Around the Word in 365 Days, by Linda Sommer

Oppression Leads to Depression

Psalm 43:1-5 Yesterday we saw the emotional, mental and physical pain David was experiencing because his enemies were coming against him. He was depressed, but he made the decision with his will to praise the Lord even in the midst of a very low time in his life. All depression is caused by some kind of oppression. Granted, depression can be caused by a chemical imbalance in our system, and this can be treated medically. However, whether we are depressed because of a chemical imbalance in our system or circumstances that surround us, Satan takes advantage of us in our weakened state. He oppresses us with all kinds of deceptive thoughts.

Throughout the psalms and also 1 and 2 Samuel, we see how David was constantly surrounded by enemies. David spent most of his life either fighting or fleeing. We have to remember, however, that even though we may be oppressed by physical human beings, we are not fighting a flesh-and-blood battle. Paul tells us clearly in Ephesians 6 that our battle is not with flesh and blood, but with principalities, powers, rulers of darkness and wickedness in high places that control flesh and blood. For example, Derek Prince, a well-known Bible teacher, fought a constant battle with depression for most of his life. Finally, as he was praying one day, he got the victory in this battle. He realized he was not in a flesh-and-blood battle, but he was experiencing a spiritual battle. As he was reading Isaiah 62:3 he saw that God had provided the garment of praise to lift the spirit of heaviness. He recognized then that he had to come against the spirit of heaviness by praising the Lord. He bound the spirit of heaviness and loosed his soul to praise the Lord. He continued to do this faithfully whenever he felt heaviness coming upon him again. It worked, and he was delivered from the stronghold of depression in his life.

In the psalm, David prays a powerful prayer that released him from depression. He asked the Lord to do the following:

1. Judge him (see if there was anything he needed to confess to the Lord).

2. Plead his cause against his enemies.

3. Deliver him from deceitful and unjust men.

4. Send His light and truth to him.

5. Lead and bring him to the place of worship and fellowship again.

God heard David's prayer, and the results were many of the joyous songs David wrote that we use today to praise and worship the Lord. Exceeding joy awaited David, but first he had to make a decision to praise the Lord, pray to the Lord and sing songs to the Lord even when he was oppressed by Satan and his spirit was down. You may want to pray as David prayed: "Lord, search me and show me if there is any sin I need to confess. Plead and do battle for me against Satan and deliver me from his deceptive thoughts by sending Your light and truth to me. Restore to me the joy of my salvation."

READ: Leviticus 20:22-22:20; Mark 9:1-29; Psalm 43:1-5; Proverbs 10:18

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