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The One Over There (Psalm 36-37)

That One Over There (Psalms 36 – 37)

In Psalms 36 and 37 David is talking about “that one over there.” In fact, God does alot of that in the 10 Commandments. We are not to spend our lives thinking about, or acting like, “that one over there.” But have you ever thought about how often you do?

David starts out Psalm 36 describing “that one.” You know them. You work with them. You work for them. You live next-door to them. They don’t love God like you do. They are not good Christians like you are. Even if they go to the right church (yours) they don’t do it the right way, at the right time, with the right attitude. They are prideful liars who think their skubala does not stink and they don’t think about even god at all.

Some people are actually like that. Some people we imagine are like that. But David makes the point immediately that God is not like that.

Those people over there are, or seem to be, focused on the here and now of this world and themselves. But God is focused on loving others and His Love reaches up to Heaven. His faithfulness is like clouds above our heads. Unless there’s something wrong we don’t even notice it as we don’t notice clouds until it rains. His good works surround us like mountains in ways so deep we can’t even understand them as He takes care of humanity and even the animals that we don’t notice for days or months or years until they get our attention.

David points out that God pours good things on every human being and even animals. But those things will pass away with life. Notice that David says God’s love only continues with those who have a personal relationship with God. Only those with a clean heart from God can keep all of the pleasures of life after life.

David ends Psalm 36 by asking not to go over there with the prideful and not to be weak enough to be pushed over there away from GOD with the evil who are doomed.

Psalm 37 is the answer to that prayer. It explains how to keep from becoming one of those over there and how to stop obsessing over them:

Stop thinking about them. Stop being jealous of their promotion, their house and all the good that happens to them. That’s what the “don’t covet” means in the 10 Commandments. We all get jealous of what others have or even who they are. Even the Apostle Peter was jealous of the Apostle John. JESUS Himself was explaining to Peter how Peter would be martyred. And instead of concentrating on what JESUS was saying, Peter noticed John trailing behind them and asked, “What about him?” JESUS basically said that’s none of your business. You follow Me!”

And that’s what David is saying. What other people have isn’t your business. You follow GOD. The evil will only enjoy what they have a little while. You focus on your relationship with GOD. Trust Him to do the right thing. Commit to Him.

Notice that what we’re trusting GOD for is to let us be changed to be like Him. Then He’ll fight our case for us. But to do that we’ve got to stop being angry and jealous about the person over there. Otherwise we’ll fall into evil ourselves trying to outdo them.

The evil are jealous of you, too. It’s human nature. It’s not your imagination. They are gossiping about you and wishing you harm. GOD says so what? By joining in their game you’re doing as they do and your focus is on here and now instead of Heaven.

You all know the tradition of giving candy at Halloween. How silly would it be if a child got jealous of the candy his parents are handing to others when they have much more? How silly is the dog who gets jealous when you pat a neighbor’s dog on the head when it has your love all day?

GOD is loving. He blesses everyone and everything because it is His Nature. But for those humans who don’t recognize His Goodness and seek Him it is only temporary. One bag of candy, one pat on the head. Then they’re gone into darkness because they aren’t going Home with Him.

It is those who are meek, who know the power they have as Believers and don’t need to show it, like a powerful horse that chooses to be bridled, who find true enjoyment.

David makes the key point that the LORD will not forsake His saints, those He has saved not from evil people but from death itself. Today that is only possible through our being given new lives and hearts in JESUS. As His children we need no longer be jealous or obsessed about what others have for a little while over there. Because we are surrounded and protected in Christ our Refuge, here, now, and forever with Him in Heaven.

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