A Page from the Journal: One Year Ago

Posted: May 2, 2010 in Uncategorized

Psalm 18:13-14 The Lord also thundered from the heavens, and the Most High uttered His voice, amid hailstones and coals of fire.  And He sent out His arrows and scattered them; and He flashed forth lightnings and put them to rout…16 He reached from on high, He took me; He drew me out of many waters; 17 He delivered me from my strong enemy and from those who hated and abhorred me; for they were too strong for me.

I landed on this scripture today – Psalm 18 – which is the Psalm where David rejoices because God has finally set him free from all the enemies that have been pursuing him for so many years.  David has faced really big giants – in fact, in this passage, he freely and exuberantly admits that they were “too strong for me.”  And in the middle of the passage, he paints this picture of God and His strength that I think must have been a prophetic vision.  It would be easy to look at it as a fanciful overstatement (“my dad’s muscles are bigger than this WHOLE building!”)  but I don’t think so.  There’s so much detail that it feels to me like David – from his place of worship and gratitude – is actually seeing what went on in the spiritual realm when God stepped into his battle and dealt with his and His enemies.  Beautiful.  And really – frightening.  I mean, this is not the holy-Jesus-meek-and-mild picture that I have often worshiped.  This is God with muscles.  God with vengeance.  God with anger and attitude.

This is God who clearly knows His enemy and clearly knows His own people and His own power.  This passage makes me understand the commands that He gave the children of Israel in how to deal with the enemies they faced.  Make quick work of them! I loved this verse :

(vs. 38) “I smote them so that they were not able to rise;  they fell wounded under my feet.”

God’s passionate pursuit of the enemy of His people has often been underemphasized.  I think in the American church of the 21st century we have domesticated God in a dangerous and unholy way.  We like for Him to conform to our view of civilized society…to sit in our parlors and drink our tea and play nicely with the group so that – heaven forbid – anyone should be intimated or offended by His size or strength or ways.  Is it any wonder we find ourselves powerless against the onslaught of the enemies of righteousness?  We’ve got our best player on the bench while we negotiate the terms of the game and send our children in, watching helplessly as their destinies are destroyed.

Why are we afraid to say, “Arise, O God…let your enemies be scattered!”?  Are we secretly protecting the enemies who have become our friends?  I wonder.

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Comments
  1. Jenn Hoff says:

    Love this Bo.
    No…Actually, I think it’s the other way. We’re protecting our friends who claim allegiance with the cross and us but are actually living as enemies of righteousness. It’s too hard and sad to ask God to strike when you know that the scattering will be in your own camp. That’s what I think. I often find myself calling on his mercy instead…

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