PSALM 109 - Better Sore then Sorry! 19 Feb 2020
Today a psalm with many serious curses. Is that according the character of God? Most probably not. How to deal with those words? Are there persons who have betrayed me and with whom I am very annoyed?
Who or what is cursed.
Because David speaks about friendship, I assume it must be (a) real person(s). Most probably king Saul. David could have killed him directly. He had opportunities. At least he choose not to be the judge and invites God for what he (or the Holy Spirit) feels as justice.
Saul chooses to remain sour
David had offered king Saul opportunities to restore friendship. Saul choose to remain sore and filled with bad thoughts. He left David with very few options.
If I remain sore and do not allow myself to be sorry for my bad actions, my opponent may remain annoyed with me. And perhaps God as well. I need to say sorry where I was wrong, or else I will suffer myself from my own sore thinking.
1 [For the choirmaster. Of David. Psalm]
God whom I praise, do not be silent!
2 Wicked and deceiving words are being said about me,
false accusations are cast in my teeth.
3 Words of hate fly all around me,
though I give no cause for hostility.
4 In return for my friendship they denounce me,
and all I can do is pray!
5 They repay my kindness with evil,
and friendship with hatred.
6 'Set up a wicked man against him
as accuser to stand on his right.
7 At his trial may he emerge as guilty,
even his prayer construed as a crime!
8 'May his life be cut short,
someone else take over his office,
9 his children be orphaned,
his wife be widowed.
10 'May his children wander perpetually,
beggars, driven from the ruins of their house,
11 a creditor seize all his goods,
and strangers make off with his earnings.
12 'May there be none left faithful enough to show him love,
no one take pity on his orphans,
13 the line of his descendants cut off,
his name wiped out in one generation.
14 'May Yahweh never forget the crimes of his ancestors,
and his mother's sins not be wiped out;
15 may Yahweh keep these constantly in mind,
to cut off the remembrance of them from the earth.'
16 He had no thought of being loyal,
but hounded the poor and the needy and the broken-hearted to their death.
17 He had a taste for cursing; let it recoil on him!
No taste for blessing; let it never come his way!
18 Cursing has been the uniform he wore;
let it soak into him like water,
like oil right into his bones.
19 Let it be as a robe which envelops him completely,
a sash which he always wears.
20 Let this be the salary Yahweh pays the accusers who blacken my name.
21 Yahweh, treat them as your name demands;
as your faithful love is generous, deliver me.
22 Poor and needy as I am,
my wounds go right to the heart;
23 I am passing away like a fading shadow,
they have shaken me off like a locust.
24 My knees are weak from lack of food,
my body lean for lack of fat.
25 I have become the butt of their taunts,
they shake their heads at the sight of me.
26 Help me, Yahweh my God,
save me as your faithful love demands.
27 Let them know that yours is the saving hand,
that this, Yahweh, is your work.
28 Let them curse, provided that you bless;
let their attacks bring shame to them
and joy to your servant!
29 Let my accusers be clothed in disgrace,
enveloped in a cloak of shame.
30 With generous thanks to Yahweh on my lips,
I shall praise him before all the people,
31 for he stands at the side of the poor,
to save their lives from those who sit in judgement on them.
Excerpt from THE NEW JERUSALEM BIBLE, copyright (c) 1985 by
Darton, Longman & Todd, Ltd. and Doubleday, a division
of Penguin Random House, Inc. Reprinted by Permission.
Was David really sour?