Psalm 12

Psalm 12: the Word of God

Psalm 12
For the director of music. According to sheminith. A psalm of David.

(1) Help, LORD, for no one is faithful anymore; those who are loyal have vanished from the human race.
(2) Everyone lies to their neighbor; they flatter with their lips but harbor deception in their hearts.

(3) May the LORD silence all flattering lips and every boastful tongue-
(4) those who say, "By our tongues we will prevail; our own lips will defend us- who is lord over us?"

(5) "Because the poor are plundered and the needy groan, I will now arise," says the LORD. "I will protect them from those who malign them."
(6) And the words of the LORD are flawless, like silver purified in the crucible, like gold refined seven times.

(7) You, LORD, will keep the needy safe and will protect us forever from the wicked,
(8) who freely strut about when what is vile is honored by the human race.

In Psalm 12, David speaks of the vicious words of man compared to the precious, healing, powerful, and pure Words of God.

with flattering lips and a double heart they speak.
Psalm 12:2b NKJV

A heart and a heart: one for the church, another for the change; one for Sundays, another for working days; one for the king, another for the pope. A man without a heart is a wonder, but a man with two hearts is a monster.

Thomas Adams, English preacher, 1583-1652


Maybe David was in the court of king Saul when he wrote this psalm with all the whispering and gossiping going on around him. People stepping over one another, trying to gain the king’s favor. People stepping on him possibly. Maybe he was sick and tired of those professing to love the Lord on the Sabbath acting differently at work on Monday. Or maybe he was tired of those professing to love him and follow him, only to turn around and say the same to Saul later.

A lip flatterer. A double heart.

Whatever was happening, David was keenly aware of flattering lips and double hearts. He did not know who to listen to, nor who to trust.

David was a soldier, a warrior, a man of war. Men loved him and followed him. But we get a sense in this psalm that he did not understand nor deal well with the gossip, slander, and backstabbing that he experienced in court. He was alone. He did not know who to trust. This was a battle he knew nothing about. He might have preferred the sword and battle to this kind of war.

So, what did David do? He took the matter to God.

David was frustrated with the flattering lips and double hearted people; you can hear it in his words. But then his words change as he speaks of something that is timeless, true, pure, unchanging, and trustworthy. He journals his prayer to God and in the midst of his prayer, he remembers. He remembers Who is faithful. He remembers Who he can trust.

Yahweh. Jehovah. The Lord God in heaven and David’s heavenly Father. When his world felt like chaos around him, David looked to his Father in heaven.

Right now, with the politics, the pandemic, the unknowns, the news, the fake news, and all the drama, we could say the same . . .

“Away from me flattering lips and double hearts! Quit trying to distract me from all the blessings that I have in my life! I will seek God’s Word which is true and good and timeless.”

Here is an interesting difference and a good reason to read different translations to learn all that we can about what God is saying:

The words of the LORD are pure words, like silver refined in the furnace on the ground, purified seven times. You, O LORD, will keep them; you will guard us from this generation forever.
Psalm 12:6-7 ESV

The words of Jehovah are pure words; as silver tried in a furnace on the earth, purified seven times. Thou wilt preserve them from this generation forever.
Psalm 12:6-7 ASV

Is David talking about God’s people or God’s Words? Or both? Maybe David is saying both: God will preserve His people and His Word.

Despite the drama in court, David was confident in God’s ability to preserve His Words, no matter who tried to mess them up. We can look back throughout time and see that the hand of God has protected the integrity of His Word.

And He will continue to do so.

We can rest in this, friends, that despite the gossip and the drama and the lies and the evil in this world, that God’s Word will never fade or change.

Heaven and earth will pass away, but my words will not pass away.
Matthew 24:35

The grass wither and the flowers fall, but the word of our God endures forever.
Isaiah 40:8

David says the Lord’s word is pure and compares it to silver that has been put through the fire to burn out all of the impurities. And not only once, but seven times. This silver is pure.

Has the word of the Lord withstood the fire?

Yes, time and time again.

But the difference between God’s Word and silver is that God’s Word has lost nothing through the burning of the fire.

There were no impurities to begin with. It is the same as it was in the beginning.

My friends, during this time of fear and trials, read God’s Word. If you’ve never done so before, I suggest starting in the New Testament with the book of John. You will meet Jesus there.

In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God. He was with God in the beginning. Through him all things were made; without him nothing was made that has been made. In him was life, and that life was the light of all mankind. The light shines in the darkness, and the darkness has not overcome it.
John 1:1-5

Father in heaven, thank you that your Word is true, pure, timeless, and powerful. Help us to lean upon the Truth in your Word at all times, but especially now. Help us to weigh everything against your Truth. Thank you for the book of Psalms in particular; please continue to bless us as we read from it and learn from it. Please heal our land, keep our loved ones safe and healthy, and strengthen your church. Amen.

Heidi xoxo

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