Monday, March 19, 2012

Trust in God, Do Good and Receive God's Inheritance

[A Psalm of David]

1 Fret not thyself because of evildoers, neither be thou envious against the workers of iniquity.

2 For they shall soon be cut down like the grass, and wither as the green herb.

3 Trust in the LORD, and do good; so shalt thou dwell in the land, and verily thou shalt be fed.

4 Delight thyself also in the LORD: and he shall give thee the desires of thine heart.

5 Commit thy way unto the LORD; trust also in him; and he shall bring it to pass.

6 And he shall bring forth thy righteousness as the light, and thy judgment as the noonday.

7 Rest in the LORD, and wait patiently for him: fret not thyself because of him who prospereth in his way, because of the man who bringeth wicked devices to pass.

8 Cease from anger, and forsake wrath: fret not thyself in any wise to do evil.

9 For evildoers shall be cut off: but those that wait upon the LORD, they shall inherit the earth.

10 For yet a little while, and the wicked shall not be: yea, thou shalt diligently consider his place, and it shall not be.

11 But the meek shall inherit the earth; and shall delight themselves in the abundance of peace.

12 The wicked plotteth against the just, and gnasheth upon him with his teeth.

13 The LORD shall laugh at him: for he seeth that his day is coming.

14 The wicked have drawn out the sword, and have bent their bow, to cast down the poor and needy, and to slay such as be of upright conversation.

15 Their sword shall enter into their own heart, and their bows shall be broken.

16 A little that a righteous man hath is better than the riches of many wicked.

17 For the arms of the wicked shall be broken: but the LORD upholdeth the righteous.

18 The LORD knoweth the days of the upright: and their inheritance shall be for ever.

19 They shall not be ashamed in the evil time: and in the days of famine they shall be satisfied.

20 But the wicked shall perish, and the enemies of the LORD shall be as the fat of lambs: they shall consume; into smoke shall they consume away.

21 The wicked borroweth, and payeth not again: but the righteous sheweth mercy, and giveth.

22 For such as be blessed of him shall inherit the earth; and they that be cursed of him shall be cut off.

23 The steps of a good man are ordered by the LORD: and he delighteth in his way.

24 Though he fall, he shall not be utterly cast down: for the LORD upholdeth him with his hand.

25 I have been young, and now am old; yet have I not seen the righteous forsaken, nor his seed begging bread.

26 He is ever merciful, and lendeth; and his seed is blessed.

27 Depart from evil, and do good; and dwell for evermore.

28 For the LORD loveth judgment, and forsaketh not his saints; they are preserved for ever: but the seed of the wicked shall be cut off.

29 The righteous shall inherit the land, and dwell therein for ever.

30 The mouth of the righteous speaketh wisdom, and his tongue talketh of judgment.

31 The law of his God is in his heart; none of his steps shall slide.

32 The wicked watcheth the righteous, and seeketh to slay him.

33 The LORD will not leave him in his hand, nor condemn him when he is judged.

34 Wait on the LORD, and keep his way, and he shall exalt thee to inherit the land: when the wicked are cut off, thou shalt see it.

35 I have seen the wicked in great power, and spreading himself like a green bay tree.

36 Yet he passed away, and, lo, he was not: yea, I sought him, but he could not be found.

37 Mark the perfect man, and behold the upright: for the end of that man is peace.

38 But the transgressors shall be destroyed together: the end of the wicked shall be cut off.

39 But the salvation of the righteous is of the LORD: he is their strength in the time of trouble.

40 And the LORD shall help them, and deliver them: he shall deliver them from the wicked, and save them, because they trust in him.

—Psalm 37 KJV Bible

This psalm of David is a song of wisdom. David uses a series of proverbs to repeatedly encourage the listener to trust in God, who will cause them to receive God’s inheritance. David reminds them not to fret about the wicked because they will be rooted out, cut off, and receive nothing from God.

First and foremost, we should recognize that this psalm is a reminder by David, in his old age, to the Israelites of his time. David is reminding them to uphold God's requirements for inheriting and keeping the land promised by God to Abraham and his descendants. The requirements were outlined roughly five hundred years earlier by Moses in Leviticus 26:1-13 and in a parallel passage in Deuteronomy 28:1-16. Failure on the part of the people to maintain God's requirements would result in they and their future generations not inheriting "the land."

While keeping in mind the above points, it should be noted that many of the principals of this psalm can and have been applied to the New Testament faith. In fact, Jesus echoed the instructions of Moses and David in the principals He outlined in His Sermon on the Mount, as recorded in Matthew, chapters 5, 6, and 7, and the parallel account in Luke 6:20-49.

This psalm is an alphabetic acrostic. Every other verse begins with a successive character of the Hebrew alphabet. Among other things, an acrostic can be used as a mnemonic device to aid memory retrieval. Perhaps by associating this psalm with the Hebrew alphabet, David thought his important instructions would be easier to remember and follow.

In verses 1 and 2, David says “Fret not thyself.” He is telling the righteous to not become incensed, angry, or indignant because of evildoers. The wicked will be gone soon enough.

In verse 5, David says to “commit.” The Hebrew word is “govl,” meaning “to roll.” David is telling the righteous to “roll,” or transfer, their plans and desires from themselves to the God; to make a conscious decision to put God in charge of their lives.

In verse 22, David summarizes the entire psalm: The righteous will receive God’s inheritance, but the wicked will vanish and receive nothing from God.

In verse 30, David affirms that what comes out of the mouth gives evidence of one’s true character. Here David says that the righteous speak wisdom and justice. Contrast this verse with Psalm 36:3, in which David states that the ungodly speak wickedness and deceit.

In verses 35 and 36, David notes that the wicked will appear as indestructible as a luxuriant tree growing in its native soil. Even so, the existence of the wicked is temporary and they will be gone in the blink of an eye.

Father, I thank You that as a child of Your New Covenant, I may inherit Your blessings by following Your instructions. Help me to roll my plans and cars onto You, to trust in You, and to not fret about the wicked, who will be cut off and gone soon enough.


No comments:

Post a Comment