Betrayal – When Evil is Returned for Good

When Evil is Concerned for GoodWe’ve all been touched by the act of betrayal at some time in our lives, and yet the spirit behind this act is increasing within the Church bringing disunity and distrust. It is part of the end-time battle and one in which every believer needs to be aware so that they become neither the victim nor the perpetrator.

When evil is returned after we have done some act of kindness, it is not only painful, but perplexing. There is no better example of this pattern than in the relationship between Saul and David.

This is what it looks like when evil is returned for good.

“What have I done? And what is my sin?” [1] David exclaimed as he learned that King Saul was once again on his trail intent on taking his life.

The relationship between Saul and David was a rocky road almost from its inception. Throughout their relationship there were moments in which Saul expressed his love and value for David, only to do a complete “about face” just days later, determined to take his life.

This happened over and over again. The answer to the “why?” is the root behind every betrayal.

However once it is recognized, it can also be a place of healing.

The root of the challenge between Saul and David has nothing to do with David, but everything to do with Saul. Saul’s disobedience to obey God’s command when he was ordered to destroy all the people and the plunder within the Amalekite’s camp[2] revealed his heart.

This wasn’t Saul’s first act of disobedience, nor would it be his last. But it was in that moment when the Lord told Samuel, “I regret that I have made Saul king, for He has turned his back on following me.”[3]

The root of Saul’s disobedience is the key behind each act of betrayal. And with betrayal is the launch of a spirit of destruction against an individual. It all stems from the original sin: pride.

Saul’s pride (determination to follow and exalt self rather than God) brought deception which opened the door to rebellion, offense, jealousy, and inevitably insanity. Saul’s pride and disobedience removed God’s blessing and anointing upon him and he became tormented in spirit.

It was because of this torment that Saul met David.

In order to find relief for their king, Saul’s men sought out the young shepherd as a soothing psalmist. As David played the harp before Saul, the anointing was released and the tormenting spirit was abated…at least temporarily.

I Samuel 16:21 reveals that Saul loved David and looked at him with favor. Yet as David and Saul’s lives continued to intertwine, it changed. With each new feat David accomplished, Saul recognized the hand of the Lord was upon him and he burned with intense jealousy.

He recognized God’s spirit and favor on David, because it had once been on him.

Yet David didn’t seem to have a clue the depth of evil lurking within the king. Why? Because David loved Saul and simply wanted to bless him.

He gave kindness and expected kindness back. What he got was evil.

He played his harp for Saul. He killed the giant. He was instructed to kill 100 Philistines to obtain their foreskins for the right to marry Saul’s daughter and instead brought Saul 200.

The more Saul refused to honor David, the harder David worked at serving him for ultimately in serving the king, he knew he was serving the King.[Tweet this]

Saul in his pride and torment couldn’t see David’s pure heart. He only saw David’s successful actions through the filter of his pride and offense.

And offense always brings with it the twin of deception.

Saul was certainly deceived. In his tormented mind he assumed David was trying to steal his glory. And that was another problem. It wasn’t Saul’s glory in the first place. It was the Lord’s.

And we are right back full circle to the root. Pride. Pride launched Saul’s downfall. In his pride and deception he was determined to remove David from the scene. But the person that was removed was Saul.

We need to be on guard against pride which can so silently enter our lives. A small success, some type of recognition or pat on the back can send us to believe that somehow we are something more than just a vessel for His glory.

When we succumb to that subtle draw we are ripe for deception. Everyone is susceptible. “For false Christs and false prophets will arise and will show great signs and wonders, so as to mislead, if possible, even the elect.”[4]

Once the seed of deception has taken root and the twins of offense and deception enter, then like the Pharisees of old, we become Satan’s tool to destroy the brethren. “They will make you outcasts from the synagogue, but an hour is coming for everyone who kills you to think that he is offering service to God.”[5]

It is imperative that daily we search our hearts so that pride doesn’t take root and deceive us. This is a day when the body of Christ should unify as never before, rather than launch offensives against each other. May we live as David did when he said, “Search me, O God, and know my heart: try me, and know my thoughts: And see if there be any wicked way in me, and lead me in the way everlasting.”[6]


[1] I Samual 20:1 NASB

[2] I Samual 15

[3] I Samual 15:10 NASB

[4] Matthew 24:24 NASB

[5] John 16:2 NASB

[6] Psalm 139:23-24 KJV

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