You have become enraged with Your anointed.—Psalm 89:38
God’s glory is more important than our own well-being. The serious problem is not the pain that others have inflicted upon us, but the pain we have inflicted (and continue to inflict) upon God. Let me spell out as clearly as I can exactly what I mean.
Many Christians are far more interested in focusing on how they can get God to comfort them when they have been hurt than considering how much they have hurt Him. Not that it is wrong to seek His comfort—Scripture encourages us to do this—but it is only one side of the picture. The most popular books in our bookshops today are titles such as these: How to Be Healed of Life’s Hurts or How to Overcome the Pains of the Past. I repeat that this is a legitimate emphasis, but we must not lose sight of the fact that the important issue is not how badly people have behaved toward us, but how badly we have behaved (and continue to behave) toward God.
Take this for example: Someone hurts us or upsets us, and we decide to become the architects of their judgment. But what does God say? “Friends, do not avenge yourselves; instead, leave room for His wrath. For it is written: Vengeance belongs to Me; I will repay” (Rm 12:19). Don’t you think God is hurt when He sees us ignoring His Word? We may have been sinned against, but is that any justification for sinning against God? Let’s not mince words here, for any violation of a divine principle must be called by its rightful name—sin. And no sin ought to be treated lightly—especially a sin against God.
O God, forgive me that so often I am more concerned about how others have treated me than the way I treat You. I see that a failure to trust You is a failure in love. I say, “I love You,” but only so far. Forgive me and help me. In Jesus’ name. Amen.
Ps 62:1-12; Mt 21:12-13; 23:37-39; Lk 19:41
What pain was inflicted on Jesus as He observed the Temple area?
What pain did Jesus feel as He approached the city?