Tuesday, October 27, 2015
Psalms 59:13 …that they may know that God rules over Jacob to the ends of the earth.
It may seem overly simplistic, but life boils down to a choice between two objectives – we either live to make ourselves known or we live to make God known.
These two objectives are the result of a choice between two preliminary desires– to know self or to know God. Those who long to know self will live to make self known. Those who long to know God will live to make God known.
King Saul was a man who desired to know self and make himself known. In contrast, King David was a man who desired to know God and make God known. We see that contrast expressed in Psalm 59.
Saul’s fame is being threatened by David’s popularity. Saul orders David to be killed. Undercover agents set up a stake-out at David’s house, waiting for the right opportunity to kill him. David knows they are there, and he’s aware of their intentions. He calls out to God to rescue him. His call to God includes three very important things that demonstrate his desire to know God and to make God known.
- He makes sure his own life is pure and holy before asking for the threat to be removed. For behold, they lie in wait for my life; fierce men stir up strife against me. For no transgression or sin of mine, O LORD, for no fault of mine, they run and make ready. Psalm 59:3-4
We cannot expect trouble to be removed from our lives if God has designed the trouble to reveal our sin to us. At times, trials are a test of our faith and the purifying fires that remove our sinful desires. Those who desire to know God will first ask what God is trying to teach them before they ask for the difficulty to be removed.
- He makes sure that his request fits within the nature and character of God and is able to be universally applied. You, LORD God of hosts, are God of Israel. Rouse yourself to punish all the nations; spare none of those who treacherously plot evil. Psalm 59:5
David prays not only for his own situation but that the principles he wants God to employ on his own behalf are also applicable to all people. Whatever we ask of God for ourselves we should be willing to ask of God on behalf of others. Whatever we want God to do for us we should believe that He will also do it for others. We must not customize God to our own specifications. Our lives must be conformed to His nature and character.
- He makes sure that this is not just a quick fix for himself, but an opportunity for God to be made known to all people. Kill them not, lest my people forget; make them totter by your power and bring them down, O Lord, our shield! …that they may know that God rules over Jacob to the ends of the earth. Psalm 59:11, 13b
Having his enemies killed would have solved his immediate problem. But David’s main concern was not to know God for the betterment of self, but to submit to whatever God would do to make Himself known to all people. Many of the trials we endure are not about us, but rather they are about God using us to make Himself known to others. Those who truly want to know God and make Him known will submit to God’s solutions.
So much more could be said about each of these three principles, and I trust that throughout the day today you will listen to the Holy Spirit as He teaches you to apply these truths to your life.