Is it Time to be Brave?

Thoughts on Psalms 26

By Tanja

When a student sits down to take an exam, they experience an intense time, and if they put their mind to work hard, they will experience success after the short trial. There is a long pause of silence and time stops. Every student in the room waits, the teachers wait. The students have held their breaths, but their minds are working like they never had before. Until a voice says, “put down your pencils and stop!” Finally, the student can look forward to the fresh air outside the classroom and the voices of their friends calling. They can take a break for a while.

The first few words of Psalms 26 are “vindicate,” it is not a word that we use every day, at least I haven’t used it. What does it mean? Vindicate; proving that someone is not guilty of wrong. (Internet definition) The Hebrew word is “shaphat”(shaw-fat); the Bible dictionary says it means to judge. When God himself, or a judge, a ruler, or a king makes a judgement or a decision.[1] In verse 2, the word “test” is used, in Hebrew, it is; “bachan” (baw-khan), this word also means to examine, however in Biblical literature it is found that God tests humans like He is testing silver and gold.[2] That shows how much God values us, that we can be so precious to Him and worth so much to Him that He would want to test and see how shiny we have become!

An example of this in Scripture is:

“But He knows the way that I take; when He has tested me, I will come forth as gold.” (Job 23:10)

The Psalmist, David was asking to have a court case with God because he wanted to be proven not guilty of sin.[3] One Bible commentator says that David wanted God to take him seriously because he faithfully followed the Lord.[4] That is a brave place to be, to ask God to take you seriously. It is a healthy place to be too because it shows that we are becoming more mature in our faith. It makes me think of how the New Testament talks about maturity in our faith. Sometimes our faith is still developing; we are getting stronger spiritual muscles, or we are maturing significantly in our faith. 

The NT says:

“In fact, though by this time you ought to be teachers, you need someone to teach you the elementary truths of God’s Word all over again. You need milk, not solid food!  Anyone who lives on milk, being still an infant, is not acquainted with the teaching about righteousness.” (Hebrews 5:12-13)

By Tanja, taken on the Gold Coast

Imagine missing out on the position that God wants to place you in? As the verse says, “by this time you ought to be teachers!” Do you need to step up in the maturity of your faith? Do you need to be brave? Does your relationship with Jesus Christ need to be more real? Is the Lord calling you? Do you need to be reaching out to Jesus like never before, because you can do nothing without Him?

[1] Spiros Zodhiates, Hebrew-Greek Key Word Study Bible: New American Standard Bible, Genuine Black, Wider Margins. (S.l.: Amg Pubs, 2008), 2057.

[2] Ibid., 942.

[3] Robert L. Alden, Psalms, Everyday Bible commentary (Chicago: Moody Publishers, 2019), 68.

[4] Jeffrey L. Seif, Glenn Blank, and Paul Wilbur, Shalom in Psalms: A Devotional from the Jewish Heart of the Christian Faith (Grand Rapids, Michigan: Baker Books, 2017), 65.

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