Psalm 69 is one of the clearest Messianic Psalms. The words of this Psalmist fit perfectly in the mouth of the suffering servant who died for our sins on the cross. He says in verse 9, “ and the reproaches of those who reproach you have fallen on me.” Jesus’ one and only passion was to accomplish the work that God had sent him to accomplish; to die on the cross to pay the penalty for our sins. He set his face as a flint to that purpose. He would not be deterred from his destiny. Even when those close tried to dissuade Him, he never faltered. The Psalmist explains this with these words from this suffering servant, “For zeal for your house has consumed me.”

Soldiers sometimes suffer from battle fatigue. It’s a term that describes the inability to motivate oneself any longer. It leads to great apathy and is extremely contagious. When others see such a depressive spirit they too exhibit similar characteristics. It noticeably leads to a deadly malaise among the troops and an inability to reach military objectives. One soldier in WWII said that this kind of depression “never leads a life in any direction but to the rear.” Those who are overwhelmed by it, however, are often cured by exposure to others who still exhibit a true zeal for life. When they see heroic behavior, often in the face of great suffering, they are inspired and can continue the battle.

This is often seen in the Bible. Jehu inspired a revival. In 2 Kings 10 he said, “come with me and see my zeal for the Lord.” No prophet inspired a revival in Israel with a more heroic example than Elijah. In 1 Kings 19 he says, “I have been very zealous for the Lord God Almighty.” Solomon, in Proverbs 23, tells us never to let the lives of sinners influence us, instead, “always be zealous for the fear of the Lord.” Paul even tells us in Romans 12, “Never be lacking in zeal, but keep your spiritual fervor, serving the Lord.”

We all get weary of life’s battles, but none of us has had the depth of battle that Jesus had. His heroic behavior of never losing sight of his mission regardless of the personal cost should inspire us all. Isn’t being a disciple, becoming more like Jesus?

The godly will rejoice in the Lord and find shelter in him. And those who do what is right will praise him. (Psalm 64:10)