BLESSED ARE THE MERCIFUL
Inspire me Father with fresh insights, a new vision for my life, and special strength to live a godly and obedient life.
Read PSALM 41
For the director of music. A psalm of David.
1 Blessed are those who have regard for the weak;
the Lord delivers them in times of trouble.
2 The Lord protects and preserves them—
they are counted among the blessed in the land—
he does not give them over to the desire of their foes.
3 The Lord sustains them on their sickbed
and restores them from their bed of illness.
4 I said, “Have mercy on me, Lord;
heal me, for I have sinned against you.”
5 My enemies say of me in malice,
“When will he die and his name perish?”
6 When one of them comes to see me,
he speaks falsely, while his heart gathers slander;
then he goes out and spreads it around.
7 All my enemies whisper together against me;
they imagine the worst for me, saying,
8 “A vile disease has afflicted him;
he will never get up from the place where he lies.”
9 Even my close friend,
someone I trusted,
one who shared my bread,
has turned[b] against me.
10 But may you have mercy on me, Lord;
raise me up, that I may repay them.
11 I know that you are pleased with me,
for my enemy does not triumph over me.
12 Because of my integrity you uphold me
and set me in your presence forever.
13 Praise be to the Lord, the God of Israel,
from everlasting to everlasting.
Amen and Amen.
New International Version (NIV)Holy Bible, New International Version®, NIV® Copyright ©1973, 1978, 1984, 2011 by Biblica, Inc.® Used by permission. All rights reserved worldwide.
ReflectWhere will you need the Holy Spirit’s filling for the various demands of the coming week?
Question: Whom does the Lord deliver, protect, preserve, bless, sustain and restore?
Answer: Those who ‘have regard for the weak’ (vs 1–3). ‘Have regard’ means more than making a casual donation. It means taking trouble and giving serious thought to what can be done for people in need. The Lord himself is a friend to the vulnerable. It is in his character, and he blesses the same trait in his people. ‘Blessed are the merciful,’ said Jesus (Matthew 5:7) ‘for they will be shown mercy.’
The psalmist’s life was blighted by two things: a debilitating illness and opponents who were taking advantage of it (vs 3–9). Sinner that he was, he looked to the Lord for mercy (vs 4,10) to help with both problems. If this was David the king speaking, it could have been at a time of uprising in his kingdom. How he longed for the strength to be able to put things right! How frustrating that he couldn’t! Verse 9 tells us that a former friend had turned against him very unmercifully. Jesus pondered this verse when Judas turned against him (John 13:18).
The psalmist knows he can count on the pleasure and the presence of the Lord (vs 11,12). He calls on him for his merciful support (v 10).
Consider ways in which can you meaningfully help any who are sick or unfairly treated.
Loving Lord, I find it so easy to harbor resentment, to pass on negative gossip. I confess it before you and ask for your grace to overcome this weakness.
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