Psalm 10: A 40-Days-for-Life Prayer

Reading: Psalm 10

During the fall, churches across Tampa Bay join together in prayer that God will bring an end to abortion in the 40 Days for Life Campaign. Although prayer and a peaceful presence are needed year round, there are also great benefits to this concentrated effort.

It can be difficult, when going to the abortion chambers to pray, to know how to pray. If we are there for any length of time, it is easy to either drift into not praying, or to become so repetitious in our praying that it becomes mindless. I don’t want to fall into the trap of merely praying like a pagan (Matthew 6:7). In light of this, I often find the Psalms a good place to go to teach me how to pray for serious issues like abortion. One such psalm I find very helpful in praying outside the abortion chambers is Psalm 10.

Psalm 10 begins with a lament, a way of expressing the difficult questions we have regarding atrocities like abortion to the Lord. These are the kinds of “complaints” the Lord not only allows, but invites us to bring to Him.

Why, LORD, do you stand far off? Why do you hide yourself in times of trouble? (2) In his arrogance the wicked man hunts down the weak, who are caught in the schemes he devises. (3) He boasts about the cravings of his heart; he blesses the greedy and reviles the LORD. (Psalm 10:1-3)

It almost sounds as if this was written today. It describes the abortion chambers and what is going on in that billion dollar a year industry. It then goes on to describe the mentality of the industry merchants quite well.

(5) His ways are always prosperous; your laws are rejected by him; he sneers at all his enemies. (6) He says to himself, “Nothing will ever shake me.” He swears, “No one will ever do me harm.” (Psalm 10:5-6)

Then we reach a verse that almost feels as if it had been written about the abortion chambers and what goes on in them.

He sits in ambush in the villages; in hiding places he murders the innocent. His eyes stealthily watch for the helpless; (Psa 10:8 ESV)

There are none as helpless as the infants in the womb who can only squirm and move so far. They are trapped and will fall victim to the blades of the heinous merchant who kills them for a profit. It continues:

…He lies in wait to catch the helpless; he catches the helpless and drags them off in his net. His victims are crushed, they collapse; they fall under his strength. (Psalm 10:9-10)

It is hard to read this and not weep. This describes well the cruel reality of abortion. May God have mercy on us all. He then goes on to describe how the abortion merchant responds to this same scene—the same scene that makes most weep.

He says to himself, “God will never notice; he covers his face and never sees.” (Psalm 10:11)

Of course, this brazen attitude toward God is often expressed from a perspective that God does not exist. Others, that God even supports their activity. Both of these are merely truth suppression techniques (reference Romans 1:18-19).

The psalm then moves from describing the horror of the circumstance to calling on God to do something about it. It moves from our internal conflict to a faith that calls on God to act.

(12) Arise, LORD! Lift up your hand, O God. Do not forget the helpless. (13) Why does the wicked man revile God? Why does he say to himself, “He won’t call me to account”? (14) But you, God, see the trouble of the afflicted; you consider their grief and take it in hand. The victims commit themselves to you; you are the helper of the fatherless. (15) Break the arm of the wicked man; call the evildoer to account for his wickedness that would not otherwise be found out. (16) The LORD is King for ever and ever; the nations will perish from his land. (17) You, LORD, hear the desire of the afflicted; you encourage them, and you listen to their cry, (18) defending the fatherless and the oppressed, so that mere earthly mortals will never again strike terror. (Psalm 10:12-18)

In the case of these afflicted, we have to be their voice also. We have to cry out to God on their behalf that their cry might be heard, though I know the Lord hears their cries from the womb, though they are not vocalized.

I hope Psalm 10 helps you pray about this tragic holocaust of our time.

Love the Gospel, Live the Gospel, Advance the Gospel,
Jerry

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