A war of words…



Psalm 140:1 Deliver me, O LORD, from evildoers; protect me from those who are violent, 2 who plan evil things in their minds and stir up wars continually. 3 They make their tongue sharp as a snake’s, and under their lips is the venom of vipers.

Here the psalmist is asking for protection from God from “evildoers”. The writer then points out a number of things that evildoers do. The end of verse 2 and verse 3 describe those who “stir up wars continually”… with words. Here’s what that looks like in my experience.

Such people are generally argumentative. They challenge everything, often when it’s unnecessary or for no apparent reason. They have a gift for language, but use words as weapons to curse rather than to bless. Their criticisms are personal and belittling rather than constructive. They whisper into peoples’ ears accusing the innocent and/or deflecting attention away from their own transgressions. They prey on vulnerable people, pretending to be their friend while taking advantage.

You can find such people at work, at school, in your neighborhood, even at home. You may be thinking of someone in particular right now. This is the sort of person from whom the psalmist is asking for divine protection. We should do the same.

Heavenly Father, this morning we echo the words of the psalmist. Deliver us from “evildoers” and give us grace that we might never be the offender. We pray this in Jesus’ name. Amen.


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