The Lord in His Temple, Psalm 11

Yesterday Christians attended church to worship God in his temple, but his temple extends far beyond the four walls of any earthly facility.

Psalm 11 reminds us that no matter what happens in life God is in his temple. When we are under attack, we can take refuge in the Lord. Verses 1-3 (ESV) affirm God as refuge while asking a rhetorical question:

In the Lord I take refuge;
how can you say to my soul,
     “Flee like a bird to your mountain,
for behold, the wicked bend the bow;
     they have fitted their arrow to the string
    to shoot in the dark at the upright in heart;
if the foundations are destroyed,
    what can the righteous do?”

In the dark of night and under cover of deceit, the wicked aim flaming arrows at the hearts of the righteous. If the foundations fall, what can the righteous do? Flying to a mountain hideout is useless, but we flee to the Lord.

The Lord is in his holy temple;
    the Lord’s throne is in heaven;
    his eyes see, his eyelids test the children of man (Psalm 11:4, ESV).

God is sovereign over everything. He sits enthroned in heaven, his holy temple, seeing and knowing all that happens. But he is not a distant God. He is a personal God, who dwells in the hearts of believers. Our very bodies are his temples (1 Cor. 6:19).  God knows every hidden inclination and secret motive of each heart. He refines the faith of the righteous by testing them, but he hates those who are violent and wicked.

The Lord tests the righteous,
    but his soul hates the wicked and the one who loves violence.
Let him rain coals on the wicked;
     fire and sulfur and a scorching wind shall be the portion of their cup (Psalm 11:5-6, ESV).

As a righteous God, he cannot allow sin to go unpunished. He will rain destruction on the wicked. Those who are unrepentant will suffer in proportion to their violence. But believers will enjoy the blessings of God’s righteousness.

For the Lord is righteous;
he loves righteous deeds;
    the upright shall behold his face (Psalm 11:7, ESV).

Our righteous God love righteous deeds and righteous people. Those who love and serve him will surely see his face. As you serve God this week, may he bless you and keep you. May he cause his face to shine upon you so that you see glimpses of his glory now and have hope for your glorious future.

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2 thoughts on “The Lord in His Temple, Psalm 11

  1. In God’s providence, the timing of this meditation is perfect! Just yesterday our pastor, Drew Eenigenburg, preached an excellent sermon on Luke 12:4-7, reminding us how often we fear men rather than God. In fact, we even sang Psalm 11 during the service. I just wanted to share that providential coincidence–thanks!

    Michael Kearney
    West Sayville URC
    Long Island, New York

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