Sunday, 2 August 2020 Psalm 141
“Let not my heart turn to any evil thing, to practice deeds of wickedness with men that work iniquity….” -Psalm 141:4[TLV]
This is a prayer by David to keep him from sinning while going through trials and problems. There are many things common to all with regard to life on earth and one among them is, problems. It has no respect for background, nationality, status, etc. It just keeps coming to all in various shades. We face big and small problems on a daily, weekly, lifetime basis. The older we get the more we seem to have. This is why, Jesus warns us in John 16:33 that we will face tribulations and pressures and problems while in this world. Yet in the same breath He tells us to take courage because He has overcome the world! This means, every problem has to be seen as an opportunity for God to show Himself strong on our behalf (2Chron. 16:9) as David did.
At times like these it is good to remember that Jesus also suffered as written in 1 Peter 2: 21&23, “For to this you were called, because Christ also suffered for us, leaving us an example, that you should follow His steps: who, when He was reviled, did not revile in return; when He suffered, He did not threaten, but committed Himself to Him who judges righteously…”
David had developed communion with God through an active "prayer life" as can be seen in this Lamentation Psalm.
The First Step he takes is to give an early call for God to hear his plea. He declares his intention to prayer with hands raised toward heaven, as incense (Rev 5:8) at the evening sacrifice, desiring that God accept it as such.
The Second Step he takes is to lay bare his own human shortcomings by asking God to help him safeguard his speech by controlling his tongue (James 3); help him to avoid being drawn into enjoying the finer things of life while associating with the ungodly.
Third Step he takes is precautionary in case he leans the wrong way he prefers God would send a godly man to rebuke him. He also prays for grace to accept this rebuke as kindness in contrast with the dainties of the wicked which he wishes to refuse.
The Fourth Step he takes is to
Remind God that even during trials his prayers will still be against wicked deeds but his words will be seasoned with salt (Col 4:6) for when the leaders of the wicked fall they will remember his words as being well-spoken
Remind God that his eyes are fixed on Him for deliverance
Remind God that He is his refuge and no one else can keep him from death (Psa 121)
Remind God of his promise to keep him safe from the snares that the evildoers have laid for him (Psa 91:3)
The Fifth Step he takes is to be honest with God about how he really feels towards his enemies. He opens his heart out to let God know that he wants his enemies to fall into their own traps while he himself is kept in safety.
We should open our heart before God and be without guile for God knows what lies in our heart. He will repay according to what lies in there (Jer. 17:9-10). But thanks be to Christ Jesus, who has taught us to pray for those who hurt us because our enemy is not flesh and blood but powers and principalities that has taken flesh and blood captive to do their will.
We too have to cry out to be kept from the unrighteousness of retaliating or taking revenge or joining the wicked when hurt and pain assault us. Instead allow God to work through it all so He can work out His good in us!
Quote for the Day: “God examines with trials, the devil examines with temptations, the world examines with persecutions.” -Henry Smith