Psalms 36

Psalm 36

How Precious Is Your Steadfast Love

To the choirmaster. Of David, the servant of the LORD.

36   Transgression speaks to the wicked
    deep in his heart;
  there is no fear of God
    before his eyes.
  For he flatters himself in his own eyes
    that his iniquity cannot be found out and hated.
  The words of his mouth are trouble and deceit;
    he has ceased to act wisely and do good.
  He plots trouble while on his bed;
    he sets himself in a way that is not good;
    he does not reject evil.
  Your steadfast love, O LORD, extends to the heavens,
    your faithfulness to the clouds.
  Your righteousness is like the mountains of God;
    your judgments are like the great deep;
    man and beast you save, O LORD.
  How precious is your steadfast love, O God!
    The children of mankind take refuge in the shadow of your wings.
  They feast on the abundance of your house,
    and you give them drink from the river of your delights.
  For with you is the fountain of life;
    in your light do we see light.
  Oh, continue your steadfast love to those who know you,
    and your righteousness to the upright of heart!
  Let not the foot of arrogance come upon me,
    nor the hand of the wicked drive me away.
  There the evildoers lie fallen;
    they are thrust down, unable to rise.


Psalm 36 Commentary

by Brad Boyles

The Warehouse staff has just begun to have weekly accountability meetings. Each pastor on staff has a different week in which they will be asked to evaluate where they are seeing fruit and where they are struggling. It’s something I’m personally looking forward to. Why? Because I know that I have blind spots in my life. I know that others who are solid and walking with Jesus can see things I can’t. I know, in some ways, I have embraced wickedness in my flesh and I want to turn from it!

When it comes to wickedness, it makes little difference what people say. What I mean is, the person who claims to be Christian is no different than the person who claims to be an atheist if there is not an active, personal relationship with Jesus that is producing fruit. One way to state this would be practical atheism. It describes someone who is verbally a Christian but practically-speaking lives no differently than the world. The first half of Psalm 36 describes someone like this.

Sin speaks to the wicked deep in their hearts; they reject God and do not have reverence for him. 2 Because they think so highly of themselves, they think that God will not discover their sin and condemn it. 3 Their speech is wicked and full of lies; they no longer do what is wise and good. 4 They make evil plans as they lie in bed; nothing they do is good, and they never reject anything evil.

Psalms 36:1-4 GNB

Consider what this looks like. A lack of reverence for God. Pride which equates in always speaking highly of themselves. Knowingly hiding sin and believing that God cannot see it. For someone who verbally calls themselves a Christian this could mean willingly sinning with a mindset that God will always forgive them. It is a lack of effort to repent and turn from wickedness.

Another indication of someone who has embraced practical atheism is their deceitful tongue. Suppressing their conscience, they see nothing wrong with lying when it benefits them which leads to a heart that desires to plot evil acts. They open themselves up to anything and everything using zero wisdom and thinking only of themselves.

The reality of what I’ve just described is incredibly sobering. Most of us would read this passage and think “Oh, that’s not me.” But when we take a closer look, is that really true? Are we discerning what is going into our eyes and ears? Have we compromised our relationship with Jesus by embracing little white lies? Have we slowly allowed pride to creep into our minds and deceive us into believing that our needs are the most important?

The point is, wickedness is not always obvious. In fact, the great deceiver himself uses subtle and sneaky tactics to dupe those who claim to be believers into compromising situations every single day. One compromise leads to another, and another, and another. Pretty soon, we have convinced ourselves that we are just fine. “No one can judge me or hold me accountable.”

So, I return to my original story above. Our staff has committed to accountability. Our desire is to illuminate compromise with the light of Christ. Where do you need this in your life? Who could you begin meeting with that would hold you accountable in your Christian walk?

People, we can’t do this alone! Part of Jesus’ sacrifice on the cross meant establishing a body of believers who would walk together in grace and truth with total transparency. God have mercy on us who have made small compromises and have falsely believed that you are looking the other way. Bring truth into our lives so we can follow you more closely! Bring people alongside us who will lovingly hold us accountable!

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