For the director of music. A psalm of David. 1 Rescue me, Lord, from evildoers; protect me from the violent, 2 who devise evil plans in their hearts and stir up war every day. 3 They make their tongues as sharp as a serpent’s; the poison of vipers is on their lips. 4 Keep me safe, Lord, from the hands of the wicked; protect me from the violent, who devise ways to trip my feet. 5 The arrogant have hidden a snare for me; they have spread out the cords of their net and have set traps for me along my path. 6 I say to the Lord, “You are my God.” Hear, Lord, my cry for mercy. 7 Sovereign Lord, my strong deliverer, you shield my head in the day of battle. 8 Do not grant the wicked their desires, Lord; do not let their plans succeed. 9 Those who surround me proudly rear their heads; may the mischief of their lips engulf them. 10 May burning coals fall on them; may they be thrown into the fire, into miry pits, never to rise. 11 May slanderers not be established in the land; may disaster hunt down the violent. 12 I know that the Lord secures justice for the poor and upholds the cause of the needy. 13 Surely the righteous will praise your name, and the upright will live in your presence.
David wants to be rescued from evildoers. He feels this intensely and particularly dislikes the venomous words that come from evil people’s mouths. David then really speaks his mind in crying out to God for these evil people to be destroyed by their own wicked scheming.
David also talks about God’s character in that he secures justice for the poor and upholds the cause of the needy. The Psalm finishes in stating that praise comes out of the mouths of the righteous and they live in the presence of God.
I take two things from this passage, firstly the importance of the words we speak and our destination. The plotting of evil and stirring up trouble continually may very well lead to being engulfed in one’s own wickedness. Yet out of the lips of the righteous comes praise and the promise of living in God’s presence. I know where I’d rather be!
The second thing I take from this passage is the reminder that the Lord himself secures justice for the poor and upholds the cause of the needy. It’s intrinsic to God’s nature but I need prompting! What am I personally doing to help those who cannot help themselves?
Dear God keep me from becoming involved in things that are evil and displeasing to you. Please help me to actively look out for the needs of the poor Amen.
Written by Ainslie Woods