by – Ptr. Al Austria
Psalm 36:2-3, 7 2For he flatters himself in his own eyes that his iniquity cannot be found out and hated. 3 The words of his mouth are trouble and deceit; he has ceased to act wisely and do good. 7How precious is your steadfast love, O God! The children of mankind take refuge in the shadow of your wings.
Some Christians, tend to ask themselves, “Am I really saved?” “Am I really in the faith?” Some believers ask this, particularly, in times of dryness in their passion in serving God, or in times of failures (when committing a sin). This question arises, “What makes me different from the wicked, the unsaved?” Psalm 36:2-3 and 7, clearly speaks about the huge difference between righteous redeemed ones against the wicked unbelieving ones. These verses emphasize the differences in their attitude and behavior, towards sin, and towards God.
The attitude of the wicked is this, they flatter themselves in their own eyes, flatters – in other sense of these word can be translated as “decree” or “measure” themselves in their own eyes, which means they don’t only conceal their sins but measure and decree themselves of not being sinful, so that their iniquity cannot be found. They have no (godly) sorrow for sin. The wicked’s attitude is evidently rooted in loving sin (not hating sin, not rejecting evil) (v4), and there is no fear of God before their eyes (v1). They cease in acting wisely and cease in doing good. Their behavior results in trouble and deceit (v2).
On the other hand, the attitude of the righteous believers, (from the phrase “children of mankind” which could also mean, “the children of weak, frail, sinful man”) see themselves as weak and sinful. They behold God as faithful (steadfast), loving and very precious. They behold God as a treasure. Their behavior is focused on coming to God, trusting Him as a shelter and protection from harm. They trust His salvation.
In summary, according to these verses, the wicked unbelieving people are the ones who never confess their sinfulness, never admit their need of God. They behave foolishly by ceasing in doing good, but seek trouble and act in deceit. The righteous believers on the other hand, are those who admit, confess, and repent of their sins to God. They see their need of God and His forgiveness. They see God as so precious, they gaze at Him as a treasure. They see God as loving, faithful, protector, shelter and a savior.
Let us therefore mirror ourselves towards these truths. The Holy Spirit will definitely reveal our hearts if we truly believe and trust Jesus for salvation, for the Spirit testifies with our spirit that we are (indeed) children of God (Romans 8:16), forgiven repentant sinners who received adoption to be children of God through Christ.