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Psalm 1:1-6
Psalm 2:1-12
Psalm 3-4
Psalms 5-7
Psalms 8-9-10
Psalms 11-14
Psalms 15-16-17
Psalm 18:1-50
Psalm 19:1-14
Psalms 20-21
Psalm 22:1-31
Psalm 23:1-6
Psalm 24: 1-10
Psalm 25-26
Psalm 27:1-14
Psalm 28-30
Psalm 31-32
Psalm 33-34
Psalm 35-36
Psalm 37-38
Psalm 39-40
Psalm 41-43
Psalm 44-45
Psalm 46-47
Psalm 48-50
Psalm 52-55
Psalm 56-58
Psalm 59-61
Psalm 62-65
Psalm 66-68
Psalms 69-72
Psalm73-1-28
Psalms 74-77
Psalm78-1-72
Psalms 79-81
Psalms 82-83
Psalm84-1-12
Psalms 85-87
Psalms 88-89
Psalm 90:1-17
Psalm 91:1-16 Psalms 92-93 Psalms 94-95 Psalms 96-99 Psalms 100-102
Psalm 103:1-22 Psalm 104:1-35 Psalm 105:1-45 Psalm 106:1-48 Psalm 107:1-43
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Psalms 39-40

 

Psalm 39:1-13

 

To the chief Musician, even to Jeduthun, A Psalm of David

 

“I said, I will take heed to my ways, that I sin not with my tongue:  I will keep my mouth with a bridle, while the wicked is before me.  I was dumb with silence, I held my peace, even from good; and my sorrow was stirred.  My heart was hot within me; while I was musing the fire burned:  then spake I with my tongue, LORD, make me to know mine end, and the measure of my days, what it is; that I may know how frail I am.  Behold, thou hast made my days as an handbreadth; and mine age is as nothing before thee:  verily every man at his best state is altogether vanity.  Selah.  Surely every man walketh in a vain shew:  surely they are disquieted in vain:  he heapeth up riches, and knoweth not who shall gather them.  And now, LORD, what wait I for?  my hope is in thee.  Deliver me from all my transgressions:  make me not the reproach of the foolish. I was dumb, I opened not my mouth; because thou didst it.  Remove thy stroke away from me:  I am consumed by the blow of thy hand.  When thou with rebukes dost correct man for iniquity, thou makest his beauty to consume away like a moth:  surely every man is vanity.  Selah.  Hear my prayer, O LORD, and give ear unto my cry; hold not thy peace at my tears:  for I am a stranger with thee, and a sojourner, as all my fathers were.  O spare me, that I may recover strength, before I go hence, and be no more.”

 

Introduction

 

“Psalm 39, it is to the chief Musician, so we know this is one that was definitely to be played publicly.  It is a Psalm of David, and it says it’s to Jeduthun.  Ah, in Chronicles, there’s a number of places, but in the Book of Chronicles it says ‘And all the Levites,’ David is setting up the order that God gave to him relative to worship, it says “All the Levites which were singers, all of them, Asaph, Heman, Jeduthun, with their sons and their brethren, being arrayed in white linen, having cymbals and psalteries and harps, stood at the east of the altar, and with them a hundred and twenty priests sounding on trumpets.”  So Jeduthun, one of the primary worship leaders in David’s Tabernacle.  He is mentioned in Psalm 62 and Psalm 77 again, he’s called a Seer in one place, so interesting then, David is writing this Psalm to be played publicly, something about Jeduthun, he’s relating it to him.  And interesting, certainly, David sharing his heart here.  Some struggle, we’re not sure, the background, the context is not always certain, and I think it makes it easier for us to relate.  David’s been hurt, he’s gone through something, and he’s just got to the point where he’s in silence, and it’s a frustration.  ‘I’m not even saying anything, I’m not saying anything, I just didn’t bother, I didn’t say anything bad, I didn’t say anything good, I just kept my mouth shut.’  And that’s a good place to be sometimes, by the way.  But he just somehow, there’s a mess going on around him, whoever it is he’s just decided ‘I’m not going to say anything.’  And then he realizes ‘We’re just here for a short while, we’re frail, we’re temporary, we’re pilgrims, we’re sojourners, we’re passing through, and what we’re left with really is crying out to the LORD, to find hope in him.’  It kind of takes us through that track in this Psalm. 

 

‘I Will Keep My Mouth Shut While The Wicked Is Before Me’

 

It begins by saying “I said, I will take heed to my ways, that I sin not with my tongue:  I will keep my mouth with a bridle, while the wicked is before me.  I was dumb with silence, I held my peace, even from good; and my sorrow was stirred.” (verses 1-2) “stirred” troubled, almost destructive, his sorrow was so disturbing.  “And my heart was hot within me; while I was musing the fire burned:  then spake I with my tongue,” (verse 4) literally “my heart became hot within me” he’s got boiling bone marrow here, you know, holding everything in.  “And my heart was hot within me; while I was musing the fire burned:  then spake I with my tongue,” now we don’t know if that’s good or bad.  Did he finally blow his stack, or finally went off?  But he’s saying ‘While this is cooking around me,’ he said, ‘I kept quiet.’  He said, “I said [to myself], I will take heed to my ways, that I sin not with my tongue:”  Now you’re never going to do that without taking heed to your ways, without just taking heed, looking at your heart, keeping yourself in the right place.  He says, first of all, “that I sin not” because there are lots of different ways we can sin, isn’t there.  People that can’t speak, sin.  So it isn’t just that we can sin with our tongue, there’s lots of ways that we can sin.  And the way to keep ourselves from that, certainly, is to take heed to our ways.  But he says ‘I took heed to my way, that I sin not with my tongue.’  And, you know, all of us here know that, we have taken tongue-whuppens’ that are worse than somebody slugging us.  You know, you can hurt a child more with your tongue sometimes than with a paddle.  And I think, what a challenge for us, it says in Proverbs 15:1 that ‘A soft answer turneth away wrath.’ I’m not good at that all the time.  I’m not always the soft answer guy.  Ask my wife.  No, don’t ask my wife.  If you’re married you know exactly what I’m saying.  You know, the answer doesn’t come back soft.  And I find, and I’m sure you feel the same way, more often than not I wish I had kept my mouth closed.  Granted, there are a few times in life when you kind of say to yourself, ‘I wish I had said something.’  But the majority of the time you’re saying ‘I wish I had just shut up, it’s not worth it.’  You know, once you let it out, it’s gone.  And, interesting, David here, whatever he’s wrestling with, whatever’s going on, he says ‘I’m going to take heed to my ways,’ the reason, ‘that I sin not’ and specifically, ‘that I sin not with my tongue.’  “I will keep my mouth” King James says “with a bridle,” the Hebrew says “with a muzzle, while the wicked is before me.”  So, whatever’s going on, there were people that stood right in front of him.  Is it Saul?  Is it Ahithophel?  Is it Absalom?  We don’t know.  Shimei? we don’t know what’s going on, but David said, ‘I looked at ‘em, I took heed to my ways, I didn’t want to let it out of my mouth, I kept my trap closed,’ and he says, ‘I kept a muzzle on, while the wicked stood before me.’  You know, he’s smart enough, experienced enough, whatever his age is at this point in time, he thinks, ‘It ain’t worth it sometimes, just let them do what they do, and just to keep your mouth closed.’  James of course, says this, and James knew more than anyone, obviously.  James had said, ‘Look, if somebody comes into your synagogue, dressed in a nice robe, they have a gold ring, you better not treat them any different than you would treat a carpenter, because you never know who you’re dealing with.’  Because it took him awhile to find out his older brother was God.  But then James would write, he says, “Behold, we put bits in horses mouths, that they may obey us, we turn about their whole body.  Behold, the ships which go through the sea, the great waters, they’re driven by fierce winds, yet are they turned about with a small helm, a rudder, withersoever the governor turns it.  Even so the tongue is a little member, it boasts great things, behold how great a matter a little fire kindleth,’ almost like Smokey the Bear here, you know, ‘Only you can prevent forest fires.’  Just a little spark, he says, consider how great a fire it kindles.  ‘And the tongue is a fire, a world of iniquity, so is the tongue among our members, that it defileth the whole body, and setteth on fire the course of nature, and it is set on fire of hell.  Every kind of beast and serpent and things in the sea is tamed,’ Shamu, ‘and hath been tamed by mankind, but the tongue can no man tame, it is an unruly evil full of deadly poison, therewith bless we God, even the Father, and therewith curse we men, which are made in his image and likeness.’  You know, so, this whole problem that we have, it sits right here, again, comes in its own cage, and if we just keep the cage closed we stay out of trouble most of the time.  But David’s saying here, ‘When the wicked stood before me, I had a muzzle on, I just kept my mouth closed.’  And there’s a frustration we sense, as he’s saying it.  “I was dumb” he says, “with silence, I held my peace, even from good;” ‘I didn’t even bother to say anything good,’ he said, ‘I just kept it closed,’ “and my sorrow was stirred.  My heart became hot within me;” ‘I began to burn, it started to get under my skin,’ I know it’s hard for us to understand, these things happened only 3,000 years ago.  But David says, ‘As I kept quiet, and I listened, I just started to cook, I was burning up.’  And he said “while I was musing” ‘thinking about this, grinding through all this,’ “the fire burned:” (verse 3b) he says, then spake I with my tongue,” it doesn’t specifically tell us he regretted that, or whether it was time finally to speak up.  Again, Ecclesiastes chapter 3, it talks about there’s a time for every purpose under heaven, it says there’s a time for silence, and there’s a time for speech. 

 

“LORD, Life Is So Fragile, I Just Got Here, And I’m Not Staying Long’

 

And it should say ‘Blessed is the man that knows the difference,’ ah, because too often we speak when we should be silent, we’re silent when we should speak.  David says ‘then I opened up, I let it out.’  And in regards to all this, somehow he’s saying, look, in verse 4 he begins to talk about man’s frailty, “LORD, make me to know mine end, and the measure of my days, what it is; that I may know how frail I am.  Behold, thou hast made my days as an handbreadth; and mine age is as nothing before thee:  verily every man at his best state is altogether vanity.  Selah.” (verses 4-5)  Now a handbreadth is, there’s one way that he laid out the heavens, God with the span of his hand, that’s with the little finger to the thumb [about six inches], but a handbreadth is just the four fingers without the thumb.  And he says ‘You’ve measured my life in handbreadths, that’s how fast this goes by,’ “and mine age is as nothing before thee:” and then he says, “verily every man” including himself, and you and I, “at his best state is altogether vanity.  Selah.”  So David then enters in, and he says “LORD, make me to know mine end,” ‘remind me, this is all temporary, this is a pilgrimage,’ “and the measure of my days, what it is; that I may know how frail I am.  Ah, do we really want to know that?  You know, of course Moses would say ‘LORD, teach us to number our days,’ and so forth, and David no doubt knew that Psalm, Psalm 90.  But here, David says ‘Make me to know my end, make me to realize how few days I’m really here, how frail I am.’  And there are things that come into our lives, you know, that cause us to take some of those measures.  Again, James Dobson says “In everyone’s life there’s a time when his membrane is ruptured,” you know, speaking about a child in the womb, and the membrane’s ruptured and the birth process begins to take place.  But he says, then in life, you know we kind of have this protection around us, and somewhere in everybody’s life there’s a day when the membrane is ruptured, and you realize ‘Woe.’  You know sometimes it can be, you know I remember being with my Dad when he drew his last breath.  That’s very impressionable.  You kind of sit back and take a breath, and think, ‘If I wasn’t a Christian I’d go right to a bar from here.’  How does an unbeliever deal with that?  [With much difficulty]  Or you have a best friend that dies, sometimes takes their own life.  A child, a lab report, it says your lab report came back positive, your heart decides to go out of rhythm one day, that’s always fun.  When I first went through this thing with graves disease in 1991, I lost 26 pounds in three weeks, so they tested for cancer and all these different things, that’s always a fun time, waiting for those tests to come back.  You’re thinking, ‘Lord, don’t kill me, I’ve got four kids, I’m your pastor, what are you going to do without me? it’s a bad plan, you know.’  But it makes you reprioritize, I didn’t expect this.  Then you find out what it is and your heart goes into astro-fib, my heart stayed for about two months at 145, and it was doing drum-rolls, and it would stop, and I’d wake up, and then it would start drumming again, and just you’re thinking ‘They gotta do something about this, what if I skip too many beats?’ you know, there’s a frailty, you sit back and say ‘Lord, life is so fragile, it is so fragile, and I just got here, and I’m not staying long.’  And all of the things that we try to hold onto are all of a sudden not so important.  And David, you know, whatever he’s struggling with, whatever he’s musing with, whatever he’s wrestling with, just the wicked, and something’s terribly unjust, ‘I didn’t say anything, and all of a sudden I let it out, and I fired it.  And LORD. teach me’ he says, LORD, to know my end, to measure my days, what this is all about, to know how frail I am, behold, you’ve measured my days, measured them in a handbreadth.  My age, what if I live to be 80 or 90, my age is nothing before thee.’  “verily every man at his best state is altogether vanity.  Selah.” (verse 5b)  “Selah” means to “think about that.”  What do you think about that?  Think about that for awhile, because I’m wondering if he’s saying it in the context, ‘I finally let it out, my tongue started to wag, and I let him have it,’ and then he’s realizing, ‘of course, LORD, I’m no better than any other man.  LORD, I was wrestling with my rights and what was fair and all that, and I finally let it out, and LORD, every man at his best state is vanity.  Selah.’

 

‘Every Man Walks In A Shadow, What Am I Hoping For?  My Hope Is In Thee’

 

He says again, “Surely every man walketh in a vain shew:  surely they are disquieted in vain:  he heapeth up riches, and knoweth not who shall gather them.” (verse 6)  It’s an interesting verse to try and break down, King James says “Surely every man walketh in a vain shew:” it’s actually “every man walketh in a shadow” so life is just a shadow.  “surely they are disquieted in vain:”  “disquieted” there is, “they are only a breath.” the idea is there, you know, it’s over that fast, it’s only a breath.  “he heapeth up riches, and knoweth not who shall gather them.”  This is what man is, whose temporary, who just got here, and ain’t staying long?  You know, we’re so selfish, this is what we give ourselves to, we heap up riches.  And then we don’t know whose gonna get ‘em, whose going to gather them when we’re gone?  And no doubt, influencing Solomon with many of these ideas.  Solomon, you know, talks about a man, he gets wealth, and then he leaves it all to his son whose a fool, and squanders it, you know, and it’s gone.  Many of these emotions reflected in Ecclesiastes and the Book of Proverbs.  So, he says ‘then it’s gone.’  And now, verse 7, you know, there’s comfort in hope, he says, “And now, LORD, what wait I for?  my hope is in thee.”  Verse 7 is really the kind of the central point, where you drive a stake in this Psalm.  “now, LORD, what wait I for?” good question guys, ‘LORD, what am I waiting for?  Where’s my anchor?  What holds me in this life?  What am I waiting for?’  To get married? [yes, among other things…hey, I’m being honest, but that would take a miracle, so in that case too, I’m really waiting upon the LORD.]  So you can get a mortgage and get $200,000 in debt?  You think ‘If I get married I’ll be happy’?  You’ll be blessed.  Look, look, there are lessons there you can’t learn anywhere else, but God uses marriage as an arena to conform you into the image of his Son.  You have to die to yourself, you have to give, and then if you’re not well-done yet, you have kids, and that’s when the rest of you is gone.  What are we waiting for, “LORD, what wait I for?” ‘what’s the deal, what is my heart anchored into?’  “my hope is in thee.”  ‘my hope’ he says, ‘it’s in you.’ 

 

‘Deliver Me From All My Transgressions’

 

“Deliver me from all my transgressions:  make me not the reproach of the foolish.” (verse 8)  How wonderful that David could say that.  ‘Make me not the reproach of the foolish, LORD I’ve messed up, LORD, deliver me, my hope is in you, LORD, that’s what I’m waiting for.  Don’t let my enemies, don’t let fools just shoot their mouth off about me.’  “I was dumb, I opened not my mouth; because thou didst it.” (verse 9) he goes back to the beginning of the Psalm, ‘I opened not my mouth, because you did it, you allowed it,’ whatever’s come into his life he’s seeing it, LORD, this is, you’re dealing with me LORD, there’s chastisement here LORD.’  And he says it in verse 10, he’s crying out, yet in hope, “Remove thy stroke away from me:  I am consumed by the blow of thine hand.  When thou with rebukes dost correct man for iniquity, thou makest his beauty to consume away like a moth:  surely every man is vanity.  Selah.” (verses 10-11)  The Hebrews says there not “his beauty consumes away like a moth”, it says “that which is to be desired in him melts away.”  So, you get a better idea, you know you see somebody whose full of vitality, David was as a young man a warrior, filled with vitality, respected by his men, and then as he fails, he enters into sin, certainly Joab was never the same, because he knew what went on behind the scenes.  David said ‘All my bones are dried up,’ his vitality withered away, you see somebody, they just age, you see how they’re worn.  You see what compromise and sin can do to someone, the effect that it has on their very physical frame, because, you know, we’re driven from inside.  When there’s vitality, there’s life when we’re walking with the LORD, it says it’s health to our bones, it’s health to our whole being.  And David says here, ‘LORD, remove your stroke, take this from me, LORD, when thou dost rebuke and correct a man for iniquity, you make LORD,’ it says here, ‘that which is to be desired of him to be melted away,’ it actually kinds of melts away.  “surely every man is vanity.  Selah.” Again, ‘think about that, what do you think about that?’

 

‘I’m A Sojourner, A Pilgrim, As All My Fathers Were’

 

And now wonderfully, listen to the last two verses.  He says, “Hear my prayer, O LORD, and give ear unto my cry; hold not thy peace at my tears:  for I am a stranger with thee, and a sojourner, as all my fathers were.” (verse 12)  ‘I’m a sojourner, I’m a pilgrim,’ notice, “as all my fathers were.”  You get that great sense, you know.  When your dad goes, one of the overwhelming things about that is, ‘I’m next in line.’  That’s the overwhelming sense, ‘I’m next, the line in front of me is getting way shorter.’  You know, where’s your dad if you’re my age?  Where’s your grandpa?  Where’s your great grandpa?  Go on ancestry.com, and you’ll realize, like it says right here, ‘we’re a foreigner, we’re a pilgrim, as all our fathers were, passing through this world, it’s temporary.’  You know, human history, you know, it’s measured with a micrometer, compared to eternity which is endless.  And out of this little slit of time, all this screaming and yelling and sinning and nuclear bombs going off, and all this craziness in this little slot of time.  And David in the light of the LORD’s presence says, ‘Hey, make me to know my end, LORD, my life is measured in a handbreadth, it’s here and it’s gone, LORD, I’m understanding how frail I am.  Every man, LORD, is just vanity, Selah.’  He says ‘Every man is just a shadow, every man is just a breath.  And LORD, what am I hoping in LORD, what am I waiting for?  It’s you LORD, my hope is in you, so deliver me from all my transgressions, don’t make me the reproach of the foolish.  I was dumb, I didn’t open my mouth, because I realized you were chastening me, you were allowing things to come upon me.  So remove thy stroke away from me, I am consumed by the blow of thy hand, when thou dost rebuke or correct a man for iniquity, all that is to be desired in him seems to melt away, surely every man is vanity, LORD, hear my prayer, O LORD, give ear to my cry, hold not thy peace at my tears, LORD, you see me here before you broken.  For I am a stranger,’ he says, ‘with thee, and a sojourner, as all my fathers were.’  “O spare me, that I may recover strength, before I go hence, and be no more.” (verse 13)  “before I go hence,” that’s where we’re all going, “hence”“O spare me, that I may recover strength, before I go hence, and be no more.”  We have a little more insight than David did.  He understood going to Sheol, didn’t have a lot of information behind that, we have much more light.  [To see some of that light, according to how one part of the Body of Christ interprets Scripture, which is quite interesting, see http://www.unityinchrist.com/plaintruth/battle.htm]  I like it, ‘O spare me, that I may recover strength,’ some of your translations may say ‘that I might smile.’  The idea in the Hebrew is, when your spirit is lifted up, a smile returns to your face.  He says, you know, that’s an interesting idea, ‘Spare me, O LORD, that I may smile, before I go hence, I don’t want to leave here bummed and condemned, I want leave here ready with a smile on my face, O LORD.’  So, interesting song to sing, most of it is a blue’s song, you get an idea, Jeduthun was into rhythm and blues, because it’s kind of a heavy tune there [why I love Dire Straits, can you just imagine when God calls some of those musicians and they write the music for some of David’s Rhythm & Blues Psalms?  Awesome, man].

 

Psalm 40:1-17

 

To the chief Musician, A Psalm of David

 

“I waited patiently for the LORD; and he inclined unto me, and heard my cry.  He brought me up also out of an horrible pit, out of the miry clay, and set my feet upon a rock, and established my goings.  And he hath put a new song in my mouth, even praise unto our God:  many shall see it, and fear, and shall trust in the LORD.  Blessed is the man that maketh the LORD his trust, and respecteth not the proud, nor such as turn aside to lies.  Many, O LORD my God, are thy wonderful works which thou hast done, and thy thoughts which are to us-ward:  they cannot be reckoned up in order unto thee:  if I would declare and speak of them, they are more than can be numbered.  Sacrifice and offering thou didst not desire; mine ears hast thou opened:  burnt offering and sin offering hast thou not required.  Then said I, Lo, I come:  in the volume of the book it is written of me, I delight to do they will, O my God:  yea, thy law is within my heart.  I have preached righteousness in the great congregation:  lo, I have not refrained my lips, O LORD, thou knowest.  I have not hid thy righteousness within my heart; I have declared thy faithfulness and thy salvation:  I have not concealed thy lovingkindness and thy truth from the great congregation.  Withhold not thou thy tender mercies from me, O LORD:  let thy lovingkindness and thy truth continually preserve me.  For innumerable evils have compassed me about:  mine iniquities have taken hold upon me, so that I am not able to look up; they are more than the hairs of mine head:  therefore my heart faileth me.  Be pleased, O LORD, to deliver me:  O LORD, make haste to help me.  Let them be ashamed and confounded together that seek after my soul to destroy it; let them be driven backward and put to shame that wish me evil.  Let them be desolate for a reward of their shame that say unto me, Aha, aha.  Let all those that seek thee rejoice and be glad in thee:  let such as love thy salvation say continually, The LORD be magnified.  But I am poor and needy; yet the LORD thinketh upon me:  thou art my help and my deliverer; make no tarrying, O my God.”

 

Introduction

 

Ah, Psalm 40, ‘to the chief Musician,’ to be sung publicly.  Now we know this is a Messianic Psalm, ah, in the Book of Hebrews chapter 10, verses 6 on quote this, Paul quotes it from the Septuagint and not right from the Hebrew, but it’s quoted right from here.  So we know the Messiah comes into the picture, interesting Psalm.  He begins by saying “I waited patiently for the LORD; and he inclined unto me, and heard my cry.” (verse 1)  Now, “I waited patiently”, your translation, if you try to be literal, it’s ‘Waiting, I waited,’ the Hebrew says, “Hoping, I have completely hoped in the LORD,” that’s the phrase where “I waited patiently,”  “Hoping, I have completely hoped,”  So if you’re hoping for something, where’s your complete hope?  “Hoping, I have completely hoped in the LORD; and he inclined unto me, and heard my cry.  He brought me up also out of an horrible pit, out of the miry clay, and set my feet upon a rock, and established my goings.” (verses 1-2)  Now this Psalm kind of divides down the middle.  Verses 1 to 10, it’s praising God for his past deliverance, for his past faithfulness.  David’s going to talk, looking back in his life, ‘God has been faithful, he’s delivered me, this is what he’s done.’  Then when he comes to verse 11, he begins to pray for present deliverance because he must be in a very difficult situation.  As he goes through these things, he is allowed to get a glimpse of the Messiah.  Remember Job saying ‘I wish my words were written in a book, I wish they were chiseled in a rock forever, because I know that my Redeemer lives, in the latter days he’s going to stand upon the earth, and I’m going to see him for myself, these eyes are going to behold him, and not another, even after my body’s consumed away,’ he says, ‘I’m going to see him.’  So here David, much like Philippians chapter 3, ‘That I might know him,’ Paul says, ‘and the power of his resurrection.’  Then he goes where we don’t want to go, ‘the fellowship of his suffering.’  You ever fellowship with him there, when you’re betrayed, when you’re deeply hurt, when you’re keeping your mouth shut like David, and you don’t want to lash out?  And it tells us in Peter ‘that when he was reviled, he didn’t revile again.  He committed himself to the shepherd and bishop of his soul.’  That takes incredible strength.  And David here going through a very, very deep struggle, comes out of it saying ‘LORD, man, I have seen your blessings, they’re innumerable, what is the sum of them?’ and then in verse 6 he starts to see the Messiah.  So God takes him to a place where he can lift up his eyes. 

 

‘He Put A Song That Had Never Been Heard Before In My Mouth’

 

So he says this, ‘Hoping, I have hoped completely in you LORD,’ and then “he inclined unto me, and heard my cry.” (verse 1)  Listen to what he says, “He brought me up also out of an horrible pit, out of the miry clay, and set feet my upon a rock, and established my goings.” (verse 2) not just a regular old pit, “a horrible pit”, it’s interesting, the Hebrew “he brought me up also out of a noisy pit,” literally, “a pit of tumult” it says.  So whatever this was, literal, emotional, mental, spiritual, he says ‘I’m in a pit, and it’s filled with noise and tumult, it’s horrible, it was the deepest, darkest place I’ve ever been,’ and he said, ‘I hoped, and my hope was completely in the LORD, he inclined unto me, he heard my cry,’ and this is something that happened in his past, ‘and he brought me up also out of this horrible pit,’  “out of the miry clay, and he set my feet upon a rock, and established my goings.  And he hath put a new song in my mouth, even praise unto our God:  many shall see it, and fear, and shall trust in the LORD.” (verses 2b-3)  Back to Psalm 33, verse 3, we talked about it there, there are six “new songs” in the Book of Psalms, this is the second one.  And when David says “a new song”, it’s not just ‘let’s sing a new song,’ it’s a song that’s never been heard before, relative to the circumstances he’s gone through.  So David said ‘The song that came out of that pit was a song I never heard before, nobody ever heard before, in fact it was so deep, so troublesome, so horrible, so miry, that when the LORD brought me up out of that, put my feet on a rock, he established my goings, with it he put a song that had never been heard before in my mouth,’ even praise to our God, many shall see it, and fear, and shall trust in the LORD.” (verse 3)  It’s going to be an encouragement, what’s come out of this.  “Blessed is that man that maketh the LORD his trust, and respecteth not the proud, nor such as turn aside to lies.” (verse 4)  “Blessed is the man that maketh the LORD his trust, and respecteth not the proud, nor such as turn aside to lies.”  We can get our eyes on the power-brokers, the wealthy, the people in this world, ‘It’s not fair, look what they’re doing, look what they live in [ i.e. the Oliver Stone movie “Wall Street”], their lives filled with sexual indulgence, they have all this pleasure, look how wealthy they are, they all got Bemer’s, they’re dealing this on the side, they got this going on, they’re ripping people off here, they got all this.’  He says, ‘Look, blessed is the man, I was in a place that was so deep and it was so dark, that there was no amount of money, no amount of power, nothing that could have made a difference in my life.  But the LORD heard my cry, he lifted me up out of that place, he put me on a rock, he brought forth as new song out of my heart, and it’s going to help other people.’  ‘Blessed is the man that trusted in him, that doesn’t respect the proud, nor such as turn aside to lies.’ 

 

‘How Wonderful Are Your Works, How Incredible Are Your Thoughts Toward Us, LORD

 

And look at what he says in verse 5, he says, “Many, O LORD my God, are thy wonderful works which thou hast done, and thy thoughts which are to us-ward:  they cannot be reckoned up in order unto thee:  if I would declare and speak of them, they are more than can be numbered.”  So he goes, he says ‘I can’t even in this place,‘ no doubt part of this “new song,” he said, ‘LORD, your marvelous works, how many of them are there?  I was blind to them, going through this great difficulty made me have a different perspective,’  and he says, ‘Your thoughts, because down in that deep mire I thought ‘You didn’t care about me, LORD, what is this, is this your love?  This is your faithfulness?  This stinks.  Here I go, I tell everybody else about how great you are, and how they can trust you and all this stuff, and this is what I get?’  [amazing, I’m there right now]  You never sang this song [oh yeah, I’m singing it now, that part of it, so this is real].  But I’m just saying, that’s where David was.  And he said ‘That’s how bad it was,’ he said, ‘the LORD lifted me up out of there, put my foot back on a rock, he heard my cry, a new song was born in my heart,’ and he said, ‘I’m telling you, trust in him, make him your trust.  Don’t look at the proud in this world, don’t look at those who turn to lies,’ he looks up, he says, “Many” he talks to the LORD now, “Many, O LORD my God are thy wonderful works which thou hast done, and thy thoughts which are to us-ward:  they cannot be reckoned up in order unto thee:  if I would declare and speak of them, they are more than can be numbered.” (verse 5)  ‘There’s so much which I didn’t see, which thou hast done…and thy thoughts which are toward us, I thought you had forgotten me, how many are your thoughts for us, they cannot be reckoned, I mean, you can’t count them.’  He said, “If I would declare and speak of them, they are more than can be numbered.”  So in verse 5 he’s saying ‘What is the sum of all this?  How wonderful are your works, how incredible are your thoughts toward us, LORD, what’s the sum of all your love, and all of your wonder, what does it look like when it’s all summed up?’ 

 

LORD, What’s The Sum Of All Your Care For Us?

 

He says this, “Sacrifice and offering thou didst not desire; mine ears hast thou opened:  burnt offering and sin offering hast thou not required.  Then said I, Lo, I come:  in the volume of the book it is written of me, I delight to do thy will, O my God:  yea, thy law is within my heart.” (verses 6-8)  Now, the writer to Hebrews picks this up, he changes it up a bit, when he says this, he says, “For it is not possible that the blood of bulls and goats should take away sins.” (Hebrews 10:4)  David said ‘You haven’t desired sacrifice and offering.’  “Wherefore when he cometh into the world, he said Sacrifice and offering thou wouldest not, but a body has thou prepared me:” (Hebrews 10:5)  The King James says “when he cometh” the Greek is, “wherefore coming into the world he sayeth” so this is something that Jesus said, coming into the world, “Sacrifice and offering thou wouldest not,” the Psalm says “thou hast opened my ear”, here it says, “but a body hast thou prepared me:  In burnt offerings and sacrifices for sin thou hast had no pleasure.  Then said I, Lo, I come (in the volume of the book it is written of me,) to do thy will, O God.” (Hebrews 10:5b-7)  So, this remarkable portion of Scripture, this Messianic Psalm, he’s saying ‘Way down, I hope, I hope completely in the LORD, that’s what I did.  But man, I’m telling you, it [the ground] was dropped out from under me, I was in a place I never want to be again, I can’t describe it.  But he heard my cry, you brought me up, put me on a rock, there’s a new song, you’re supposed to get something,’ David says, ‘and that is, don’t turn to the proud, don’t turn to those who turn after lies, don’t look there.’   And he lifts up his head and he says ‘My God,’ he says, ‘how many are your wonderful works, how many are your thoughts towards us, LORD?  They can’t be reckoned.  If I should number them, they can’t be counted up, LORD.  What’s the sum, LORD, of all of your wonderful care for us?’  What the sum of it is, Jesus Christ.  What’s the sum of God’s love towards us?  ‘Lord, if you love me, you’ll let me get this new job.  Lord, if you love me, you’ll let this situation in my life work out.  Lord, if you love me, I’ll pass my Finals.  Lord, if you love me, you’ll give me this guy as a husband.’ You know, ‘Lord, you love me, and you gave me this guy as a husband?’  You know, ‘Lord, if you love me this will work out, if you love me this…’ no, no, it doesn’t say that.  It says here about his love, ‘Not that we loved God, but that he first loved us, and that he gave his Son to be the propitiation for our sins.’  He gave his Son.  Propitiation is the place where wrath is satisfied, that God Almighty, I have two sons, I’m crazy about both of them.  And they’re good, and they’re godly sons, they’re upright.  And for me, to stand back and watch them beaten beyond human recognition, spit on, mocked, when I’m omnipotent, all-powerful, just as an earthly father, if I could stop that process, change that at any moment, what kind of restraint would it take for me to hold back and watch my sons, or one of my sons go through that?  And then hear them say ‘Father, if there’s any way this cup can pass, any way, this doesn’t have to happen,’ and then to be silent, restrain myself.  To watch him scourged, watch his beard ripped out, watch them spitting on him, you know, the crown of thorns jammed on his head, then the sin of the world placed on him, every murderer, every rapist, every terrorist, every pornographer, you know, just the foulest most vile pile of human sin imaginable, it says he bore our sin upon the tree.  And then what I do do, is I turn away from him, because it says “God can’t look upon sin,” and I hear my own Son crying “My God, my God, why hast thou forsaken me?”  And my answer to that is I fire all of my holy wrath down on my own Son and judge the sin of the world.  And we want to say ‘Lord, if you love me you’ll give me this job, if you love me you’ll get me into this mortgage, if you love me you’ll do this…’ no, no, no, no, he says this is it, I’m not, ‘If you love me, my kid won’t have cancer,’ no look, nothing else is going to compare to this, God says [i.e. what Christ has already done for us, it is done, finished, Tutelisti].  Here is his love, ‘Not that you loved me, but I first loved you.’  You weren’t even aware of it, men [and women] are altogether vanity, you were out there transgressing, ‘I loved you, and I gave my only begotten Son to be the propitiation, the place where I could satisfy all of my holy wrath on sin, so that you could be forgiven.’  That’s love, God says.  And David’s saying here, ‘What’s the sum of it all, if I count it up, if I try to put it together, and I come from this dark, dark place, you’ve lifted me up into the light, I’m overwhelmed.  I can’t even count it up, what’s the sum of it all?’  And then all of a sudden it runs out of his mouth, “Sacrifice and offering thou didst not desire; mine ears hast thou opened:” (verse 6a) or as the writer to Hebrews says “a body thou hast prepared for me.”  “burnt offering and sin offering thou hast not required.  Then said I, Lo, I come:  in the volume of the book it is written of me,” (verses 6b-7) this is Jesus, we know that from Hebrews, “I delight to do thy will, O God:  yea, thy law is within my heart.” (verse 8), i.e. it’s within my bowels.  [And the law of God was in Jesus’ heart, just read Matthew chapter 5:17-48.]  So, wonderful picture here.  Sacrifice and offering is not going to cut it, it’s impossible with the blood of bulls and goats, but this, the sum of all of this, this is it, “Lo, I come:  in the volume of the book it is written of me,”  Look, from Genesis to Revelation, it says ‘the Word, the Logos, became flesh and dwelt among us, we beheld his glory, the glory of the only begotten of the Father, full of grace and truth,’ You know, some people, I’ve been in all different ministries, been saved since 1972, saved over 40 years, and I’ve banged around in all these different ministries, blab it and grab it ministries, sneeze, I’m not sick, sneeze, I’m not sick, faith confessions, you’re supposed to be healthy and prosperous, we stayed there until we were sick and broke, we’ve gone through all these different ministries, and you realize, well some people look at the Bible like through rose colored sunglasses, and everything looks rosy. Or everything is doctrine, or everything is principle. But the right color glasses to put on to interpret the Book is “In the beginning was the Word, the Word was with God, and the Word was God, the Logos.  The Logos [Greek for Word] became flesh and dwelt among us [i.e. Jesus Christ] and we beheld his glory, the glory of the only begotten of the Father, full of grace and truth,” from Genesis to Revelation Jesus Christ is revealed. [to see a good list of many of the prophecies ‘in the volume of the Book, the Bible that were written of me,’ Jesus Christ, from Genesis to Revelation Jesus Christ, where he is revealed, see http://www.unityinchrist.com/prophecies/1stcoming.htm]  And he is the lens that opens up the Word of God, he is the Living Word of God.  And here David says ‘Wow!  Man, from the deepest place to the highest place he saw this.’ 

 

“Mine Ears Hast Thou Opened”---Digged

 

And wonderfully here, I love the fact it says, “mine ears hast thou opened:” or “digged” we know it’s making reference, the word is always used of digging a well, but in this particular context, it’s allegorical.  In Exodus 21 it says the same thing as it says here, in Deuteronomy it says this, it’s talking about a servant, ‘where he shall say I will not go away because he loveth thee, loves his master in thy house, because he is well with thee, then shalt thou take an awl and thrust it through his ear [ear lobe] unto the door, and he shall be thy servant for ever, also unto thy handmaid thou shalt do likewise,’ and so forth.  Exodus 21 it says this, it says if you serve, and you’re serving a master, sometimes to pay off a debt, sometimes it was to the year of jubilee, and the time comes for you to be set free, and this servant realizes, ‘Set free, why would I want to be set free, I’ve come here broke, I came here worn out, he took me in, I’m clothed, I have a place to serve, my master is noble, I’ve found a wife here, I’ve found kids here.’  Let me tell you something, without Jesus Christ, I would not be married for 35 years, because I’m way too selfish.  And he took me in, I was a slave, he brought me into his house, and he’s added to me, I have a wife, I have children, I have grandchildren.  And if he said to me now ‘You can go free,’ I’d say ‘No, Lord, you’re my Master, freedom is in your house.’  The pursuit of life is to find the right master.  ‘You’ve given me everything,’ and it says if ‘I love my master, I’m not going go anywhere else, I’m going to serve him,’ then the master would take him to the door of his house, the doorpost, and sometimes a priest was there to witness it, and they would take an awl and pierce your ear, wouldn’t put ice cubes on it or anything, it would go right through it, and then they would put a ring in the ear, and it was a symbol of the fact that you had given your life, for the rest of your life, you’ve found the master that you want to serve, and beautifully here, then the Psalmist says “Sacrifice and offering thou didst not desire; mine ears hast thou opened:” or “digged:” we know that’s talking about something physical, because the interpretation in Hebrews is “a body thou hast prepared for me”  “burnt offerings and sin offerings thou hast not required.  Then said I, Lo, I come:  in the volume of the book it is written of me, I delight to do thy will, O my God:  yea, thy law is within my heart.” (verses 6-8) 

 

‘Be Faithful Now LORD, Presently In My Life’

 

Now remember, David overlaps this, “I have preached righteousness in the great congregation:  lo, I have not refrained my lips, O LORD, thou knowest.  I have not hid thy righteousness within my heart; I have declared thy faithfulness and thy salvation:  I have not concealed thy lovingkindness and thy truth from the great congregation.” (verses 9-10) [David now talking of his faithfulness in witnessing to others around him and even to the whole great congregation about God’s truth and faithfulness.]  So, talking about the LORD’s faithfulness, verse 11 he starts to pray now, David now, not the LORD, be faithful in my life presently, “Withhold not thou thy tender mercies from me, O LORD:  let thy lovingkindness and thy truth continually preserve me.  For innumerable evils have compassed me about:  mine iniquities have taken hold upon me, so that I am not able to look up; they are more than the hairs of mine head: [that’s worse for some of us than others]  therefore my heart faileth me.  Be pleased, O LORD. to deliver me:  O LORD, make haste to help me.  Let them be ashamed and confounded together that seek after my soul to destroy it; let them be driven backward and put to shame that wish me evil.  Let them be desolate for a reward of their shame that say unto me, Aha, aha.” (verses 11-15)  (We found that before last week in the Psalms, it’s a phrase of derision, you’re mocking someone.) 

 

“The LORD Be Magnified”

 

Let all those that seek thee rejoice and be glad in thee:  let such as love thy salvation say continually, The LORD be magnified.”  (verse  16)  That sounds like an encouragement, doesn’t it?  “Let all those that seek thee rejoice and be glad” you guys are ready to do that, right?---you seek the Lord, you’re glad, rejoice in him, “let such as love thy salvation say continually, The LORD be magnified.”  Do you love his salvation?  Not just tonight, do you love his salvation?  Without it we are in a mess.  “let such as love thy salvation say continually,” here’s where you’re failing, because you don’t continually say this, because I don’t either, “let such as love thy salvation say continually, The LORD be magnified.” (verse 16b)  So, just an exhortation, when you’re coming into church Sundays [or Saturdays], when you’re leaving, somebody says ‘How you doing?’ just say “The LORD be magnified.”  ‘What are you talking about?’  ‘I love his salvation, the Bible says because I love his salvation I should continually say The LORD be magnified, when we see you Wednesday night [for fellowship and Bible study],’  If they don’t understand, you’ll know they’re not coming Wednesday night, it’s like a secret code.  [laughter]  “let such as love thy salvation say continually, The LORD be magnified.”  That’s a great thing to say while your sitting alone with him too, ‘You saved me, LORD, be magnified, LORD, be magnified, LORD, I don’t care what the ACLU says, I don’t care what anybody says, LORD, be magnified, let there be prayers in every football game, let there be prayers in school, let them throw fits, let there be Nativity scenes everywhere, let the Ten Commandments be everywhere, LORD be magnified, be magnified LORD.’  [applause]  I love your salvation, I’m not ashamed of the Gospel of Christ, I love his salvation. 

 

“But I Am Poor And Needy, Yet My LORD Thinketh Upon Me”

 

And then he says this, and we can all relate, “But I am poor and needy; yet the LORD thinketh upon me:  thou art my help and my deliverer; make no tarrying, O my God.” (verse 17)  King James says “the LORD thinketh upon me:” the Hebrew says, “yet my LORD thinketh upon me:” that’s important.  It’s not just religion, it’s relationship, “my LORD thinketh upon me”, do you have that sense?  I mean, can you say that?  ‘My LORD thinketh upon me.” and he’s not thinking, ‘Oh not you again.’  That’s not what it’s talking about.  But look what he says, over in verse 5, he says, “Many, O LORD my God, are thy wonderful works which thou hast done, and thy thoughts which are to us-wardthey cannot be reckoned up in order unto thee:  if I would declare and speak of them, they are more than can be numbered.”  ‘they’re wonderful,’ it says in Psalm 8, ‘What is man that thou art mindful of him, or the son of man, that thou visiteth him?’  While he’s stretching out the heavens with the span of his hand, he’s running the universe, and he can’t get his mind off of you.  It says in Psalm 139, verses 17 and 18, that again, ‘his thoughts towards us are more than the grains of sand on the seashore, and good continually only.’  Because we’re around human beings all the time, so we think he must be, ‘alright, you did ok today, let’s not bring it up, try to do better tomorrow, ok, it’s a fresh start, I mean, I’m gracious so I’m going to let it go, ah, you think we can take a better shot at this tomorrow?’  It doesn’t say that.  It says his thoughts are immeasurable, that you can’t count them, they’re beyond human conception, they’re good continually only, because he’s the God who was, and is, and is to come, he’s in all three places.  So he can say, ‘you’re justified, sanctified, and glorified.’  He’s the God who was, “justified,” he’s the God who is, “sanctified,” he’s the God who is to come, you’re “glorified” [i.e. 1st resurrection to immortality, cf. 1st Corinthians 15:49-54], he’s in all three places, so he sees the finished product [cf. Revelation 19:7-9; 20:4,6; 21:1-23].  And his thoughts towards you as his sons and daughters, innumerable, good only, wonderful it says here.  “But I am poor and needy; yet my LORD thinketh upon me:” (verse 17a)  Isn’t that wonderful?  Frail, human, failing, many times, so many times doing right what’s outwardly, but inside we can be caving in, letting our minds go places they shouldn’t, feeling condemned thinking ‘Lord, you don’t really love me, why should you even let me sit in church?  It’s a wonder the building doesn’t get struck by lightning.’  We do that, and we listen to the enemy.  “I am poor and needy; yet my LORD thinketh upon me:”  What’s the sum of his thoughts, ‘Sacrifice and offering thou hast not desired, but a body  you have prepared for me, Lo, I came, as it is written in the volume of the book, to do thy will I delight to do,’ the Messiah has come, that’s how we know. 

 

‘You’re My Help And Deliverer, Make No Tarrying’

 

“thou art my help and my deliverer; make no tarrying,” and I love this, “O my God.” come and get us outa here, “make no tarrying, O my God.”  Isn’t it wonderful, with seven billion people on the planet, he can’t get his mind off you.  We think he’s like Santa Claus, ‘making a list, checking it twice, gonna find out whose naughty or nice.’   No, the reason he can’t take his eyes off of you, is because he’s crazy about you, because he loves you.  He knows what’s born in you, the new-birth.  Look, I’ve got grandkids now, I remember when my own kids were little, they would do things you’d never let an adult do in your house, lots of things you’d never let an adult do, because they’re so cute.  Babies can get away with things because they’re cute, they throw things, they rub spinach on the wall, they go to the bathroom in the middle of the living room, ‘Oh, they’re so cute.’  He sees what’s born in us, we’re his sons and daughters.  Yes, we’re in process, and as Spurgeon said, “I’m not what I should be, but I’m not what I used to be, and I’m not what I’m going to be.”  You know, we are in process.  But he sees us complete, a completed work of Christ.  It says ‘Set your affection on things above, not on things of the earth,’ your life is hid in Christ with God.  Look around the room, maybe you see people that bug you, they’re get on your nerves, God doesn’t see that, he sees the Bride, She’s pure and white by his completed work on the cross.  Again, I think of Balak hiring Balaam to curse the children of Israel, and he did all kinds of things, and Balaam it says, when he goes to curse them, it says the Spirit of God comes on him, and he says ‘How lovely are thy tents O Jacob, there is no iniquity found in thee.’  If all you do is nitpick and see what’s wrong with everybody around you, you need to fill up with the Holy Ghost, because this is the Bride of Jesus right here, and she is beautiful, and she’s beautiful, I look at her for three services every Sunday [as I do every Saturday], she’s beautiful by what he’s accomplished, not by her performance [although, thinking about it, her performance is a millions times better that that of those who are still dwelling in the world, unsaved], she’s beautiful by the completed work, and he has set his heart upon us, so that we can say ‘Lord, don’t tarry, come, don’t tarry.’  That’s all grace, for you and I to look forward to the coming of Almighty God.  We got to be in the right place for that to be happening, and it’s of course being washed in the blood of Jesus. 

 

In Closing

 

So, let’s have the musicians come.  We’ll lift our hearts, we’ll worship.  Again, I encourage you, great lessons about your mouth, keeping it closed, keep it in the cage.  Realize, we’re all men, we’re sojourners, we’re pilgrims, we’re passing through.  At our best, you know, we really don’t grade-out on top of somebody else.  We can cry to the Lord, in our bitterest day he hears us, he delivers us, we should hope in him.  Sometimes he takes us into the fellowship of his sufferings, Philippians chapter 3, sometimes to the darkest place.  But rising out of that there’s a new song that is born in our hearts, and that testimony touches other lives.  And it’s a place we come to, and people don’t understand, look, they’re saying ‘they’re on fire, they’re flipping out, they’re Jesus freaks,’ no, no. we’re  saying, ‘Lord, your works, how many are your wonderful works, I can’t even count up the sum of the thoughts that you have towards us.  Lord, what is the sum of all your love?  It’s Jesus, the sum of everything, Father, in your heart towards us is Jesus, it’s the sacrifice of your own Son, not sin offerings, not burnt offerings, sacrifice and offerings, he didn’t take any pleasure in them, but a body was prepared, your Son came, he did your will, he hung on the cross, he was crucified, he rose the third day, I’m getting into heaven [yes, two elements, outside of Space-Time, and into the Kingdom of God, which will end up on earth with the New Jerusalem, cf. Revelation 21:1-23], I’m getting into heaven.  So let those who love his salvation continually say, The LORD be magnified,’ so we should continually say that, and say, ‘LORD, come and get us, don’t tarry LORD, come and get us out, I’m poor and needy, but I know you’re thinking about me, come and get me outa here.’  Right?  Let’s stand.  Let’s pray, let’s lift our hearts in worship.  ‘Father, I know you’ve overheard, and these ancient songs, Lord, just filled with so many things. And Lord, in so many ways, Lord, born-again, filled with your Spirit, come into the light, Lord I wonder what glimmers and what beauty we see that maybe even David in his earthly pilgrimage didn’t see Lord?  It says prophets and holy men of old longed to look into the things that were written down for the heirs of salvation.  And Lord we praise you this evening, Lord, to give us grace with our mouths, Lord, you know how we can do that, we can bless you and then not bless people, that are created in your image, Lord.  Make us wise, let us take inventory Lord, we’re just flesh, Lord, let there be a Selah instead of a freak-out.  And Lord, in the darkest days and the deepest trials, let us hope in you, Lord.  Let us find that you lift us up, you hear us, you put our feet on a Rock, and that Rock is the Rock of Ages, the sum of all your love and your care for us, Lord.  Let that be fresh and new in us each day, Lord, let us, Lord, be overwhelmed with how many thoughts you have towards us, let us be calling for you to come.  Lord, you put every broken heart before you here, so we lift our voices, move among us by your Spirit, Lord Jesus we pray, in your wonderful name, amen.’         

 

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“Lo, I come, in the volume of the Book it is written of me.” 

See, http://www.unityinchrist.com/prophecies/1stcoming.htm

 

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