Read Psalm 7
ALSO IN SCRIPTURE
“My dear children, I am writing this to you so that you will not sin. But if anyone does sin, we have an advocate who pleads our case before the Father. He is Jesus Christ, the one who is truly righteous. He himself is the sacrifice that atones for our sins—and not only our sins but the sins of all the world” (1 John 2:1–2 NLT).
A band I really like is one that is electronic in nature, meaning that it is composed mostly of synthesizers, electric drum beats, electric bass, and a persistant bass drum beat that will make you think the warring “deathbringers” are on their way. All jokes aside, it is basically a band that has very dancy beats, but the lyrics are absolutely deep and thought provoking. What’s more, though this is a secular band from London, well the lead singer/founder is from Ireland, there is a certain spiritual side to them that comes through in virtually every song they release.
Now, don’t get me wrong. I am not saying they are a “Christian” band. I have no clue what Ronan Harris or his bandmates’ religious views are. With that said, humans are intrinsically spiritual. Even atheists find ways of fulfilling the spiritual side of their nature, whether they recognize it or not. So, there is a commonality between all human beings in that regard and that leads to humans of all creeds as well as “no creed” writing music that can move us spiritually.
One of VNV Nations songs that moves me is a song called Nemesis. The word nemesis is actually never used once in the song so, prior to talking about the song, let’s look at what the title word means. According to Oxford Dictionary, Nemesis comes from classical Greek Mythology; “she was the goddess of retribution, vengeance, who reverses excessive good fortune…”.
That is the “Nemesis” that the song is invoking: the Greek goddess of retribution. Retribution, of course, is vengeful punishment for a wrong or criminal act. In the song, Ronan laments:
“Everybody wants to live in a lie, but why should we delude ourselves? It’s not as if we can’t see something’s wrong, where’s the duty to what’s right? Intentions end with empty words and chaos replaces order. Those who shout the loudest impose their will upholding laws that serve the few, declaring peace while the sirens sing in the name of progress, the name of madness; drum beats faster, crowd shouts louder and chaos replaces order.”
The lyrics are plain and simple. He is calling out the reality that most of us see happening around us every day. The rich get richer, the poor get poorer, and the middle-class that is an anomaly to Western Civilization (aka made up of the average person in society), is shrinking. What does that mean? That means that there are less and less people with the means to live in society. And that is just dealing with Western Civilization, not to mention all of the other non-Western peoples in the world that suffer as a result of the West’s complete and abhorrently excessive lifestyle. It’s enough to make anyone with a conscience scream. Hence the chorus of Ronan’s song:
“I want justice for the voice that can’t be heard, vindication for every suffering and hurt. Let retribution hold dominion over earth because Judgement Day’s not coming…judgement day’s not coming…soon enough.”
This song very much rings and sings of the Psalms. Psalm 7 is a song of David that he wrote when he was being attacked by, enigmatically, by Cush who was a Benjaminite. The reason this is enigmatic or mysterious is because there are no references to Cush in the Biblical accounts of David. This is the only mention of him. So, we really have no clue what David was being attacked for; however, he was being attacked by an Israelite from the tribe of Benjamin, presumably in some sort of Temple trial.
The Psalmist is declaring himself righteous and even states that God should allow him to be overtaken by his enemies if he proves to be untrue. Following this, he calls for God to rise up in anger, seeking retribution against his enemies. He calls for a justice that not only vindicates him, but punishes the wicked for their wrong doing. He calls for a day where there will be an end of the violence of the wicked and where the righteous will remain secure.
Like David, that is what Ronan Harris is calling for; however, he’s not calling it just for himself, but for all of those who suffer in the world. He’s angry at the suffering he sees, at the injustice, and he is expressing his feeling that “judgement day is not coming soon enough.” I, too, have often felt this sense of urgency and anger at what I see taking place in the world around me. With that said, I also have a healthy dose of humility too. Sometimes it is my voice that is heard over others. Sometimes I have been a source of suffering and hurt as much as I have been a recipient.
While it can feel like judgement day is too delayed or may never come, we have to remember that judgment is UNIVERSAL. It is not just going to come for those we dislike or disagree with. It will come to us too! How will we stand before the judgment throne? How will we fare in front of a just God who seeks to right the wrongs of sin, evil and death in the world?
I have one answer and one answer alone: JESUS CHRIST. That is how we will stand before God and that is who we will stand with. Jesus Christ is our advocate and will stand next to us and vouch us as one of his. That is why, my friends, we need to humble ourselves before God, repent of our sins, and accept the One who has died for us…the ones who deserve a meeting with Nemesis.
Let us thank the Lord Jesus Christ that we have been invited into such a family where sin is forgiven and destroyed, where ALL are included because they are loved (as opposed to being loved because they are included), and where justice, mercy and unending LOVE reign supreme! Let us, like the Psalmist, draw closer to the one who is our advocate and redeemer.
THOUGHT OF THE DAY
“Do not let your hearts be troubled. Trust in God; trust also in me.” – Jesus of Nazareth
Lord, help me to put my trust in you, to seek justice, to love mercy and to walk humbly with you throughout my life. Amen.