Tuesday, July 12, 2016

Praising God In Spite of The Problems

Psalm 69:1-36

To the chief Musician upon Shoshannim, A Psalm of David.

This psalm was meant to be accompanied by the trumpet. 

Save me, O God; for the waters are come in unto my soul.  I sink in deep mire, where there is no standing: I am come into deep waters, where the floods overflow me.  I am weary of my crying: my throat is dried: mine eyes fail while I wait for my God.  They that hate me without a cause are more than the hairs of mine head: they that would destroy me, being mine enemies wrongfully, are mighty: then I restored that which I took not away.” (Psalm 69:1-4)

Like everyone, David frequently felt discouraged or depressed, and this Psalm describes one of those times.    When he started the song. He felt like a person sinking in quick sand, with the water constantly getting closer to his head.  He had cried out to God for help until his throat was raw and his eyes were tired of watching.   His enemies were attacking and accusing him, to the point he was paying things he didn’t owe to eliminate any appearance of evil. 

“O God, thou knowest my foolishness; and my sins are not hid from thee.  Let not them that wait on thee, O Lord GOD of hosts, be ashamed for my sake: let not those that seek thee be confounded for my sake, O God of Israel.  Because for thy sake I have borne reproach; shame hath covered my face.” (Psalm 69:5-7)

David was aware that his own actions might have caused some of his problems, and he asks that others who believed in God not be discouraged as a result of what was happening to him.  He has taken the blame and disgrace for God’s sake, unable to prove his innocence. 

“I am become a stranger unto my brethren, and an alien unto my mother's children.  For the zeal of thine house hath eaten me up; and the reproaches of them that reproached thee are fallen upon me.  When I wept, and chastened my soul with fasting, that was to my reproach.  I made sackcloth also my garment; and I became a proverb to them.  They that sit in the gate speak against me; and I was the song of the drunkards.” (Psalm 69:8-12)

His desire to please God and his discouragement was preventing David from being able to spend time with his brothers and sisters, and those who hated God were accusing him of doing wrong.  The harder he tried to please God, the more they accused him.  They were holding him up as a bad example and a warning against serving God.
“But as for me, my prayer is unto thee, O LORD, in an acceptable time: O God, in the multitude of thy mercy hear me, in the truth of thy salvation.  Deliver me out of the mire, and let me not sink: let me be delivered from them that hate me, and out of the deep waters.  Let not the waterflood overflow me, neither let the deep swallow me up, and let not the pit shut her mouth upon me.

Hear me, O LORD; for thy lovingkindness is good: turn unto me according to the multitude of thy tender mercies.  And hide not thy face from thy servant; for I am in trouble: hear me speedily.  Draw nigh unto my soul, and redeem it: deliver me because of mine enemies. Ps 69:19 Thou hast known my reproach, and my shame, and my dishonour: mine adversaries are all before thee.” (Psalm 69:13-19)

Despite his discouragement, David was trusting God to take care of him.   Though it wasn’t happening when he hoped, David still believed God would rescue him at the proper time.  He wouldn’t allow him to drown in his despair.  He knew God still loved him, but he would sure appreciate God acting on his behalf soon.  After all, God knew everything about him. 

“Reproach hath broken my heart; and I am full of heaviness: and I looked for some to take pity, but there was none; and for comforters, but I found none.  They gave me also gall for my meat; and in my thirst they gave me vinegar to drink.” (Psalm 69:20-21)

He was so discouraged by the accusations and kept hoping somebody would share something that would give relief.  Instead it seemed like everyone was out to push him down even further. 

“Let their table become a snare before them: and that which should have been for their welfare, let it become a trap.  Let their eyes be darkened, that they see not; and make their loins continually to shake.  Pour out thine indignation upon them, and let thy wrathful anger take hold of them.  Let their habitation be desolate; and let none dwell in their tents.  For they persecute him whom thou hast smitten; and they talk to the grief of those whom thou hast wounded.  Add iniquity unto their iniquity: and let them not come into thy righteousness.  Let them be blotted out of the book of the living, and not be written with the righteous.” (Psalm 69:22-28)

David asked that those who were so determinedly trying to destroy him begin to suffer as a result.   He prayed that the things they were counting as blessings turned out to be curses instead, and that they would find themselves in the same kind of fear he was experiencing.   He prayed they might soon know God’s judgment, because of what they were doing to a person who tried to serve God.  If they would not change, he asked that they lose their lives. 

“But I am poor and sorrowful: let thy salvation, O God, set me up on high.  I will praise the name of God with a song, and will magnify him with thanksgiving.  This also shall please the LORD better than an ox or bullock that hath horns and hoofs.

The humble shall see this, and be glad: and your heart shall live that seek God.  For the LORD heareth the poor, and despiseth not his prisoners.  Let the heaven and earth praise him, the seas, and every thing that moveth therein.  For God will save Zion, and will build the cities of Judah: that they may dwell there, and have it in possession.  The seed also of his servants shall inherit it: and they that love his name shall dwell therein. ” (Psalm 69:29-36)

He promises to serve and praise God no matter what happens, and knows that it is what God wants more than any sacrifice he could offer.  He asks that God would set him free because it would be an encouragement to others who were seeking to please God.  It would result in the entire earth praising God, not just David, and God’s people would be able to live there.  

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