WELCOME TO THE BANQUET
Heavenly Father, thank you for your lovingkindness that you express in my life each day.
Read 2 SAMUEL 9
David and Mephibosheth
9 David asked, “Is there anyone still left of the house of Saul to whom I can show kindness for Jonathan’s sake?”
2 Now there was a servant of Saul’s household named Ziba. They summoned him to appear before David, and the king said to him, “Are you Ziba?”
“At your service,” he replied.
3 The king asked, “Is there no one still alive from 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 lame in both feet.”
4 “Where is he?” the king asked.
Ziba answered, “He is at the house of Makir son of Ammiel in Lo Debar.”
5 So King David had him brought from Lo Debar, from the house of Makir son of Ammiel.
6 When Mephibosheth son of Jonathan, the son of Saul, came to David, he bowed down to pay him honor.
David said, “Mephibosheth!”
“At your service,” he replied.
7 “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.”
8 Mephibosheth bowed down and said, “What is your servant, that you should notice a dead dog like me?”
9 Then the king summoned Ziba, Saul’s steward, and said to him, “I have given your master’s grandson everything that belonged to Saul and his family. 10 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.)
11 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[a] table like one of the king’s sons.
12 Mephibosheth had a young son named Mika, and all the members of Ziba’s household were servants of Mephibosheth. 13 And Mephibosheth lived in Jerusalem, because he always ate at the king’s table; he was lame in both feet.
- 2 Samuel 9:11 Septuagint; Hebrew my
New International Version (NIV)Holy Bible, New International Version®, NIV® Copyright ©1973, 1978, 1984, 2011 by Biblica, Inc.® Used by permission. All rights reserved worldwide.
‘Amazing grace! How sweet the sound / that saved a wretch like me.’1 Thank Jesus for bringing you out of the pit and setting your feet on the Rock.
Personally, having experienced years of painful suffering, sometimes feeling like ‘a dead dog’ is a true expression of reality (v 8). Whether Mephibosheth said that to show homage before David is unclear, but it’s a powerful picture. His father was Jonathan and his grandfather, Saul. Having once lived in a king’s house, he was now before one who could humiliate or kill him. Years before, when Mephibosheth was just five, David had promised unfailing love to Jonathan’s family2 and Mephibosheth is now an adult. No doubt terrified, he is welcomed into the king’s throne room. In a reflection of God’s goodness to him, David restores the lands to Mephibosheth’s family, setting people around him to provide for his needs, even inviting him to dine at the king’s table (vs 7,11).
The parallels cry out to us from this story. That we, who were but broken pieces laid before the King, would be restored as heirs. More than that, to be welcomed into the King’s presence, by name. Not meeting with the expected (and just) death sentence, but finding a welcome of the greatest proportion and honor – and the restoration of all the enemy has taken from us! Ziba calls him the lame son (v 3), the king calls him by name (v 6) and adopts him as family. In the same way, God invites us personally into restoration and relationship. In redemption we find blessings beyond comprehension, even everlasting life and the joy of being his children. Just as the disciples sat sharing with the Lord, we are invited to the King’s feast! Psalm 23 expresses it beautifully: he prepares a table for us before our enemies, we are to be anointed and dwelling in God’s house forever.3 Or, as David’s son described it, ‘Let him lead me to the banquet hall, and let his banner over me be love.’4
Who are we inviting to the feast, to receive God’s grace and eternal love?
Lord Jesus, there is nothing in me that you needed, but my need for you was beyond measure. You came and died for me; I want to live for you.
1 John Newton, 1779 2 1 Sam 20:14–17 3 Ps 23:5 4 Song 2:4
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