October 11 2022
Today, Tuesday October 11
Remembering God’s Justice in Prayer
“For You are not a God who takes pleasure in wickedness, Nor shall evil dwell with You. The boastful shall not stand in Your sight; You hate all workers of iniquity. You shall destroy those who speak falsehood; The LORD abhors the bloodthirsty and deceitful man.”
“For there is no faithfulness in their mouth; Their inward part is destruction; Their throat is an open tomb; They flatter with their tongue. Pronounce them guilty, O God! Let them fall by their own counsels; Cast them out in the multitude of their transgressions, For they have rebelled against You.”
David knows the best thing he can do is pray as he is facing the fact that his own son is out to kill him, and his best friends have turned against him. And my friend, that is what we should be doing as we realize that we have an enemy, the devil who has come to steal, kill and destroy (John 10:10). And often Satan is using the evil and wicked people around us to do his work.
David’s first cries out to the Lord for mercy and help (vs. 1-3), remembering that God was his personal King and was still sitting on His throne in heaven. That is why David prayed, “I will look up” (v. 3). But David also found assurance of God’s help as he prayed and reminded himself of God’s holy and righteous justice. So, twice in this chapter and prayer, David prays about how God looks on the wicked, evil, boastful, bloodthirsty, deceitful and rebellious people who are trying to destroy him.
I know our prayers are basically our time of calling on the Lord, a time of thanking, praising, and worshipping Him. Our prayers are a time of our petitions and intercession on behalf of ourselves and others. But our prayer might also need to be a time reminding ourselves of how much God’s hates sin as we face those who are rebelling against God.
God has no pleasure in wickedness nor can He be neutral about sin; therefore, rebel sinners couldn't enter into His presence (Ps. 15:l; 24:3-6). God delights in those who fear Him (Ps. 147:11) and who offer sincere praise to Him (Ps. 69:31). To please God, we must have faith (Heb. 11:6) and be identified with His Son in whom He is well pleased (Matt. 3:17).
When you read verses 5-6 and 9-10, you meet a crowd of people who deliberately and repeatedly disobey God and think nothing of the consequences. It's the crowd John describes in Revelation 21:8, the people who are going to hell. God loves the world of lost sinners (John 3:16) and sent His only Son "to be the Savior of the world" (1 John 4:14, 1 Tim. 2:3-4, 2 Peter 3:9). Jesus died on the cross for the sins of the world (1 John 2:1-2), and His invitation to salvation is sent to all who will believe and come (Matt. 11:28-30; Rev. 22:17). Such are the vast dimensions of God's grace and love (Eph. 3:18-19).
But the glorious truth of God's love doesn't change the fact that God hates sin and punishes sinners. He has no pleasure in them, and they cannot dwell with Him (v. 4) or stand before Him as they are (v. 5; Ps. 1:5-6). He abhors murderers and liars and destroys them if they don't trust His Son (v. 6). It isn't necessary to dilute the word "hate" in verse 5 because you find it also in 11:5 and 45:7, and see 7:11. In fact, the Lord expects those who love Him to love what He loves and hate what He hates (97:10; 119:113; 139:21; Prov. 6:16-17; Amos 5:15; Rom. 12:9).
There is no such thing as "abstract evil" except in dictionaries and philosophy books. Evil is not an abstraction; it's a terrible force in this world, wrecking lives and capturing people for hell. God's hatred of evil isn't emotional; it's judicial, an expression of His holiness. If we want to fellowship with God at His holy altar, then we need to feel that same anguish (anger plus love) as we see the evil in this fallen world.
So, even as we are praying and entering into God’s presence, it is ok to not only feel God’s love, mercy and compassion, but to also at the same time sense His holy wrath and indignation against sin and rebellious sinners.