Poison's Antidote

Pray: 

Lord, You are my shield, my safe hiding place and my vindicator. I entrust all to You.

 

Read: PSALM 140:1-13

[1] For the director of music. A psalm of David. Rescue me, LORD, from evildoers; protect me from the violent, [2] who devise evil plans in their hearts and stir up war every day. [3] They make their tongues as sharp as a serpent's; the poison of vipers is on their lips. [4] Keep me safe, LORD, from the hands of the wicked; protect me from the violent, who devise ways to trip my feet. [5] The arrogant have hidden a snare for me; they have spread out the cords of their net and have set traps for me along my path. [6] I say to the LORD, "You are my God." Hear, LORD, my cry for mercy. [7] Sovereign LORD, my strong deliverer, you shield my head in the day of battle. [8] Do not grant the wicked their desires, LORD; do not let their plans succeed.[9] Those who surround me proudly rear their heads; may the mischief of their lips engulf them. [10] May burning coals fall on them; may they be thrown into the fire, into miry pits, never to rise. [11] May slanderers not be established in the land; may disaster hunt down the violent. [12] I know that the LORD secures justice for the poor and upholds the cause of the needy. [13] Surely the righteous will praise your name, and the upright will live in your presence. 

 

Reflect: Can you put it safely in God's hands?

For many years David, who may have written this psalm, served a man, King Saul, who hated him, envied him and wished him dead. He lived with the very real threat of violence, and in the knowledge that there were plenty of people around him looking for the opportunity to bring him down.

Evil is a reality in this world. We will encounter people who wish us harm. There will be those who speak badly against us behind our backs, who try to trip us up or worse. The psalmist responds to his situation in a very human way--he asks God to do dreadful things to the people making his life a misery (9-11). But--and this is important--he doesn't do these things himself. He understands that God is a God of justice, and any punishment is for God to mete out (12).

Faced with people who wrong us, we need to lay down our desire to retaliate, and we need to turn to the Sovereign Lord, our strong deliverer (7). He is our refuge. We live in his presence and, because of that, we are safe.

 

Apply: 

If you are in a situation in which someone is doing you harm or speaking against you, talk to God. Leave it with him.

 

Pray: 

God, You are a God of justice and of mercy. Thank You that You do not turn Your back or close Your eyes.

 

Syndicated via Scripture Union
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