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LURKERS

When David tended his flocks he faced the darkness and the dangers of predators.  Once he began to serve King Saul he was introduced to a darker danger.  Perhaps he may have faced the night wondering where God was hiding his hope.  He was becoming aware that outside his family there were men who plotted evil in the night.

Why standest thou afar off, O LORD? why hidest thou thyself in times of trouble?  The wicked in his pride doth persecute the poor: let them be taken in the devices that they have imagined.  For the wicked boasteth of his heart’s desire, and blesseth the covetous, whom the LORD abhorreth.  The wicked, through the pride of his countenance, will not seek after God: God is not in all his thoughts.  His ways are always grievous; thy judgments are far above out of his sight: as for all his enemies, he puffeth at them.  He hath said in his heart, I shall not be moved: for I shall never be in adversity.  His mouth is full of cursing and deceit and fraud: under his tongue is mischief and vanity.  He sitteth in the lurking places of the villages: in the secret places doth he murder the innocent: his eyes are privily set against the poor.  He lieth in wait secretly as a lion in his den: he lieth in wait to catch the poor: he doth catch the poor, when he draweth him into his net.  He croucheth, and humbleth himself, that the poor may fall by his strong ones.  He hath said in his heart, God hath forgotten: he hideth his face; he will never see it.  Psalm 10:1-11

David is young and is appalled at the evil he sees in the world around us.  He may wonder why God allows so many to be contrary to his will.  Evil men take advantage of the weak and scorn their enemies.  Their self confidence leaves them in denial of the waiting wrath of God.  Don’t they still do that today?

Arise, O LORD; O God, lift up thine hand: forget not the humble.  Wherefore doth the wicked contemn God? he hath said in his heart, Thou wilt not require it.  Thou hast seen it; for thou beholdest mischief and spite, to requite it with thy hand: the poor committeth himself unto thee; thou art the helper of the fatherless.  Break thou the arm of the wicked and the evil man: seek out his wickedness till thou find none.  The LORD is King for ever and ever: the heathen are perished out of his land.  LORD, thou hast heard the desire of the humble: thou wilt prepare their heart, thou wilt cause thine ear to hear:  To judge the fatherless and the oppressed, that the man of the earth may no more oppress.  Psalm 10:12-18

While evil men lose their fear of God, the humble have confidence in him.  We all have sin, but daily repentance returns us to the fear of the Lord.  The day will come when evil will no longer be found.

In the LORD put I my trust: how say ye to my soul, Flee as a bird to your mountain?  For, lo, the wicked bend their bow, they make ready their arrow upon the string, that they may privily shoot at the upright in heart.  If the foundations be destroyed, what can the righteous do?  The LORD is in his holy temple, the LORD’s throne is in heaven: his eyes behold, his eyelids try, the children of men.  The LORD trieth the righteous: but the wicked and him that loveth violence his soul hateth.  Upon the wicked he shall rain snares, fire and brimstone, and an horrible tempest: this shall be the portion of their cup.  For the righteous LORD loveth righteousness; his countenance doth behold the upright.  Psalm 11: 1-7

Why should I run away at the threats of evil men?  I trust in God against the weapons of evil.  The arrows and sword are not the only works of evil either.  The words of gossip and divisive cliques are just as destructive as violence.  All conspiracy is known by God, and evil will meet destruction from God.

Help, LORD; for the godly man ceaseth; for the faithful fail from among the children of men.  They speak vanity every one with his neighbour: with flattering lips and with a double heart do they speak.  The LORD shall cut off all flattering lips, and the tongue that speaketh proud things:  Who have said, With our tongue will we prevail; our lips are our own: who is lord over us?  For the oppression of the poor, for the sighing of the needy, now will I arise, saith the LORD; I will set him in safety from him that puffeth at him.  The words of the LORD are pure words: as silver tried in a furnace of earth, purified seven times.  Thou shalt keep them, O LORD, thou shalt preserve them from this generation for ever.  The wicked walk on every side, when the vilest men are exalted.  Psalm 12: 1-8

Help Lord; this is the key when we see that even the godly man ceases.  The faithful fail:  if there were no sinners there would be no church.  We all need grace.  Christians speak vanity, polite in public and critical in private.  We do need to repent daily, but in Christ we find the door open for us to do so.  Without that opportunity, we who are just beginning to become righteous will backslide right off the path.  The temptation that makes our feet slide is not our downfall; the temptation to omit repentance is.  Some turn away from life and their neighbors need deliverance from them.  God will keep those who are humble enough to maintain a relationship with him.

David will go on to fall into sin, to recover, and to confront the proud workers of evil.  He will have no reason to fear the works of the night because he will walk in the light of relationship with God.  He is not destined to be a perfect man, but he is to become a man after God’s own heart.

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