Responding to False Accusations. It’s hard enough to respond to true accusations, let alone false ones.
Whenever I hear, “Why did you…?” or, “How come you…?” etc., my invisible antenna goes wild, and the klaxon in my mind begins to scream. I’m under attack!
The default response for many is to go into defense mode and respond, “Oh, and you never…?” (or something to that effect), thereby taking the attention off us and putting it on the original accuser. Perhaps you can relate.
Rarely is there any attention given to the validity of the accusation. We have our honor to defend. Unfortunately, the process of defending our honor is rarely honorable.
As already stated, it’s hard to respond to accurate accusations. But what about responding to false accusations?
I’m sure many examples could be examined, but the one that stands out in my mind is Hannah responding to Eli. For context, the story is given in 1 Samuel 1:1-20.
To capsulize, Hannah was barren and deeply desired a son. Hannah is pouring her heart out to God in the House of God, being watched by the Man of God. In the process, Eli falsely accused Hannah of being drunk in the temple.
Hannah did not get defensive and attack Eli. She did not get her husband to attack the preacher on her behalf. She did not start a petition to remove Eli from office or start an insurrection.
Hannah replied to Eli in her brokenness, letting him know she was not disgracing the house of God but rather was expressing her deep grief and desire to God Himself. Eli let her know she could go knowing her request would be granted.
Hannah left graciously. She did not insist on an apology before leaving. It’s interesting to note that there is no record of an apology from the top spiritual leader in the country. There should have been, but there wasn’t. And Hannah appeared to be okay with that.
Although I cannot definitively prove this next point, I do not doubt its truth: Samuel was born only because of Hannah’s proper response to the false accusation of the preacher. Had she responded any other way, her petition would not have been granted.
God took care of Eli. Hannah didn’t need to. She got what she wanted. All because of a correct response to an incorrect accusation. Selah.
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