Daily in the Psalms : Psalm 38
THE CONSEQUENCES OF SIN
O LORD, rebuke me not in thy wrath: neither chasten me in thy hot displeasure. For thine arrows stick fast in me, and thy hand presseth me sore. There is no soundness in my flesh because of thine anger; neither is there any rest in my bones because of my sin. For mine iniquities are gone over mine head: as an heavy burden they are too heavy for me. My wounds stink and are corrupt because of my foolishness. I am troubled; I am bowed down greatly; I go mourning all the day long. For my loins are filled with a loathsome disease: and there is no soundness in my flesh. I am feeble and sore broken: I have roared by reason of the disquietness of my heart. Lord, all my desire is before thee; and my groaning is not hid from thee. My heart panteth, my strength faileth me: as for the light of mine eyes, it also is gone from me. My lovers and my friends stand aloof from my sore; and my kinsmen stand afar off. They also that seek after my life lay snares for me: and they that seek my hurt speak mischievous things, and imagine deceits all the day long. But I, as a deaf man, heard not; and I was as a dumb man that openeth not his mouth. Thus I was as a man that heareth not, and in whose mouth are no reproofs. For in thee, O LORD, do I hope: thou wilt hear, O Lord my God. For I said, Hear me, lest otherwise they should rejoice over me: when my foot slippeth, they magnify themselves against me. For I am ready to halt, and my sorrow is continually before me. For I will declare mine iniquity; I will be sorry for my sin. But mine enemies are lively, and they are strong: and they that hate me wrongfully are multiplied. They also that render evil for good are mine adversaries; because I follow the thing that good is. Forsake me not, O LORD: O my God, be not far from me. Make haste to help me, O Lord my salvation. Psalms 38:1-22
As we read through the Psalms we see the great difficulty the Psalmist has in expressing the pain that his sin had caused him. Many will see the sin but miss the pain caused by the sin. David never questions whether he is worthy of Godís displeasure and wrath. Sin ought to always lead the Christian to understand that sin offends God. That offence changes the sweet relationship between man and his loving God. Man can only view God through our limited humanity. We see Him through our own moral experiences; we are comfortable with His presence because of our innocence, or we are uncomfortable with His presence because of our guilt. We see Him as either our Father or our Judge. The most bitter experience of the Christian is knowing that God is angry with him because of sin. God knows how to make His wrath keen, swift, and penetrating. We usually do not see it coming; it comes when we least expect it and its effect is very painful. The arrow of the Holy Ghost will always hit its mark and will always remind us of the bitterness of sin. The enticement of sin is never as intense as the price paid for it. When the soul is wounded by sin, it becomes offensive in itís own sight. When the sinned is under the conviction of the Holy Spirit, he sees all sin as a festering sore and hates it for the grief it causes. When man is under the rebuke of God, he feels that he is overwhelmed in a sea of sin and he has no refuge. He feels he is in a dark pit with no light available. Even the smallest sin will bring rebuke, but the severity of that rebuke is connected to the seriousness of the sin. God will rebuke us of even the slightest sin because one unconfused sin will lead to another. Sin will quickly become a heavy burden and if it is not cast upon the Lord, it will sink the sinner into the pit of destruction. Thank God that He makes us aware of the smallest infraction. Godís chastisement affects every part of man. It reaches down to his bones and causes unrest. The Christian with known sin in his life is like a ship tossed in a great storm. There can be no peace and rest as long as sin is present in our lives. That peace and rest is only found in Christ, who is the Prince of Peace. Godís chastisement will cause us to run to Him. Sin will always leave its mark. It changes the merry heart, damages the strength of the body, and sours the countenance.
SINíS EFFECT ON HUMAN RELATIONSHIPS
My lovers and my friends stand aloof from my sore; and my kinsmen stand afar off. Psalms 38:11
Friends may be many while we enjoy sin for a season, but when Godís wrath comes, those friends will quickly vanish. The Christian that falls under the chastening hand of God will find himself on a very lonely road. Those you look to for comfort will flee because they donít want to fall into the same judgment. Most will be astonished at the change Godís wrath will make in a personís life. Even the closest of friends and most family members will stand as far away as they can. Remember that Jesus was forsaken by His disciples as He hung on the cross. It takes true friendship to stand the test of adversity.
They also that seek after my life lay snares for me: and they that seek my hurt speak mischievous things, and imagine deceits all the day long. Psalms 38:12
But I, as a deaf man, heard not; and I was as a dumb man that openeth not his mouth. Thus I was as a man that heareth not, and in whose mouth are no reproofs. Psalms 38:13-14
The wrath of God in the life of a Christian brings him to the point that there is nothing he can say in his own defense. It seems that anything that comes out of his mouth will only bring more condemnation. This is the place where it is best to bow silently before God.
When it comes to our enemies, silence is the best display of wisdom. Silence is the language of innocence and the evidence of noble self-control. Christ, our example, answered His enemies not a word. The strong soul can bear slander and persecution in silence, because he is seeking Godís vindication and protection.
In the hour of the most severe chastisement, when grief is at its worst, our enemies seem to be the most cruel. They believe it is a favorable time to execute their evil schemes. The wicked are unmerciful, cowardly, and conniving. They are mean, relentless, evil speaking, and they delight in any lie that is told about us. May we be reminded today that sin will separate us from God and only God can defeat our enemies.
For I am ready to halt, and my sorrow is continually before me. For I will declare mine iniquity; I will be sorry for my sin. Psalms 38:17-18
Godís wrath causes the Psalmist to acknowledge his moral weakness. Sin has brought him to a place of despair. He confesses his sin without reservation. There was no good to see in his life. Sin will cause the Godly to examine their lives, their friends, their thoughts, and their actions.
Forsake me not, O LORD: O my God, be not far from me. Make haste to help me, O Lord my salvation. Psalms 38:21-22
David was silent before men, but not before the Lord. When we face the chastisement of God it is far better to talk to Him than to talk to other men. He did not want God to forsake him because without God he would truly be friendless. Godís presence in our lives is the only protection we have against our enemies. Sin separates us from God and brings His chastisement, but it also leads us to repent which restores sweet fellowship. Prayer is always the path we take to victory.
So Glad To Be So Saved
Danny "Preacher" Bezet