Sunday, 17 October 2021
“Contend, O LORD, with those who contend with me; fight against those who fight against me.” -Psalm 35:1
The psalmist desires that God would undertake his cause against those who had risen up against him, and God should be the advocate. His bitter opponents were engaged in bringing all sorts of false accusations against him, seeking his condemnation. The psalmist felt that he could not stand up against them; and he, therefore, pleads with God that He would interpose, and stand up for him.*
David begins by bringing his battle before the Lord in prayer and trusting God to fight the battle for him: “fight against those who fight against me.” (V.1) He trusted the situation and himself fully to God. He entrusts his desire for justice to God who he knows is the perfect and just Judge.
There are times in our lives that we react to situations or people when we feel offended but it says in James 1:19-20 – “…let every man be swift to hear, slow to speak, slow to wrath; for the wrath of man does not produce the righteousness of God.” How many of us really submit every move and step of our lives into the hands of God? How do we respond to people who do not agree with us? Anger is the sign of trying to fight our own battles. The root cause of that sin is the desire to control, instead of entrusting justice and vengeance to our Creator.
We can look to our prayer life to check whether we are trusting in God or in ourselves. If we don’t pray much or pray at all, then we are almost certainly trusting in our own strength, resources or understanding. But if instead we are bringing our needs before the throne of God in prayer, we are truly trusting our battles to Him! We can see David asking God to be his protection in his battles. The good news for us is that God will fight our battles for us (Isaiah 49:25). We were not made to live apart from our Creator, rather we were created to rely upon Him for everything in our lives including fighting our battles. If we have received God’s salvation through Christ, then just like David, we have access to God in prayer. Let us learn to bring our troubles and troublemakers, to Him and allow Him to deal in our situations, while praying for those who try to wrong us.
Seeking justice on our own is an unholy desire. We must not desire or pray for the ruin of our enemies- except those enemies of our flesh- lusts of the flesh that would lead to our destruction. We shouldn’t have a prideful attitude of seeking the destruction of those who don’t agree with us or live like us. Rather, understanding the extent of God’s love and mercy towards in what God has done for us through Christ Jesus, we have to love them and desire that God shows them His grace, just as He has done to us. Our example is Jesus who taught us thus: “But I tell you, love your enemies and pray for those who persecute you…” (Matthew 5:44)
Meditate on: ‘Do not say, “I’ll pay you back for this wrong!” Wait for the Lord, and he will avenge you.’ (Proverbs 20:22)
Listen: ‘The Battle belongs to the LORD’