Today’s devotional is so applicable to me, as a neighbor has decided to attack me in the public square. These truths here are very encouraging.
Psalm 17:9 “… hide me in the shadow of your wings from the wicked who assail me, from my mortal enemies who surround me.”
[For David, these enemies were actual people; for us it is sometimes people acting like our enemies, but it is actually our spiritual foe, Satan and his forces of demons and devils, who regularly use people to attack God’s children.
This opposition is real, it is powerful, it is beyond our abilities to withstand and overcome. We know that Satan’s goal is to rob us of joy, to destroy our testimonies, families, churches and lives, and to kill, as he is doing in the Middle East and parts of Africa with attempts by terrorists to wipe out all Christians in their area. We need help desperately!
Praise be to you, Lord, that you do want to hide us in the shadow of your wings. You are our rock, our salvation and our high tower. You call us to take shelter in you–just as David is doing in Psalm 17 by pouring out his heart to you and asking for help–so that we will never be shaken.]
Psalm 17:10 “They close up their callous hearts, and their mouths speak with arrogance.”
[People used by Satan are certainly callous—I read recently that a young man publicly executed his own mother for opposing his joining ISIS! And when you hear the pronouncements of those who oppose biblical truths and standards, there is huge arrogance as they exalt their own intellect above the Almighty Creator of heaven and earth, the sea and all that is in them. As pawns in Satan’s plans, mercy and grace are foreign concepts to them. May this not be true of us!]
Psalm 17:11 “They have tracked me down, they now surround me, with eyes alert, to throw me to the ground.”
[Satan intentionally sends his servants out to track us down and attack. This description of spiritual warfare is expanded on in Psalm 62:3-4: “How long will you assault me? Would all of you throw me down– this leaning wall, this tottering fence?”
We are weak and unable to stand on our own against the attacks of Satan’s forces, whether he uses people or events, sickness or accidents, fear or frustration.]
“Surely they intend to topple me from my lofty place;”
They want to have us forget who we are in Christ–children of the Most High God, chosen, forgiven, adopted and delighted in–to forsake Him as our high tower, to topple us into the swamp of self-pity, materialism and despair.]
“they take delight in lies. With their mouths they bless, but in their hearts they curse.”
[Satan’s forces can be slick, sounding so positive and constructive at times (“we welcome all, we don’t want anyone to be offended”), but their goal is destruction, causing people to accept lies and harmful values–as we see happening all around us today, with abortion, rampant divorce, twisting of the definition of marriage and political correctness.]
Our strength is inadequate, but yours, Lord God, is mighty, invincible, far more than adequate–you who breathed the stars, who hung the earth on nothing, who brings the dawn each day, you are able to empower us to stand in any situation.
Help us to remember these truths: that we are in a spiritual battle every day; that our real enemies are not people, but Satan’s forces using them. Help us to keep on the full armor you have provided, to fight with praise, prayer and persistence in obedience and to see your mighty power triumph in our lives and in those of people we are called to serve.]