I have always loved David’s progression in this passage, from wicked, to sinners, to mockers. It is a progression from passive to active in their wickedness. The wicked are those whose mind is turning from good to evil. They are thinking about wicked things and working things out. The sinners are those who’ve taken up the mantle of wickedness and sinned against God. They have tired of the cramped Laws and openly rebelled against their Lord. But the last group, the company of mockers, is the worst of the lot. Not only are they wicked, and are sinners, but they they mock the God of heaven. They have denied God, for they know the penalty for their actions should God actually exist. This is why (some) atheists actively hate God and Christians, even they don’t “beleive” in His existence. They must continually deny what their own spirit tells them, forcing them soul down into dark places so that their “reasonable” mind can drown out the evidence that surrounds them.
But atheists are not the biggest problem for Christians, not by long a long shot. For Christians, our biggest problem is ourselves. As David writes, there are plenty of opportunities to walk in counsel of the wicked (“try this, do that! No one will find out!”) or to stand with sinners (“Sin isn’t so bad once you get used to it. Don’t you have a God who forgives sin? What’s one more sin?”) or to sit with the mockers (“You call yourself a Christian? Then why don’t you . . .?”) As Christians, we certainly feel the pressure from the world to be more like them, to fit in and conform so that we don’t stand out.
But what is the strength of the Christian? The written word of God. In this we meditate, day and night. In the Word we find a ready defense against temptation, just as our Master did. A Christian who is equipped with the Word will never find it failing, but it will always provide an answer when your faith is challenged.
I’m sorry to say, but the greatest threat to the Christian isn’t the world, but the ease of which Satan’s arguments can slip past our defenses when we don’t know the word of God. If we don’t study the book, we will be wide open to attack. Be diligent to study the word of God so that you will not be unprepared in the day of temptation.
Dear Lord, help me strong in the face of certain attack by the evil one. I know you have laid out for me everything I will need to know in You book. Help me each and every day to open Your word and apply what I’ve read to my life, so that my gaps will close and I will stand in the day of temptation. In Jesus’ Name, Amen.