Facing the Accusers and the Naysayers – Part 1
“When Eliab, David’s oldest brother, heard him speaking with the men, he burned with anger at him and asked, ‘Why have you come down here? And with whom did you leave those few sheep in the wilderness? I know how conceited you are and how wicked your heart is; you came down only to watch the battle.’” (1 Samuel 17:28 NIV)
Whenever God sends you out and tells you to trust him— because you’re on the edge of doing something great for his kingdom; because you’re at the dawning of a new day when you will start to make a difference in people's lives—you will inevitably face two obstacles: the accusations and disdain of others; and the words of the naysayers.
The young shepherd boy David was ready to slay the Philistine giant, Goliath, and free all Israel from the terror he was causing and from the oppression of the Philistines, when David’s own brother Eliab called him conceited and falsely accused him of showing up on the battlefield as a busybody. And Eliab was his own biological brother! That was what hurt David: as his brother, Eliab should have known better; he should have known David’s heart.
The root of Eliab’s disdain for his younger brother at that moment could have been jealousy, because on a previous occasion, the prophet Samuel had anointed David and not Eliab or any of the other brothers as God’s chosen vessel. And indeed David did end up becoming king after Saul.
Sibling rivalry is a terrible thing, whether you are talking about biological siblings or brothers and sisters within the body of Christ. It not only damages people and relationships, but also brings with it discouragement. If David had reacted to the words of his brother, he could have said, “Forget it”; and he would have lost his victory against Golilath.
Likewise, when we ourselves want to step out for God, we could encounter resentment from others, even in our own families or in the body of Christ. We have to be tender toward God, but when it comes to what other people might say to discourage us, we have to have tough skin and say, “I’m going to do what God called me to do!”
To be continued…