Recovering Your Possessions
The Bible states that we should love our enemy and be good to those who hate us.
This is a hard task to accomplish because our natural instinct is to hate those who spitefully used us or to avoid them at least but certainly not to shower them with affection.
However, the Lord want us to do exactly that.
Evidently, we can only succeed when we sacrifice our human instinct and allow the Holy Spirit within us to work on our behalf.
You will reap the benefits when you pursue, overtake and recover all.
David lived as a refugee for many years hiding from King Saul, who was trying to kill him.
The king felt threatened by David rise to power and popularity after he was anointed by the prophet Samuel to take over the throne of Israel.
David had also slain the dreaded giant Goliath when he was only a shepherd boy and delivered the Israelites from the hands of the Philistines.
Saul became, even more, irate with David after he gained more victories against the Philistines than him. The women praised David as he returned home from war and sang,
“Saul has slain his thousands and David his ten thousand.” (1 Samuel 18:7)
Saul was exceedingly jealous of David because he recognized that the Lord was with David, but no longer with him because of his disobedience.
David along with his wives and six hundred men fled their homeland and went to live in the land of the Philistines, who were enemies of Israel.
David became friends with Achish king of Gath and asked him for a part of his territory to live.
The king gave David the land of Ziklag, and he dwelled there for one year and four months.
David was a man of war and often attack the neighboring communities. So, the Philistine king liked David because of his perceived loyalty.
Consequently, when the Philistine gathered together to fight against the Israelites, the king of Achish made a pack with David to be his chief guardians in battle.
However, on the day of the war when the princes of the Philistines inspected their army and saw David and his men among his soldiers, they became upset and ordered them to return home.
The rulers remembered that David had slaughtered his people at a previous battle, and he recalled the song that the women had sung about David slaying his ten thousand, and so they did not trust him.
Although the Philistine king tried to defend David, the princes were adamant about their decision.
When David arrived home, he found his entire village burnt to the ground by the Amalekites and all their wives and children were taken captive.
The enemy did not kill any of the people because the Lord had protected them.
Upon seeing the destruction of their home, David and his men wept bitterly. Although David also lost his wives and children, his men raged against him and threatened to kill him.
Who could David turned to but God! So he strengthened himself in the Lord.
David decided to send for the priest to make a sacrifice to God. He asked the Lord whether he should pursue the enemy and overtake them. The Lord immediately replied,
“Pursue, for you shall surely overtake them and without fail recover all.” (1 Samuel 30: 81)
David quickly gathered his troop together and pursued the enemy.
When they arrived at the brook of Besor, two hundred of his men were too weary to cross over, so he left them and continued with four hundred men.
Showing kindness to your enemy will reap a better result!
Eventually, David’s men found a weak and sickly Egyptian in the field and took him to David.
David fed the Egyptian with bread and water and then gave him some additional delicious dessert such as fig cake and a cluster of raisins.
After the Egyptians stomach was filled and he was satisfied he was more than willing to answer all of David’s questions.
Although David recognized that the dying man was part of the bandits who had ravaged his home, he exercised patience and self-control and did not torture the sick man to gain vital information about the whereabouts of the others. Instead, David showed him kindness.
David’s action is contrary to some of the strategies used in our present day society where prisoners of war are sometimes tortured to reveal information.
It is questionable whether torturing or instilling fear in a captive is a useful method to gain information.
Perhaps if we change our tactics and show them love instead of anger we will reap better results.
The well-fed Egyptian revealed to David the identity of the enemy and their location. He even took David and his men to their camp site.
When David found the thugs, they were busy celebrating not knowing their intended doom.
David and his men attacked the enemy and recover all their possessions including all their families and animals plus the spoils of the enemies.
You will recover all that the enemy has stolen from you when you learn to repay good with evil.