False Praise

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Reading the Word

Psalm 78:32–37 (ESV)

32 In spite of all this, they still sinned; despite his wonders, they did not believe. 33 So he made their days vanish like a breath, and their years in terror. 34 When he killed them, they sought him; they repented and sought God earnestly. 35 They remembered that God was their rock, the Most High God their redeemer. 36 But they flattered him with their mouths; they lied to him with their tongues. 37 Their heart was not steadfast toward him; they were not faithful to his covenant.

Understanding and Applying the Word

Even after God punished the people for grumbling and complaining, they did not believe. They were afraid to enter the Promised Land and instead desired to return to Egypt. God punished the people by banishing them to wander in the desert for forty years until the entire generation had passed away. They would never enter the land that God was delivering them to. The people seemed to turn to God as a result of his discipline, but it turned out to be superficial only. Over time, the people showed their unfaithfulness and true relationship with God by turning away.

It is often in times of difficulty that people call out to God for help. Often, when God shows his grace and mercy, those same people make vows to God and say many flattering things about him that soon fade away. Instead of fully trusting in him, they go back to their old ways and forget about God until trouble comes again. This reveals the sinful heart that only uses God to serve self. Let us pray to God that our love for him would be genuine and through every circumstance we find ourselves in.

**Shaped by the Word is a daily Bible reading devotional. Please use the links at the bottom to subscribe to this page. You can also share this post with your friends through social media using the buttons below. Thanks for reading!

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For Your Sake

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Reading the Word

Psalm 69:7–12 (ESV)

7 For it is for your sake that I have borne reproach, that dishonor has covered my face. 8 I have become a stranger to my brothers, an alien to my mother’s sons. 9 For zeal for your house has consumed me, and the reproaches of those who reproach you have fallen on me. 10 When I wept and humbled my soul with fasting, it became my reproach. 11 When I made sackcloth my clothing, I became a byword to them. 12 I am the talk of those who sit in the gate, and the drunkards make songs about me.

Understanding and Applying the Word

As David continues to call out to God he states that it his devotion to God that has caused him trouble. He has faced social rejection and even his family has turned on him. David is committed to God. He says that he is zealous for Him, but his zeal has been met with resistance from others.

We live in a world not unlike David’s. Those who desire to follow Christ with all of their hearts are often mocked and ridiculed as being ignorant and naive by unbelievers. We are not really surprised by this, but we are surprised that even among fellow believers, those who show too much zeal are often criticized as being too serious or being too religious.

As we live our lives for Christ, we must keep in mind the words He spoke to His disciples:

“If the world hates you, know that it has hated me before it hated you.” (John 15:18, ESV)

Let us seek God’s glory in all that we do even if the world turns against us for it!

**Shaped by the Word is a daily Bible reading devotional. Please use the links at the bottom to subscribe to this page. You can also share this post with your friends through social media using the buttons below. Thanks for reading!