In Psalm 26, David claims to live with integrity before the Lord, and he invites the Lord to test him, to inspect his life, inside and out. I wonder how many of us would welcome God’s inspection. According to the Scriptures, Jesus died to pay for our failures to live with integrity. Jesus died because we all fail the test.
Psalm 26 breaks down into three stanzas. First, David claims that he has nothing to hide (verses 1-3); second, he claims that he has nothing in common with wicked people (verses 4-8); and finally he claims that he has nothing to fear from God’s judgment (verses 9-12). Those are audacious claims from a mere mortal, especially with what we know about David’s life and the glaring sins he committed.
David’s integrity was not perfection, and neither is ours. But, there was one man who lived with perfect integrity, one man who could sing this Psalm with its deepest meaning, without any pangs of conscience. That man is Jesus Christ. Not only did he die to pay for our failures, but he also lived the successful, obedient life God intends for humans to live.
Jesus endured the test of his integrity on the cross. He was accused of blasphemy by the Jewish court (Matthew 26:65-66). We know that those accusations were false. God vindicated Jesus, showed that he was indeed innocent, by raising him from the dead. Jesus really had nothing to hide.
Jesus did, in fact, spend time with sinners. In fact, this is one of the things that irked the Jewish leaders more than anything else. He ate meals and spent time with wicked people (Luke 15:1-2). But, he never joined in their wickedness, and he didn’t condone their wickedness. Jesus remained completely sinless (1 Peter 2:22). He really had nothing in common with wicked people.
Jesus would, in fact, experience the judgment of God, but not for his own sins. He endured God’s wrath that blazes against us. Nevertheless, he really had nothing to fear from God’s judgment. Those who trust Jesus can now sing Psalm 26 honestly.
Mr. Justin Langley is Minister of Discipleship of Kilgore Bible Church in Kilgore. You can reach him through the congregation’s website: www.kilgorebiblechurch.org.