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When People Curse You, Remember This

Jennifer LeClaire Exclusives

When People Curse You, Remember This

David was weeping and barefoot as he left Jerusalem. His son, Absalom, had just launched the ultimate fiery dart against him: an insurrection. David didn’t want to see the city destroyed, so he left willingly, only to meet with a man from the house of Saul who came out to add insult to injury. We read the account in 2 Samuel 16:5-8:

“Now when King David came to Bahurim, there was a man from the family of the house of Saul, whose name was Shimei the son of Gera, coming from there. He came out, cursing continuously as he came. And he threw stones at David and at all the servants of King David. And all the people and all the mighty men were on his right hand and on his left.

“Also Shimei said thus when he cursed: ‘Come out! Come out! You bloodthirsty man, you rogue! The Lord has brought upon you all the blood of the house of Saul, in whose place you have reigned; and the Lord has delivered the kingdom into the hand of Absalom your son. So now you are caught in your own evil, because you are a bloodthirsty man!”

 

David Focuses on the Deliverer

David’s clan was so incensed they wanted to take off his head! But David took it in stride. He actually suggested the Lord may have sent him to heap curses on his head. The point is, David didn’t retaliate. In the midst of the cursing, in the midst of Absalom’s betrayal, in the midst of his grief, David kept his eyes on the God who had always delivered him in the past.

David said, “Let him alone, and let him curse; for so the Lord has ordered him. It may be that the Lord will look on my affliction, and that the Lord will repay me with good for his cursing this day” (2 Samuel 16:11-12). David’s righteous heart attitude didn’t immediately change the situation. Shimei went along the hillside opposite David and kept cursing him, and even threw stones at him and kicked up dust. And David’s men grew weary.

When people are cursing us, we can’t grow weary in well doing. We can’t return evil for evil. Sure, David could have had Shimei killed in any given moment, but he was trusted the same God who helped him overcome the lion, overcome the bear, overcome the Goliath and overcome Saul’s murder attempts against his life. He was waiting for God to turn the curse into a blessing. God is just that good, and David knew it.

God Will Turn the Blessing into a Curse

Perhaps David was inspired by Deuteronomy 23:5, when God turned Balaam’s curse into a blessing because of His love for the Israelites. The Israelites didn’t deserve the curse of Balaam, and the curse causeless does not land (see Proverbs 26:2). Balaam knew this, saying, “How shall I curse whom God has not cursed? And how shall I denounce whom the Lord has not denounced?” (Numbers 23:8).

When people curse you without a cause, pray for them. Jesus said, “Bless those who curse you” (Luke 6:28.) Paul put it this way: Bless and curse not (see Romans 12:14). When you take on this attitude, like David, the curse cannot land but it may rebound on the sender because they will reap what they sow.

Pray mercy and ask God to forgive them, because although they may be cursing you maliciously, they don’t ultimately understand what they are doing. In this way, you return good for evil and set yourself up for promotion.

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