Psalm 26 reads:
Vindicate me, O LORD,
for I have integrity,
and I trust in the LORD without wavering.
2 Examine me, O LORD, and test me!
Evaluate my inner thoughts and motives!
3 For I am ever aware of your faithfulness,
and your loyalty continually motivates me.
4 I do not associate with deceitful men,
or consort with those who are dishonest.
5 I hate the mob of evil men,
and do not associate with the wicked.
6 I maintain a pure lifestyle,
so I can appear before your altar, O LORD,
7 to give you thanks,
and to tell about all your amazing deeds.
8 O LORD, I love the temple where you live,
the place where your splendor is revealed.
9 Do not sweep me away with sinners,
or execute me along with violent people,
10 who are always ready to do wrong
or offer a bribe.
11 But I have integrity!
Rescue me and have mercy on me!
12 I am safe,
and among the worshipers I will praise the LORD.
The prayer of Psalm 26 is simple: vindicate me. Apparently, the psalmist was caught up in some kind of trouble (local or national), and he didn't feel that he deserved to be "swept away with sinners" or "executed along with violent people." Although there were evil people around him, he did his best to avoid their council and remain innocent of their crimes.
I love this psalm for its emotion and its simplicity. The author just wants help, but he wants it badly. It seems as if he is pleading with God--"You know me. You know my character. You know I don't deserve what is happening to me. Let the truth be known and come to my rescue!"
It's comforting to know that we have a God who vindicates His people.
"Father, I thank you for Your righteousness. I thank you that You preserve the righteous and those who seek after you. We confess our confidence and our trust in You. Amen."
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