December 17 - Messiah - Psalm 69:20

Monday, December 17, 2012

December 17 - Messiah - Psalm 69:20

Thy rebuke hath broken His heart: He is full of heaviness. He looked for some to have pity on Him, but there was no man, neither found He any to comfort him.

If you think Christians get too judgmental sometimes and try to stop others from having fun, this isn't new.  Handel’s music, as well as the theater, were thought of as profane and subversive in the 1700s.  Jonathan Swift (author of Gulliver’s Travels) was at St. Patrick’s Cathedral in Dublin and nearly stopped the performance there. He threatened to forbid his singers to participate.  He finally relented, but when Handel took Messiah to London the next year, he advertised it as a Sacred Oratorio so he wouldn't be accused of blasphemy.

In Psalm 69:20, David is complaining to God about those who hate him.  His heart is broken and there was no one around to give him comfort.  The only one who offered comfort was God himself.

David wanted punishment for his tormentors  He called for God to pour our His indignation on them, to destroy them. He asked for God to add to them punishment upon punishment and to blot them out of the book of the living.

Jesus, on the other hand, may have looked for comfort and pity from those around him, but in the end offered forgiveness for all who had tormented him.  His comfort and restoration couldn't happen while he was still on earth, he had to get through the torment and the pain in order to save God’s people.  He had to do it willingly and he had to do it alone, not only for those who loved him while he was on earth, be even for those who wounded him.

When we are called to be like Christ, we aren't called to bring down God’s vengeance on our enemies like David, but to cry out for their forgiveness and trust in God alone for our salvation.