At the King’s Table
Greater love has no one than this; that he lay down his life for his friends (John 15:13). O Lord, how You love me!
Read 2 SAMUEL 8:15-9:13
 David reigned over all Israel, doing what was just and right for all his people.  Joab son of Zeruiah was over the army; Jehoshaphat son of Ahilud was recorder;  Zadok son of Ahitub and Ahimelech son of Abiathar were priests; Seraiah was secretary;  Benaiah son of Jehoiada was over the Kerethites and Pelethites; and David’s sons were royal advisers.  David asked, “Is there anyone still left of the house of Saul to whom I can show kindness for Jonathan’s sake?”  Now there was a servant of Saul’s household named Ziba. They called him to appear before David, and the king said to him, “Are you Ziba?” “Your servant,” he replied.  The king asked, “Is there no one still left of the house of Saul to whom I can show God’s kindness?” Ziba answered the king, “There is still a son of Jonathan; he is crippled in both feet.”  “Where is he?” the king asked. Ziba answered, “He is at the house of Makir son of Ammiel in Lo Debar.”  So King David had him brought from Lo Debar, from the house of Makir son of Ammiel.  When Mephibosheth son of Jonathan, the son of Saul, came to David, he bowed down to pay him honor. David said, “Mephibosheth!” “Your servant,” he replied.  “Don’t be afraid,” David said to him, “for I will surely show you kindness for the sake of your father Jonathan. I will restore to you all the land that belonged to your grandfather Saul, and you will always eat at my table.”  Mephibosheth bowed down and said, “What is your servant, that you should notice a dead dog like me?”  Then the king summoned Ziba, Saul’s servant, and said to him, “I have given your master’s grandson everything that belonged to Saul and his family.  You and your sons and your servants are to farm the land for him and bring in the crops, so that your master’s grandson may be provided for. And Mephibosheth, grandson of your master, will always eat at my table.” (Now Ziba had fifteen sons and twenty servants.)  Then Ziba said to the king, “Your servant will do whatever my lord the king commands his servant to do.” So Mephibosheth ate at David’s table like one of the king’s sons.  Mephibosheth had a young son named Mica, and all the members of Ziba’s household were servants of Mephibosheth.  And Mephibosheth lived in Jerusalem, because he always ate at the king’s table, and he was crippled in both feet. Scripture taken from the Holy Bible, NEW INTERNATIONAL VERSION. Copyright © 1973, 1978, 1984 International Bible Society. All rights reserved throughout the world. Used by permission of International Bible Society.
ReflectWhat character trait did David show here?
What would David have been without Jonathan who saved his life, strengthened his hand in God (see 1 Sam. 23:16), and ultimately laid down his life so that David could be king? I imagine that David reflected on the man that Jonathan was, the friendship they shared, his promise to show kindness to Jonathan’s descendants (1 Sam. 20:15, 42). Now, David learns of Jonathan’s son Mephibosheth, physically disabled since childhood (4:4), restores him to his family property, and invites him to the king’s table. David’s actions speak of the enduring legacy of good friends. I love the fact that this amazing friendship was between men: a giant-killer and a military prince. Close friendship is not a gender thing; it’s a covenant thing.
The story also echoes the actions of the King of kings who welcomes us as we are, and restores us to who we were meant to be. No matter how little we think of ourselves (Mephibosheth calls himself a dead dog), the King recognizes our true worth, invites us to dine with him in a place of both honor and acceptance, and shares life with us. It’s wonderful to be so loved by the King.
Reflect on your close and enduring friendships. Thank God for them and your friendship with God through Christ.
Thank You, Lord, that I’m welcome at Your table. Thank You for the privilege of being a friend of the King.
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