Psalm 119:84-88 - How long must Your servant endure? When will You judge those who persecute me? The insolent have dug pitfalls for me; they do not live according to Your Law. All Your commandments are sure; they persecute me with falsehood; help me! They have almost made an end of me on earth, but I have not forsaken Your precepts. In Your steadfast love give me life, that I may keep the testimonies of Your mouth.
In the life of the psalmist, as in our lives, our trust in God provokes a reaction from the world. We pray that our faithfulness to the Word and will of God will bring honor and glory to our Lord and lead people to worship Him, but such faithful living may, at the same time, lead others to ridicule and persecute us. This was the psalmist's experience. He trusted God's commandments and he was persecuted, yet even when he faced death, he did not forsake God's precepts.
The psalmist speaks of his own experience of faithfulness, but these psalm verses also turn our attention to Jesus, who said. "If the world hates you, know that it has hated Me before it hated you" (John 15:18). Jesus was faithful to His Father's Word and will. Many people believed in Him, but He was also hated for His faithfulness. The Savior kept every one of His Father's sure commands as His enemies persecuted Him with falsehood. Enemies accused Him and false witnesses were brought forward at His trial to tell lies about Him. The lies followed Jesus to the cross as His enemies mocked Him, rejecting Him as Messiah and Savior. Jesus remained obedient to God's precepts, even to the point of death. The Savior's enemies made an end of Him on earth, or so they believed. According to God's plan of salvation, Jesus took onto Himself the penalty of death for the world's disobedience. He died and was buried, but the hatred and persecution of the world could not conquer the innocent and faithful Son. The Father's steadfast love gave life to His Son as Jesus rose in victory over death and the grave.
Our crucified and risen Lord calls us to follow Him, to reflect His faithful life in our own lives. We seek to follow God's commandments. We do not want to forsake His precepts, even in the face of the world's hatred. We will be opposed by many people who choose to reject Jesus as Lord. They may tell lies about us. They may try very hard to "make an end" of our faith on earth as believers around the world are threatened with imprisonment and death. We pray that we, with our brothers and sisters in Christ, will be strengthened by the Holy Spirit to remain faithful in the face of the threats and falsehoods that rise against us. Through Jesus' death and resurrection, God's steadfast love gives us life. In the power of the Holy Spirit, we seek to share Jesus' love and life with the world!
WE PRAY: Lord Jesus, lead me to walk with You in faithful obedience to Your Word. Amen.
This Daily Devotion was written by Dr. Carol Geisler.
1. Why are lies so damaging to relationships?
2. Jesus endured vile words and bitter lies from His accusers. How did He handle that?
3. What are some common ways Christians are lied about or belittled because of their faith?
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