April 1, 2015.
Daily Reading: Psalm 36-38.
Background: Psalm 33-35.
Concepts and Connections.
Contrast between the wicked and righteousness: In this psalm, David gives a contrast between the wicked and the Lord’s righteousness, with an ending plea for the Lord to remember him as righteous. The psalm opens with a picture of the wicked. It would seem that the fundamental driving point of the wicked is a heart problem and a lack of fear of God. He deceives himself with the words of his mouth, thinking more of himself than is warranted. Then the psalmist turns to the steadfast love and righteousness of the Lord, ascribing praise and glory to Him. In the Lord is found the fountain of life, and His children take refuge in Him. Showing this contrast, the psalmist then makes his plea to the Lord, that His steadfast love continue on those who love Him, and that they not become arrogant as the wicked are. It is interesting that the psalmist prays against arrogance, as it would seem an arrogant heart wouldn’t be very apt to pray this prayer. However, often this is exactly what we need to pray.
Fret not: It is often the case that life seems to be unfair to us. We see the wicked prosper and the righteous perish. However, the psalmist here reminds us over and over not to fret about the seemingly unbalance in the world, as the Lord indeed has everything under control. We are to trust in the Lord when it seems that all hope is lost, for in Him we will be delivered. The Lord looks favorably upon His children, and we can take refuge in Him. The wicked only prosper for a time, but it is the meek that will inherit the land (see also Matthew 5:5). The entire psalm gives us encouragement to trust in the Lord and not to worry about the things that are outside of our control (yet are inside God’s control). If we are not sure, we need only look to the reputation that the Lord has for helping those who are called by His name. Let us strive to do His will, for we know that the salvation of the righteous is from the Lord.
Confession: In this psalm, the psalmist recognizes his sins and iniquities and is pleading with the Lord that He would not answer him out of His anger. The psalmist knows where he stands before the Lord, and he knows that he is not in a good position. He openly confesses his sins and asks for the pardon of the Almighty. His enemies have come upon him, and those who hate him are openly mocking him. The psalmist feels pressed on every side; thus he turns to the Lord, in whom he trusts even though his iniquities are great. Though his confession and remorse, the psalmist feels confident that the steadfast love of the Lord will come on him, for he knows that that is his only chance of salvation. A final cry is made that the Lord be not far from him nor forsake him, for the Lord was his salvation. Let us remember that though our iniquities are great, we can still trust in the Lord with our whole heart to forgive us when we fall, making confession and repenting along the way.
Tomorrow’s Reading: Job 25-26.
The steadfast love of the Lord never ceases.