds in the wilderness (vv.14-17) and had been repaid evil for good.  The only problem was his anger was leading him into sin.  David’s first instinct was find Nabal and thrust his sword into his gut, even though he knew murder and revenge was wrong.

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It is impossible to go through life without being offended.  When we’ve been offended, it’s good to compare our urge to get even with what God’s Word says.  We may be like David and want to strike back at people with a tongue lashing, withdraw and isolate ourselves, or escape through any number of ways.  Like David learned, choosing a gracious response will help us avoid regret, and most of all it will please God.  Our text in Proverbs teaches us that when our desire is to honor God in our relationships, He can make even our enemies to be at peace with us, Prov. 16:7.  And by the way, God took care of Nabal.  He died a few days later and David took Abigail to be his wife.  God Bless!