Ready for Battle? | Psalm 7:10–13
10 My shield is with God,
who saves the upright in heart.
11 God is a righteous judge,
and a God who feels indignation every day.
12 If a man does not repent, God will whet his sword;
he has bent and readied his bow;
13 he has prepared for him his deadly weapons,
making his arrows fiery shafts.
What fearsome language! The Lord of all creation readies Himself for battle. All those who hate the God Most High face a grave fate. God doesn’t sin (miss the mark)—His arrows fire true. His sword doesn’t dull. And as the KJV translates v. 11, “God is angry with the wicked every day.” How blissful the ignorant sinner, unaware of the coming nightmare!
The Lord battles His enemies with a variety of weapons. For instance, God providentially allows violence to befall these men of violence (v. 16). When Christ sets up His kingdom, we read of a more literal application: “From his mouth comes a sharp sword with which to strike down the nations, and he will rule them with a rod of iron. He will tread the winepress of the fury of the wrath of God the Almighty” (Rv 19:15).
The Lord knows the hearts of men. David says that God “saves the upright in heart” (v. 10). God recognizes true worship. For instance, consider 2 Chronicles 29:34—“But the priests were too few and could not flay all the burnt offerings, so until other priests had consecrated themselves, their brothers the Levites helped them, until the work was finished—for the Levites were more upright in heart than the priests in consecrating themselves.” There, we see that God knows who is genuine of heart and who is not, and He defends and punishes accordingly.
The Lord shows mercy to the penitent. Hope remains, for verse 12 begins the battle language with the condition that the wicked does not repent. Consider that David, innocent of the slander of this psalm but certainly a sinner, says, “My shield is with God.” The Lord doesn’t take delight in the destruction of the wicked (Ez 33:11), and He will relent from disaster (Jon 4:2). When Christ came, He came preaching repentance (Mk 1:15). In light of all of this, repent of your sin and believe the gospel today.