TODAY’S READING: PSALM 83-89
The psalmist’s cry for deliverance for Israel; the blessedness of living in the midst of God’s presence; David’s desire to walk in truth; cry for deliverance from death; praise for God’s covenant and promises.
HIGHLIGHTS & INSIGHTS:
As we get back into the Psalms, Psalm 83 once again points prophetically to the time of the Second Coming of Christ when all of the nations (83:6-8) have converged “with one consent” (83:5), “confederate against” (83:5) the nation of Israel to “cut them off from being a nation; that the name of Israel may be no more in remembrance” (83:4). As we have seen repeatedly, just when Israel’s back is against the wall, and from a human standpoint is utterly helpless and hopeless, God answers their prayers (83:1)! It is a great reminder for those times when our back is against the wall, and from a human standpoint, we are helpless and hopeless, that God answers prayer, and can and will step in to do what could never be done in our own strength or power. He has already proven that He would, because that is exactly how Ephesians 2:11-17 describes our situation in our lost condition when we cried out to the Lord for our salvation! Note that the basis for the psalmists requests in th!
e last verse of this Psalm, should be the desire, passion and prayer of our hearts, “That men may know that thou, whose name alone is JEHOVAH (the “self-existing One”), art the most high over all the earth” (83:18).
The context of the expression of the psalmist’s heart and praise for the Lord in Psalm 84 is set in verses 4 and 8. It is the Day of the Lord, Christ’s millennial reign when He will once again “tabernacle” among us (84:1; John 1:14 – “dwelt” = “tabernacle”.) Do the words expressing the passion of the psalmist’s heart for God and His glory in verse 2 express what is in your heart today? “My soul longeth, yea, even fainteth for the courts of the Lord: my heart and my flesh crieth out for the living God” (84:2). The last part of verse 11 is a great promise and reminder – “the Lord will give grace and glory: NO GOOD THING WILL HE WITHHOLD FROM THEM THAT WALK UPRIGHTLY.” God most certainly “withholds” certain things, but contrary to Satan’s lies (see Genesis 3:5), it is never because He is “withholding” some GOOD thing from us. His restrictions are always to keep us from something He knows will be BAD for us, and ultimately destroy us. It is sometimes difficult to get our !
flesh to really believe that, and the “father of lies” is at every turn more than willing to convince us otherwise. In light of that, the concluding verse (84:12) is very fitting, “O Lord of hosts, blessed is the man that trusteth in thee.”
The millennial context continues in Psalm 85. The description of that time is laid out beautifully in verse 10, “Mercy and truth are met together; righteousness and peace have kissed each other.” It is also a beautiful thing when the word pictures in this verse are found in the life of a New Testament believer. Mercy with no regard for truth makes us wishy-washy, spineless, and way too accommodating of unholy doctrine and unholy living in the church of the Lord Jesus Christ. On the other hand, truth with no regard for mercy makes us harsh, judgmental, and unloving. God wants a perfect balance of both in the life of His people. (See Ephesians 4:25, then Ephesians 4:15.)
Psalm 86:5 and 15 are a personal favorite – “For thou, Lord, art good, and ready to forgive; and plenteous in mercy unto all them that call upon thee . . . Thou, O Lord, art a God full of compassion, and gracious, longsuffering, and plenteous in mercy and truth.” How many times do we need those reminders, especially those of us who are bent toward doing “penance” before we can let go of failures. I love the fact that before we even come to Him, He is already “READY TO FORGIVE.” He made that more than clear by the willful offering of His only and beloved Son!
For those who find themselves in the depths of despair today, find comfort and solace by using the words of the psalmist in Psalm 88 as he lifts his complaint up to the Lord, and then allow the Lord to bring you up and out in Psalm 89, as the psalmist expresses his confidence and praise to the Lord.
CHRIST IS REVEALED:
By the SEED OF DAVID – Psalm 89:3-4 (Christ was made of the seed of David according to the flesh – Matt. 1:1; Luke 3:31-32).