Having won the war with Israel, the Philistines thought their idol Dagon had given them victory. The ark of God was put in Dagon's temple. Then God not only proved that He is greater than Dagon by what happened in the temple, but He also struck the Philistines in all five of their territories with plagues of death, tumors, and rats ravaging the land. The Philistine fortune tellers and priests devised a creative plan to test if these disasters had happened on their own, or because of God's hand was against them. In the story it is clear that the Philistine people knew about the plagues God used against the Egyptians. Once again, God proved that He is God. For any any agnostic or atheist in the audience, this seems to me to be the kind of story that no one would have just made up, especially if you compare this with literature of the same age.
This is a psalm of trust in the face of injustice. The psalmist asks for God’s vengeance on arrogant and evil leaders. Those who take advantage of others are called ‘stupid fools’. There is a parable that forms an interesting parallel: Luke 12:20, where God says to the rich man, “You fool, this very night your soul will be required of you.”
In chapter 2 of Romans, Paul warned of a coming judgment of God, where God will judge everyone's secret life. The trouble is, however, that we all will be judged guilty of sin. Paul has shown us that it doesn't matter if you are Jew or non-Jew, circumcised or uncircumcised, we all need a radical transformation. We need to become a ‘true Jew’, which is “one whose heart is right with God].” What each one of us needs is “a change of heart produced by God’s Spirit.” Paul calls this “circumcision of the heart.”
GNT Translation notes:
Ps. 94:14 [You, O Lord//The Lord] will not abandon [your/his] people; [You//he] will not desert those who belong to [You//him].
17 If [You//the Lord] had not helped me, I would have gone quickly to the land of silence.
22 But [You, O Lord my God, defend me//the Lord defends me]; [and protect//my God protects] me.
23 [You//He] will punish them for their wickedness and destroy them for their sins; [You, O//the] Lord our God[,] will destroy them.
Rom. 3:4 Certainly not! God must be true, even though all human beings are liars. As the scripture says [when David was speaking to God], “You must be shown to be right when you speak; you must win your case when you are being tried.”
8 [But] Why not say, then, “Let us do evil so that good may come”? Some people, indeed, have insulted me by accusing me of saying this very thing! They will be condemned, as they should be.
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