It Is to One’s Glory to Overlook an Offense

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1 CHRONICLES 19:1-21:30 | ROMANS 2:25-3:8 | PSALM 11:1-7 | PROVERBS 19:10-12

This section in the book of Chronicles is a recap of the account of David’s time as king of Israel.  The decisions to go to war, to build alliances, to inquire of the Lord through his prophets, to accept his own weaknesses and seek pardon, and to make atonements—these were all the hallmarks of his reign, and this text reminds us of it.

Turning next to our reading in the book of Romans, we find Paul in the throes of making deep theological arguments with his Jewish brethren on a variety of topics, including the very Jewish topic of circumcision.  Evidently, there was discussion about the importance of this ancient practice, and in how it defined the people and their faith. 

And here you have Paul, who couldn’t be more Jewish—because he is the quintessential Jew indeed—saying to them that it is the circumcision of the heart which is what was more meaningful.  What a concept! 

Paul says this: 28 A person is not a Jew who is one only outwardly, nor is circumcision merely outward and physical. 29 No, a person is a Jew who is one inwardly; and circumcision is circumcision of the heart, by the Spirit, not by the written code. Such a person’s praise is not from other people, but from God.

Paul goes on to argue other theological points on the matter of God’s righteousness and faithfulness.  He asks the rhetorical question:  3What if some were unfaithful? Will their unfaithfulness nullify God’s faithfulness?

Turning now to our reading of the psalms, we find one in which David is acknowledging the great omnipotence of the Lord Almighty.  He says:

4 The LORD is in his holy temple;
the LORD is on his heavenly throne.
He observes everyone on earth;
his eyes examine them.
5 The LORD examines the righteous,
but the wicked, those who love violence,
he hates with a passion.
6 On the wicked he will rain
fiery coals and burning sulfur;
a scorching wind will be their lot.
 

7 For the LORD is righteous,
he loves justice;
the upright will see his face.

Finally, a beautiful verse from the book of Proverbs on the virtue of patience.  Solomon, the wise king of Israel writes:

11 A person’s wisdom yields patience;
it is to one’s glory to overlook an offense.

May God bless the reading and reflection of His Word.

4 thoughts on “It Is to One’s Glory to Overlook an Offense

  1. “For the LORD is righteous, he loves justice; ” is a verse of hope as in the Beatitudes!

  2. I was very drawn to your caption and the idea of overlooking an offense. It is so important, especially in a world with so much violence, division, long-simmering disputes. We have to learn “the virtue of patience” (as you aptly put it), tolerance, or even just how to pick our battles. For myself anyway, many offenses of others are really by-products of excessive pride on my own part: doesn’t that person know who I am? how could they do that to ME?

    On the other hand, and equally importantly, I do think there is a place for NOT overlooking offenses. At times – actually many times – it’s important to bring offenses to the attention of the offender. For one, it may help that person avoid such an offense in the future. It can be a growth opportunity for them. It might also help us to heal or at least move on from an offense. If a past hurt is bothering us it’s very healthy to talk about it, work through it, process it and then put it behind us. Again, pride can sometimes be an issue here. To admit that we’ve been hurt or offended requires some humility, putting aside one’s pride. We have to tell someone that they’ve had an effect on us – one we didn’t like. That’s not easy to do and the process of doing that is quite admirable, I believe.

    As always, my friend, thank you for the thought-provoking devotional!

    1. Thank you for your extremely thought-provoking commentary on today’s devotional post.

      You are correct in that many a time the true source of an offense may lie in none other than ourselves in how we might process a perceived word or deed that may have wronged us. I know that I myself am so very guilty of such behavior — why, just the other day, I had my feathers all ruffled up over a minor matter with a friend. While it is true that my grievance might have been a valid one (how could my friend have been so insensitive, etc. etc.), it is equally true that I also did have the prerogative to overlook the offense — a prerogative that I did not exercise. Alas, that led to much grief to myself and my friend, and took the better part of a weekend to sort out.

      In the same token, however, your other point of the need to stand up and speak up for offenses committed is also a very important one. I agree wholeheartedly with you on this matter.

      Thank you again, and God bless you.

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