our responsibility in our spiritual battle

Meditation Journey Day 51      

Hi Friend,

King David’s response to seeing evil is:

Oh that you would slay the wicked, O God! Men of blood, depart from me! They speak against you with malicious intent; your enemies take your name in vain!  Psalm 139:19

We have seen how David has been made aware of God’s loving kindness in verses 1-18 of Psalm 139, and he has embraced the precious thoughts God has about him. Now he sees the evil in and around him in vivid colors. His first reaction was to expect God to destroy them; his second response was to simply expect them to leave. God wants us to do more in a battle with evil.

God wants us to do more in a battle with evil.

In verse 20, David turns to God and petitions Him once more; this time for God to defend God’s good name.  “They speak against you (God) with malicious intent; your enemies take your name in vain!” David is still expecting God to do what only David can do, which is take the responsibility for the sin he has in his life.

rosevelt(Please note, I know the battle is the LORD’s and it is His power that defeats the enemy, but there is a personal responsibility in our spiritual battles that we must accept. It is not that we must pay for our sin because we cannot. Jesus Christ is our Redeemer and justifier.  Our responsibility is to accept our choices and to bring them to God in humility. The battles are allowed so that we might seek His grace and power to work through us. Our spiritual battles are allowed by Him to transform us, not just to change our circumstances. Romans 8:28-29)

What David is saying is true; the enemy does speak against God. Satan always wants to malign the character of God. People that speak maliciously about God or the Bible do have evil thoughts working in their minds. They ignore that God’s word judges them, they do not judge it!

God’s enemies do take His name in vain. When we think ugly thoughts about God we concur with the evil of this world. If we allow the thoughts of the wicked to become our thoughts, we set ourselves against God.

God wants David to understand that the evil facing him in his spiritual battle will only be changed as David makes the internal decision to be in total agreement and dependence on God. God never makes anyone believe in Him. God always honors our freedom to choose.  He allows the wicked to be wicked, and He gives us, His Beloved, opportunity to become Christ-like as we take ownership of our behavior.

“God wants David to understand that the evil facing him in his spiritual battle will only be changed as David makes the internal decision to be in total agreement and dependence on God.”

What David is doing up to this point in the process is typical of human nature. We think God or someone else will be the solution to our problems. That is not how God wants to relate to us. He wants us to trust Him by faith, therefore, giving us the spiritual tools to allow Him to work through us. Spiritual transformation is always from the inside out. We must receive God’s life in our human spirit and grow Christ’s nature in us through faith and obedience.

Our natural thinking is to ask God to change our circumstances to our liking, and if God does not do what we think is right, we typically resent His decision.  However, God has another agenda for us. He redeemed us to transform us internally by way of our trusting and obeying Him. We are naturally on a track to be conformed externally to our surrounding environment. But the Holy Spirit wants us to be spiritually transformed by God’s word internally (Romans 12). It all depends on whether or not we turn to God and humbly take responsibility for the choices we make.

Observation: In verse 20, David continues his typical human response to the problem of evil. He is expecting God to remove it. Only this time He is appealing to God’s honor as the basis of why God must act. However, God has an eternal desire for His Beloved to be transformed from the inside out to become Christ-like. 

Interpretation: When we see God’s goodness and kindness, as we observe in Psalm 139, the evil in the world and in our lives challenges its veracity. We naturally hope God will remove it or that it will just go away. God in His perfect wisdom designed us not just to know the truth but to become like Christ. That only happens as we are transformed internally by His eternal power. This happens as we nurture the new nature of Christ in us by engrafting His word and yielding to His Spirit.

Application Prayer: Father God, Thank you for insisting I grow in my faith by making me take responsibility for the evil in my life. Give me the grace to trust your word and to yield to your Spirit as I fight the good fight of faith. … in Jesus Name, Amen.

What is your take away?

 

 

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