The audio can be listened to here.
What kind of time is this to be alive in Scotland? In the West? Is it a good time to be alive, or a bad time?
Do I need to convince you that at this time, in this country, the true church has many enemies? Do I need to convince you that we are living in a time of incredible wickedness?
Goliath’s taunting. Saul’s hunting. Absalom’s marching.
On Wednesday, Lochee turned on its Christmas lights. A transgender fairy that was going to be featured at the event, naturally right alongside Santa, canceled at the last minute because it was raining. What a fairy!
Scotland’s proud to soon be the first country to have a comprehensively, super gay curriculum for its P1 and up kiddos.
Thousands will be slaughtered and incinerated this year on the altar of sex with no fruitful responsibility.
Your government taxes you for productivity and then uses that money to mutilate children, pass out heroin, fund sluggards, and promote the persecution of Christian parents and preachers.
The prevailing wisdom of the day is that mankind is nothing more than well-evolved shrapnel from an explosion of everything from nothing and therefore, for some reason, women are to be empowered and men are to cry more.
The prevailing Christianity of the day is as Christian as Theresa May’s Brexit deal is a deal.
I could keep going. But the long and short of it is that Christian Christianity is not welcome in Scotland.
You are Christians. Therefore, if you will be faithful… do the math.
So, again, is it a good or bad time to be alive?
Well, according to Psalm 5, it’s grand. That’s because our God hates the wicked. The worse our enemies are, the worse it will be for them. And we can be sure that God will bless us and be our shield.
What confidence should you have from Psalm 5?
A confidence in God. A confidence of vanquished foes and the enjoyment of sweet victory.
Let’s read Psalm 5 together.
1To the chief Musician upon Nehiloth (flute accompaniment?), A Psalm of David.
Give ear to my words, O LORD, consider my meditation.
2Give attention to the sound of my cry, my King and my God, for to you do I pray.
3In the morning, O LORD, You will hear my voice; in the morning will I direct my prayer to You, and will look up.
4For You are not a God who takes pleasure in wickedness: neither will evil dwell with You.
5The foolish shall not stand in thy sight: You hate all workers of iniquity.
6You will destroy those who speak lies: the LORD will abhor the bloody and deceitful man.
7But as for me, I will come into Your house in the multitude of Your mercy: and in Your fear will I worship toward Your holy temple.
8Lead me, O LORD, in Your righteousness because of my enemies; make Your way straight before my face.
9For there is nothing reliable in their mouth; their inward part is wickedness itself; their throat is an open grave; they flatter with their tongue.
10Destroy them, O God; let them fall by their own counsels; cast them out in the multitude of their transgressions; for they have rebelled against You.
11But let all those who put their trust in You rejoice: let them ever shout for joy, because You defend them: also let them that love Your name be joyful in You.
12For You, LORD, will bless the righteous; with favor will you surround him as with a shield.
There are broadly three ideas, or arguments, that David takes up and develops in this Psalm.
First, from the first three verses, David makes his case to be heard by God.
Second, from verses 4-6 and 9-10, David makes his case for why God should destroy his enemies.
Third, from verses 7-8 and 11-12, David lays out why he has every reason to rejoice.
Look back with me at verses 1-3. David wants to be heard by God.
We know from verse 1 that this is a Psalm of David, written to the chief musician.
In verse 3, David says he will pray to the LORD in the morning. This comes after Psalms 3 and 4, where David prays as he moves to sleep in faith. In Psalm 5, David has slept in faith, he has been sustained through the night, he has been raised by the LORD in the morning. Having received all that preserving grace from the LORD, his shield, his glory, the lifter of his head, David prays in the morning, expecting to be heard, and asking to be heard. He asks for God’s attention, God’s consideration, God’s ear. And he expects to have it because he is praying to his King and his God.
Take note Christian.
The LORD is your God. He’s your Maker and Owner and Sustainer. So give Him the worship He is due. Give Him the honor He is due. Give Him the praise and service and gratitude due His name.
The LORD is your King. He is the King of kings. And so to Him do you owe all fealty and allegiance and obedience.
The LORD, your God and King, has granted You His ear whenever you’ve prayed to Him in faith. And He will ever do so. He will never tire of giving You His ear, His careful consideration.
Is it a good time to be alive? Of course. The LORD is your God. The LORD is your King. He cares for your prayers.
So, pray. And look up. And be heard in Christ.
David develops his second idea, his second argument, in verses 4-6 and 9-10. God should destroy his enemies.
David’s good night of sleep was a great act of faith…a monument to the grace and preserving power of God.
But closing his eyes didn’t make his enemies disappear. They were still out there, still raging, still looking to devour him.
David’s basic case before God is this: LORD, see my enemies? They are Your enemies. Because You’re holy, You hate sinners. The worse the sinner, the more opposed to Him You are. And have You seen how sinful my enemies are? So, in Your holiness, come down on them like the Red Sea on Pharaoh, like the flood on the Nephilim, like the sulfur on Sodom, like the she bears on the lads.
Look at verse 4. Why does God take no pleasure in wickedness? Why can’t evil dwell with Him?
Because God is holy. Because God is good. His goodness demands his hatred of wickedness. His holiness forbids the slightest evil to dwell with Him.
The foolish, those who refuse to give Him His due, those who are arrogant, those who say, “There is no God!”, those who love sin, those who go their own way, those who invent genders and orientations, those who love manly women and lady men, those who hail Mary and eat the Mass and respect priests and cardinals and popes, those who ignore the truth and authority of the Scriptures, they shall not stand in God’s sight.
And, get this, GOD HATES WORKERS OF INIQUITY. GOD HATES SINNERS.
And God will destroy the liars. He will abhor with holy fury lying and murderous men.
That is the good and holy God of the Bible. That is David’s God. That is the Christian’s God.
And that’s grand news for David. His enemies are precisely the men whom God hates. His enemies are God’s enemies.
God hates liars? Shoot. David’s enemies are liars. There’s nothing reliable in their mouth. Their throat is an open grave. They flatter with their tongue.
God hates wickedness? Shoot. Their inward part is wickedness itself.
Look how sinful they are, God! Do what You do. Give them justice. Destroy them. They aren’t just rebels against me. They’re rebels against You. Cast them out in the multitude of their transgressions. Smash them to smithereens.
What a wonderful prayer for us, is it not?
Fools and their iniquities abound. Christian, pray for their destruction. Are you uncomfortable with this kind of prayer? Many evangelicals today are.
Two things to that:
Firstly, which have you done more recently? Acted like an enemy of God? Or prayed for their destruction?
Secondly, discomfort with praying for the crushing of foes is an effeminate discomfort. Men owning their warrior duty, men in the throes of battle, such men have no confusion as to what to do with destructive prayers.
Is it a good time to be alive? Oh, yes. Our enemies are far too wicked, far too foolish, far too stupid to succeed.
What’s David’s third case that he lays out for us in this Psalm?
The answer is in verses 7-8 and 11-12. David lays out why he has every reason to rejoice.
The end of his enemies is certain. God is holy. They are sinners, super sinners. And so they will be destroyed by God’s holy fury.
But David knows his end is blessing and favor.
Now, if you followed the logic of David’s last argument, this should surprise you. God is holy. Therefore, He hates sinners. David’s enemies are sinners. Therefore, God hates them and will destroy them.
David is sure that blessing and favor from God are his. But David is a sinner. And God is holy. And God hates sinners. So how can David’s end be any different than that of his enemies?
Verse 12 is key. The LORD will bless the righteous. We know that none is righteous. None, that is, but Christ. And through faith in Christ, God is pleased to credit Christ’s righteousness as belonging to His people. Those who believe on Christ get his righteousness as a gift. Christ takes the unrighteousness of every believer upon himself at the cross, and their God deals with him as He deals with all the wicked. Our sin paid for. Christ’s righteousness ours through faith alone.
And this means that David’s holy God and King can bless him and surround him with favor as with a shield. And He can do and does in fact do the same with us. That is certainly amazing grace.
And it means that God’s blessing and favor are secured for us forevermore not by our obedience to God but by Christ’s obedience to God.
This means that instead of being banished from dwelling with God in the multitude of his iniquities, David will come into God’s house in the multitude of God’s mercy. Instead of being lost in foolishness, David will worship toward God’s holy temple.
Having been declared righteous by God, David asks to be lead in righteousness, to be led according to the straight way of God.
Lead us not into temptation, O LORD, but deliver us from evil. For thine is the kingdom, and the power, and the glory forever, amen.
Against all foes, David can be confident that God is His Defender and Shield.
And so, even facing the hottest opposition, David has every reason to rejoice and be glad.
And so do we.
Yes, the West is threatened, not by war from enemies without, but by war from enemies within. The enemies of truth, goodness, and beauty are powerful. The enemies of God in this land are many.
It’s wartime. But not worry time. It’s no time for anxiety or dismay.
It’s a great time to be alive.
Look at how wicked our foes are! They cannot succeed. They will not succeed. Victory for the righteous is as sure as hell is hot.
Look at the grace of God to us. The LORD is our Defender, our Shield. Our God and King has declared us righteous.
Let us walk not in the way of the wicked, as we are far too prone to do. Let us walk in the way of the righteous. And let us rejoice.
Rejoice and be glad.
In the morning, pray and be heard. Pray for the destruction of our foes. And await God’s reply. Pray for holy living.
And celebrate the goodness of God.