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WHEN OVERWHELMED, PRESS BUTTON: "ASK BY FAITH!"
Consummating Consciousness of the way with JOURNEY'S GUIDE
Till JOURNEY'S END
Makes a Masterly Beginning (Psalm )
is magnificent. It says so much in so little, for so many.
Verse 1: David INVOKES GOD'S famous faithfulness and righteousness. He is neither slack, careless nor indifferent.
Verse 2: The shepherd boy become King, now asks the Lord NOT TO JUDGE HIM, since NO ONE could survive such a process. It requires a divine mandate, journey as man, manufacture of a means for transferring both guilt (ours) and righteousness (His - as in Psalm 132, Leviticus 16 a) 1-19 and b) 20ff., and I Cor. 5:19ff.).
Verse 3: The enemy has persecuted David so that he needs to appeal to the Higher Power, the Personal God to deliver him. Who is this enemy ? While has has many servants, it is in the end, the devil (cf. I Chronicles 21:1). He attacks the spirit of a man or woman or child; he attacks their affairs (as in Job), their physical opportunities, their reputation (as in Psalm 109) and seeks to spoil their faith, though in this it is quite a futile effort for that mighty power, that misusing spiritual malefactor, that accuser of the brethren, because of the promises such as are found in Hebrews 7:25, 8:12, 9:12, 10:10-14, Romans 8, I John 4:4).
Verse 4: Temporarily, however (cf. II Cor. 1), David FEELS OVERWHELMED BY THE VILE VIGOUR of the opposing powers. He feels like one abandoned in his desolation, like Kosovo, to use a modern analogy, bombed from its own nation and from those seeking to deliver it.
Verse 5: However, he is not daft. He meditates on the power and performances of God in the past (cf. Psalm 57:1-2).
Verse 6: He then moves in spirit, a yearning and believing suppliant, to the Lord, with the zest of the thirsty in a desert.
Verse 7: Knowing God's tender mercies, he points out that his spirit feels near to fainting, so that he requests speedy action, sure and strong relief. The pit of spoliation yearns for him; but as to David, HE YEARNS FOR GOD, and SEEKS DIVINE ACTION fast.
Verse 8: With clearly growing spiritual focus, after the concussion of heart from which he has just been suffering, in the midst of grievous trials, David now seeks specific things:
· to KNOW God's lovingkindness IN THE MORNING
(and what great and massive
· while the TRUST he has in God is noted, like an electric light switch in a darkened barn in a stormy night (cf. Psalm 34:15-22, 31:19, 84:11, 37:40 - the last of which tells us this: "And the Lord shall help them, and deliver them from the wicked, and save them, because they trust in Him.").
Verse 9: He then utters a staccato cry, as of one about to be run down by a murderous truck crew: "Deliver me ... I flee to Thee to hide me."
10: Now comes some of the most tender interchange. "TEACH ME TO DO THY WILL." It is necessary to be
taught. It is easy to forget, to be confused or made stunned. The instruction
of the Mighty Teacher is necessary.
HE IS MIGHTY for the simple reason that He is God, indeed THE PERSONAL GOD OF DAVID, and hence not only THERE, but RELEVANTLY AVAILABLE.
comes the interlink, the directing, indwelling
dynamic, the manifest power and the made-available presence of God, in His
Spirit: "Thy Spirit is
good; lead me into the land of uprightness." What a yearning is here! There is an intimate "Christ in you, the hope of
glory" as it is
expressed in the consummation of the New Testament (Colossians ), for which however the Old Testament or
Covenant, was the aptest of preliminaries. GOOD is your SPIRIT, so LEAD ME ... where ?
What a land is that! It is a mode of living, an immediate environment of soul, an unsoiled, unspoiled surrounding of life in the Lord, so that He avails and prevails for His vast purposes, yet with individual grace and kindness, whether
· by His acting in power to those forces beyond our power, or
· in the presencing of His other friends, or both, or
· in subduing the unalterable by the over-all-Nature power which He retains, so that NOTHING but His word and self is immovable, and His servants are KEPT from being moved (cf. Psalm 62:1,6).
o There we find David affirming this (Psalm 62): "From Him comes my salvation. He only is my rock and my salvation: He is my defence: I shallnot be greatly mocwsd... and then: "He only is my rock and my salvation: He is my defence. I shall not be moved. In God is my slavtion and my glory; the rock of my strength, and my refuge is in God. Trust in Him at all times, you people:
Pour out your heart before Him: God is a refuge for us."
WHEN HE ONLY is MY ROCK, there is the case. Not the pope plus, or Peter plus, or my pastor plus, or my church plus.God is infinite; and none of these are.To those resting in Him and abiding in His salvation ALONE, it is so. Then is the land of uprightness so joyous, so near, and then do the eyes of His people behold the land "that is very far off" (Isaiah 33:17-18) with the closeness almost of touch; then, to take from Wordsworth, is he on his way attended by the vision splendid, and then "He will dwell on high: His place of defence will be the fortress of rock. Bread shall be given him. His water will be sure." The bread of life gives strength, and the waters of the Spirit bring refreshment. Such is the land of uprightness, impelling with its outreaches to our hearts and ways, alight with glory, ready for when we awake in, and for His likeness (Psalm 17)..
This land of uprightness, it is thus also a DESTINATION to come when the powers of wickedness - whether from that cardinal crime of indifference to the Divine One, or from active hostility - are subdued manifestly; and the fighting, the warfare is accomplished externally, as now it is internally through His New Covenant.
Verse 11: Meanwhile this particular denizen of the Covenant, this David, is in need of a heart cordial, speaking spiritually. His whole being is almost limp with anguish and stunned with circumstance. REVIVE ME, O LORD! he cries. Why ? "FOR THY NAME'S SAKE!" After all, when you read Isaiah 40:26ff., you realise that they who wait upon the Lord shall not merely renew their strength, but actually rise up with wings like eagles, walk and not faint! The long or short haul, it is one. HE is sufficient (cf. II Cor. 4). Now God has pardoned sin (cf. Psalms 32, 132) and against His people does no longer act as a critical assessor towards judgment, but as a tutor towards purification, refinement, growth, development and health. Thus David can now cry: " FOR THY RIGHTEOUSNESS' SAKE", please bring me out of trouble.
Verse 12: The soaring horror of the damning indicters, the scheming seducers, the inveigling false witnesses, all of this he seeks to be brought to nothing. AS he performs as required in the service of the Lord, heartily and with his whole mind, as thus a servant of the Lord, he NEEDS divine intervention to limit the firepower of the furious, the dire dynamic of the spurious, the fell attacks of the remorseless destroyers.
as King was given this again and again. We who are in fact the people of the
Lord can expect deliverance as the case requires, not from suffering, but from
a seduction by mere follies and pretence, of our purpose, our life's work, our
way in the Lord. After all, HE is LEADING into the land of uprightness. NOTHING
is too hard for the Lord. That is the beautiful fact. There IS NO LIMIT with God, and His word is magnificent. Take a moment in closing,
to look at Ephesians and - to put it in the vernacular, GO FOR
IT! and WHO IS HE who then goes before you, and makes
up the security of your back, as your rearguard ! (Isaiah 58:8).