Psalm 43:1-5 NIV Vindicate me, my God, and plead my cause against an unfaithful nation. Rescue me from those who are deceitful and wicked. You are God my stronghold. Why have you rejected me? Why must I go about mourning, oppressed by the enemy? Send me your light and your faithful care, let them lead me; let them bring me to your holy mountain, to the place where you dwell. Then I will go to the altar of God, to God, my joy and my delight. I will praise you with the lyre, O God, my God. Why, my soul, are you downcast? Why so disturbed within me? Put your hope in God, for I will yet praise him, my Savior and my God.
A Personal Cry
The writer of this psalm begins by asking that God to:
● Vindicate him -We who are saved have been justified, or vindicated by or through faith Romans 5:1-2 NIV. Therefore, since we have been justified through faith, we have peace with God through our Lord Jesus Christ, through whom we have gained access by faith into this grace in which we now stand. And we boast in the hope of the glory of God.
● Plead his cause - Jesus is our advocate 1 John 2:1-2 NIV My dear children, I write this to you so that you will not sin. But if anybody does sin, we have an advocate with the Father—Jesus Christ, the Righteous One. He is the atoning sacrifice for our sins, and not only for ours but also for the sins of the whole world.
● Rescue him - Jesus redeems or rescues us from the curse of sin. Romans 6:23 NIV For the wages of sin is death, but the gift of God is eternal life in Christ Jesus our Lord.
He then asks why he’s been rejected. He may be depressed wondering why he’s being harassed by his enemies. He is not afraid to let God know how he’s feeling. He needed God’s presence and once He was able to get to the temple and the altar he was able to praise Him.
When the going gets tough, the tough get going, we’re told. But often tough times stop us in our tracks, raising doubts and questions. How good it is to know that we can bring our questions to God and trust in his unfailing love.
Even when we pray we wonder if God has forgotten us, does He hear us, does He care? All the time our enemies are taunting us. Pointing and saying if God loves so much why are you sick, broke, alone, sad, and discouraged? Even in the face of those taunts we can say that our hope and trust is in God.
Our longing for God’s presence is overwhelming until we remember who God is. And He loves us. We remember that He said that He would never leave us.
1 John 4:9-10 (NLT)9 God showed how much he loved us by sending his one and only Son into the world so that we might have eternal life through him.10 This is real love—not that we loved God, but that he loved us and sent his Son as a sacrifice to take away our sins.
Deuteronomy 31:6 (NLT)6 So be strong and courageous! Do not be afraid and do not panic before them. For the LORD your God will personally go ahead of you. He will neither fail you nor abandon you.”
While we search for God’s presence we remember the times when when we felt His presence in our lives without the trials and tribulations of this word. We then remember Jesus’ promise
John 16:33 (NLT)33 I have told you all this so that you may have peace in me. Here on earth you will have many trials and sorrows. But take heart, because I have overcome the world.”
Like the psalmist we conclude that even in times of trouble we are not alone and we can say with him; “I will put my hope in God! I will praise him again— my Savior and my God!”
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Donald Jacobs is an ordained minister with the spiritual gift of teaching. He is the Associate Pastor of a non-denominational church in Los Angeles, CA.