Confidences

‘A gossip betrays a confidence, but a trustworthy person keeps a secret.’ Proverbs 11:13 NIV

Betrayal is worse than gossip. Gossips may not necessarily harbour ill-will towards their victims; but a betrayer knowingly divulges information in a breach of confidence. They commit ‘relational treason’ by violating the trust someone has placed in them. Judas was in a position to betray Jesus with very little effort because he was familiar with His comings and goings.

The Bible says, ‘Judas, who betrayed Him, knew the place, because Jesus had often met there with His disciples.’ (John 18:2 NIV) Judas used his inside knowledge of Jesus’ tendencies to hurt Him. Then later his behaviour engendered such self-loathing that he committed suicide. Acts of betrayal eat away at your self-esteem and sense of dignity.

So, have you ever breached a confidence? If so, why did you do it? What was the reward? Did you gain some inside advantage? What were you envious or resentful of at the time? Was there an unresolved conflict between you and the other person? Have you repented of what you did?

Conversely, has someone betrayed your confidence? If so, were you reaping what you had sown? What valuable lesson did you learn from it? Have you freed the offender in your heart, and no longer desire revenge? If not, you’re still bound to them and they’re controlling your life. Drop it!

Remind yourself that, ‘All things work together for good to those who love God.’ (Romans 8:28 NKJV) Strive to become a trustworthy person others can depend on to guard their secrets. And if you’re blessed to have a trustworthy friend yourself, thank God for them!

SoulFood: Judg 16:23–31, 2 Cor 12:3–11

word4today an adaptation of The Word For Today is authored by Bob and Debby Gass and published under licence from UCB International Copyright © 2022

Today’s Readings

Judges 16:23–31

23 Now the lords of the Philistines gathered to offer a great sacrifice to Dagon their god and to rejoice, and they said, “Our god has given Samson our enemy into our hand.” 24 And when the people saw him, they praised their god. For they said, “Our god has given our enemy into our hand, the ravager of our country, who has killed many of us.” 25 And when their hearts were merry, they said, “Call Samson, that he may entertain us.” So they called Samson out of the prison, and he entertained them. They made him stand between the pillars. 26 And Samson said to the young man who held him by the hand, “Let me feel the pillars on which the house rests, that I may lean against them.” 27 Now the house was full of men and women. All the lords of the Philistines were there, and on the roof there were about 3,000 men and women, who looked on while Samson entertained.

28 Then Samson called to the LORD and said, “O Lord GOD, please remember me and please strengthen me only this once, O God, that I may be avenged on the Philistines for my two eyes.” 29 And Samson grasped the two middle pillars on which the house rested, and he leaned his weight against them, his right hand on the one and his left hand on the other. 30 And Samson said, “Let me die with the Philistines.” Then he bowed with all his strength, and the house fell upon the lords and upon all the people who were in it. So the dead whom he killed at his death were more than those whom he had killed during his life. 31 Then his brothers and all his family came down and took him and brought him up and buried him between Zorah and Eshtaol in the tomb of Manoah his father. He had judged Israel twenty years.

Judges 16:2

The Gazites were told, “Samson has come here.” And they surrounded the place and set an ambush for him all night at the gate of the city. They kept quiet all night, saying, “Let us wait till the light of the morning; then we will kill him.”

1 Corinthians 12:3–11

Therefore I want you to understand that no one speaking in the Spirit of God ever says “Jesus is accursed!” and no one can say “Jesus is Lord” except in the Holy Spirit.

Now there are varieties of gifts, but the same Spirit; and there are varieties of service, but the same Lord; and there are varieties of activities, but it is the same God who empowers them all in everyone. To each is given the manifestation of the Spirit for the common good. For to one is given through the Spirit the utterance of wisdom, and to another the utterance of knowledge according to the same Spirit, to another faith by the same Spirit, to another gifts of healing by the one Spirit, 10 to another the working of miracles, to another prophecy, to another the ability to distinguish between spirits, to another various kinds of tongues, to another the interpretation of tongues. 11 All these are empowered by one and the same Spirit, who apportions to each one individually as he wills.

Sun 16 January, 2022


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