My shield is with God,
who saves the upright in heart.
God is a righteous judge,
and a God who feels indignation every day.
Have you ever been falsely accused? Has someone ever been against you for seemingly no reason? Or have you ever been in the wrong place at the wrong time, thus giving someone the wrong impression? It hurts when we are falsely accused or judged wrongly. It often takes every ounce of self-control to keep ourselves from lashing out in return, or from emphatically pleading our innocence, doesn’t it?
In the above Psalm, David sings about a situation in which he was falsely accused. In doing so, he provides an incredible example of how to handle those times we face adversity for something we did not do.
First of all, David cries out to God. He takes refuge in his God (“O Lord my God, in you do I take refuge…” – vs 1). He doesn’t run to another friend. He doesn’t run to the one who accused him. He runs to God. Oh the drama that could be avoided if we ran first to God with our troubles instead of to people. Don’t get me wrong, we need people in our lives for support, but we also must be wise in how and why we seek the support. Even the most well meaning friends can make a situation worse if they take on our offense and pass judgment on our accusers. Job learned the hard way that friends do not always have the right answers.
Second, David examines his heart and asks God to do the same. It’s one thing to be falsely accused and another to be caught in a lie. In verses 3-5, David asks God to punish him if he is guilty. David is willing to take the blame if he deserves it. We too must assess our heart and motives when we find ourselves under the scrutiny of accusations. Denial does not mean innocence. We must be willing to face any wrongs we may have done and then accept the consequences for them.
Then, after calling out to God and asking God to search his heart–once David knew his hands were clean–he then asks God to do the judging. David does not take matters into his own hands; he places the situation in God’s hands. Verses 6-16 detail David’s trust in God’s righteousness and God’s protection of the upright in heart. David doesn’t bring the issue to God and then go out and defend himself. He takes cover under the shadow of God’s Almighty wings. Why? Because David knew that right standing with God is more important than right standing with man. Man’s judgment may appear to rule on the earth, but God’s judgment reigns forever. David knew that even if payback didn’t come during his lifetime, it would come in the one to come.
Knowing this–knowing God alone is the One and only righteous judge–enabled David to end his song with praise. He doesn’t praise God for rescuing him. He doesn’t praise God for defending him. He praises God for God’s righteousness and God’s authority.
Wow. If only every one of us would approach misunderstanding and false accusations in the same way. No drama. No whining. No pleading. No worry about what man may think. Instead, we go to God, seek Him, and then trust Him to glorify His name, even in an unlikely and untrue situation.
I’m not sure what you may be facing today, if anything, but I do know God is for you, not against you. When troubles come, when misunderstandings occur, or when false accusations arise, I encourage you to seek God first. Seek Him, allow Him to search you, and then let Him be the judge. He will take up your cause. The ones planning your demise will fall into their own trap. For God promises such. He promises to be with you always, even when the world seems against you–especially when the world seems against you! So wipe away those tears this morning and go forth today with a confidence that comes only from God. Go forth knowing God “will sustain you; he will never permit the righteous to be moved” (Psalms 55:22).