Sides of Kindness

Sides of Kindness

Kindness is that generous disposition which seeks the wellbeing of others. Yet if the disposition of kindness is to come into full bloom, someone must receive the kindness that is offered.

In the OT account of King David, two chapters highlight David’s kindness and how it was received (2 Samuel 9-10). In the first, David showed kindness to Mephibosheth, the son of David’s friend Jonathan, who was lame in both his feet. David welcomed Mephibosheth to live in his palace, to eat at his table, and to enjoy a royal pension the rest of his days. In stark contrast was Hanun, the new crown prince of Ammon. David sent a delegation to show kindness (10:2), but under bad counsel, Hanun rejected the kindness and humiliated David’s men (10:4-5). Same king, same kindness, two different responses.

The same things happens today. God “[shows to us] the exceeding riches of his grace in his kindness toward us through Christ Jesus” (Eph. 2:7). Some warmly accept God’s offer to enter His family, to eat at his table, and to enjoy pleasures at his right hand forevermore (Ps. 16:11). These are the children of God through faith in the sacrifice of Jesus Christ.

On the other hand, there are those who stiff-arm God. Like Hanun, they remain skeptical, even critical of any kindness from God. They fight the very One who wants to show them kindness. They criticize God or even deny His existence. They write books like Richard Dawkins’ The God Delusion and/or spew unbelief in college classrooms “to overthrow the faith of some” (2 Tim. 2:18). Same God, same kindness, dramatically different results.

This is no small matter, for what one does with the kindness of God determines the destinies of men. On which side of God’s kindness are you?