May 11 2023
Today, Thursday May 11
“The Goodness of God Endures…”
To the Chief Musician. A Contemplation of David when Doeg the Edomite went and told Saul, and said to him, ‘David has gone to the house of Ahimelech.’
“Why do you boast in evil, O mighty man? The goodness of God endures continually.
Your tongue devises destruction, Like a sharp razor, working deceitfully. You love evil more than good, Lying rather than speaking righteousness. Selah
You love all devouring words, You deceitful tongue. God shall likewise destroy you forever; He shall take you away, and pluck you out of your dwelling place, And uproot you from the land of the living. Selah
The righteous also shall see and fear, And shall laugh at him, saying, "Here is the man who did not make God his strength, But trusted in the abundance of his riches, And strengthened himself in his wickedness."
But I am like a green olive tree in the house of God; I trust in the mercy of God forever and ever. I will praise You forever, Because You have done it; And in the presence of Your saints I will wait on Your name, for it is good.”
In this Psalm, David is writing about his thoughts and emotions that he experienced when he heard that a very wicked man by the name of Doeg has told King Saul that he had visited the Ahimelech the priest and asked for bread for his men. David doesn’t know it yet but as result of this visit, Doeg is going to be commanded by Saul to kill Ahimelech and 85 other priest, as well as all their family members who lived in the city of Nob (1 Samuel 21-22). David, at this time, just knows something very bad is going to happen and he is upset.
In preparing for this chat, I couldn’t help but think of Psalm 11:3: “If the foundations are destroyed, What can the righteous do?” What can we do as God’s people when we see wicked and evil people in the high places of authority and government with “their tongues devising destruction, being deceitful, promoting evil rather than good and lying about their corruption and motives” (v. 2). And then on top of that, “they boast about their evil” (v. 1), because they think they are getting by with it. What should be our response? What can we do?
My friend, we can do what David did. He prayed and remembered the “goodness of God that endures continually” (v. 1). We also need to reflect on the goodness of the character of our God that never changes. You have heard the saying, “God is good all the time, and all the time, God is good”. We usually say that when things are going good for us and fail to remember that God is still good even when things are going bad for us!
We definitely need to remember this with all the evil and corruption we are experiencing in our country these days! David derisively calls Doeg, “O mighty man”, which is the equivalent of us calling someone a "big shot". The wicked definitely are thinking more highly about themselves than they should! They might be boasting now but it will not last.
David points out that their end is coming. “God shall likewise destroy you forever; He shall take you away, and pluck you out of your dwelling place, And uproot you from the land of the living” (v. 5).Verse 5 is the central verse of the psalm and marks the turning point in David's experience as he contemplated the wickedness of the human heart. He was confident that God would one day judge Saul, Doeg, and all who follow their evil philosophy of life.
The righteous would only see but not experience this devastation (Psalm 91:8), and they would stand in awe of the holy wrath of God (Psalm 40:3). Then they would laugh in derision at the humiliating fall of these pompous leaders along with God (Psalm 2:4). What Saul and Doeg did to the priestly community at Nob (1 Sam. 22:6ff), the Lord would do to them, for sinners ultimately fall into the pits they dig for others (Psalm 9:15; Prov. 26:24-28; 29:6).
The contrast is clear: the wicked are like uprooted trees, but the godly are like flourishing olive trees that are fruitful and beautiful. Saul and Doeg would perish, rejected by the Lord, but David and his dynasty would be safe in the house of the Lord! David was a blessing to the nation while he lived and long after he died—and he is a blessing to us today. He trusted God's lovingkindness and the Lord did not fail him, and he never failed to give God the glory. The phrase "wait on thy name" (v. 9), means to hope and depend on the character of God as expressed in His great name.
Don’t forget God is always good and even though evil may seem to triumph, we must continue to obey and serve the Lord and not get discouraged. The "last laugh" belongs to the Lord's people.