Today, Tuesday June 06
Shrewd Schemes Against Us
To the Chief Musician. A Psalm of David.
“Hear my voice, O God, in my meditation; Preserve my life from fear of the enemy. Hide me from the secret plots of the wicked, From the rebellion of the workers of iniquity, Who sharpen their tongue like a sword, And bend their bows to shoot their arrows--bitter words, That they may shoot in secret at the blameless; Suddenly they shoot at him and do not fear.
They encourage themselves in an evil matter; They talk of laying snares secretly; They say, "Who will see them?" They devise iniquities: "We have perfected a shrewd scheme." Both the inward thought and the heart of man are deep.
But God shall shoot at them with an arrow; Suddenly they shall be wounded. So He will make them stumble over their own tongue; All who see them shall flee away.
All men shall fear, And shall declare the work of God; For they shall wisely consider His doing. The righteous shall be glad in the LORD, and trust in Him. And all the upright in heart shall glory.”
Psalm 64 is the psalm of the poisonous tongue. All we really know about this psalm is that it was one of David's. Opinions differ as to when he wrote it. Some place it during his youthful, fugitive days when he fled from Saul. David's spectacular rise to prominence in the kingdom, after his conquest of Goliath, earned him as many foes as friends. His marriage into the royal family likewise evoked bitter feelings in the hearts of some. Doubtless there had been many who had aspired to the hand of the king's daughter.
The historical records confirm that Saul's ears were filled with lies about David. Doeg, the Edomite, for instance, did David tremendous harm with his tongue. Not even Jonathan's impassioned defense of David at court could offset the lies and fuel with which David's foes constantly fed the fires of Saul's suspicions. In more than one of his Psalms David pours out his heart to God about the falsehoods being spread about him.
David was probably serving in Saul's court when he wrote this psalm (1 Sam. 18-20). He knew that Saul was his enemy and wanted to kill him and that most of Saul's officers were in a conspiracy against him. Though he was the anointed king, David had no authority to oppose Saul, and eventually he had to flee and hide in the wilderness. Psalm 64 instructs us what to do in the battles of life.
People give us all kinds of trouble, but our battle is not against flesh and blood, but against Satan and his hosts. We are instructed in Ephesians 6:11-12 to, “Put on the whole armor of God, that you may be able to stand against the wiles of the devil. For we do not wrestle against flesh and blood, but against principalities, against powers, against the rulers of the darkness of this age, against spiritual hosts of wickedness in the heavenly places.”
We have a great example of how the devil works to defeat us in Exodus 1. The people of Israel had been in Egypt for almost 400 years and had grown into a mighty nation as God had promised Abraham years earlier. Notice what happened in Exodus 1:8-11: “Now there arose a new king over Egypt, who did not know Joseph. And he said to his people, "Look, the people of the children of Israel are more and mightier than we; come, let us deal shrewdly with them, lest they multiply, and it happen, in the event of war, that they also join our enemies and fight against us, and so go up out of the land." Therefore they set taskmasters over them to afflict them with their burdens…”
Pharoah, who is a picture or type of Satan, acknowledges that the people of God are more and mightier than he and his armies, so he comes up with a plan to defeat them. He basically says, “Let us deal deceitfully (shrewdly) with them lest they realize how strong they really are and join in battle against us”. What a sad picture! God’s people allow themselves to be deceived by the devil into thinking they are weak and with no authority, and they become his slaves instead of serving and living for God.
My friend, I’m convinced that our first response to the attacks and lies of the enemy should be to realize who the real enemy is! He wants us to believe that we are weak, hopeless and helpless, and have no defense as he constantly bombards us with his lies.
Today, like David, we need to call out to the LORD to hear us, protect us, and be our defense!