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BETRAYED AND SLANDERED (PSALM 7)

WHO OF US DARES TO PRAY, AS PSALM 7 DOES:

“IF THERE IS WRONG IN MY HANDS…

LET MY ENEMY PURSUE MY SOUL AND OVERTAKE IT?”

DAVID DID DARE, BUT WE MUST SEE BEYOND DAVID TO CHRIST,

TO THE ONLY ONE WHO HAS NEVER DONE WRONG.

FOR WHEN WE SEE CHRIST AT THE CENTER OF THIS PSALM

IT HELPS US ENTER INTO HIS SUFFERING

AND THEN WE CAN KNOW WHY HE CAN SO COMPASSIONATELY ENTER INTO OURS.

WHAT DOES IT FEEL LIKE TO BE BETRAYED AND SLANDERED?

HE KNOWS.

Caravaggio_-_Taking_of_Christ_-_Dublin_-_2
CARAVAGGIO: Taking of Christ

 

Patrick Henry Reardon, echoes Mike Reeves when he writes in “Christ in the Psalms”

The underlying voice in the Psalms is not simply “man” but “the Man.”

Do you remember when Mike Reeves said that the underlying man in Psalm 1 was Christ?

And the underlying king in Psalm 2 was Christ?

And that these opening psalms are like the six days of creation leading up to Psalm 8 where the man who has been given dominion over all is not just Adam, but Christ?

The intricate beauty of The Word, like the intricate beauty of the solar system, causes me to worship.

02-solar-system-nice-model-990x743

 

christinthepsalms

Patrick Reardon writes:

“To pray this psalm properly is to enter into the mind of the Lord in the context of his redemptive Passion… It is to taste in some measure, the bitterness and the gall.”

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christ-in-gethsemane-p3
Christ in Gethsemane: Michael D. O’Brian

Beginning with Christ instead of ourselves gives us perspective, a perspective we sorely need.

betrayal

Betrayal is so painful — and many of you are living with it. A husband, a child, or a kindred spirit friend has turned on you.

I have often seen pastors slandered by a group or individual within the congregation who have a personal agenda. Betrayal is real — but it is not the end of the story.

In the rushing rapids of betrayal, God throws us first the lifeline of Christ: grab it and you’ll make it through, swim on your own, and you’ll sink.

Sunday Icebreakers

1. What stood out to you from the above and why?

2. Why is betrayal, especially from those you have served and loved, so painful?

Monday-Friday Bible Study

I never want to give you a sermon just to give you a sermon, and this week I found none I thought wonderful enough to give you. But the psalm is meaty, and we will have a good discussion. Do two questions a day to keep up.

Background: Commentators surmise that it was Cush the Benjamite, who was near to the throne of Saul, who accused David falsely of treason. David had served Saul and twice spared his life — but still he is being hunted. Sara Groves sings about David’s feelings when hiding from Saul in her “Cave of Abdullum.” You may need to download spotify (it’s free) to hear it — but I’m hoping you can hear it: LINK

Elizabeth found this better link for the above: I did have trouble with the Sara Groves link–but this site worked for me, and the lyrics are posted too:
http://www.lyricsg.com/90503/sara-groves/cave-of-adullum-lyrics
In the top left corner, you’ll see a small “play” button (I missed it for a few minutes! 😉

3. If you could hear Sara’s song, share what stood out to you — or if not, what emotions do you imagine David was having?

lion4. Read Psalm 7:1-2

     A. What is David’s prayer?

     B. As a shepherd, what had he seen lions do? What fear do you see?

     C. How did Jesus pray in Gethsemane?

     D. How are the enemies of Jesus described in Psalm 22:12-13?

E. Who is the real enemy behind the enemies?

F. Listen to this musical rendition of Psalm 7 and let us know your thoughts.

                      http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=idmA7a0KS1s

 

5. Read Psalm 7:3-5

A. Find the three “if’s” and describe the pain beneath.

B. Kidner compares this to Job’s pain, when his friends maligned him. What do you remember about this?

C. Find an example of Christ being slandered.

6. Read Psalm 7:6-11

A. Describe the prayer.

B. The only way we would dare pray verse 8 is in the righteousness of Christ, as He covers us with His. But indeed, in Him, we can pray this way. Pray this now, for yourself, first confessing any known sin, and then hiding in His righteousness.

B. How was Christ vindicated by God eventually?

C. Why will God do the same for you, as His child? (See the last part of John 17:23 and let it penetrate your heart.)

7. Read Psalm 7:12-16

A. When it seems like workers of evil are getting away with it, what truth must we tell our souls?

B. How have you seen this happen?

8. How does this psalm close? Pray it now.

      9.Victor Hugo’s Les Mis in many ways portrays how God will come to the aid of his children who are betrayed and slandered, which was

        certainly the case of Jean Val Jean. I don’t know much about the French Revolution, but I do know that when my heart breaks over

        children killed by chemicals in Syria, that one day God will make that right too. Watch the close of Les Mis and share your comments:

    10. You may be thinking — I don’t see God coming to the aid of all His children who are slandered and betrayed. What does Hebrews 11:36-40 tell us is the end of the story?

Saturday:

11. What is your take-a-way and why?

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229 comments

  1. 11. What is your take-a-way and why?
     
    For me it was again His Love..I know that sounds too simple but again I saw His Love in the picture: for those who don’t repent He whets his sword and he has bent and readied his bow. So He sheds His Grace on those who are evil yet repent. He desires to rescue them before he lets that bow loose-I see Jonah here and of course the Gospel! He used Mary E. from Ohio to confirm this when she responded to my story about a gal from work. 🙂
    What also stuck with me is that He was willing to stoop down and become man and be betrayed and slandered so he could have me but also so he could identify with us in our suffering-this is such a deep Love which so comforts me!
     
    Guess what our pastor taught on last week? Hebrews 4-and especially this verse which stood out: 15 – For we do not have a high priest who is unable to sympathize with our weaknesses, but one who in every respect has been tempted as we are, yet without sin. – So not only has he been tempted as we are he has not sinned so he knows this suffering deeper than us because he never gave in.

  2. 11. What is your take-a-way and why?
     
    Sometimes it is hard to remember that God is acting and will act against wickedness. It seems as if the wicked are winning and there is little justice. Then again, we hear that God is a God of love and how can He punish. They say He will always forgive. So then, if this be so, there is no justice really. 
     
    However, this Psalm 7 reminds us that God is just and will act. He will not be patient forever. 
     
    Spurgeon comments on verse 11:

    “God is angry with the wicked every day.” He not only detests sin, but is angry with those who continue to indulge in it. We have no insensible and stolid [indifferent, unresponsive] God to deal with; he can be angry, nay, he is angry to-day and every day with you, ye ungodly and impenitent sinners. The best day that ever dawns on a sinner brings a curse with it. Sinners may have many feast days, but no safe days. From the beginning of the year even to its ending, there is not an hour in which God’s oven is not hot, and burning in readiness for the wicked, who shall be as stubble.

     
    These thoughts are solemn and scary. Most people do not want to hear of God being angry and sharpening His sword for justice against the wicked, because we all are wicked; but it is so unless we repent. We need to live in holy fear and see how serious our sin really is.
     

    1. Diane-Oh yes..such a good point to bring out that He is just and will act and He  indeed is angry with the wicked every day-those who continue to indulge in it and are unrepentant.  He sharpens his bow standing ready for justice-yes, pretty sobering indeed! His patience amazes me already but we know His patience won’t last forever and there will be justice-He will act.

  3. Take-away(s):
     
    Because my righteousness is in Christ, I am safe in him — and knowing that he loves me, I can ask him to examine my heart.  I don’t think this has fully soaked in to my heart, and I am grieved by my own self-righteousness.
     

    1. Renee, 
      So good-your takeaway..Knowing that He loves you, you don’t have to hide from him-you can hide IN Him and be vulnerable and confident when you ask him to examine your heart..so so important..and i can identify with you in that it hasn’t fully soaked in yet! 

    2. Love you take-away, Renee.  I’m learning more and more to REST in the finished work of the cross, while knowing He still has work left to do on me. 🙂  But even that is HIS work, for He is not only the author of our faith but He is also the perfecter of it, not us.  (though it is a much less painful, long process if  we cooperate!) Hebrews 12:2 (NAS) “…fixing our eyes on Jesus, the author and perfecter of our faith.  Who for the joy set before Him endured the cross, despising the shame, and has sat down at the right hand of the throne of God.”  Thanks You, Lord Jesus!!!!

    1. Love this update-I hope you write about this..I LOVE to hear the stories of Him moving in your prison visits-and the way you write them draws me in like I am there..I could hear them all day long and be so moved and encouraged.

    2. have been praying Dee,so thankful for this report! We are out of town, so I may not get to finish this week, nice to get away from the snow though! 🙂

    3. LORD you are the one “mighty in battle” and we are grateful for the victorious message of the cross! Thank you Dee for your update.

    4. Dee, Have been praying and will continue — looking forward to hearing more.

  4. Can’t wait! I know you mean it when you say it in caps..something is up-can you give us a hint?? 🙂  nah,..it is best to wait.. ;~)

  5. Saturday:11. What is your take-a-way and why?
    I think the part I could connect with the most is verse 17, “I will give thanks to the Lord because of his righteousness; I will sing the praises of the name of the LORD Most High”.
     
    The LORD Most High has not only declared David innocent—  that’s why he can sing and praise God. Our singing and praising the “LORD Most High” also is based on the fact that God has “declared us to be righteous” because we are “in” Christ. We are not guilty—  we are set free of all charges.
     
    Dee said, “I know I was moved by thinking of Christ’s feeling of abandonment and how he understands when I feel that way”.  Me too.
     
    When I know Him as “The LORD Most High” all is well.
     

     
     
     
     
     

    1. Cindy that is so beautiful…I saved it…Thank you!

      1. Missed you Joyce—  glad you liked the song. 

  6. I deleted my post, seeing the song is above.

  7. 11. What is your take-a-way and why?  The part of the Psalms that says:
    Vindicate me, O Lord, according to my righteousness and my integrity that is in me. O let the evil of the wicked come to an end, but establish the righteous; For the righteous God tries the hearts and minds.
    I know that my sin has contributed to my problems and that apart from Christ, I am not able to pray this Psalm truthfully. That the righteous God is trying my heart and mind. He cause me to see my depravity, but also shows me that He will vindicate me, that He in fact already has through Jesus Christ.
     

  8. 11. What is your take-a-way and why?
    I will thank the Lord for His righteousness. This verse stands out to me and is my take away. I will sing of His name forever. I am thankful that He is righteous and just in all things. It isn’t about me but about His name and He will defend it. I remember this: I don’t need to defend a lion. I need to let him loose and He will defend Himself.
     
    This lesson has reminded me of how God has brought down those in power because they set their face to harm me. that makes me feel very loved and protected. 
     
    I pray that the Lord will vindicate me. Until then, I continue to move forward in the armor He has provided for me.