Daily Devotional: Psalms 35:19-23
19 Let not those gloat over me who are my enemies without cause; let not those who hate me without reason maliciously wink the eye. 20 They do not speak peaceably but devise false accusations against those who live quietly in the land. 21 They gape at me and say, "Aha! Aha! With our own eyes we have seen it." 22 O LORD, you have seen this; be not silent. Do not be far from me, O Lord. 23 Awake and rise to my defense! Contend for me, my God and Lord.
1 Peter 4:3-5
3 For you have spent enough time in the past doing what pagans choose to do-living in debauchery, lust, drunkenness, orgies, carousing and detestable idolatry. 4 They think it strange that you do not plunge with them into the same flood of dissipation, and they heap abuse on you. 5 But they will have to give account to him who is ready to judge the living and the dead.
When we live according to God’s plan for us, we find that many around us are uncomfortable because we make them feel guilty. They know their lives are not right with God and they know their behavior is wrong but refuse to change. For this reason they often make fun of us or malign us for our good behavior. They did this to David and they did this to our Lord, so we should not be surprised.
We should not react to this by thinking we are better than they. We must keep in mind that we are not right with God because of how good we are but because we have been forgiven by the blood of Jesus. Paul says all can be forgiven, both Jew and Gentile. The same sacrifice that saves me is available for them as well, so we must try to share this good news with them and help them come to Jesus.
Another temptation from this abuse is that we give up and quit serving the Lord who saves us. We need to remember Noah. He was a faithful man in a wicked world. He preached to those around him for a hundred years but did not have a single positive response. Yet, in this wicked environment, he was able to bring up his three sons to respect and serve the Lord. We can be faithful, no matter what the world is like around us or who is against us. Remember, God is for us!
Heavenly Father I am so thankful for your word that you have given. Thank you for all the encouraging stories that let me know I am not alone in trying to do what is right. I look at your nature, your character, your majesty and your power and then see myself and how small, insignificant and flawed I am compared to you. Thank you for your continued forgiveness when I fail to live up to your glory and the perfect example of Jesus. Fill me with your Spirit so I will love others as you love me. Develop in me patience, kindness and self-control as I trust you to mold me into your image. I humbly pray in the name of Jesus my Lord.