Last week we saw that the imprecatory psalms can be seen as spiritual lawsuits in the court of heaven. Perhaps Satan has been doing his utmost to discourage you with all kinds of opposition. You have sensed his demonic work in many ways. First of all (in this hypothetical situation), you have felt dark oppression in the home, second, a thief broke into the home and not only stole $5000 worth of things, but trashed $8,000 for spite. Third, you have been experiencing sickness. And fourth, your children have been waking up with nightmares. And you have just decided that enough is enough.
So you declare war. You ask for God's angels to be a hedge round about you. You devote your home to the Lord, and apply the blood of Christ to the lintels of your house. You ask God to send His mighty warrior angels to escort every demon out of the house. And then you begin to engage in serious, intense spiritual warfare. [And by the way, if you are curious about how to do that, I have a booklet that has model prayers for every area of spiritual warfare that you can use.] But back to our hypothetical situation. Having engaged the enemy in this way, you feel relief from His oppression immediately. And many of you have gone through exactly that. You have been so encouraged at the power over the demonic that you have been able to exercise. Praise Jesus! That encourages me..
But now comes something that I really haven't done a lot of teaching on. How do you get your money back? Do you just let it be gone? But it's God's money, used for God's purposes. Isn't it right to ask for that money back? Many Christians just assume that they can't. But last week I suggested that it is perfectly appropriate to take such a matter to God's court room and ask Him for restitution. You are pleading to the Lord, "God, you are a God of justice, and your word specifies varying levels of restitution from the enemy. I want demons who have been responsible to know that I am arraigning them before your courtroom to receive justice at your hands. You have commanded us in Luke 18 to pray for such justice. And your word speaks of a minimum of 125% restoration if they return the goods before I go to court. Well, that hasn't happened Lord. And now that I am in court, I ask that you make Satan give 200% if he does not resist, and that you extract 400% if he does. Here are the facts, Lord. And you proceed to outline all the information that you know, and why you believe that it was more than just human opposition, and why it is that you are arraigning Satan as well – why he is responsible as well. I know a missionary who served for years in India, who has shown me this Biblical method of justice, and he has had so many times when he has done this, that he proceeds to court without any doubt whatsoever that God will answer. He was such an encouragement to talk to.
When some members of his church were killed in a religious hatred case, he said, "Lord, these are sheep that you have entrusted to my hands. Satan has robbed them from me. I am asking for justice." He then read what God's law claimed as justice for sheep stealing. Exodus 22:1 says, "If a man steals an ox or a sheep, and slaughters it or sells it, he shall pay five oxen for the ox and four sheep for the sheep. He claimed four conversions from Satan's kingdom for every Christian that was killed. And he got his justice every time. He wanted the blood of martyrs to be the seed of the church, and he went after Satan. He wasn't passive. He wanted Satan to think twice about killing his sheep. I think this is eminently biblical. That's a kind of restitution that fits God's justice and is to God's glory. When leaders were killed, or even where they were taken out of ministry through Satanic attack, he claimed five fold restitution. And he got it. God was raising up new leaders to replace the ones that had been taken out.
And I want to ask the question, "Why should we always be on the defensive against Satan? If we take him to court enough times, he might leave us alone. You know what the one offensive weapon that God has given to us is? It is the sword of the Word. And we need to understand that Word, including the principles of court procedure if we are to be effective in our offensive maneuvers. And so last week I started going through point I. We saw that it takes some effort to take Satan to court, and we have to follow God's procedures. We saw first that it's not enough to have other people bringing a case before God. They can be witnesses, but the person suffering has to bring his own case before God. You know, we can be witnesses for the Sudanese, but the Sudanese themselves must be willing to use the War Psalms, and be willing to prosecute Satan in heaven.
Secondly, it must be orally presented. Thirdly, it must be presented by a person who is not guilty of the same injustice and who is not guilty of casting God's law behind his back. Well, that rules out a lot of evangelicals from being able to get justice in God's courtroom. They hate God's law. How in the world can they honestly appeal for justice from God's law.
Fourth, it has to be prosecuted in public. Fifth, there must be a formal accusation with specific details. Sixth, there needs to be witnesses – at least two or three that are praying together with you. Another argument for public prayer. Seventh, we need to have a case and not bring false charges against Satan or against our enemies. We can't take this lightly. Which means that we need some guidance from the Lord, doesn't it? Eighth, we must show respect and humility before the Judge of all the earth. To scream and yell at God like some pastors do makes me want to run lest I be held in contempt of court like I'm sure they are. And then finally, we saw that we need to wrestle with fervency.
Make the Effort to Have Adequate Grounds For Judgment (vv. 4-6)
Demonstrate that the charges are consistent with God's Law and His kingdom (vv. 4-6)
Prayer is tough, but this kind of praying is even tougher. But the more you engage in this and see the results, the more you will be encouraged to continue to pray. Spurgeon made a very wise observation when he said that our desires to pray and our abilities to pray increase with the more time that we spend in prayer. He said, "The more we pray, the more we shall want to pray. The more we pray, the more we can pray. The more we pray, the more we shall pray. He who prays little will pray less, but he who prays much will pray more. And he who prays more, will desire to pray more abundantly." That is the way God's grace works. As we exercise our little faith, God gives us more faith. As we give our five loaves and two fish, He multiplies them many times over. As we pray, God gives to us an even greater spirit of prayer and supplication.
Today I want to show how we can enter into such a lawsuit with confidence of winning. Keep in mind the Biblical laws we looked at last week. But point II says that we need to make the effort to provide adequate grounds for judgment.
God's Pleasure (v. 4a)
Now I say "grounds" because of the word "for" at the beginning of verse 4. The word "for" introduces the reasons for his prayer. And notice that all the reasons revolve around God. Any reason in our desires, feelings or actions would not be very solid. That would be merely opinion. Opinion does not stand up even in American courts of law. What stands up is if you can appeal to law. Well, David pleads the promises of Scripture and the character of God and the laws of God. God loves to be swayed by an argument so long as those arguments come from His word.
His first reason is, For You are not a God who takes pleasure in wickedness. What a wonderful truth that is! God takes no pleasure in the evil that is dominating our culture! He takes no pleasure in the evil that has been done personally against you. For you are not a God who takes pleasure in wickedness. It's comforting to know that this Judge is upset. He is motivated to throw the keys away on this guy. But he is following court procedure, and until you bring the charges, it won't be heard in court. It's just the way God's justice works. In fact, its the way any justice works.
But let's think about that fact that God takes no pleasure in wickedness, because I think it can really motivate you to proceed with your case. The Scripture declares that God's pleasure is to see righteousness fill the earth; God's pleasure is to see Satan vanquished; Luke 12:32 says, Do not fear, little flock, for it is your Father's good pleasure to give you the kingdom. Isaiah 53:10 prophecies of Christ's victory and says that the pleasure of the Lord will prosper in His hand. But Isaiah goes on to say how that is accomplished: it is through the prayers of the saints. And so Isaiah says, For Zion's sake I will not hold My peace, and for Jerusalem's sake I will not rest, until her righteousness goes forth as brightness, and her salvation as a lamp that burns. The Gentiles shall see your righteousness, and all kings your glory. God's pleasure is already committed to righteousness covering the earth and He is waiting for the church to agree with Him through prayer. Isaiah 42 is a Messianic prophecy fulfilled according to Jesus in His ministry, and in that passage it says that He will bring forth justice for truth. He will not fail nor be discouraged, till He has established justice in the earth; and the coastlands shall wait for His law.
When you are asking for justice, you are asking for exactly what God has promised will come more and more upon the earth. You are asking for His pleasure, not simply your own pleasure. It is the church, not God, that is holding back revival according to Isaiah 62. James says, You have not because you ask not. When David asks for victory later on in this Psalm, he does so in the confidence that God will not deny Himself; that He has promised that He is not a God who takes pleasure in wickedness and He is going to do something about it.
God's Intolerance (v. 4b)
He goes on to say, nor shall evil dwell with You. That indicates that it is not God's desire for evil to stick around for a long time. God has not given settlers rights to evil. We can appeal to God's intolerance and His reluctance to let evil camp out. Since God has claimed the world and the fullness thereof, then evil must abandon its claim to the world. We are praying that God's will would be done on earth as it is in heaven. In heaven evil cannot and does not dwell with God. We are praying that the same would be true on earth.
God's Presence (v. 5a)
David then appeals to God's Holy Presence. The boastful shall not stand in Your sight. You can think of Biblical examples of what happens to people when they are confronted with God's majesty. They cry out in fear and fall on their faces. David is saying, "Lord, there are many people who boast as if you do not exist. That boasting is their blasphemous proof that you do not exist. Let them realize that their boasting is no match for the reality of Your power. Since boasting in the presence of God is impossible, we ask for your victory. We ask for your justice to flare against such boasting."
God's Hatred (v. 5b)
God's hatred is another basis for confident prayer. David says, You hate all workers of iniquity. There are Christians that don't like to think about God's hatred of wicked men, but it is that hatred that causes God to do something against Satan's kingdom; that causes Him to burn against rebels. It was hatred that cast Lucifer and the other rebellious angels out of heaven. It was hatred of wicked men that caused God to pour out His wrath on Christ as a substitute for sinners; and it is hatred of the wicked that guarantees that the church will triumph. Again this shows that God is a God who cares about the state in America and has every motivation needed to change things. The only thing God is waiting for is the church to care as much and to begin to pray in earnest that the wicked would be destroyed either through conversion or through other means and the kingdom established. Praying the War Psalms corporately is one way to agree with God's justice. We have talked about other means.
This is what it means to pray according to the will of God. We fill our mouths with arguments from Scripture as to why God should answer in the affirmative.
God's Judgment (v. 6a)
Verse 6 appeals to the fact that God is continually judging. You shall destroy those who speak falsehood. The fact that God is a God of judgment is good enough ground to go to court. The fact that He hates falsehood is great motivation to ask Him for restitution against those who are slandering you.
God's Revulsion (v. 6b)
And finally, David appeals to God's feelings of revulsion. The LORD abhors the bloodthirsty and deceitful man. These three verses have removed any doubt that God does not care about victory over evil in America. In our prayers we do not come with an "I hope so" or wishful thinking. We pray according to the will of God; we pray God's desires. And this is what Spurgeon meant when He said "God the Holy Ghost writes our prayers, God the Son presents our prayers, and God the Father accepts our prayers. And with the whole Trinity to help us in it, what cannot prayer perform?" When your prayers are written with the courts known desires, we can have confidence.
Demonstrate that you have claims to God's protection (vv. 7-8)
The Importance Of Being A Member Of The Church (v. 7a; cf. 1 Cor. 5:5; 1 Tim. 1:20)
But there is another condition that we need to take account of. We must demonstrate that we have rightful claims to God's protection. Obviously, we must be Christians before God will bother to hear our case. But there are other things needed as well. If you don't want your prayers to bounce off the ceiling, you need to pay attention to David's words in this section.
Verse 7 speaks of his connection and accountability to a local body. He says, But as for me, I will come into Your house in the multitude of Your mercy.
If you examine the Scriptures I have placed in your outlines, you will see that being cast outside the church is being handed over to Satan. There is no neutral ground in life. Even believers are either in God's kingdom or are in Satan's kingdom. And church membership gives a protective canopy over the covenant to a believer. You could think of it as jurisdiction. Some cases are rejected from courts because the court believes that the case does not pertain to their jurisdiction. Well, this is all that point 1 is talking about. Psalm 76:1-3 says that it is in the congregation that God grants victory and vengeance. Psalm 133 says that it is in the unity of the church that God commands His blessing. Psalm 134 shows that it is in God's house that He gives His blessing. And so we need to be members of the church.
Have we confessed our sins and received God's mercy (v. 7a; cf. Zech. 3:1-3; Eph. 4:27; 2 Tim. 2:24-26; Prov. 28:13; Luke 10:20)
Secondly, have we confessed our sins and received God's mercy that verse 7 refers to? Apart from His mercy in our lives, we are powerless against Satan. Proverbs 28:13 says, He who covers his sins will not prosper, but whoever confesses and forsakes them will have mercy. Ephesians 4:27 indicates that when our sins are not confessed, we give Satan an advantage. In fact, unconfessed sin gives Satan legal rights to not leave or to not have to give in. Our sin gives him legal rights.
I told you about Tommy Titcomb's total lack of power against the demons when he tried to cast demons out of this one girl. In fact, the demons seized him and threw him back. And the Spirit of God immediately prompted him about a sin once again that he had refused to deal with. When Tommy dealt with that sin and confessed it, the demons had to leave. And I have seen this over and over again. One person who had demons was crying out to her husband that I was coming and to keep me away while I was still blocks away in my car. She became more and more agitated and even throwing up as I approached the door. I commanded the demons to be quiet, to loose her mind and to let her talk. And when I explained what was happening and that she needed to confess her sins, she was willing to confess two or three, but refused to forsake one of them. Immediately the demons took over again, and I had no ability to deal with the situation. They were claiming legal rights. If you have unresolved anger in your household, you have given Satan legal rights (or what Ephesians calls a foothold). He's got his foot in the door, and until you confess your sins, God's courtroom will not force Satan to get his foot out of your door. If you have unresolved bitterness, the same is true. The bible says rebellion is as the sin of witchcraft, and almost always where there is unresolved rebellion, you find that prayer for victory is futile.
This might discourage you because you realize how many sins you have. But how many is immaterial. David must have had a multitude of sins because verse 7 speaks of the multitude of God's mercies. So don't get discouraged because you are a baby Christian who keeps stumbling into sin. If you get back up, confess your sin, hate your sin and come to God for cleansing and renewal, there is nothing that Satan can legally hold against you.
In fact, I want to read you a passage that illustrates this in such vivid language. Please turn to Zechariah 3. This was during the times of Ezra and Nehemiah, when the Biblical community faced attacks from outside, intrigue from inside, stabs in the back from brethren, greed, immorality and anything else that Satan could throw at them to weaken them and make them ineffective. Those historical books show the visible. But this one shows the invisible behind the scenes situation. Zechariah 3, beginning at verse 1.
Then he showed me Joshua the high priest standing before the Angel of the LORD, [so there is Joshua standing before the preincarnate son of God who was Joshua's lawyer. But notice who else is in this courtroom] and Satan standing at his right hand to oppose him. And the LORD said to Satan, "The LORD rebuke you, Satan! The LORD who has chosen Jerusalem rebuke you! Is this not a brand plucked from the fire?" [The implication is that Joshua was worthy of hell fire, but God had rescued him by His grace and from his pollution.] Now Joshua was clothed with filthy garments, and was standing before the Angel. [The filthy garments represent this believer's ongoing sins. And Satan is using those sins as legal ground to resist him and to resist his ministry. And this passage shows how we continually need the cleansing of Christ and we continually need to put on the armor of Christ or the clothing of Christ. Paul does not say that we should put on the helmet of our salvation and the breastplate of righteousness once and then forget about. He is talking to saved people who repeatedly need to resort to this clothing to be effective in going after Satan. Well, that is what is going on here. Verse 4:] Then He answered and spoke to those who stood before Him, saying, "Take away the filthy garments from him." And to him He said, "See, I have removed your iniquity from you, and I will clothe you with rich robes." And I said, "Let them put a clean turban on his head." So they put a clean turban on his head, and they put the clothes on him. And the Angel of the LORD stood by. Once Joshua was cleansed, and all of the moral ground which Satan claimed in his life had been reclaimed and given to God, and once Joshua had been clothed from head to foot in the provisions of Christ, God stood by to hear his prayers. Nothing could hinder his pleas. This is what I mean by protective covering from the Lord.
We dive into warfare prayer all too unprepared. This was one of the mistakes I made before I read Mark Bubeck's book on the Adversary. And there are several prayers in the warfare booklet that I hand out that I recommend that you pray. If you don't think that you need the multitude of God's mercies, I know already that you will not be successful in your lawsuit against Satan. God resists the proud, but gives grace to the humble. So come confessing your sins and come cleansed in His blood.
The Importance of Reverent Worship (v. 7c; 2 Chron. 20:21-22; 1 Sam. 16:23; James 4:7; Ex. 19:22)
Point 3 emphasizes our attitude in court. One of you told me that you knew someone who recently was in court and was so saucy to the judge that she threw him back into jail for a few days until he could learn court manners and respect. And he was going to keep getting sent back until he had a more respectful manner. Well, the analogy isn't exact for point 3, but Scripture makes clear that there is a correlation between our worship and our protection against the enemy. It is not by accident that God had Israel worship as they went into battle.
Don't treat worship as an empty symbol. In 2 Chronicles 20 it formed the basis for Jehoshaphat watching the Lord destroy the enemies without lifting a sword.
The Importance of Receiving God's Righteous Guidance (v. 8a; Matt. 6:13; Rev. 12:11; Col. 3:15-16)
But point 4 is important as well. It is sometimes difficult to know exactly how to pray in some of these situations. And the Spirit's intercession and guidance can be very, very important. David also prays for guidance. Verse 8 says, Lead me, O LORD, in Your righteousness because of my enemies; We need both a subjective and an objective leading when we enter into spiritual warfare. The objective leading is the Scriptures which God brings to mind. Christ knew just which Scriptures to quote to Satan and cause Satan to flee. In Revelation 12:11 it says, And they overcame him by the blood of the Lamb and by the word of their testimony. We need God's leading to bring the Sword of the Spirit out in just the right way to break through to the hearts of those who resist.
But the leading can be subjective as well. We may intend to ask for a given judgment from the Lord, but feel no peace at all about that. We are uneasy about it. That may be the Spirit telling you to re-evaluate. Colossians 3:15-16 gives both the subjective and the objective leading when it says, And let the peace of God rule in your hearts... [That's the subjective; then he says] Let the word of Christ dwell in your richly in all wisdom... God protects us with that subjective peace or lack thereof and the objective word of God that we are filling ourselves with in order to resist the attacks of Satan.
The Importance of God's Righteous Providence (v. 8b; Matt. 6:13; Jude 24-25)
And then finally, a complete trust in God's righteous providence is important in our protection as well. David continues in verse 8, saying, Make Your way straight before my face. We can claim God's many promises that He will keep His way straight and keep us from stumbling. My favorite is Jude 24-25: Now to Him who is able to keep you from stumbling, and to present you faultless before the presence of His glory with exceeding joy, to God our Savior, who alone is wise, be glory and majesty, dominion and power, both now and forever. Amen. He says, "to Him who is able to keep you from stumbling." God is able, we need to claim that ability. God promises that He will never put us into a position where we have to sin. He always providentially leaves a door open. 1 Corinthians 10:13 says, No temptation has overtaken you except such as is common to man; but God is faithful, who will not allow you to be tempted beyond what you are able, but with the temptation will also make the way of escape, that you may be able to bear it. David asks God to show him the way to resist Satan. He asks God to make His providential ways clear to him. Paul says the same. He guarantees that God always makes the way of escape. To say, "I can't do it," is to question this fact. Aggressively we need to obey in the faith that God will make the way straight before our face.
Make the effort to clearly identify the ways in which the accused has violated God's law (vv. 9-10). Identify the strongholds by name (v. 9; cf. eg. Numb. 5:14,30; 1 Kings 22:19-23; Is. 19:14; Hos. 4:12; 5:4; Zech. 13:2; Mark 9:17; Luke 13:11; Acts 16:16; Rom. 8:15; 11:8; 1 Tim. 4:1; 1 John 4:6; etc.)
But point C shows that we also need to make the effort to clearly identify the ways in which the accused has violated God's laws. This is going to be the enemy's weak point. Before I quickly outline the violations of the law that David sets before the judge, let me point out the reason why I think this was especially the demonic that David was going after. The Hebrew indicates that the enemy was gripped by some stronghold of Satan. The renowned Hebrew scholar Franz Delitzsch, pointed out that there is a play on words in verse 9 that clearly implicates Satan in what they do. Another commentator says, "This description being true, we are practically compelled with Delitzsch to contend that there is something Satanic about their sin" (Leupold). The Hebrew indicates that destruction is more than just an attitude within these men. These men are indwelt with something that destroys. Delitsch points out that that phrase has a double meaning and can be translated as "their inward part is a yawning abyss;" another way of saying that hell is within these people. Likewise, Their throat is an open tomb. What comes out of their throat is the stench of death itself. Just as James speaks of the tongue being a world of iniquity and set on fire by hell itself, verse 9 is indicating that the smooth flatteries of these people are moved by an inward malevolent evil. But David words it in such a way that he doesn't let the people off the hook. People can never excuse their sin with the words, "The devil made me do it." No, though we don't have free will in an absolute sense, we are free moral agents and we are accountable to God. It is our fault when we give a foothold to Satan. When Christ bound the power of Satan in one man's life He commanded the man, Sin no more lest a worse thing come upon you.
These men may have started out freely engaging in sin, but Satan took advantage and bound them in their sins. That is what David is tackling. The first stronghold that David sees is a terrible problem with lying. He says, For there is no faithfulness in their mouth. You probably know people who grieve over the fact that they continually lie, yet they cannot seem to get a handle on it. I know one lady in another state who is so caught up in continual lying that she doesn't even know what is a lie and what isn't anymore. The second stronghold is an inward destructive principle, and you have probably met people who are driven to destroy even the relationships that they love. He says, Their inward part is destruction. Then he repeats the same two strongholds in different language. He says, Their throat is an open tomb. They flatter with their tongue. So verse 9 is listing the problems and verse 10 tears them down.
Specify the Judgment You Are Seeking (v. 10)
David asks for a guilty verdict (v. 10a; Zech. 3:2; Jude 9)
So let's go to Roman numeral III. The next step that David does is to specify the judgment that he was seeking. A lawyer does this in the courtroom doesn't he? David says, Pronounce them guilty, O God! If you don't ask for a guilty pronouncement, you are failing to plead your case in court. The passage I read in Zechariah has the preincarnate Son of God saying, The LORD rebuke you, Satan! The LORD who has chosen Jerusalem rebuke you! Jude 9 says that even Michael the archangel resisted Satan by saying "The LORD rebuke you!" God's rebukes; God's judgments; God's pronouncements have power. And we can ask that God would bring these pronouncements against the evil one. To speak His Word against them.
Let me illustrate this principle with a story of a confrontation with a Christian counselor that was much more bold. This is a quite different context, but it still shows the power of God's pronouncements.
One night after midnight, our doorbell rang. I put on my robe and hurried to answer it. Peering through the window in the door, I could see a man I knew standing in the cold in his bare feet and dressed only in his pajamas. As I opened the door, he fairly rushed into my arms, pleading for me to help him. I ushered him into a room where we could talk and learned that he felt under attack from the powers of darkness. ... On that night, he had awakened with the terrifying sense that some evil powers were trying to take over his being and even kill him.
I began to pray for him, and as I prayed he was seized by some convulsive force that seemed literally to throw him upon the floor. I continued to pray, quoting the Word of God and focusing the victory of Christ upon the man, sometimes commanding any powers of darkness tormenting him to leave him and go where Jesus Christ would send them.
As I continued praying that way, he began to gesture threateningly at me. He was large enough and strong enough to have doubtlessly overpowered me, had he been able to proceed with his threats. I continued to address the promises of the Word against the forces of Satan. As he came toward me, I quoted 1 John 5:18, "He that is begotten of God keepeth himself, and that wicked one toucheth him not" (KJV) and 1 John 3:8, "The Son of Cod was manifested, that he might destroy the works of the devil" (KJV). [This is much like David was doing. "Declare Your judgment on them O God." This man was bringing God's declarations against Satan. He went on to describe what happened every time he quoted God's judgments.] Several times he seemed almost violently thrown back from me. Finally, the war was won. He was calm and able to pray himself and thank the Lord for the victory. He later told me that he seemed controlled by a violent power that strongly wanted to hurt me. Yet each time I addressed the Word of God against the power of darkness seeking to control him, it was as though that violent force was hurled away from me by some invincible power. The Word of God is invincible when rightly understood and applied.
Never neglect God's pronouncements. Hebrews tells us that the Word of God is powerful and sharper than any two edged sword. That is not a figure of speech. That is a reality. 2 Corinthians 10 says, For the weapons of our warfare are not carnal but mighty in God for pulling down strongholds... Never neglect this facet of warfare.
David asks God to bind and frustrate their purposes (v. 10b)
The next step that David takes after bringing God's declarations of judgment is to ask God to bind and frustrate their purposes. Verse 10 goes on to say, Let them fall by their own counsels. And actually, this may be more than just frustrating them. He may be asking for God to take them out.
David asks God to destroy their ability to rebel (v. 10c,d; 1 John 3:8)
Next, David asks God to destroy their ability to rebel. Cast them out in the multitude of their transgressions, for they have rebelled against You. By the way, any time a curse is pronounced in one of these imprecatory psalms, it can be answered in one of two ways. Either Christ can take the curse on His cross as our substitute or God can make it fall on the individuals themselves. I knew of a pastor who was resisted at every step of the way by an individual who was clever enough to avoid discipline, but was mean enough that he made life miserable for the pastor. And this pastor began saying, "Lord, it is impossible for me to get justice down here below. So I appeal to your thrown. He presented his case, and asked for God to make it impossible for this man to rebel anymore." At the next meeting, right in the middle of a speech of opposition, this man fell dead to the ground. David was asking that they would no longer be able to rebel.
David asks for a protection order against them (vv. 11-12)
Next, David asks for a protection order. But let all those rejoice who put their trust in you; let them ever shout for joy, because You defend them; let those also who love your name be joyful in You. "Lord, we don't want to be spending all of our kingdom time being taken up with controversies, problems and unproductive watchings for arrows in the back. Lord, please give a protection order to keep those people from any longer disturbing our joy."
David asks for joy and blessings as compensation (vv. 11-12)
And then David asks for joy and blessings as compensation. In some psalms he specifies what those recompenses would be, but here it seems as if he is quite willing for God to decide what compensation is sufficient. For You, O LORD, will bless the righteous; with favor You will surround him as with a shield. Either way is OK. God knows what recompense to give. He knows His justice. But if you know Biblical justice, you can specify damages as well.
Believe Without Doubting That God Will Give Justice (vv. 11-12)
Rejoicing Faith (v. 11; 2 Chron. 20:21-22)
And he ends this Psalm with the total assurance that since God is a God of justice, God is going to answer. Never doubt God's justice. Satan takes advantage of doubt and lack of faith (so that our prayers will not be answered), but he trembles at the faith expressed by a Martin Luther in a hymn like a Mighty Fortress Is Our God. Look at verse 11. But let all those rejoice who put their trust in You; let them ever shout for joy, because You defend them; let those also who love Your name be joyful in You. Job 5:22 speaks of the ability of faith to laugh at adversity. I am not saying that we will enjoy the conflict. After all, this psalms begins with groanings. But Christ said, Blessed are those who mourn, for they shall be comforted. So it is a rejoicing faith (verse 11)
Secure Faith (v. 12; 2 Kings 6:16)
But verse 12 also indicates that it is a secure faith. For You, O LORD, will bless the righteous; with Your favor You will surround him as with a shield. All it takes is one Martin Luther with this kind of faith to bring about a Reformation. Luther said, "And though this world with devils filled should threaten to undo us, we will not fear, for God hath willed His truth to triumph through us." Do you believe that? Do you believe that God has willed His truth to triumph through you? David says, For You, O LORD, will bless the righteous; with Your favor You will surround him as with a shield.
I want to challenge you to put into practice the truths of last week and this week and to stop being defensive, and to begin claiming back money, territory, joy and children that Satan has robbed. Start claiming back moral ground that He has taken. Go after Satan in court. We don't wrestle ultimately with flesh and blood, but with principalities and powers; against the rulers of the darkness of this age, against spiritual hosts of wickedness in the heavenly places. But praise God. They are subject to King Jesus, the Judge of all the earth. Amen? Amen.
Charge: I charge you to stop being defensive, and to start going after Satan with covenant lawsuits.