Tag Archives: praying for our enemies

April 20; Get ‘Em, God

Psalms 7, 35, 57, 142

It’s tempting to read David’s psalms and have a sense of satisfaction, thinking the people in our lives who have treated us badly will get what’s coming to them. It’s tempting to think God is telling us, “What goes around, comes around.” But does that sound like the God you know and love?

If that were the case, Jesus wouldn’t have gone to the cross. The cross is totally about NOT getting what’s coming to any of us. Jesus died for sinners, not just people who were nice to Him.

Jesus taught us to love our enemies, do good to people who aren’t good to us, pray for people who mistreat us. He never told us it was ok to secretly hope a house will fall on top of them, or even hope that someone will do to them what they did to us.

So how are we supposed to read these psalms where David is asking God to destroy his enemies? We read them and ask God to destroy ours.

Get ’em, God!

But remember, David’s enemies were flesh and blood. Ours are not. Our enemy is Satan. Our enemy is sin, temptation, false teaching… We read these psalms, and instead of looking outward, pointing fingers at people who are mean to us, we take a good look within ourselves and identify the enemy that is attacking our own soul.

THAT’S the enemy we want God to defeat, to destroy, to disgrace and put to shame. That’s the enemy we want to fall into the pit it has dug for us.

Get ’em, God!

Please don’t read these psalms with the name of someone who has hurt you in your mind. Read these psalms with one eye on yourself, and the other on God who wants you to have victory over sin, who delights in helping you win those battles with Satan.

And as for that person who has hurt you? I would encourage you to begin to pray that God will give them what they don’t deserve… Himself. After all, He did that for you.

Psalms 133-141; Get ‘im, God

Satan is my enemy. And when the psalmists talk about their’s, I can’t help but think of mine.

Please don’t read the psalms and picture your ex, or that person at work who makes your life miserable. They are not your enemies. We live after the cross where Jesus taught us to love those people, do good to them, pray for them. If we are reading psalms and thinking, “Yeah, God, crush that person who hurt me,” we are not praying according to Scripture.

I am struck this morning how often psalmists, when talking about their enemies getting what they “deserve,” express a determination to keep their eyes on God, to praise Him, to bow down before Him.

Can you pray that someone for whom Christ died suffers physical or financial ruin, and look Jesus in the eye at the same time? Can you pray that God will cause pain in someone’s life, and honor the Savior, too?

But I can pray that God will crush Satan, that God will defeat Satan in my  life and yours, that God will show no mercy on my spiritual enemy, and that Satan will experience the fullness of God’s wrath.

As I read these psalms, I replace any reference of an enemy with the name of Satan. And I can know that is a prayer that God hears and answers. When I pray, “Get him, God,” the ‘him’ is Satan, my enemy and yours.