Meditations on Psalm 7
When you are being hunted by the law, there is no safe place. You always need to be on your guard. There is no one who you can ultimately trust. Even your closest comrades may sell you out if the price is right. Have you ever felt like that?
I haven’t. I have no experience of literally fleeing for my life as David is doing in this Psalm.
But I have suffered injustice at the hands of men. I have experienced the sting of betrayal. I have had my good works spoken about as if they were evil. I have been maligned by close friends. I have been criticized and slandered, my reputation in tatters. I have fled to my own version of “my cave” to get perspective.
And this is the cry of David’s heart. He wants to gather perspective. He needs protection from God. There is no one else who cares about him. If God does not have his back, then he’s done for! It is just that simple. In desperation, he turns to God.
What has Brought This About?
David was oppressed by Cush, a Benjamite.( Source; Life Application Study Bible.1995)
You were persecuted, not by those who were outside the covenant God made with Israel, but from one of the tribes of God’s people. Opposition comes from within the ranks!
This is a weighty consideration for me as I contemplate your circumstances.
Cush the Benjamite, one of the twelve tribes of Israel, privileged to be in covenant with God.Was Cush supporting Saul, simply being loyal to his king? That David was being persecuted, and that it stemmed from his own countrymen,( fellow believers if you will), makes this a heart-wrenching song to read.
Cush, I’m thinking, inspired Saul and his army to persecute David — chasing him down in order to kill him. Yes, he fears for his very life, for David exclaims “or else like a lion they will carry me off where no one can save me and there they will tear me to pieces.”(Psalm 7:2 GNB)
This is no mere disagreement that can be managed over coffee and donuts with an experienced mediator. No, this is a life and death situation David is facing!
To put it in the modern idiom, “the deck is stacked against him.”
David’s Defence Before God.
David applies to the only court that is able to defend him.
In truth the king in charge, King Saul, who should be administering justice at this time, is instead championing injustice.
Saul is not in the headspace to see things objectively. He threatens David’s life, believing lies about him. Saul has the might of the Israelite army at his disposal. We know from other Biblical texts that David has a few hangers on, but nothing that could mount an offensive against Saul’s assault.
David’s survival instinct is to flee.
David’s survival instinct is to pray.
David’s survival instinct is to call out to God in his distress.
What is your survival instinct when life’s harsh realities come knocking at your door?
Recognize that you will be tempted to flee from God, and not to God.
Recognize that the last place you may choose to be is humble before God.
That’s a reality that I have had to face in my own life. Oh, why do I turn away instinctively? Why do I have such a faithless heart?
David’s example to us all is to turn to God, particularly when we are suffering though we have done nothing wrong that we know.
God is judge. He does not delight in wickedness.
God is righteous. He prepares to avenge his servants and punish the wicked. The wicked will reap what he sows.
The Lord avenges his people- in his own way; in his own time. Meanwhile, God wants his children to draw strength from the God He is.
David rejoices that God is righteous; David praises God for His justice in ruling.
David is content to leave his case in God’s hands.
Practical Takeaways for Me.
1. My God. You are not some supreme Deity out there. You are my God. You are my Lord. You are mine and I am Yours.
2. You are the God who knows. You are the God who examines your people.
3. You have the power to bring blessing. You have the power to judge your people.
4. You are the judge of all people and you are a righteous Judge. Furthermore, You are a judge that knows our hidden thoughts and our inmost desires.
5. There is recompense with God. There is no escape from evil. He is righteous and loves righteousness.
6. David can rest in the shelter of His faithful God.
Rescue me from every presumption that because I have committed myself to You, that You will give me an easy life. David was declared by You to be a man after Your own heart, and his life was a life of intense interpersonal suffering. Perhaps I should embrace suffering as the normal Christian life.
Like David, the people that despise me are more powerful than me. If You do not come to my rescue, there is no rescue. It’s as simple as that.
I never thought I would need to withdraw from my comrade who once pledged loyalty, but now withdraws support.
The things I count as precious, even irreplaceable, can be taken away without my consent. I stand to lose everything in this world that is precious to me, and it has come about because I have defended the right.
Like David, I am before You. Psalm 7 is my song to You this morning. Psalm 7:17 needs to be my own Declaration of Dependence on You.
“I thank the LORD for his justice;
I sing praises to the LORD, the Most High.” (GNB)
Let the longing that you have birthed within me to be a faithful man, equip me to walk in faith, and in security.