Divine Vindication


Don’t let liars prosper here in our land.

~Psalm 140:11, NLT


All believers encounter storms of affliction. These seasons of severe distress can make us either better or bitter. He depends on our response.

~Steve Lawson

Psalm 140 is a prayer of David who is praying for vindication in the face of his enemies. It is a theological masterpiece that teaches us some very critical lessons. First of all, their are evil people in this world who’s primary goal is to hurt others. David opened his prayer with these words,O LORD, rescue me from evil people. Protect me from those who are violent, those who plot evil in their hearts and stir up trouble all day long. Their tongues sting like a snake; the venom of a viper drips from their lips.” Folks, evil is real, yet it’s presence and power is denied by the secular world. If you talk to a modern liberal, they will tell you the only evil in America is the religious right. Of course they are wrong, there are evil and violent people in our society. Secondly, evil wears many faces. Some evil people are given to violence and murder. Their depravity is so deep that they stop at nothing. However, there are those who would never think of murder but they are more than willing to slander, which is a form of murder. David was being attack by a group of liars who were setting him up for failure. They were like shrewd hunters who sit traps for wild animals. These folks use their tongue to spread poison. They are very proficient at innuendo and insinuation. They do not openly accuse but they suggest and imply. You have to watch them closely, they use undertones and overtones. These people put a lot of thought into their words. Even when they appear to be complimenting you, their remarks can be disparaging. I refer to these shrewd undertones as “left-handed compliments” which are not really compliments at all. These same folk are also given to flattery. Don’t trust anyone who uses flattery. Thirdly, David’s enemies wanted him to fail. They did not pray in the same way David prayed but the desire of their heart was for David to fail. I realized this truth just a few years out of seminary. I’m not talking about outsiders, I came to realize that there were people in the church who wanted me to fail. 

David and I have at least one thing in common: both of us are sinners falling for short of the perfection we see in Christ. David was reckless, careless and ruthless at times. He did some shameful things that caused a lot of suffering and pain but he was God’s chosen servant and he had great faith. He accomplished more than any king of Israel: he established the dynasty that would lead to the birth of Christ {King of kings}, he basically gathered all the materials for the first Temple and he revolutionized worship. He also wrote half of the Psalms which are a huge blessing to me and millions of others. I cannot tell you how grateful I am for the Psalms; I would be a very unhappy person without them. Yes, David did fail on occasion but look at all God accomplished through him. Do you think David had any idea that 3,000 years later millions would be reading his Psalms? Personally, I do not think David had a clue. I think he knew that God had used him to some extent but he had no idea how much God was using him.

I got to preach Sunday night a week ago and I preached on “Repentance.” There was no response. Seriously, I wondered if I had been obedient. Before I got to my vehicle, one man came up to me and said, “Bro. Jack, the message was for me. I should have come down but I didn’t. The next morning I got a text that read something like this, “That sermon whipped my rear end.” Yesterday, I got a phone call [one week later] and the person told me, “I should have come forward last Sunday night. I was hoping you would drop by on Monday and talk to me but when you didn’t show up, I made things right on my own.” Just a note: I do not read minds, thank goodness. If you need me to come by, you call me and say, “Bro. Jack, can you come over for a minute.”

The point is this: God uses us even when we are not aware of what or all that He is doing. I didn’t feel like God had used me but feelings are totally unreliable–never trust them.

Absolutely wonderful day yesterday. I loved the praise and the preaching–both Doug and Joe David did great. Doug sang one song last night that really spoke to me, “He Had The Birth-Day and We Got The Gift.” I had heard him sing it before but never linked it to Christmas. If He had not had a birthday, the nativity, we would not have the gift. Anywho, a great day and I want to give the LORD praise for it.


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