Though the snares be placed by the enemy with ever so much subtlety, God can, and will, secure His praying people from being taken in them.
1 LORD, I cry unto thee: make haste unto me; give ear unto my voice, when I cry unto thee.
2 Let my prayer be set forth before thee as incense; and the lifting up of my hands as the evening sacrifice.
3 Set a watch, O LORD, before my mouth; keep the door of my lips.
4 Incline not my heart to any evil thing, to practise wicked works with men that work iniquity: and let me not eat of their dainties.
5 Let the righteous smite me; it shall be a kindness: and let him reprove me; it shall be an excellent oil, which shall not break my head: for yet my prayer also shall be in their calamities.
6 When their judges are overthrown in stony places, they shall hear my words; for they are sweet.
7 Our bones are scattered at the grave’s mouth, as when one cutteth and cleaveth wood upon the earth.
8 But mine eyes are unto thee, O GOD the Lord: in thee is my trust; leave not my soul destitute.
9 Keep me from the snares which they have laid for me, and the gins of the workers of iniquity.
10 Let the wicked fall into their own nets, whilst that I withal escape.
Psalm 141 – J. Vernon McGee
Psalm 141 – Humility
This is an evening psalm. Acceptable prayer is as the smoke of incense rising in the still air, Revelation 5:8; 8:3-4. Each day we should ask to be delivered from lip sins, life sins, and like sins—especially the last, the dainties of appetite and desire, Psalm 141:4.
We owe a great deal to the care of fellow-believers. It may take more love to smite than to soothe. The breaking of the box of precious ointment over our heads may cause a momentary shock; but we must not refuse it, since the contents are so salutary; and we can return their well-meant kindness by praying for the righteous when their calamities are multiplied, Psalm 141:5. It was a rough time for David, but he kept looking up and committing his soul to God’s faithful care. Under similar circumstances Paul struck an even higher note, Romans 8:36-37. Go on patiently living up to your ideal. God will surely vindicate you! —Through the Bible Day by Day
Psalm 141:5—Let the righteous smite me; it shall be a kindness.
David confessed his indebtedness to those who had reproved him. He realized how much he owed them. We ought to consider one another and have a care for each other’s growth in grace. It is the duty of every true-hearted child of God to arrest another if he be erring in some way which is inconsistent with the honour of the family. We have to wash one another’s feet; and may perform an inestimable benefit in graciously indicating some fly in the ointment of our religious profession.
But perhaps there is nothing which needs greater grace. We are so apt to be censorious, to lord it over the one whom we rebuke, to pride ourselves on our superiority, to be so taken up with another’s life, as to miss God’s best for ourselves. It is said that some persons wash the saints’ feet in scalding water. David says, Let the righteous smite me. You cannot lift a man higher than you are. You must take the beam out of your eye before yea can take the mote out of your brother’s.
It needs some amount of grace also to accept reproof. The head is rather inclined to refuse it, and to take itself out of the way of the well-meaning adjusting hand. We resent interference. We do not care to be found out. But if, by God’s grace, we can and do accept the smiting and reproof, we shall find that they become as fragrant oil. The fresh anointing which you seek in the morning may come not in rapt emotional experiences, but in the straight dealing of some fellow-disciple. Whenever anything is said which finds fault with you and blames you, receive it humbly and tenderly, asking whether it may not contain a message from your Father. —Our Daily Homily