It Ain't Fair -- Yet!

"Happy is the man to whom the LORD does not impute sin." Psalm 32:2

Opening Prayer: Father, when my enemies press in around me, help me remember that You are my Righteous Judge and my final court of appeal.

A friend of mine was cheated out of a very large real estate commission recently. A dishonest client (an attorney, as it happens) had her research and show him several large income properties, but he then claimed to change his mind. Within days, he bought one of those properties through one of his friends, who presumably kicked back a portion of the commission to him.

We all know examples of this, where people scheme and cheat and seem to get away with it. Many times, the offended parties don't have the time and legal resources to get help from our state or federal court systems.

What can we do about it?

Simple: File charges in a different court system.

Let's begin with Psalm 43, verse 1:

Judge me, O God, and plead my cause against an ungodly nation: Oh deliver me from the deceitful and unjust man.

First things first: To whom is the writer talking and what is the writer asking?

He's talking to God, and asking God to judge him and verify his innocence.

Why is he asking God to judge him? Aren't there thousands of courthouses and judges and attorneys out there?

He doesn't trust the earthly justice system. Frankly, I don't blame him.

What is the second thing he's asking God to do for him?

Plead his case for him. Talk about nerve! First he wants God to be the judge for him. Then he wants to have God be his ATTORNEY as well. He must want to WIN the case, I guess. Actually the concept of God being our advocate is not unique to this Scripture.

We see this principle in the last part of Isaiah 53, verse 12:

...yet He bore the sin of many, and made intercession for the transgressors.

The concept also appears twice in Romans chapter 8, verses 26 through 27, and verses 31 to 34:

And in like manner the Spirit also helpeth our infirmity: for we know not how to pray as we ought; but the Spirit himself maketh intercession for [us] with groanings which cannot be uttered; 27 and He that searcheth the hearts knoweth what is the mind of the Spirit, because He maketh intercession for the saints according to [the will of] God.
31 What then shall we say to these things? If God [is] for us, who [is] against us? 32 He that spared not His own Son, but delivered Him up for us all, how shall He not also with Him freely give us all things? 33 Who shall lay anything to the charge of God's elect? It is God that justifieth; 34 who is he that condemneth? It is Christ Jesus that died, yea rather, that was raised from the dead, who is at the right hand of God, who also maketh intercession for us.

We see the same concept in the epistle to the Hebrews, chapter 7, verse 25:

Wherefore He is able also to save them to the uttermost that come unto God by Him, seeing He ever lives to make intercession for them.

So we see there are two important concepts here:

  1. There's a lawyer, or attorney, arguing our case before a judge.
  2. Second, there is the concept of intercessor -- literally a "go-between." This is a much more powerful concept than that of a mediator, who at least pretends to be neutral. An intercessor actively pleads for something for some person or group.

The concept of intercessor is quite different from that of an advocate. The advocate tries to convince the judge to decide in favor of his client on the basis of evidence. An intercessor goes before the Lord and asks for a specific favor, and uses his influence with the Lord to gain it.

Why am I spending so much time on this? Because you and I don't always get treated fairly in this life. That's gotta be one of the rudest shocks in life -- to realize some day that life ain't fair. 'Cause it ain't. In fact, God never said life would be fair. He only promises to be righteous, and to judge rightly, according to HIS rules.

When my kids still lived at home, the word "fair" was not permitted in my home. That was the "F" word. If something was right, it was right, whether it seemed "fair" or not. As a parent, my responsibility before God was to personally teach my children what's right and what's wrong, to the best of my ability and understanding. The kids' only court of appeal was Scripture. If they could prove me wrong with Scripture, I would yield to higher authority.

But if God is my judge, advocate and intercessor, then why do the bad guys keep winning?

Because you and I can only see the "lower court system." God Himself presides over the ultimate Supreme Court, and He's never lost a case. No Son of Belial has ever been acquitted on a technicality.

God has the FINAL say, even though our enemies may seem to have the upper hand for a very long time. For now remember that God is:

Now let's read verse 2 (At last!):

For Thou art the God of my strength. Why hast Thou cast me off? Why go I mourning because of the oppression of the enemy?

How does he describe God in this verse?

My strength. Add that to the list above. And notice that for the second two-thirds of the verse, the writer is complaining: "Why me, Lord?"

So from the writer's perspective, what does the Lord's attitude appear to be?

It appears that the Lord has cast the writer off, for some reason. Or He seems not to care that His people are getting the worst of it.

Forgive me if I seem to be pounding this subject to death, but this is real life, and this guy's feelings are real, and the unsaved world looks at his troubles and says, "Why does he continue to trust in a God who is so far away and who doesn't care in the first place? After all, if God cared, He wouldn't allow His people to get into such messes, would He?"

Oh yes, He would and He does!

But why does God allow us to get pushed around so much?

Believe it or not, for our benefit. God does not view Himself as a religious rabbit's foot to be hung around our necks for good luck. If being Christian made a person instantly and perfectly lucky, perfectly protected and sheltered, and constantly winning every battle, then everyone would sign up, no questions asked, for very selfish motives.

God isn't looking for the selfish ones. He's looking for those who can trust in a God they can't see, feel, taste, or directly hear. He's looking for those who have enough trust in God's nature and character to continue trusting even through the bad times, and who have the sense to praise Him in good times and bad.

It's healthy for us to lose once in awhile. It's good to get our knees scraped or our noses bloodied every so often. It helps us remember that there's an enemy out there who wants to keep us and our family and our friends out of heaven.

Let's read verse 3:

Oh send out Thy light and Thy truth; Let them lead me: Let them bring me unto Thy holy hill, And to Thy tabernacles.

When it looks very dark, when the bad guys seem to be winning, I need the Lord's light and His truth. Light dispels darkness and exposes the traps placed by the enemy. God's light and truth help us find the way to a much better place. The Bible tells us that Jesus is the way, the truth and the life -- besides being our attorney and intercessor.

So now, our list of God's attributes has grown to:

Read verse 4:

Then will I go unto the altar of God, Unto God my exceeding joy; And upon the harp will I praise thee, O God, my God.

If the Lord leads us to His holy hill and His dwelling place, what will we do there?

Hmmm. It says we will go to the altar of God, experience the joy of His presence, and spend time playing the harp and praising God. OK, friends, this is it! This is the only place in Scripture where it SOUNDS like we'll spend eternity playing the harp.

But that's not what it says here. This verse is the Hebrew equivalent of saying we'll go to God's house and bring our guitars and drums and sing up a happy storm! Note that God is my JOY. Not just my contentment, or my boredom, or my so-so. God is

Read verse 5:

Why art thou cast down, O my soul? And why art thou disquieted within me? Hope thou in God; For I shall yet praise him, [Who is] the help of my countenance, and my God.

Now the writer gives us some insight into his personal feelings. And he is feeling cast down and disquieted. But to his credit, he knows the way out: To have hope and trust in God, and to remember to praise Him in good times and bad. God is:

OK, teacher, so what? How do I qualify to have God be all those things for me?

Good question. But let's take first things first: in order to have the Lord Jesus be your Advocate and Intercessor, He must first be your Lord and your Savior.

Well, how do I do that?

Both Jesus and John the Baptist began their ministries with the word "Repent!" Start by admitting that your best efforts are insufficient to merit salvation. Recognize that Jesus died on the cross to pay the penalty for your sin and mine. Ask Him to come into your heart and take control of your life. Ask Him to give you a NEW life, a supernatural heart transplant, through the power of the Holy Spirit who will dwell in your heart. Then help this new life grow through prayer, Bible study, and regular worship and fellowship with other Bible-believing Christians. Then, without a doubt, God will be:

Closing Prayer: Lord, I know that my only defense comes from You, by Your grace. Guide me to an understanding of how You have taken away my guilt, and show me how I can walk in the light of Your truth.

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