“Contend, Lord with those who contend with me; fight against those who fight against me.” These were the words of David in Psalm 35:1. He even prayed for those who were pursuing him to be “disgraced and put to shame; may those who plot my ruin be turned back in dismay,” asking the angel of the Lord to drive them away.
If you read on in verse 7 it says, “Since they hid their net for me without cause and without cause dug a pit for me, may ruin overtake them, may they fall into the pit, to their ruin.” And in verse 22 and following, “Lord, you have seen this; do not be silent. Do not be far from me, Lord. Awake and rise to my defense! Contend for me, my God and Lord. Vindicate me in your righteousness. Lord my God; do not let them gloat over me.”
God honored this prayer in David’s life. I want to encourage you that it is perfectly fine to pray as David prayed when you are being unfairly treated, when someone is “digging a pit” and seeking to push you into it. But be warned that you can be a “pit digger too.” When God does punish or allow the pit diggers to fall into the pit they have dug, make sure you do not “gloat” or forget…it was God. Stay humble. Remain prayerful. And do not GLOAT!
David was said to be a “man after God’s own heart.” If you read and study scripture, you see that David was just that…a man after God’s own heart. I will remind you right here that David was an imperfect man. He was used by God and also punished by God. He enjoyed many victories–David and Goliath just to name one. He faced many trials–running from Saul, hiding in caves.
He was a king but also had major downfalls such as adultery with Bathsheba and using his position to orchestrate the murder of her husband, Uriah. When you study the life of David there is so much to learn. You clearly see that He was anointed by God to do God’s work and when he was in harms way or being mistreated, God protected and provided countless times. He honored David’s prayer to “contend with those that contended with him!”
But, the one thing I see happening in David’s life as God honored those prayers is that David…used his God-given power and authority. Later in life he abused it in order to feed his passions and his desires. God’s provision became a POWER PUSH in David’s life to abuse God’s provision and protection as he committed adultery and orchestrated a “hit” on Uriah’s life.
What do we learn here and what is the encouragement? YOU can absolutely pray, and pray fervently, for God to contend with those who contend with you. When God’s hand moves to protect and provide and expose, do not forget it was God…and do not GLOAT. Remain humble. Do not take a position of “pride” and an unrealistic view of your humanness to turn around and sin……..or be a “pit digger yourself.”
When God allows victory and moves in answer to your prayers, Satan, my and your enemy, can sneak in and appeal to my/our “pride” and “self-righteousness.” Then we, too, can fall flat. Stand guard. Stay humble. Speak the truth in love and know, “NO temptation has overtaken you except what is COMMON to mankind…” [emphasis added, 1 Corinthians 10:13].
God is the avenger. He tells us clearly in Romans 12:19 that “vengeance is His.” Many times on earth there are God-orchestrated natural consequences for poor behavior and sin. He is faithful to “bring to light what is hidden in darkness.”
Our job is to pray…not gloat. To speak truth and keep marching behind Him not in front or even beside Him. Micah 6:8, “He has shown you, O mortal, what is good. And what does the Lord require of you? To act justly and to love mercy and to walk humbly with your God.”
Do not hesitate to ask God to defend you and contend for you. When you do, be willing to walk behind Him, to follow Him, allowing Him to be the “sword of your spirit.” Lean not on your own understanding but in all your ways acknowledge Him. The path will be lighted for you one step at a time. It might be long. It might be uphill. It might have curves…but you will not get lost…and you will have victory. God never loses!