But David said to Abishai, “Don’t destroy him! Who can lay a hand on the LORD’s anointed and be guiltless? – 1 Samuel 26:9
David remained on the run from Saul, who still wanted to kill David. The LORD had given Saul into David’s hands a second time, and Abishai accompanied him into Saul’s camp where they could have struck him down and killed him. However, David told Abishai not to touch him because Saul was still God’s anointed king over Israel. He told him, “who can lay a hand on the LORD’s anointed and be guiltless?”. David knew that God’s leader deserved respect because of God’s actions if nothing else despite the evil and ruthlessness of the person anointed.
This is the second time in as many days that God has pointed out to us that we had better respect the people He anoints and puts in charge of our lives. In fact in the NT Paul and Peter both teach us that we, as employees (aka, servants) are to respect our masters and do our work for them with the best in us, as though we were working for the LORD and not men. Paul says to work hard for them not just when their eyes are on you, but all the time. He also said to show respect for all authority including those that bless us and those that are harsh on us because all authority whether in government or on the job or in the home has been placed there by God.
If you are a husband-father, then you are the anointed and appointed leader of the home. If you are a boss on the job, then you are God’s anointed and appointed leader in the company. As much respect as your people should have for you and not bad mouth or complain against you, remember that Paul taught that masters are just as responsible for taking care of their people as their people are at respecting them. David respected his master, the LORD’s anointed, king, and father figure in Saul. Saul as king and master did not respect David nor give him what he needed to succeed. Saul’s jealousy and rebellious heart drove him mad and coerced him to seek David’s life.
No matter which role we play in this life whether servant or master, employee or boss, we must respect one another. We must remember that God has placed us all in the positions where we serve both Him and our fellow man. We must remember that even sinners are God’s anointed. If you doubt me, then read the accounts of the pharaohs, Nebuchadnezzar, and Cyrus, and Artaxerxes and other heathen kings mentioned in Scripture. They were all God’s servants. Daniel confirmed that word in the 2nd chapter of the book by his name.
Those who speak against or act against God’s anointed will answer to God for their actions because God doesn’t take things lightly regarding His servants, even if they are sinners. In other words, love your neighbor as yourself, and there will never be a problem about disrespecting one of God’s anointed. You will never incur the anger of God surrounding this topic. Love God and fellow man, and you’ll be sure to always have the proper attitude and respect for God’s anointed including those that make your life miserable.
Father, thanks for reminding me today that I must have the proper attitude and respect for Your servants, regardless of whom they might be. The easy ones to recognize are those that are in positions of power, but even those that are not in authority, are still anointed of You. They all must be revered for the mere fact that You selected them for the roles in which they serve. If we all would follow the two greatest commandments, then we’d never have to worry about offending those You anointed and appointed. Help me to always remember this sage advice and to live by it. In Jesus’ name, Amen.