In today’s culture of death, when evil men persecute Christians and sin remains deeply woven into society’s fabric, consider David’s pleas and praise in Psalm 54.
As he so often does, David begins the psalm by begging God to hear his prayer:
O God, save me by your name,
and vindicate me by your might.
O God, hear my prayer;
give ear to the words of my mouth (Psalm 54:1-2, ESV)
He then states the reason he cries to God.
For strangers have risen against me;
ruthless men seek my life;
they do not set God before themselves (verse 3, ESV).
Christians today all over the world and in our own country are beset by ruthless men and strangers who rise up against them. These enemies have no regard for the God who made them and created all things. They do not look to God or follow his commands.
But believers acknowledge their dependence on the Lord and his sustaining power.
Behold, God is my helper;
the Lord is the upholder of my life.
He will return the evil to my enemies;
in your faithfulness put an end to them (verses 4-5, ESV).
Christians realize they can do nothing without God equipping them. He upholds us physically through each breath and heartbeat, emotionally through each trauma and grief, and spiritually through each perplexity and doubt.
And he does not allow evil to triumph ultimately. He will put an end to the enemies of Christians, who are also his enemies.
When we see this happen, we can praise God. We may praise him as individuals, but we encourage other believers when we share accounts of God’s deliverance. And our appropriate response is a thankful spirit in corporate worship.
With a freewill offering I will sacrifice to you;
I will give thanks to your name, O Lord, for it is good.
For he has delivered me from every trouble,
and my eye has looked in triumph on my enemies (verses 6-7, ESV).
David frequently reviewed the many ways God had delivered him in the past. He wrote these words long before his final cold and weak days, while he still fought and sang with youthful vigor. In fact, he wrote this while fleeing for his life from Saul. Despite the present danger, David considered that God had already delivered him from every trouble.
The Psalms often convey God’s deliverance as if it’s already accomplished. How would it change your outlook if you ended each prayer by confessing God’s resolution of your problem?
We may not always see the resolution to every problem or persecution in this life, but from God’s infinite perspective it’s already a done deal. Praise his name!