Scripture Nugget 1.25.2017
Scripture Read – Psalms 9-11
Nugget Psalm 10:1-4, 6, 11-14, 16-18
“Why, O LORD, do you stand far off? Why do you hide yourself in times of trouble? In arrogance the wicked persecute the poor – let them be caught in the schemes they have devised. For the wicked boast of the desires of their heart, those greedy for gain curse and renounce the LORD. In the pride of their countenance the wicked say, ‘God will not seek it out’; all their thoughts are, ‘There is no God.’ …They think in their heart, ‘We shall not be moved; throughout all generations we shall not meet adversity.’ …They think in their heart, ‘God has forgotten, he has hidden his face, he will never see it.’ Rise up, O LORD; O God, lift up your hand; do not forget the oppressed. Why do the wicked renounce God, and say in their hearts, ‘You will not call us to account?’ But you do see! Indeed you note trouble and grief, that you may take it into your hands; the helpless commit themselves to you; and you have been the helper of the orphan. … The LORD is king forever and ever; the nations shall perish from his land. O LORD, you will hear the desire of the meek; you will strengthen their heart, you will incline your ear to do justice for the orphan and the oppressed, so that those from earth may strike terror no more.”
Devotional thought: God in his mercy gives humanity room to maneuver – choice in how they will live. He allows each to take note of the boundaries he sets and then allows us a choice. This is the story of Adam and Eve in the garden. God would give them space then come walk with them in the evening. In his “absence” he still witnessed all that occurred. Today, in the present, just as when the Psalmist wrote these words, there are those who push the boundaries, break the boundaries, run into the wilderness – choosing to separate themselves from God, who, according to their thoughts, doesn’t exist. If God doesn’t exist then there are no rules, anything goes. But then in these phrases; “the wicked say, ‘God will not seek it out’; all their thoughts are, ‘There is no God.’ …They think in their heart, ‘We shall not be moved; throughout all generations we shall not meet adversity.’ …They think in their heart, ‘God has forgotten, he has hidden his face, he will never see it’“, there is recognition that God is God. They just hope, that God won’t act as God says he will. Believers, hope and pray, God will act as he says, that salvation is available for all, that all will experience not just forgiveness of sins but ongoing salvation (I have been saved, I am being saved, I will be saved some more). Indeed God notes trouble and grief, and takes into his hands the helpless. God is king forever and the wicked who think otherwise will be discovered and will perish, unless they turn to God. God does hear the cries of the oppressed, and God strengthens their hearts. Those who oppress the orphan, who commit evil and wickedness will have their day. Let us pray that before their day comes their hearts are changed and they cry, God is real and I am not God. Let me pray that I always put God first and never attempt to step into His place.