Jesus said, “Father, forgive them, for they know not what they do.” Luke 23:34
After hours of persecution and torture, this was the prayer Jesus prayed for the people who looked at Him as He hung in death for the sins of the world.
Even when Jesus was being tortured, falsely accused, and mocked; He was not unaware God was the final judge. 1 Peter 2:23 says “(Jesus) continued entrusting himself to him who judges justly.”
It was Jesus’ commitment of Himself and His circumstance to the hands of God that allowed Him to endure and do all God had commanded Him to do.
In Psalm 35, David had a similar circumstance of accusations. He had people who were striving against him, causing him trouble, and seeking his destruction. He asked God to fight for him. He asked God to stand up against his accusers and for God to judge.
At no time did David declare he would take judgment in his own hand. These were some of the requests David made of God in Psalm 35:
- Fight against those who fight against me. (vs. 1)
- Rise up for my help. (vs. 2)
- Say to my soul, “I am your salvation”. (vs. 3)
- Let them be ashamed and dishonored who seek my life. (vs. 4)
- Let the angel of the Lord chase them away. (vs. 5)
- Let the angel of the Lord persecute them. (vs. 6)
- Let destruction come upon them without their knowledge. (vs. 8)
David kept himself stable in the time of his conflict with the following thoughts, attitudes, and actions found in Psalm 35:
- My soul will rejoice in the Lord and delight in His salvation. (vs. 9)
- “Lord who is like you? You deliver the afflicted from him who is too strong for him.” (vs. 10)
NOTE: Did you see it? There are enemies that are stronger than you are . . . but those enemies are not stronger than God. God will deliver you from enemies of people, circumstances, sin, addictions, and problems that are TOO STRONG FOR YOU . . .but your enemies are NOT TOO STRONG FOR GOD.
- Rescue my life from their destructions. (vs. 17)
- I will give you thanks and praise in the great congregation. (vs. 18)
- Do not let those who are my enemies, but I haven’t done anything against them, triumph over me. (vs. 19)
- Lord, you have seen it, do not be silent, do not be far from me, and help me (vs. 22-23)
- Join with others who say “The Lord be magnified, who delights in the prosperity of His servant.” (vs. 27)
NOTE: Did you see it? God delights in the prosperity of His servant. God delights in the completeness, soundness (health), welfare, and peace of those who look to Him for help. Even in the midst of your enemies, those too strong for you, God prepares a “table” (Psalm 23). God delights to give you wholeness. He delights to keep you in perfect peace.
- My mouth will talk of the righteousness of the Lord and His praise all the day long. (vs. 28)
God never declared battles would be easy or that your enemies are weak and insignificant. If anything, God warns us and confirms to us, the enemies of our life are strong. They are too strong for us. Even when he spoke to Moses and Joshua as leaders of the children of Israel, he told them the enemies they were going to fight would be too strong for them. But, the enemies were not too strong for God.
Jesus, David, Moses, and Joshua all looked to God to fight their enemies. They committed themselves to God for Him to judge rightly. They declared thanksgiving to God and praise to God. In all of this, God provided them prosperity. God provided them completeness, soundness, welfare, and peace in the midst of their enemies to complete the battle in which they were engaged.
Jesus’ death on the cross was not a defeat, but a triumph. He defeated death, hell, and the grave when he endured the agony and gave up the ghost. He is our triumphant Savior. His enemies did not triumph over Him.
When you continue to commit all judgment against your enemies to the Lord, look to Him for help and deliverance, you will join with the great multitude and say “Let the Lord be magnified Who delights in the prosperity (completeness, soundness, welfare, peace) of His servant.” Psalm 35:27