Flattering with their lips but harbouring deception in their hearts.

Psalm 12

Those of us who have experienced legal disputes will have stories to tell of the ease with which many rephrase events to their own advantage.  We have all witnessed denials and evasiveness in national life only for lies to be exposed later.  Sadly, even in church life brothers and sisters have at times turned on one another bringing disrepute to the name of Jesus.

Reading David’s Psalm 12 in the light of Easter week brings into sharp focus the duplicity of sinful human kind and also the mission of Jesus to bring reconciliation between God and man and hope to the poor and needy. David’s despairing words, ‘Help, Lord, for no one is faithful anymore, those who are loyal have vanished from the human race.  Everyone lies to their neighbour; they flatter with their lips but harbour deception in their hearts.’ vv1-2 are played out dramatically.  Repeated traps are laid through the week attempting to catch him in something he says,Luke20.20 the Chief Priests and the whole council persuade witnesses to lie,Matt26.59 and Herod and Pilate become close friends through the unjust conviction of Jesus.Luke23.11

But there is hope.  God keeps his promise in verse 5, ‘Because the poor are plundered and the needy groan, I will arise.’  Jesus in his response to the council at his trial said, ‘But from now on, the Son of Man will be seated at the right hand of the mighty God.’Luke22.69 He then through his death, resurrection and ascension conquered sin and death. As Paul recorded, ‘But thank God! He gives us victory over sin and death through our Lord Jesus Christ.’1Corinthian15.57

So this Easter week it is helpful to hold fast to the words of Jesus.  In the words of Psalm 12, verse 6, ‘The words of the Lord are flawless, like silver purified in a crucible, like gold refined seven times.’  Through Jesus we have words that do not flatter or deceive.

Thy word is a lamp unto my feet and a light unto my path – Amy Grant (skip the adverts)

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