To you, O Lord , I call; my rock, be not deaf to me, lest, if you be silent to me, I become like those who go down to the pit. Hear the voice of my pleas for mercy, when I cry to you for help, when I lift up my hands toward your most holy sanctuary. Do not drag me off with the wicked, with the workers of evil, who speak peace with their neighbors while evil is in their hearts. Give to them according to their work and according to the evil of their deeds; give to them according to the work of their hands; render them their due reward. Because they do not regard the works of the Lord or the work of his hands, he will tear them down and build them up no more. Blessed be the Lord ! For he has heard the voice of my pleas for mercy. The Lord is my strength and my shield; in him my heart trusts, and I am helped; my heart exults, and with my song I give thanks to him. The Lord is the strength of his people; he is the saving refuge of his anointed. Oh, save your people and bless your heritage! Be their shepherd and carry them forever.
Psalms 28:1-9 ESV
Does it sometimes feel like God is deaf to you? How do you feel in that case? Indifferent like many, or inconsolable like the Psalmist? He knew how essential God’s mercy was to Him.
I love how he contrasts the works of evildoers not with his own no doubt flawed spiritual performance, but with the perfection of the Lord’s works. He’s not holier than thou, but he does know the One who is holier than thee or me!
He’s not afraid to pray for justice against evildoers either. That might not seem very loving, but we all deserve God’s justice. Unless we repent, we too will be swept away by God’s wrath.
The Psalmist knows he’s no better than evildoers. The only difference is that he’s relying on God’s mercy to justify him. He’s all about God’s praise, not his own glorification.
And the writer isn’t a lone ranger either. He wants God to save a people for Himself. He wants Him to bless His people and to shepherd them forever.
“Yahweh our Shepherd, we need You to mercifully carry us all of our days. Please in Your justice at evildoers, have mercy upon repentant sinners like us. In the name of Jesus, amen”