Message: “God’s Love for His Sheep”
Text: Psalm 35:19-28
David now concludes his song by reflecting on God’s love for him.
(19) Prayer for victory
David cries out to God for victory. His enemies are conspiring against him. They do not have a valid reason for hating him, but they continue their deceptive ways against him.
(20-21) The enemies’ accusations
David just wants to live a life of peace and quiet. However, his enemies will not allow it. They will continually attack him. Saul stops following David for a time, and then he resumes again. David did nothing to provoke this renewed pursuit. It was brought about by the hatred within Saul. David’s enemies claim to be eyewitnesses to David’s sins.
(22-24) Prayer for vindication
David knows that God is the true eyewitness of all that has taken place. God knows the truth. Because of this he cries out that God would speak up for him and vindicate him. The word for vindication is the word for “pass judgment.” David feels like he is constantly in the court room of public opinion. He wants God as Judge to declare him not guilty so that he can return to a life of peace.
(25-26) Prayer for victory
David cries out for the Lord to for victory over his enemies. He shows their attitude; they want to hurt him. They will stop at nothing until David has truly “suffered enough” for his “sins.” David wants God to deliver him from these continual attacks.
(27-28) God’s love for His people
David now contrasts the attitude of his enemies with the attitude of God. He wants people to be filled with joy and gladness. He wants to be constantly reminded of God’s glory and God’s attitude concerning His servants. God delights in the peace, prosperity, and health of His people. That is what gives Him joy. Because of this David is going to praise God continually.
Two attitudes are present here, accusation and advocacy. The devil is the “accuser” of the brethren (Revelation 12:10.) He is going to constantly be pointing out the faults and failures of God’s people. He is relentless and will not let them live in peace. Unfortunately, many professing Christians do this work for Satan. We need not look much further than Job’s “friends.” Notice how relentless they were in pointing out “sin” in Job’s life. They would not let him grieve in peace.
Jesus is the “advocate” of the brethren (1 John 2:1.) When they sin, He acts as their defense attorney. He pleads His own blood on their behalf. He shields them from the wrath of God; He does so by taking that wrath upon Himself on the cross. He truly desires the peace, health, and prosperity of His people, even when they sin.
There are many voices in this world. All claim to be for your own good; even Satan in the Garden of Eden claimed that his advice was because he had the best interest of Eve at heart. He did the same in his temptations of Christ. He does the same to us today. However, Jesus is concerned with our true well-being. He does not ignore our sin, but He approaches it far differently than Satan does. He points us to Himself, He covers our sin, He advocates for us, He speaks to us of His forgiveness, He does not bring it up again, and He then resumes perfect fellowship with us. We can see this in the story of the prodigal son. We can see this in the restoration of the woman caught in adultery and the restoration of Peter.
Whose voice are you listening to?
Are you accusing the brethren or advocating for them?