February Readings #12

Walk in Wisdom – Gleanings from Scripture
Today’s Readings Feb. #12 : Matt. 15:1-20; Acts 21:1-26; Psalm 35; Ex. 32-33

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Ps. 35 is one of those troubling “imprecatory” Psalms. It calls down curses and
destruction upon David’s enemies. One wonders if such praying is a proper thing
to do. After all, doesn’t Jesus say “Love your enemies and pray for those who
persecute you (Matt. 5:44), & “bless those who curse you, pray for those who
abuse you (Luke 6:28)? How then do we reconcile these harsh and damning
words of David recorded as a part of worship with the admonitions of Jesus? To
which we must reply in two ways. First, we must not pretend that there is not
some mystery involved here. There is. Some of it is removed when we take
into account that David’s reign and Israel’s national presence was a type and
shadow of the Kingdom of God. As such, it is right to set ourselves against those
who are against our King and His people. So some of it is tied up in this
temporary arrangement where God had a visible, national entity that needed
very temporal protection to survive. Israel’s enemies were enemies of God and
what He was doing and had established in the earth. We might well ask God to
crush those who oppress the children of God around the world today. Not so as
to damn their souls, but so as to break their wills that they might surrender to
Christ. But more, it seems you and I could benefit very practically from engaging
in these Psalms in our own prayer life as we see the enemies depicted there as
our REAL enemies: especially indwelling sin. Go back and read this Psalm, and in
each place, think of those sins that have wounded you and bound you so. And
see if it is not extremely fitting to pray in this way. “Contend, O LORD, with those
[sins] who contend with me; fight against those [sins] who fight against me!
Take hold of shield and buckler and rise for my help! Draw the spear and javelin
against my pursuers! Say to my soul, “I am your salvation!”


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