To the chief Musician, A Psalm of David.
1 In the Lord put I my trust: how say ye to my soul, Flee as a bird to your mountain? 2 For, lo, the wicked bend their bow, they make ready their arrow upon the string, that they may privily shoot at the upright in heart. 3 If the foundations be destroyed, what can the righteous do? 4 The Lord is in his holy temple, the Lord’s throne is in heaven: his eyes behold, his eyelids try, the children of men. 5 The Lord trieth the righteous: but the wicked and him that loveth violence his soul hateth. 6 Upon the wicked he shall rain snares, fire and brimstone, and an horrible tempest: this shall be the portion of their cup. 7 For the righteous Lord loveth righteousness; his countenance doth behold the upright.
In reading the history behind this Psalm, I discovered that David was living in King Saul’s court at the time. David was surrounded by sinful people and they hated him because of his righteous living, his testimony if you will. He was definitely “in the minority” and he was persecuted for righteousness’ sake.
I’ve been there, haven’t you? I’ll probably never be persecuted to the extent David was. However, I have undergone some persecution “for no reason” other than it had to be due to my Christianity. Standing up for what’s right is never easy. We will always find people who hate our stand and they do not want to be reminded of their sinful ways.
Even the most innocent of situations can sometimes become explosive because of the cause of Christ. I have always witnessed about Jesus Christ and His wonderful salvation to my family and it has not been well received. My children have witnessed to their children and it still was not well received. I knew I had “hit a nerve” when I overheard family members criticizing my character. I was so hurt at the time but I remembered that Christ was criticized as well, to the point of death. So little have I been persecuted in comparison to Him! I think back on my situation and can totally understand what David went through.
Today’s text has taught me to run to the Lord when my heart aches and when the world seems to be against me for His sake. I see that David knew exactly where to go. He ran to his mountain top – his place of refuge! What a wonderful lesson for me! I realize that I am in the minority when it comes to my family. A very small number of us are born-again believers. The rest are lost as lost can be! So when they try my reins and say hurtful things, I can run to my Saviour for encouragement. I am reminded in verses 3 and 4 that the foundations of my faith cannot be destroyed because the Lord is in His holy temple! I love how David phrased it. He asked the question (verse 3) and then answered it (verse 4). Jesus Christ is the foundation of my faith – He is on His throne. He is the author and finisher of my faith!
~Hebrews 12:2 Looking unto Jesus the author and finisher of our faith; who for the joy that was set before him endured the cross, despising the shame, and is set down at the right hand of the throne of God.
He is in control and will have His way with the wicked (verse 6). In the mean time, I can occupy my thoughts with His righteousness and pattern my life after His. I can walk down the paths of righteousness for His name’s sake and leave judgment to Him.
~Psalms 23:3 He restoreth my soul: he leadeth me in the paths of righteousness for his name’s sake.
In the mean time, it is my duty to be a testimony of righteous living. I am to be a light – I am to be like salt which causes others to thirst after what I have. Yes, I fail daily, but I can go to the Rock that is higher than I (Psalm 61:2) and find forgiveness and refuge from my persecutors!
~Matthew 5:13-14 Ye are the salt of the earth: but if the salt have lost his savour, wherewith shall it be salted? it is thenceforth good for nothing, but to be cast out, and to be trodden under foot of men. Ye are the light of the world. A city that is set on an hill cannot be hid.
The wicked’s time will come and they will be judged. Although this should not be my focus in life, it is a fact. All of the prophecies of Scriptures to this date have come true. Not one before today has failed. The ones that are yet to come will be fulfilled as well. In the mean time, we are to witness for Christ – we are to be living testimonies of His power in our lives – we are to be a light to the unsaved world. Yes, we will suffer persecution, but American Christians have no idea what true persecution really is as those brothers and sisters in Christ who live in Islamic-ruled countries. I must be as faithful, dutiful, and committed in my walk as David was in today’s text. Thank You, Lord, for today’s example!