Wednesday, July 27, 2011

Psalm 38

1 O Lord, rebuke me not in thy wrath: neither chasten me in thy hot displeasure.
2 For thine arrows stick fast in me, and thy hand presseth me sore.
3 There is no soundness in my flesh because of thine anger; neither is there any rest in my bones because of my sin.
4 For mine iniquities are gone over mine head: as an heavy burden they are too heavy for me.
5 My wounds stink and are corrupt because of my foolishness.
6 I am troubled; I am bowed down greatly; I go mourning all the day long.
7 For my loins are filled with a loathsome disease: and there is no soundness in my flesh.
8 I am feeble and sore broken: I have roared by reason of the disquietness of my heart.
9 Lord, all my desire is before thee; and my groaning is not hid from thee.
10 My heart panteth, my strength faileth me: as for the light of mine eyes, it also is gone from me.
11 My lovers and my friends stand aloof from my sore; and my kinsmen stand afar off.
12 They also that seek after my life lay snares for me: and they that seek my hurt speak mischievous things, and imagine deceits all the day long.
13 But I, as a deaf man, heard not; and I was as a dumb man that openeth not his mouth.
14 Thus I was as a man that heareth not, and in whose mouth are no reproofs.
15 For in thee, O LORD, do I hope: thou wilt hear, O Lord my God.
16 For I said, Hear me, lest otherwise they should rejoice over me: when my foot slippeth, they magnify themselves against me.
17 For I am ready to halt, and my sorrow is continually before me.
18 For I will declare mine iniquity; I will be sorry for my sin.
19 But mine enemies are lively, and they are strong: and they that hate me wrongfully are multiplied.
20 They also that render evil for good are mine adversaries; because I follow the thing that good is.
21 Forsake me not, O LORD: O my God, be not far from me.
22 Make haste to help me, O Lord my salvation.

Key Verse:
1 O Lord, rebuke me not in thy wrath: neither chasten me in thy hot displeasure.

Key Observation:
David has an illness caused by his sin. What it is we do not know. We do know he confesses (v. 18) and asks God for help.

Memory Verse:
18 For I will declare mine iniquity; I will be sorry for my sin.


Healing anyone? Divine intervention? Masses of Americans would think such ideas to be idiot ideas, believed only by those wackos. But I have now walked with the Lord for 40 years, and I have seen healing and many times God has divinely intervened. The fool indeed says there is no God.

In this psalm David is ill, with an unspecified illness and blames his own sin for the illness. “My lovers and my friends stand aloof from my sore.” His friends and his enemies are lined up against him. I think of the friends of Job who gave such poor counsel during Job’s plight. Many are the times when we want to supply platitudes to those around us to assuage their grief. What we do in such times is just multiply their grief.

Oh, Lord, give me a compassionate heart and a still tongue. When I find others smitten with grief, give me the wisdom to be still and to show that I care and feel for their plight. Too often I try to answer everything with a short prescription that does nothing but make the person feel worse. God, forgive me, and teach me, that I may do better.

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