Summary: After receiving the grace of David, did Mephibosheth betray his benefactor? Some great lessons on grace and the believer.
The Rest of the Story: Mephibosheth
David and Jonathan’s vow: 1 Samuel 20:14-17 - Jonathan said: 14 "And you shall not only show me the kindness of the LORD while I still live, that I may not die; 15 "but you shall not cut off your kindness from my house forever, no, not when the LORD has cut off every one of the enemies of David from the face of the earth."
16 So Jonathan made a covenant with the house of David, saying, "Let the LORD require it at the hand of David’s enemies." 17Now Jonathan again caused David to vow, because he loved him; for he loved him as he loved his own soul.
Jonathan is killed: 1 Samuel 31:1-2 - 1Now the Philistines fought against Israel; and the men of Israel fled from before the Philistines, and fell slain on Mount Gilboa. 2 Then the Philistines followed hard after Saul and his sons. And the Philistines killed Jonathan, Abinadab, and Malchishua, Saul’s sons.
Jonathan’s son introduced: 2 Samuel 4:4 - 4Jonathan, Saul’s son, had a son who was lame in his feet. He was five years old when the news about Saul and Jonathan came from Jezreel; and his nurse took him up and fled. And it happened, as she made haste to flee, that he fell and became lame. His name was Mephibosheth.
Mephibosheth remembered: 2 Samuel 9:1 - 1Now David said, "Is there still anyone who is left of the house of Saul, that I may show him kindness for Jonathan’s sake?"
2 Samuel 9:5-13 - 5Then King David sent and brought him out of the house of Machir the son of Ammiel, from Lo Debar.
6 Now when Mephibosheth the son of Jonathan, the son of Saul, had come to David, he fell on his face and prostrated himself. Then David said, "Mephibosheth?"
And he answered, "Here is your servant!"
7 So David said to him, "Do not fear, for I will surely show you kindness for Jonathan your father’s sake, and will restore to you all the land of Saul your grandfather; and you shall eat bread at my table continually."
8 Then he bowed himself, and said, "What is your servant, that you should look upon such a dead dog as I?"
9And the king called to Ziba, Saul’s servant, and said to him, "I have given to your master’s son all that belonged to Saul and to all his house.
10 "You therefore, and your sons and your servants, shall work the land for him, and you shall bring in the harvest, that your master’s son may have food to eat. But Mephibosheth your master’s son shall eat bread at my table always." Now Ziba had fifteen sons and twenty servants.
11 Then Ziba said to the king, "According to all that my lord the king has commanded his servant, so will your servant do."
"As for Mephibosheth," said the king, "he shall eat at my tablealike one of the king’s sons."
12 Mephibosheth had a young son whose name was Micha. And all who dwelt in the house of Ziba were servants of Mephibosheth. 13 So Mephibosheth dwelt in Jerusalem, for he ate continually at the king’s table. And he was lame in both his feet.
* Here is a beautiful story of David’s love for Jonathan, his keeping of his covenant, and his care for Mephibosheth.
* It is often used as a picture of the unworthy, incapable unbeliever finding grace in the eyes of our covenant-keeping God.
* However, that is not the end of the story. Today we look at 2 Samuel 16. Betrayal is in the air.
* David has fled from Jerusalem with his family and friends. He is on the run from his son.
* Absalom has moved into Jerusalem and has taken possession of the throne.
* Summary: Remember Ziba? He was made the servant of Mephibosheth to keep all of the property and wealth of Jonathan that was returned to his son.
* Here he is, catching up with David and his entourage, with food, donkeys, wine and a report.
* David asked what these provisions were for. Ziba said, "I brought them for you and your people."
* David asked, "Where is Mephosheth?"
* Ziba answers, "He is plotting to take over the throne."
* This angers David. Although he is not in a real position to make a ruling (he is a displaced king on the run), he rules that all the property and wealth of Jonathan now belonged now to Ziba, not Mephibosheth.
* This expresses faith on David’s part that he would return to the throne and be able to make such a ruling.
* It also fills our hearts with sorrow and disappointment.