Wednesday, 22 December 2010

Psalm 7- An Exposition

This Psalm is a plea for the Justice of God to take its proper cause to protect the innocent and condemn the wicked. We have seen that God is a lover of Justice in the previous expositions and this psalm pleads to that character of God. The word Shiggaion suggested in the title probably refers to the poetic form of the Psalm as being wild and ecstatic, (KirkPatrick). It may also be a literary term as this Psalm David sang to the LORD concerning Cush, a Benjamite.

Vs.1 LORD my God. David opens his case to YAHWEH who is his God. By covenant YAHWEH is Israel’s God and David understands the personal implications of this and calls YAHWEH my God. There are many foreigners to the intimacy nature of God but David is a citizen, God is personal to Him, God is dear to Him and there is no situation where His God is not concerned. I take refuge in you. This is a personal address and David immediately establishes where his confidence lies. He takes refuge in God, not in money, or in the ability of the earthly judges but in God. How many saints are troubled here below but first they take refuge in the security of the law and are not first to be found to take refuge in the Lord. First take refuge in God, come to the cross of Christ and there awaits you the safest abode of all where comforting arms shall caress you and your soul weaned as that of a child. Save and deliver me from all who pursue me. David is an hunted man, a man whom men are after his blood and he flees to the camp of the LORD in order to be delivered and saved from his treacherous accusers. Are you chased by the hostility of your sins and do you wish them depart from you. Run to the camp of Jesus and run as fast as possible vs. 2 or they will tear me apart like a lion. Sin devours the soul of a man and brings it into a greater depravity than when it first encounter it. Foolish men will not run from sin but they sit and play with it, they feel that sin is their friend but they have not eyes like the saints who has seen the repulsive repugnant nature of that obsessive ogre. But in time fools find out that sin rips to pieces with no one to rescue. David pleas to His God for deliverance because he does not want his enemies to catch him, to destroy and kill him for he would be made like a torn rag if ever his pursuers should over take him.  Let sin not overtake you, but run to the camp of Christ.

Vs 3-5 is a protest of innocence. He enters into the divine tribunal, knowing the Judge is righteous and his eternal inheritance, knowing with full confidence that only Justice is ever served in this house. David presents his defence; LORD my God, if I have done this and there is guilt on my hands. There is a charge against David, a false accusation that demanded his life, but he has been wrongfully accused, he has been slandered. David is ready to meet the divine sword if there is actual guilt to be stained on his hands. Here is the mark of a true heart, for who could comprehend a liar bringing such a statement before the eyes of Him who sees all and hears all; surely liars will not reason in this way but rather their plea will be with those who are as corrupt as they. David continues, If I have repaid my ally with evil or without cause have robbed my foe; this are the slanders that has been propagated against David and he himself feels the weight if such injustice that if these were actually to be done then rightly God would be perfectly just in letting my enemies pursue and overtake me and to trample my life to the ground. Such punishment is just for the guilty but David is no guilty man but righteous in his case. If I am to be found guilty let my enemies make me sleep in the dust.

We saw in the previous Psalm that David pleads to the LORD not to rebuke Him in His anger but here in prayer he pleads with God to vs 6 arise O LORD, in your anger; rise up against the rage of my enemies. David rightly sees himself innocent and the rage of his enemies towards him are not grounded on just principles but unjust. Awake, my God; decree justice. Many souls who love righteousness and detest wickedness to high degrees are often found with these words on their lips, that God should decree justice. The wicked seems to prosper and their ways seems to flourish, unjust principles are reigning the terrain of Africa and it seems that the LORD is asleep; but we know that YAHWEH never slumbers. Longsuffering is at a call for the saints, to bear for a season with the wicked but each moment their hearts are to the LORD waiting eagerly for the day of Justice, the day of recompense or to the morning when the wicked will repent and turn to the cross. Vs. 7 Let the assembled people gather round you. A multitude of people is here in sight, many with cases against their rulers and shepherds, many who were oppressed without a cause, many who disdained and shut out from the inheritance of the land. Here they have brought their case to the LORD while you sit enthroned over them on high. Vs. 8 Let the LORD judge the peoples. While the people gather round the throne, there is only one suitable judge, only one who is righteous in his decrees and we know that God has committed all judgement to Jesus. If you are a saint and you belong to Christ, what have you to fear on the day of judgement? Nothing at all, for if you are with him then He is for you. Your judgement has already been declared and you will be found not to be guilty for he has already taken the guilt upon himself. Jesus will judge the peoples and since he knows all that is in a man, no man will be dealt with unjustly but all will receive the righteous hand of justice. David, knowing that the LORD will judge the peoples, he pleads for his vindication. Vindicate me, LORD, according to my righteousness.  His enemies have no grounds for their accusations against him, their accusations are false and David is sure of his own righteousness in this situation; he has not offended anyone nor done wrong to his enemies. According to my integrity, O Most High. David is a man of firm principles and He keeps by them, although no man is perfect except one, the God-man, yet there are many men in the world who posses deep integrity and their ways are found to be just and honest in their dealings with their fellow creature. The righteous man and the man with integrity detest the fruits of the wicked especially when they flourish and pollute the land with their wickedness. The righteous man will soon declare to His God like David to vs. 9 bring to an end the violence of the wicked and make the righteous secure. A terrible crime is found in the earth that the wicked prosper and the righteous suffer. It is nonsensical and if there be no eternal judge to give at last wicked men their portions then all men may forsake their pursuit of righteousness and turn to the way of the wicked where carnal vices may role. But there is a righteous God who probes minds and hearts. Such is YAHWEH that he knows the depths of a soul, he searches their minds and calculates their motives, he is never mocked nor can he be fooled. It is a most stupid act when hypocrites come to the sacrifice of the LORD with hidden motives; delighting in their hearts that they have fooled men and their cheer affirms them that they have deceived God also. What fools and lawless citizens; they will not escape the piercing eyes of the saviour who will cut them down with his whet sword. The saints look towards that day when the chaff will be separated from the wheat, the elect gathered together and the rest thrown into the lake of fire because of their surpassing wickedness.

Vs 10 My shield is God Most High, who saves the upright in heart. Although this life may see the wicked flourish in the land, those who are righteous will take refuge in God who is for the cause of the righteous for He himself is righteous.  The righteous are determined that their dwelling place is of another place, they are but pilgrims and sojourners passing a most desolate abode and during their short stay they are keen to advance the cause of YAHWEH and flourish the land with the waters of righteousness. Vs. 11 God is a righteous judge and a God who feels indignation every day. Some have questioned the attitude of God against injustice and some have taken the position that God is indifferent or not too caring about it. This verse makes it plain to us that God is angry with injustice everyday. Where is injustice to be found, where is sin to be discovered, God absolutely hates it and no hour passes by where his indignation is lifted but He is angry at it everyday and with those who commit it. The only refuge from his wrath is under the spreading arms of the crucified saviour.

VS. 12 If a man does not repent, God will whet his sword; the bible declares that today is the day of salvation! Men are but a vapour and at any moment their feet may slide into everlasting hell if they are found not to have repented. God at any moment without warning sharpens his sword and sees the wicked in their wickedness, he takes no pity on them for they have not yet repented and their time is due. He whets his sword and cuts the thread of their life and sends them to that everlasting pit which was reserved for the devil and fallen angels. God not only whets his sword but He also bents and ready his bow; vs. 13 he has prepared for the wicked his deadly weapons, making his arrows fiery shafts. It is evidence by the picture portray here that God takes sin seriously and he deals with those who indulge in it with severity. He takes to the task of the executioner and strikes them with the blow of justice so that the righteous in the land may rest in peace. God is totally just in his actions because he is righteous and only does what is righteous and good.

The traits of the wicked man is spoken of in the following verses.  Vs. 14 Behold, the wicked man conceives evil and is pregnant with mischief and gives birth to lies.  Out of the heart of a man comes evil thoughts and it is true of the wicked that evil is present in his thoughts and the fruit of his labour is the lies and deceits that descent from his lips. Let us be wise to forsake all evil thoughts and only give time to those things which are pure, righteous and holy. Let us depart from lies and be bearers of truth. Let us be known not by idle words but by the sincerity of our words. The works of the wicked are not always fruitful for the wicked man vs. 15 makes a pit, digging it out, and falls into the hole that he has made. vs. 16 His mischief returns upon his own head, and on his own skull his violence descends. This is the eventual end of all wicked men who have not repented and fled to the cross of Christ. Their wickedness will in the end serve to their own destruction, while they do their wicked deeds, they are acquiring judgements upon their heads and digging holes in which they will be buried with the serpent. If you find yourself to be without Christ today, flee to the cross and turn to the way of righteousness, turn to Jesus and live.

After knowing the righteous character of God, the righteous will joyfully declare vs. 17 I will give to the LORD the thanks due to his righteousness, and I will sing praises to the name of the LORD, the Most High. Such praises are not to be found in the mouths of the wicked but it is to be found in the mouth of the saints. God is holy and righteous and their mouths never go tired from declaring it. They dance as if to have gained a treasure and the comfort in the righteousness of God encourages the saints to rise up in the morning amidst a barren land to go forth once again for the cause of justice and righteousness so that the flowers may flourish yet again.


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