October 01 2022
Today, Saturday October 01
A Prayer of Desperation
A PSALM OF DAVID, WHEN HE FLED FROM ABSALOM HIS SON.
LORD, how they have increased who trouble me! Many are they who rise up against me. Many are they who say of me, "There is no help for him in God." Selah
We continue to pray for the dear people in the state of Florida that have lost family members, lost their homes and possessions and are still suffering from the hurricane. Please keep them in your prayers, and if possible, join in the relief, recovery and rebuilding efforts that will continue for months. I suggest making contributions to organizations that will not only be on the ground sharing material and physical help, but also sharing God’s love through praying with people and sharing the Gospel. A couple that are on the top of my list are Samaritan’s Purse (https://samaritanspurse.org/our-ministry/hurricane-ian/), and the Send Relief and Southern Baptist Disaster Relief Fund (https://www.sendrelief.org/projects/hurricane-ian/).
I trust that you had the opportunity to read 2 Samuel 12 through 18. In these chapters you read the story and the events behind the writing of this prayer of David. This prayer in Psalm 3 begins very abruptly with "Lord." This is how Peter began his prayer when he got his eyes off Jesus and began sinking into the sea. Matthew 14:30, “But when he saw the wind, he was afraid, and beginning to sink he cried out, “Lord, save me.” David didn't have time to go through a long liturgy, for his own life was at stake and so was the future of the kingdom. David knew that God is a "very present help in trouble" (Psalm 46:1).
Absalom had taken a long time to build up his support for taking over the kingdom and the number increased day by day (2 Sam. 15:12-13; 16:7-8; 17:11; 18:7). Absalom was handsome, smooth-spoken, and a gifted liar who knew how to please the people and steal their hearts (2 Sam. 15:1-6). British statesman James Callaghan said, "A lie can be halfway around the world before the truth has got its boots on." There's something in the heart of mankind that enjoys feeding on lies.
Not only were David's enemies increasing but the news was getting worse. People were saying, "The king is beyond help." (See Psalms 31:13; 38:19; 41:4-9; 55:18; 56:2; 69:4 and 71:10-11.) The word "help" in the Hebrew (yeshua) is translated "save" in verse 7 and "salvation" in verse 8 and gives us the names "Jesus" (Matt. 1:21) and "Joshua." It's used 136 times in the Psalms.
Why had God permitted this dangerous and disgraceful uprising? It was part of David's chastening because of his sins of adultery and murder. One of the saddest chapters in the Bible is 2 Samuel 12, where we read about David and his affair with Bathsheba. When he found out she was pregnant he tried to cover it up by bringing her husband Uriah home from the battle front hoping he would have relations with his wife. But when Uriah refused to spend any time with her, David had him killed.
God in his grace forgave David when he confessed his sins (2 Sam. 12:13-14; Psalm 32 and 51), but God in his government allowed David to reap the bitter consequences of those sins. He experienced painful family problems (2 Sam. 12-14), including the death of the son Bathsheba bore him, the rape of his daughter Tamar, by her half-brother Amnon. Then Absalom, Tamar’s full brother, murdered Amnon in retaliation and had to flee the kingdom for three years. When Absalom was allowed to come back, he begins stealing the hearts of the men of Israel and two years later lead an insurrection against his own father David.
The consequence of sin is always very high! Over the years as a pastor, I have watched many families broken apart as a result of the sin of adultery. It affects everyone! Thank the Lord for His forgiveness, and also for His grace that He gives us to deal with the consequences! When we cry out in our brokenness like David, we can be assured that the LORD will hear us!!