Wednesday, January 28, 2009

Psalm 12

Every once in a while one has one of those days where one seems to see only the ugly in people or only ugly sinful people. Those are often the days when good people seem to be odd or touchy or selfish. It doesn't happen all the time but it happens often enough to make us realize how imperfect humans are. As a Black Christian I have had white Christian folks dislike me because I questioned President Bush putting us into war. I have had black Christian folks turn all nasty on me because I didn't get all wild about President Obama. I've had atheist sneer at me as if they knew everything I was going to say because they had "analyzed" religious people. What does one do with folks like this? Unfortunately, human hearts are always capable of hurting other human hearts. But God is always faithful. God is always perfect in the way He loves us.

Psalm 12 is yet another psalm which shows a character in deep despair about the typical human cruelty that comes as we walk through life. People tend to flatter, boast, speak deceitfully. Such faults generally bother the good and honest person. It definitely bothered a lot of the prophets. Jonah, for instance, is typical of the prophets. He loved God's creatures and God's creations. But he had had it up to here with humans...and with God's tendency to be forgiving of such people.

We folks in Christendom tend to think God will forgive anything WE DO..and so we generally don't get too hard on ourselves. But if we read Psalm 12, can we truly say that we are free from any of the sin David speaks about? Are our lips pure? O Lord Jesus, help me to speak flawless words?

Psalm 12

For the director of music. According to sheminith . A psalm of David. [a]

1 Help, LORD, for the godly are no more;
the faithful have vanished from among men.
2 Everyone lies to his neighbor;
their flattering lips speak with deception.

3 May the LORD cut off all flattering lips
and every boastful tongue

4 that says, "We will triumph with our tongues;
we own our lips [b] —who is our master?"

5 "Because of the oppression of the weak
and the groaning of the needy,
I will now arise," says the LORD.
"I will protect them from those who malign them."

6 And the words of the LORD are flawless,
like silver refined in a furnace of clay,
purified seven times.

7 O LORD, you will keep us safe
and protect us from such people forever.

8 The wicked freely strut about
when what is vile is honored among men.


Footnotes:

Psalm 12:1 Title: Probably a musical term
Psalm 12:4 Or / our lips are our plowshares
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