Let It Go! – Part 4
“But Saul said, ‘No one will be put to death today, for this day the Lord has rescued Israel.’” (1 Samuel 11:13 NIV)
King Saul refused to take revenge on his detractors, even though he had the upper hand once the people were on his side because of his great victory against the Ammonites. In response to those loyal to him who were unforgiving and vindictive, he said, “No one will be put to death today, for this day the Lord has rescued Israel.” In other words, King Saul said, “It’s by his mercy and grace that we have been victorious.”
What an important lesson this is for us today! As Christians, we have had our sins forgiven through the sacrifice of Jesus on the cross. After God has been so merciful with you and me, are we going to now bury someone because they’ve made a mistake against us? If God were to judge us by what we have done, we would be in deep trouble, wouldn’t we? Now, there may be some people who have done or said some terrible things against us; so what are we going to do—hold on to it? Why don’t we just say, “God has been so good to me; I’m not going to hold that against them”? Let God take care of the person.
If we hold within us the poison of resentment and bitterness, it will take away our praise. It will take away our peace. Someone reading this right now may be saying, “But you don’t know what I’ve been through.” I don’t. But you have to let it go, because “vengeance is mine, says the Lord” (Romans 12:19). Put on bowels of mercies; put on a garment of compassion (Colossians 3:12). Pray for those who have acted in an ugly manner toward you; because if you hold it inside, it will give you arteriosclerosis of the spirit—hardening of your spiritual arteries. I’ve watched people go through that. Envy, bitterness, and seething anger dry up the bones. You’ll lose your joy and your mobility, just because you’re bitter over what someone said twenty-one years ago or what another person did twenty-one months ago.
So this was the test for Saul in the early days of his kingship: Are you going to take advantage because you have power, and pay evil for evil? Or are you going to say, “You did evil, but I’m going to do good; I’m going to forgive you; I’m going to let it go”?
In the apostle Paul’s letter to the Ephesians, he wrote, “Be kind and compassionate toward one another, forgiving each other, just as in Christ God forgave you” (Ephesians 4:32). It’s easier said than done, I know. In fact, it takes the grace of God to let it go. Do you want to preach better, prophesy, have more faith? That’s good; but we also have to want to “let it go.” Let’s ask the Lord for the grace to do it today. He will help us!
Read 1 Samuel 11:13-15.