Standing Up for Those in Need
Psalm 72:12-14 “For he will deliver the needy who cry out, the afflicted who have no one to help. He will take pity on the weak and needy and save the needy from death. He will rescue them from oppression and violence, for precious is their blood in his sight.” (NIV)
I love to watch old cowboy movies, don’t you? I love them because there is always a battle of good versus evil, and good always wins out, plus the hero gets the girl. These movies are predictable in a comforting way because we know the outcome, and the outcome is always just, fair, and good. Unfortunately, old cowboy movies are a relic of a distant past, but their reruns always bring a flicker of hope that someday all will be right in this world. What I really enjoyed about these old cowboy stars is that they took up for the helpless and defenseless in the movie against the evil and all-powerful person who was attempting to manipulate people and outcomes for their personal gain.
We are reminded in Psalm 72, which closes Book II of Psalms, of how important the people who are needy, afflicted, helpless, and weak are to the Lord Jesus Christ. It is my opinion that this psalm, while written for King Solomon, has as its ideal focus on the coming Messiah, Jesus Christ of Nazareth. As a Messianic Psalm, we find in our devotional text some great insights into the character and thinking of Jesus Christ our Lord and Savior.
- Jesus helps those who cry out to him. Regardless of who you are or how helpless you have become, if you can focus your faith on Jesus and cry out to him, then he will deliver you.
- Jesus takes pity on the weak and needy. Jesus is willing to save even the most despised and rejected in society from the grip of death.
- Jesus hates the violence and oppression in the world because the blood of those who are taken advantage of and cruelly treated in this world is precious in his sight. Be assured at the end of time all wrongs will be righted.
If we have the mind of Christ we will never play favorites with men that we might curry favor with those that would advantage us, but rather, we will clearly focus on those that need help in this world because of their weakness and need as the world attempts to intimidate, destroy, and control them. Like the old cowboy star, we MUST intervene when we see the wrong being done. God calls us to courage, boldness, and action regardless of the consequences. It cost Jesus Christ his life, but we also are called to follow in his steps for our spiritual benefit and the glory of God (1 Peter 2:20-25). Do you have the courage, spiritual maturity, and presence of love in your heart to stand up for the “unlovable”, as the world sees and categorizes the needy, weak, and afflicted people among us? My prayer is that you do, since Christ died for them as Christ died for you, and you are called to share what God has given to you with them. Do you accept this truth today?
TODAY, FATHER, HELP ME TO STAND FIRM AND NOT GROW WOBBLY ON THE BEHALF OF THE WEAK, NEEDY, AND AFFLICTED IN THIS WORLD, JUST AS JESUS CHRIST DID FOR ME. LORD, MAY YOU GIVE ME BOLD COURAGE AND A FEARLESS SPIRIT. AMEN!
Guest post by Mike White @ Summit church of Christ