Provocative Devotion: Psalm 7

O Lord my God, if I have done this,
    if there is wrong in my hands,
if I have repaid my friend with evil
    or plundered my enemy without cause,
let the enemy pursue my soul and overtake it,
    and let him trample my life to the ground
    and lay my glory in the dust. Psalm 7:3-5

I am not at the place of maturity that David expresses in this Psalm. I know I am not always the person Christ wants me to be and is shaping me to be. I have a long way to go. So it is not a resistance to admitting my faults, my sins. What I struggle with is facing the repercussions of that sin. I so cling to the grace and mercy of God that I don’t want to face the penalty for my behavior. I know that at times I must. That is just how it works. Being forgiven by Christ does not mean we automatically avoid the consequences of our actions in this life. I wish it was otherwise but I know it is not.

What David says in this Psalm takes things to a whole other level. He actually invites the retribution for his actions. To be honest I am not sure why. Is it because David deeply recognizes the heinous nature of repaying a friend with evil or even plundering an enemy without cause and it willing to be dealt with harshly as a result? Or is it because David is so sure of his innocence that he can boldly invite retribution because he knows none will be forthcoming? My suspicion is the later. The rest of the Psalm is filled with David expressing his trust in the righteousness of God and in the fate of those who do and those who do not repent.

On the one hand I wish I could be so confident in my own righteousness to make such a bold proclamation. On the other hand, I am eternally grateful for the Cross of Christ and the grace of God that the righteousness of Christ has been credited to my account. I need not fear because Christ has taken the punishment. Christ has allowed His life to be trampled to the ground so that I might live. Oh the precious wonder and beauty of the Cross. Foolishness to those perishing but glory to those who receive it by faith. My efforts at self-righteousness are true folly. The folly of the Cross is true wisdom. I cling to that wisdom and to the Savior who gave His all for me.

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