David is calling out to God again for relief from his pursuers. They are accusing him of sin. “IF I have done this…” “I take refuge in You against my adversaries.”
We are not told what David is accused of doing or exactly who is pursuing him. From the heading of this psalm it appears that supporters of Saul are seeking his life or are at least out to ruin his reputation. David asks God to fight this battle for him.
The first thing David does though is ask God to examine his heart to see if any of what is being said is true. David is willing to accept whatever consequences God deems appropriate IF he has committed the sins he is accused of. He does not believe he is guilty, but if he is, let his opponent defeat him.
David asks God to do something to his accusers that he pleaded with God NOT to do to him. In our last psalm David asked God not to discipline him in anger. “O Lord, rebuke me not in Your anger, nor discipline me in Your wrath” (Psalm 6:1). Here, David asks God to dispense justice in His anger. “Arise, O Lord, in Your anger” (verse 6a). In David’s defense, he says that his enemies are attacking him with “fury” so maybe their fury deserved to meet God’s anger.
Above all, David trusts God to judge the situation. “The Lord judges the peoples; judge me, O Lord, according to my righteousness and according to the integrity that is in me” (verse 8); “God is a righteous judge and a God who feels indignation every day” (verse 11). David knows God does NOT smile on evil but judges rightly the hearts of men; including David’s heart.
David finds it fitting when the schemes of the wicked backfire. When the traps laid out for the righteous catch the wicked ones who set them in the first place. A definite Wile E. Coyote scenario if ever there was one.
I LOVE watching God work these kinds of ‘returns’. My oldest son’s mother-in-law was a woman determined to inflict her will on my son’s entire household. Her schemes were perverse and cruel. Her end goal was to take my son’s children from him and force their mother back into her home. All her court antics FINALLY came to a crashing defeat due to her own ‘traps’ and maneuvers. And she lost ALL contact with the children and her daughter because of her own schemes. It took more than three years to resolve the situation but God watched over all of us in the process. The sad part is that there was never reconciliation or repentance on her part. There is no opportunity for either any more as she died, estranged from her only daughter and grandchildren.
This psalm’s overall truth speaks to me of God being in control of all things. It speaks of putting my trust in Him to work out what is just in any situation. Whether that means correcting me, correcting the situation, or even punishing the evil and evil doers. God KNOWS how to bring about His will in my life. He KNOWS what it is going to take too to make me walk in His paths. Sometimes it takes me ‘rubbing up against’ someone intent on my harm to get me looking back to Him.
Father God, You know just how much ‘carrot’ and how much ‘stick’ it takes to get me going in the right direction. Thank You that Your ‘stick’ is not something You beat me with but something You use to guide me with instead. Remind me again to always start with examining my own heart to find any sin hidden there. Help me deal with what I find too instead of covering it back up.
I want to pray for those who use me wrongly. I know David prayed that You would ‘get them’ as in punishment. I pray that You would ‘get them’ as in turn their hearts to You. Reach out and do whatever it takes to open their eyes to Your word and to resolve the conflicts being caused. Bring beauty out of chaos.