Thursday, October 06, 2011

Psalm 109

1 My God, whom I praise,
do not remain silent,
2 for people who are wicked and deceitful
have opened their mouths against me;
they have spoken against me with lying tongues.
3 With words of hatred they surround me;
they attack me without cause.
4 In return for my friendship they accuse me,
but I am a man of prayer.
5 They repay me evil for good,
and hatred for my friendship.
6 Appoint someone evil to oppose my enemy;
let an accuser stand at his right hand.
7 When he is tried, let him be found guilty,
and may his prayers condemn him.
8 May his days be few;
may another take his place of leadership.
9 May his children be fatherless
and his wife a widow.
10 May his children be wandering beggars;
may they be driven[a] from their ruined homes.
11 May a creditor seize all he has;
may strangers plunder the fruits of his labor.
12 May no one extend kindness to him
or take pity on his fatherless children.
13 May his descendants be cut off,
their names blotted out from the next generation.
14 May the iniquity of his fathers be remembered before the LORD;
may the sin of his mother never be blotted out.
15 May their sins always remain before the LORD,
that he may blot out their name from the earth.
16 For he never thought of doing a kindness,
but hounded to death the poor
and the needy and the brokenhearted.
17 He loved to pronounce a curse—
may it come back on him.
He found no pleasure in blessing—
may it be far from him.
18 He wore cursing as his garment;
it entered into his body like water,
into his bones like oil.
19 May it be like a cloak wrapped about him,
like a belt tied forever around him.
20 May this be the LORD’s payment to my accusers,
to those who speak evil of me.
21 But you, Sovereign LORD,
help me for your name’s sake;
out of the goodness of your love, deliver me.
22 For I am poor and needy,
and my heart is wounded within me.
23 I fade away like an evening shadow;
I am shaken off like a locust.
24 My knees give way from fasting;
my body is thin and gaunt.
25 I am an object of scorn to my accusers;
when they see me, they shake their heads.
26 Help me, LORD my God;
save me according to your unfailing love.
27 Let them know that it is your hand,
that you, LORD, have done it.
28 While they curse, may you bless;
may those who attack me be put to shame,
but may your servant rejoice.
29 May my accusers be clothed with disgrace
and wrapped in shame as in a cloak.
30 With my mouth I will greatly extol the LORD;
in the great throng of worshipers I will praise him.
31 For he stands at the right hand of the needy,
to save their lives from those who would condemn them

Key Verse:
8 May his days be few;
may another take his place of leadership.

Key Observation:
An imprecatory psalm, a psalm of cursing.

Memory Verse:
26 Help me, LORD my God;
save me according to your unfailing love.


Two men are presented in this psalm. One is our Lord, with his humiliation being hinted strongly at. I find six things early in the psalm that are prayed for by David here, but perhaps meant to reflect our Lord: 1) wicked people open their mouths against me, 2) they speak lies, 3) hatred surrounds me, 4) they exchange friendship for accusations, 5) repay evil for good, 6) give hatred for friendship.

Later in the psalm is the other man, Judas, which we clearly know from Peter’s quotation of this psalm in Acts 1:20. Each of the curses begin in the NIV with “May” His curse is eight- fold: 1) May his days be few and another take his leadership, 2) May his children be fatherless and his wife a widow, 3) May his children be wandering beggars, 4) May a creditor seize all he has and strangers plunder his riches, 5) May no one extend kindness to him or his children, 6) May his descendants be cut off, and 7) May the sins of his fathers and his mother never be blotted out. The last “may curse” is but a repetition of the seventh.

Jesus is presented again in the last of the psalm, and gives seven reasons for God to hear his prayer (beginning in v. 22) 1) poor and needy, 2) heart is wounded, 3) fades away like a shadow, 4) shaken off like a locust, 5) knees give way from fasting, 6) body is thin and gaunt, 7) object of scorn to accusers.

I would note that those who are opposed to Jesus, and remain so, are not at all treated gently. We who are forgiven, the Bible says, are not treated as our sins deserve. But those who are not forgiven cannot expect mercy, for the mercy that was extended to the world they accepted not. “He that believeth not is condemned already, because he hath not believed in the name of the only begotten of God.” Why not believe today—for you and I know not what the morrow may bring. But we do know that mercy is available for now.

At the Cross

1. Alas, and did my Savior bleed,
And did my Sov'reign die?
Would He devote that sacred head
For such a worm as I?

2. Was it for crimes that I had done
He groaned upon the tree?
Amazing pity, grace unknown,
And love beyond degree!

3. Well might the sun in darkness hide,
And shut His glories in,
When Christ the mighty Maker died
For man, the creature's sin.

4. Thus might I hide my blushing face
While Calvary's cross appears,
Dissolve my heart in thankfulness,
And melt mine eyes to tears.

5. But drops of grief can ne'er repay
The debt of love I owe;
Here, Lord, I give myself away,
'Tis all that I can do.

At the cross, at the cross where I first saw the light,
And the burden of my heart rolled away
It was there by faith I received my sight,
And now I am happy all the day!

Lyrics: Isaac Watts; Chorus: Ralph Erskine Hudson

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