And Barzillai said unto the king, How long have I to live, that I should go up with the king unto Jerusalem? ~2 Samuel 19:34
Have you ever turned down an offer from a king? Our devotion this morning centers on a believer who walked away from an opportunity of a lifetime. It teaches us about the tragic mistake of having such a negative view of yourself that you talk yourself out of the possibility of receiving a blessing. This morning, let us see how Barzillai said no to his king.
We see the invitation.
“And the king said unto Barzillai, Come thou over with me, and I will feed thee with me in Jerusalem.” King David was grateful for Barzillai’s act of generosity in bringing an abundance of food and bedding to him when he was exiled from the kingdom. Barzillai came to the king at great risk. David is now returning to his kingdom and extends an invitation to Barzillai to spend the remainder of his days with him. It meant he would eat at the king’s table. He would be given royal hospitality every day for the rest of his life. He would be under the protection of the king. He would be a citizen of the greatest kingdom on earth. What an invitation! Our Lord extends an invitation for us to come and dine with Him. He invites us to partake of His riches in glory and the riches of His grace. All of Heaven’s resources are available to us.
We see the introspection.
“I am this day fourscore years old: and can I discern between good and evil? can thy servant taste what I eat or what I drink? can I hear any more the voice of singing men and singing women? wherefore then should thy servant be yet a burden unto my lord the king?” Barzillai looked negatively at his life and thought that he would be a burden to the king! He said that he was too old, lacked good judgment, lost his sense of taste, and lost his enjoyment of music. He saw his life as one of hardships. He was a man who looked so introspectively at his life that he concluded there was nothing to gain from coming with the king. Barzillai is an example of believers who forfeit the blessings of God because they cannot get over their insecurities, a horrible past, or failures that scarred them. Be careful of being so introspective that you are stuck when you can be successful.
We see the impairment.
“Let thy servant, I pray thee, turn back again, that I may die in mine own city, and be buried by the grave of my father and of my mother. But behold thy servant Chimham; let him go over with my lord the king; and do to him what shall seem good unto thee.” Barzillai chose the inferior. Instead of choosing to be close to his king, dining at his table and having at his disposal his kingdom benefits, he chose to go back. David wanted Barzillai’s closeness, but Barzillai refused it. First, I believe our Lord is disappointed when we refuse His invitation to enjoy His blessings. Second, I believe our Lord is dishonored when we refuse His blessings. Barzillai lived the remainder of his days a miserable man when he could have had the blessings of the kingdom. He finished his life with less than the best.
David never extended another invitation to Barzillai. Someone has said that a king’s invitation is to be always obeyed. Never say no to your King.
Have an obedient God Morning!
Bible Reading Schedule: 2 Kings 12-14