Devotional Readings

Psalm 123 – the contempt of the proud.

Strangely my last post also spoke of the proud.

Job 41:34  He beholdeth all high things: he is a king over all the children of pride.

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Listen to this short Psalm here..

Our Eyes Look to the Lord Our God

Psa 123:1  A Song of degrees. Unto thee lift I up mine eyes, O thou that dwellest in the heavens.

Psa 123:2  Behold, as the eyes of servants look unto the hand of their masters, and as the eyes of a maiden unto the hand of her mistress; so our eyes wait upon the LORD our God, until that he have mercy upon us.

Psa 123:3  Have mercy upon us, O LORD, have mercy upon us: for we are exceedingly filled with contempt.

Psa 123:4  Our soul is exceedingly filled with the scorning of those that are at ease, and with the contempt of the proud.


I recall this teaching of Jesus that seems to reflect the same attitude.


Luk 18:9  And he spake this parable unto certain which trusted in themselves that they were righteous, and despised others:

Luk 18:10  Two men went up into the temple to pray; the one a Pharisee, and the other a publican.

Luk 18:11  The Pharisee stood and prayed thus with himself, God, I thank thee, that I am not as other menare, extortioners, unjust, adulterers, or even as this publican.

Luk 18:12  I fast twice in the week, I give tithes of all that I possess.


Luk 18:13  And the publican, standing afar off, would not lift up so much as his eyes unto heaven, but smote upon his breast, saying, God be merciful to me a sinner.

Luk 18:14  I tell you, this man went down to his house justified rather than the other: for every one that exalteth himself shall be abased; and he that humbleth himself shall be exalted.


Btw as for verse 3, John Gill offers…

for we are exceedingly filled with contempt; by reason of meanness in outward circumstances, the common lot of God’s people; and therefore are reckoned the faith of the world, and the offscouring of all things: and on account of their religion, which wicked men make a jest of; reckon an engine of state, to keep people in awe of the civil magistrate; or a piece of priestcraft, to serve the lucrative views of a set of men; 

or as mere cant and enthusiasm, and a gloomy melancholy business, which none but fools will give into; and particularly on account of peculiar doctrines embraced, which are branded as novel, irrational, and licentious; and ordinances, which entirely depend on the sovereign will of the institutor of them. 

For these things, and the like, contempt was plentifully poured upon them; they had enough of it, and too much, so much that they could not bear it; it was become intolerable and loathsome, and the more, as it had been a long time continued on them. So Aben Ezra and Kimchi interpret the word, rendered “exceedingly”, of a long time.


Spurgeon writes…

“For we are exceedingly filled with contempt,” and this is an acid which cats into the soul. Observe the emphatic words. Contempt is bitterness, wormwood mingled with gall; he that feels it may well cry for mercy to his God. Filled with contempt, as if the bitter wine had been poured in till it was up to the brim. This had become the chief thought of their minds, the peculiar sorrow of their hearts. Excluding all other feelings, a sense of scorn monopolized the soul and made it unutterably wretched. Another word is added adverbially – exceedingly filled. Filled even to running over, as if pressed down and then heaped up. 

A little contempt they could bear, but now they were satiated with it, and weary of it. Do we wonder at the threefold mention of mercy when this master evil was in the ascendant? Nothing is more wounding, embittering, festering than disdain. When our companions make little of us we are far too apt to make little of ourselves and of the consolations prepared for us. Oh to be filled with communion, and then contempt will run off from us, and never be able to fill us with its biting vinegar.


Rev 6:10  And they cried with a loud voice, saying, How long, O Lord, holy and true, dost thou not judge and avenge our blood on them that dwell on the earth?



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