TODAY’S READING: PSALM 78-82
The judgment of the Lord against disobedience; Aspah’s prayer against enemies; Asaph’s prayer for mercy and restoration.
HIGHLIGHTS & INSIGHTS:
Psalm 78 is an incredible Psalm. What it provides is an abbreviated overview of Israel’s history from Exodus 7 to II Samuel 10. Obviously, I could learn a lot about concising truth from the psalmist! (No “amens,” please!)
We have talked previously about God’s principles concerning the iniquities of the fathers being passed all the way down to the third and fourth generation (Num. 14:18). The effects of sin are incredibly far reaching. Psalm 78 lets us know that the flip side is also true. The righteousnesses of the fathers likewise have the ability to be passed down to the third and fourth generation! Notice the four generations in 78:5-6
Generation # 1 – “OUR FATHERS…”
Generation # 2 – “that they should make them known to THEIR CHILDREN,”
Generation # 3 – “that the GENERATION TO COME might know them”
Generation # 4 – “who should arise and declare them to THEIR CHILDREN.”
Notice that there are also four reasons for passing down truth and righteousness through these four generations (78:7-8).
Two are positive and two are negative:
1)Positive – “That they might set their hope in God…”
2)Negative – “And not forget the works of God…”
3)Positive – “But keep his commandments…”
4)Negative – “And might not be as their fathers…”
Notice in verse 29 of Psalm 78, one of the most horrific things that God could ever do to a person—
Give them what they want! (i.e. “their own desire.”) It is a collision course for disaster without exception, because what man “desires” naturally is always completely contrary to what God desires for him. Paul writes to his young son in the faith, Timothy, warning him about four things we desire (“love”) naturally:
1)“Self” – II Tim. 3:2
2)“Pleasure” – II Tim. 3:4
3)“Money” – I Tim. 6:10
4)“This present world” – II Tim. 4:10
Psalm 78:29 should cause all of us to pray, “O God, please don’t give me what I want.” The old guy said, “I want everything that’s coming to me, and my mother-in-law says she hopes I get it!”
Notice five things Israel did against God after their deliverance out of Egypt in verses 40 and 41, and the New Testament counterpart of how we are sometimes guilty of the same things after our deliverance out of Egypt:
1)They “provoked” God – Ps. 78:40a (I Thess. 5:19) 2)They “grieved” God – Ps. 78:40b (Eph. 4:30) 3)They “turned back” from God – Ps. 78:41a (II Tim. 4:10) 4)They “tempted” God – Ps. 78:41b (I Cor. 10:9) 5)They “limited” God – Ps. 78:41c (Heb. 4:2)
Notice also that these five things were the result of the two root sins listed in verse 42 – “They remembered not his hand, nor the day when he delivered them from the enemy.” Practically speaking, we get ourselves into a whole bunch of sin problems when we forget the awesome thing God did on our behalf the day He saved us “(delivered us from the enemy”), and all of the things God did by His hand to bring us to that point (John 6:44), and all of the things He has done since (Rev. 2:4-5; Rom. 1:21).
Psalm 79 and 80 are simple to understand for anyone who understands that there are three layers of application of Scripture. They both are pointing doctrinally (prophetically) to Israel during the latter part of the Great Tribulation just prior to the Second Coming of Christ. Notice that the “wild beast” in Palm 80:13 is defined in Hosea 13:8 and is none other than the “Beast” of Rev. 13. He is like a “leopard” (Hosea 13:7), a “bear” and a “lion” (Hosea 13:8), just as in Rev. 13:2 and Daniel 7:3-6. It’s amazing what God will reveal (I Cor. 2:10) when we approach God’s book the way He told us to approach it (I Cor. 2:13 – “comparing spiritual things with spiritual” – i.e. comparing Scripture with Scripture)!
In Psalm 81, the “solemn feast day” in verse 3 points to the Second Coming of Christ which will line up, as did First Coming of Christ, with the Feast of Tabernacles. It’s way too detailed to get into here, but for a little “recreation,” checkout II Chron. 7:9; Neh. 8:18; Hosea 9:5; 12:9; Lev. 23:34; Deut. 16:13; 31:10; II Chron. 8:13; Ezra 3:4.
Be sure to note the context in Psalm 82, as once again, God sets it for us by the insertion of the word “Selah” (82:2), and nails it for us in the last verse, “Arise, O God, judge the earth: for thou shalt inherit all nations.” I don’t care where you’re from, “that there’s good”!
CHRIST IS REVEALED:
As the SHEPHERD – Ps. 80:1 (John 10:11)
As the One Will Arise to Deliver Israel Out of Her Trouble – Ps. 80:7, 14, 19; 82:8 (Rev. 16:15-21; 19:19).