There are characters in the Bible that seem to be caught up in the wake of big moments. They weren’t the key players, but their lives were forever changed (good and bad) by the events surrounding the big stories. One such man was Mephibosheth.
We first read of him when he was five years old. It was at that age when the news reached his family that Johnathan, his father, and Saul, his grandfather, were killed in battle. In fear of his life, his keeper took and ran with him because many new kings kill all the family of the old king to avoid possible claims to the throne. In her haste, Mephibosheth fell and became lame the rest of his life and was forgotten.
In 2 Samuel chapter nine, David has vanquished all his enemies. He now wishes to fulfill a vow he had made to Jonathan that he would not kill off his household (1 Sam. 20:14-15). He asks if there are any survivors of Saul’s household. That is when he is told about a son of Jonathan. David asks for him to be brought at once. Mephibosheth prostrated himself before David, yet David assured him he was in no harm. The lands of his father and grandfather were restored to him. He was provided with people to work the lands, and he would eat at the king’s table as a son. Mephibosheth’s response was, “What is your servant, that you should regard a dead dog like me” (2 Sam. 9:8)? He is overwhelmed with kindness. He is marginalized, outcast, and the son of the old king, yet he is brought to the king’s table. David, a man after God’s own heart, shows the side of God that loves His enemies.
Would it surprise you that Mephibosheth’s story is very similar to our story? “But God demonstrates His own love toward us, in that while we were yet sinners, Christ died for us” (Rom. 5:8). Like Mephibosheth, we are recipients of the blessings of a vow made long ago (Gen. 12:3). When Christ taught a lesson about those that would truly eat bread in the kingdom of God, He spoke of a great feast. Those invited rejected the invitation, “Then the head of the household became angry and said to his slave, ‘Go out at once into the streets and lanes of the city and bring in here the poor and crippled and blind and lame.’” (Luke 14:21). God cares for those who are outcasts and those that no one else would give any attention. Our response is often, “God, be merciful to me, the sinner” (Luke 18:13)!
We sup at the table of the King of kings and Lord of lords. We are sons by adoption, whereby we can cry, “Abba, Father.” (Rom. 8:15). Like the parable in Luke fourteen, there is still plenty of room at the table. Don’t forget to share with those around you the opportunity to dine with the King.