(Extracted from S. M. Anglin in "Christian Friend," 1897).
The grace of God to the sinner has been beautifully illustrated by the "kindness of God" shown by David to Mephibosheth. But not all the types in the O.T. together can adequately set forth that grace. One would desire that we may value them as directing our minds to Him of whom they speak and the exceeding riches of God's grace. What is the effect produced in the heart and thus on life and character by the revelation of that grace? I desire to consider this subjective side of the truth. Have we not to own that while the grace to us surpasses that of which he was the subject, yet his answer towards David affecting his course and character, makes us conscious of coldness of hearts, little affected by the love of God. Hence the little effect either in separation from the course of this world or in devotedness to a rejected Christ! We do well to deal honestly with ourselves as to the cause. There is a sure remedy and we can hide nothing, for all will yet be made manifest (1 Cor. 4). We have to do with the God of all grace who commends every desire after Christ. On the other hand, no mere profession deceives Him. It affords great comfort that He discerns everything perfectly. What joy it would have been to Mephibosheth, could David have appreciated his motives instead of judging his case hastily. But there was true affection for David and faithfulness which were not understood by the self-seeking Ziba. But what produced such beautiful fruit with Mephibosheth? Great and unmerited kindness had been shown to him by David. He belonged to the family of David's enemy — Saul. He was poor and helpless and felt and owned it. He was of "the poor in spirit" who could be blessed and hence had a deep sense of the grace shown him by David. (Because the nature of God's grace is not rightly understood, many are defective in proper effect in our day). He rightly understood and accepted the place assigned him thereby and this brought him into personal contact with David continually. Because of that position he grew in attachment to David and in the favour of such companionship. All this but faintly expresses that of which we have been the recipients. Indeed David never expressed love for Mephibosheth. He showed 1000-fold more for his reprobate son Absalom! Mephibosheth was at David's table "as one of the king's sons," but no conscious bond of relationship existed. But all this puts us to shame, comparing the effect on his life and that in ourselves. The feeble answer to such mighty grace and love is because our true distance and moral condition have not been sufficiently apprehended and the place of nearness which love has assigned us has not been accepted by the soul. True, that acceptance is only reached through accepting His death in its application to all that ministers to "the old man." If we prefer life here we cannot enjoy "life eternal" that circle which His death and resurrection have opened for us now and into which the Holy Spirit would conduct our hearts. In few words the divine record tells us of that which marked a devoted heart to David during his absence from his rightful place (2. Sam. 19:24). We covet a corresponding answer in our lives to the fact that our Lord is rejected here. Mephibosheth's answer respecting the inheritance speaks in no uncertain way of disinterested love for David and that he might enjoy again his company. All is beautiful to contemplate and is recorded that we may be exercised as to how far we have been formed by that love which "passeth knowledge" and by the company of our blessed Lord.