READ: Psalm 7
BACKGROUND BY VERSE:
1-2 – The title to this Psalm implies that David is being attacked (physically or verbally by a man named Cush from the tribe of Benjamin (which likely means he was a supporter of Saul, who was also a Benjamite).
3-5 – David is pleading his own innocence, saying he has given his enemy no cause to attack him.
6 – When David pleads with God to “arise” or to “awake” he isn’t implying that God sleeps or takes time off from being God. He doesn’t. He is simply using this imagery to express his longing and his frustration with waiting for God’s justice to be realized.
10-13 – David expresses confidence that his prayer will be heard.
17 – Even though David is troubled and he is currently waiting for God’s justice, he makes the vow to praise God anyway and he is confident in God’s love and deliverance.
THINK: One of my favorite television moments of the last few years was a shot of Michael Scott (Steve Carell) from The Office doing a little bit of introspection. I laughed at his observation because I felt like I could relate, and not only that, but I felt like probably a whole lot of people could relate? How many of you have felt like this?
🙂 We all like to be liked, even if we’d say that it isn’t a need. But sometimes in our lives we encounter people who don’t like us, or, at the very least, people who say hurtful things about us and try to put us down. I can think of a number of examples in my own life where I earned the dislike – times where I said or did something or acted in a certain way that resulted in negative things being said about me as a consequence. I’m sure that all of us can. But there have also been times when I haven’t done or said anything wrong or acted in a way that offended someone and, despite that, had someone say something negative about me. I’m sure that everyone can relate to that as well. And when that happens we have this profound sense of injustice. Our inner Michael Scott-like need to be liked is violated and we don’t know what to do.
When this happened to David he took it before God in prayer. Cush, the Benjamite, had slandered him, and David hadn’t done or said anything wrong to provoke it. So he brought it before God and trusted in a few things: 1. God hears our prayer, & 2. God will defend us and bring about justice so we really don’t need to worry or be concerned with defending our own reputations. This is really liberating! We need to be careful not to act in ways that offend others and cause them to lash out at us. But in the inevitable instances in life where we are unfairly accused and slandered there is no need whatsoever to allow worry to creep in or allow our lives to be defined by the words that were said. God hears our prayers, and he is just. We don’t need to be liked. We need to remember that we are truly loved!
ASK: What would it look like to release my own need/desire for revenge totally to God and trust him with the situation? How does it change the way I react to the negative comments & actions of others if, instead of first thinking about the way they perceive me, my first thought is to remember how much God loves me?