Friend or Foe?

Psalm 25:1-3 NASB

To You, O Lord, I lift up my soul.
O my God, in You I trust,
Do not let me be ashamed;
Do not let my enemies exult over me.
Indeed, none of those who wait for You will be ashamed;
Those who deal treacherously without cause will be ashamed.

We all have enemies. Even those who may be loved by the masses have those who don’t like them or who despise them or who are against them. For, we can never please everyone. We shouldn’t even try to please everyone, but we should be living to please God.

Yet, even some people who we think are our friends may be, in fact, our enemies, if they coddle us in our sins rather than speak truth to our hearts. Or, if our friends are leading us into sin, then they are not really our friends. For, better are the rebukes of a true friend than the kisses of an enemy.

Those of us who are following the Lord Jesus in surrender to his will and in obedience to his commands, and are walking in his ways, definitely have enemies, because Satan hates us, and so he will persuade those who are under his control to also hate us and to mistreat us.

The sad reality here, though, is that many who profess the name of Jesus are actually his enemies and are our enemies, as well. Our enemies may or may not be genuinely saved from their sins, but they are those who are walking in the ways of the world and of the flesh, and so they don’t like those of us who are following the Lord – though not in absolute perfection, but who are walking in his ways and in his truth day by day.

So, this is the cry of the heart of one who is a servant of the Lord who has enemies who are causing him or her harm and distress via deceitfulness and betrayal. These enemies could be those who claim to be our friends and who claim to care about us, but who may be lying to us. This is asking of the Lord that our enemies not be able to triumph over us, in their pride, but that our enemies would be brought to the place where they are ashamed of their conduct, and hopefully brought to repentance.

Psalm 25:4-7 NASB

Make me know Your ways, O Lord;
Teach me Your paths.
Lead me in Your truth and teach me,
For You are the God of my salvation;
For You I wait all the day.
Remember, O Lord, Your compassion and Your lovingkindnesses,
For they have been from of old.
Do not remember the sins of my youth or my transgressions;
According to Your lovingkindness remember me,
For Your goodness’ sake, O Lord.

None of us is incapable of being penetrated by sin. Although we are forgiven of our sins when we trust in Jesus Christ to be Lord and Savior of our lives, we still live in flesh bodies. We still have the propensity to sin against God.

Through Jesus’ death on the cross, though, and by faith in him, we are delivered from our slavery to sin so that we can now become slaves of his righteousness. Sin should no longer be our master. It should no longer have control over our lives so that our lives are ruled by sin.

Daily, by the Spirit of God, we should be putting to death the deeds of the flesh and we should be walking (conducting our lives) according to the Spirit. If we do sin, we should repent of it, and keep following our Lord in surrender and in obedience to his will.

We should desire our Lord above all else, and want to know his ways and to walk in them, and for him to show us the way in which he wants us to go. And, we should desire truth in the innermost parts of our lives.

Psalm 25:12-15 NASB

Who is the man who fears the Lord?
He will instruct him in the way he should choose.
His soul will abide in prosperity,
And his descendants will inherit the land.
The secret of the Lord is for those who fear Him,
And He will make them know His covenant.
My eyes are continually toward the Lord,
For He will pluck my feet out of the net.

So many people say they want to know God’s will for their lives, and they will even claim that they are seeking to know his will, all the while they are living in open rebellion against God via sinful addictions. So, their words and their actions don’t mix. For, we can’t walk in the ways of our flesh, to do what is contrary to God’s commands, and be led by the Spirit in the ways of the Lord, too. For, one will ultimately cancel out the other.

So, if we want to know the ways of the Lord, so that we may walk in them, then we need to be those who walk in the fear of the Lord. This means that we honor him as the holy God that he is. It means, too, that we walk in obedience to his commands, that we show him respect, and that we revere him always. It also means that we worship him via the yielding of our lives over to him, to be pleasing to him, and that we no longer live in conformity to the ways of this sinful world (See: Rom. 12:1-2).

For, if we truly want victory over sin, we have to live in the fear of the Lord. We can’t have it both ways. We can’t continually and consistently be yielding control of our lives over to the lusts of our flesh and then expect God to deliver us. Thus, if you are one who is “struggling” with sinful addiction, i.e. you are one who regularly yields to the flesh, as a matter of course, then don’t be surprised when you continue to fail and you don’t have victory.

For, we can’t play with fire and expect to not get burned. We can’t continue to go into situations blindly which have burned us before, and then act surprised, or wonder why God didn’t rescue us. He has already made the way of escape for us. We just have to take the way out he provided, which is to forsake our lives of sin and to walk with him in obedience, in purity, and in faithfulness.

Psalm 25:16-22 NASB

Turn to me and be gracious to me,
For I am lonely and afflicted.
The troubles of my heart are enlarged;
Bring me out of my distresses.
Look upon my affliction and my trouble,
And forgive all my sins.
Look upon my enemies, for they are many,
And they hate me with violent hatred.
Guard my soul and deliver me;
Do not let me be ashamed, for I take refuge in You.
Let integrity and uprightness preserve me,
For I wait for You.
Redeem Israel, O God,
Out of all his troubles.

When our enemies come against us fiercely to attack us, or when they secretly do evil against us behind our backs in a way of betrayal against us, especially if they are those who claim to love us, it hurts. It wounds our hearts. And, we will feel those emotions of being betrayed, forsaken, and forgotten, and that is loneliness. It is loneliness to experience hatred, abandonment, betrayal, unfaithfulness, and deceit, and to feel such rejection of ourselves by others.

But, if we are children of God through faith in Jesus Christ, our Lord fills that loneliness with his Spirit, with his comfort, and with his love. For, when others forsake us, our Lord will receive us. He will never leave us or forsake us.

Because we are human, and we bleed physically and emotionally, we are not unaffected by how other people treat us. Yet, we must turn these hurts over to the Lord and allow him to heal our wounded hearts and to bring peace to our troubled minds. So, it is a very good thing for us to cry these out to God and to allow him to bring comfort to our hearts, and to let him fill us with his joy.

And, we need to pray for those who despitefully use us and abuse us, and do good to them and say to them what is beneficial for them. We should pray that God would bring them to their knees in repentance so that they can be delivered from their slavery to sin. For, many people who claim to love God are not walking in love or in truth or in purity, but they are living to please the lusts of their flesh, no matter who they hurt in the process.

So, we need to pray that they will turn their hearts over to Jesus and that they will now walk in victory over sin and in God’s love and grace. And, we need to keep forgiving them, no matter how many times they sin against us. And, we need to guard our own hearts against bitterness of spirit or depression because of what we are going through at the hands of those who hate us.

Living Water
An Original Work / November 21, 2013

Based off Various Scriptures

My people have forsaken Me,
Their Savior, who died on a tree;
Made idols, and they worshipped them;
So empty, they will ne’er fulfill.

Lord, You are the hope of Your chosen ones.
Those who turn away from You will be shamed;
The Spring of Living Water left behind.

Living Water satisfies.

The thirsty, let them come and drink;
Believe in Jesus as their King;
The gift of Jesus given them,
So they will never thirst again.

Indeed, the Living Water flows within.
It springs up like a fountain cleansing sin.
Eternal life in heaven promised them.

Living Water glorifies.

Oh people, won’t you come to Him?
Obey Him and repent of sin.
Let Jesus come and live within.
Surrender all your life to Him.

My people, won’t you turn your hearts to Me?
Forsake your idols and then you’ll be free.
Won’t you come now to Me on bended knee?

Living Water sanctifies.

Wednesday, October 17, 2018, 3:00 a.m. – Thank You, Jesus, for loving us, for your comfort, your joy, your peace and for victory over sin and over loneliness.

 

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