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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
Psalms 108-110 Psalms 111-113 Psalm114-116 Psalm117-118  
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Psalm 56:1-13

 

To the chief Musician upon Jonath-elem-rechokim, Michtam of David, when the Philistines took him in Gath.

 

“Be merciful unto me, O God:  for man would swallow me up; he fighting daily oppresseth me.  Mine enemies would daily swallow me up:  for they be many that fight against me, O thou most High.  What time I am afraid, I will trust in thee.  In God I will praise his word, in God I have put my trust; I will not fear what flesh can do unto me.  Every day they wrest my words:  all their thoughts are against me for evil.  They gather themselves together, they hide themselves, they mark my steps, when they wait for my soul.  Shall they escape by iniquity?  in thine anger cast down the people, O God.  Thou tellest my wanderings:  put thou my tears into thy bottle:  are they not in thy book?  [cf. Malachi 3:16]  When I cry unto thee, then shall mine enemies turn back:  this I know; for God is for me.  In God will I praise his word.  In God have I put my trust:  I will not be afraid what man can do unto me.  Thy vows are upon me, O God:  I will render praises unto thee.  For thou hast delivered my soul from death:  wilt not thou deliver my feet from falling, that I may walk before God in the light of the living?”

 

Introduction

 

“Psalm 56, probably the first half of the introductory notes there, “to the chief Musician upon Jonath-elem-rechokim” it’s the idea of “the wings of the dove,” no doubt that refers back to the Psalm before, Psalm 55, verses 6 to 8.  Sometimes, when you see the way these are written in the Hebrew, those words are actually written right in there, right between the Psalms, you can’ tell sometimes if it’s a postscript from the Psalm you just read.  Most of the time, no doubt, it is an introduction to the next Psalm.  There isn’t in 56 anything about the dove, so most scholars believe the first half of that phrase there relates back to Psalm 55, where David spoke of the wings of the dove.  And then this Psalm, 56, where it says “Michtam” it’s a “golden Psalm,” it’s a Psalm of David, “when” it gives us the time, “the Philistines took him in Gath.”  So, this is a Psalm, David fleeing from Saul, he’s about 20-years-old.  Let’s remember that, as, you know, as he writes this.  And look, what goes to the page is the heart of God, it’s eternal, God stirring the heart of this young man, God using this 20-year-old in remarkable ways.  The last Psalm we read, no doubt about Absalom and Ahithophel, David is much older, in his 60’s, he’s an older man.  But this one, and the one after it, again, David very young.  He had cared for his father’s flock, remember the story, he’d killed a lion and a bear, he had trusted the LORD, he had written Psalms, he had stepped onto the battlefield and defeated Goliath, in great faith.  And Saul became jealous, so quickly he began in his moods, as an evil spirit would come upon him, to try to assassinate David and so forth.  David, striking up a remarkable relationship with Jonathan, many years his senior, 25 to 30 years older than David, we don’t realize that.  And yet no doubt he saw this young boy on the battlefield slaying a giant, someone he so admired.  And Jonathan and David then having to split up, David fleeing from his home.  And last week we talked a bit about it, he comes to Nob and there Ahimelech the Priest gives him the sword of Goliath and gives him some of the Show Bread to eat.  And David then proceeds south to Gath, Philistine country, because he knows Saul won’t pursue him that far.  And the irony is, you know, here’s this young man coming into Gath, where Goliath was from, dragging Goliath’s sword, like that would do him any good, he killed the guy with a stone.  And he realizes, as he gets into Gath, that his life is in great jeopardy.  They said, Isn’t this David, isn’t this their warrior, isn’t this the one they sang the songs about,’ so he begins again to dribble in his beard and act like an insane man.  But this Psalm begins to give us some of the things that were going on in his heart that he was struggling with.  Now, it’s interesting, because Psalm 55, written when he was much older, talks about his relationship, no doubt, with Absalom his son and Ahithophel, who had been his best friend for many years as counselor.  And the pain is much deeper, David is almost depressed in Psalm 55.  In Psalm 56, as a much younger man, he falls into the hands of his foes and his enemies, and actually his faith outweighs, in this Psalm, his discouragement and his fear.  There’s a remarkable reflection of a young man who has trusted God in a remarkable way, as we go in to this Psalm. 

 

When I’m Afraid I’m Going To Trust In You, LORD

 

He starts by saying, “Be merciful unto me, O God:  for man would swallow me up; he fighting daily oppresseth me.” (verse 1)  That’s not good, by the way.  “Mine enemies would daily swallow me up:  for they be many that fight against me, O thou most High.” (verse 2)  wonderfully, he sees the LORD in that position, “most High.”  He says, “What time I am afraid, I will trust in thee.” (verse 3) ‘Whenever I’m afraid, I will trust in thee.’  Listen, a 20-year-old.  And this is not the kind of afraid where it’s, ‘My neighbour’s gonna be mad,’ or ‘I’m kind of afraid, my aunt’s going to find out I gave away the bowling pin lamp she gave me for Christmas,’ or ‘I’m kind of afraid they’re going to want to do a root canal,’ you know, everybody loves the smell of enamel burning.  But this is a man, a young man whose life is in jeopardy, the king and his army are pursuing him to kill him, pursued him to his home.  He’s in Gath surrounded by the Philistines.  This is a situation where his life is really in jeopardy, I mean, it’s remarkable.  And he says, ‘When I am afraid, I will trust in thee.’  Listen, verse 4 is kind of a refrain, first 3 verses are talking about the problem.  He says, “In God I will praise his word, in God I have put my trust; I will not fear what flesh can do unto me.” (verse 4)  The verse before, he said ‘I will trust in thee when I’m afraid.’  “I will not fear what flesh can do unto me.” (verse 4b)  Now that’s a remarkable statement.  He’s only three years out from a giant standing in front of him, going down with a stone in his forehead.  So he realizes no flesh can touch him unless the LORD allows it, and he certainly realizes that.  But remarkably here, he says ‘When I’m afraid, LORD I’m going to trust in you.’  That’s a great thing, that’s a great bumper-sticker.  ‘When I’m afraid, LORD I’m going to trust you.’ ‘And I’m going to praise you for your Word.’  Where would we be without the Word of God?  What would it be like today, watching the news, without the Word of God?  What would it be like watching everything that’s going on in the world around us, as far as wars and rumours of wars, famines, pestilence, earthquake, all that stuff, if we didn’t have the Word of God, and realize ‘Somehow, we’re right on track, the Lord told us these things would precede his coming.’  [see, http://www.unityinchrist.com/mathew/Matthew24-1-31.htm and http://www.unityinchrist.com/prophecies/2ndcoming_4.htm And just this past week as I transcribed this, Vladimir Putin just parked a Typhoon class Fleet Ballistic Missile submarine carrying up to 200 nuclear warheads off the Syrian coast, parked a destroyer and cruiser squadron over it, the Chinese parked their aircraft carrier in the Russian naval base in Syria in the port of Tartus, and the Russians built a fighter plane airbase in Latakia, Syria, with a squadron of Su-34 fighter aircraft,  protected by a bunch of T-90 heavy Russian tanks, and to top it all off, Syrian refugees are flooding into Europe by the millions.]  Again, you think of some people, you look at the news, and they want to protect the Condor, protect the Spotted Owl, they’re worried about the Rain Forest, you know, ‘Mother Earth, you know, if you don’t care for Mother Earth she’s going to revolt against us.’  You look at the tsunamis and you look at the earthquakes, and you look at hurricane Sandy, if that’s your deal you got one mean mother, that’s all you need to remember.  We’ve got a father in heaven who cares for us, and David, this young shepherd says ‘I’m going to trust him, I’m going to praise him for his Word, I’m going to trust him, I’m not going to be afraid what flesh can do to me.’

 

It Hasn’t Been An Easy Journey To The Throne For David---We Enter The Kingdom Through Much Tribulation

 

“Every day they wrest [twist] my words:  all their thoughts are against me for evil.” (verse 5)  Any of you there?  Is that where you work, or go to school?  Anybody?  ‘Every day’ he says, ‘they twist my words, they take what I say, and they twist it around.’  all their thoughts are against me for evil.  They gather themselves together, they hide themselves, they mark my steps, when they wait for my soul.” (verses 5b-6)  ‘They’re using surveillance here, they want my very life.’  “Shall they escape by iniquity?  in thine anger cast down the people, O God.” (verse 7)  ‘You deal with them, LORD, I know that their wickedness is not going to provide a way of escape for them, I’m trusting that I trust you, that there will be a way of escape for me.’  And look, in verse 8 he says, “Thou tellest my wanderings:  put thou my tears into thy bottle:  are they not in thy book?”  [cf. Malachi 3:16-17]  ‘Thou tellest my wanderings, LORD, you know all of my steps, you know that I’m here in Gath, you know that I’m surrounded by enemies, LORD.’  put thou my tears into thy bottle:” more properly is “my flowing tears you have counted,” then, “are they not written in thy book?” or “are they not in thy book?”  There’s not a single one of them that’s not unnoticed.  He says ‘God’s book of reckoning has taken into consideration all of my wanderings and all of my tears.’  You know, Jesus would say in the New Testament, ‘Even the very hairs of your head are numbered, not one sparrow falls without notice, and you, even the very hairs of your head are numbered.’  Not counted, that would be easier with some of us than others.  Not the very hairs of your head are counted, they’re numbered, average head, I think about 150,000 hairs, each one of them is numbered.  So that whether you’re follicly challenged or you have a full head of hair, when one falls out, the idea is, there goes number 10,223, each one is numbered, not counted, numbered.  He knows in detail, he cares that much about our lives.  And if you figure, way down smaller than the hair, the DNA, the volumes of information that are written in the digital code in the human genome, way more complicated and precise than the number of hairs on our heads.  And here he says, ‘LORD, all of my wanderings, you know them.  All of the tears I’ve shed, you’ve seen every one of them, they’re reckoned, they’re counted.’  It hasn’t been an easy journey towards the throne, for David or for us.  We enter the Kingdom, we’re told in the New Testament, through much tribulation.  We forget so often, this is earth, it’s not heaven [or the Kingdom of heaven, which will come to earth at the 2nd coming of Christ].  This is earth, we’re passing through, we’re passing through.  And David says, ‘LORD, you know all my wanderings.  You know, Samuel poured the oil on my head, God, I know there’s a calling on my life.’  Each one of us here is anointed with the Holy Spirit of God.  Each one of us here, there’s a calling on our lives.  Each one of us here gets to lift his head to heaven and say ‘Abba, Father,’ David never did that.  But it’s not an easy journey.  And it wasn’t an easy journey for David, you know, because God anointed him to be king, but it took years to make him the king he had anointed him to be.  And he is fleeing from Saul, and will flee from Saul, he’s in enemy territory at this point in time, and he says, ‘Every one of my tears, LORD, they’re reckoned.’  On those days when you’re miserable, and you sit alone, surrounded by enemies, you don’t understand what God’s doing, why he’s leading the way he’s leading, ‘If he really loves me, why did this happen?  Nobody cares, I’m alone, I’m alone, I’m alone, I’m alone.’ [oh boy, he’s praying my prayer.  How is it I find myself living these Psalms so emotionally?]  It says here, ‘Not one of those tears is unnoticed by God,’ when you feel like no one is noticing, and no one cares.  And I know there’s people in this room like that.  The Psalmist, here through the Holy Spirit David says, ‘You reckon all my tears, they’re all counted, they’re all written down.’  Isn’t that remarkable?  are they not in thy book?” (verse 8b)  What a God that we have. 

 

There Wasn’t A Stick Of Evidence In His Life That God Was For Him

 

“When I cry unto thee, then shall mine enemies turn back:  this I know; for God is for me.” (verse 9)  Isn’t that amazing?  ‘Here I am, acting like a lunatic, in enemy territory, being chased by the king of Israel, everything in my life is falling apart, you’re my God, you’re counting my tears, I know this crazy journey I’m on, everything is falling apart.  But LORD, I know when I cry unto you, it’s my enemies that are going to turn back, I know that God, because you’re for me.’  Listen, there wasn’t a stick of evidence in his life that God was for him.  Everything that happened around him would contradict that.  But he says ‘LORD, I know all this because you’ he says, ‘are for me.’   Now he goes back into that refrain again, similar to the one in verse 4, “In God will I praise his word:  in the LORD will I praise his word.” (verse 10)  I get an idea that God’s Word has a lot to do with David standing on solid ground when everything else is falling apart.  But you see it in verse 4, “In God I will praise his word,  here, “In God will I praise his word:” then, “in the LORD will I praise his word.” (verse 10)  ‘In Jehovah’ he adds, ‘the covenant God, “will I praise his word.  In God have I put my trust:  I will not be afraid what man can do unto me.” (verses 10b-11)  “Thy vows are upon me, O God:  I will render praises unto thee.” (verse 12)  He said, ‘LORD, you get me through this, I will praise your name,’ you know, maybe he’s ending this Psalm in these last two verses, in the Cave of Adullam.  Remember he was freed then from Gath, the king of Gath of the Philistines let him loose, and then he got out of there, and he ended up in the cave.  He says, he must have said, ‘LORD, if you get me out of here, I got myself into a pickle this time, it’s a Jewish pickle in Philistine territory, that’s scary, if you will get me out of here, LORD, I will praise your name.’  He says it, “Thy vows are upon me, O God:  I will render praises unto thee.”  the idea is “pay back praises unto thee.”  And remarkably, look in verse 13 here, he says, “For thou hast delivered my soul from death:  wilt not thou deliver my feet from falling, that I may walk before God in the light of the living?”  hast delivered my soul from death” faith sees this as an accomplished fact.  ‘For you HAVE delivered my soul from death,’ and he says, in the logic of that, wilt not thou deliver my feet from falling, that I may walk before God in the light of the living?”  ‘If you’ve delivered my soul, certainly you’re going to deliver my feet.’  The idea is, ‘You’ve saved my very life, then certainly you’re going to guide my path.’  He said, ‘Thou tellest thou all my wanderings,’ and ‘thou hast delivered my soul from death.  Will not thou deliver my feet from falling?  LORD, you’re going to keep me.’  that I may walk before God” look what he says, “in the light of the living”, young guy, you know, 20-years-old, ‘LORD, that I might walk in front of you in the light of the living.’  The whole Psalm is a swing up above Psalm 55 when he was a much older man, and he had to cry out to God with his conscience guilty.  Ah, here remarkably, he pours out his soul to the LORD in light of difficult circumstances, and somehow he says ‘It’s your Word, it’s your Word, I’m holding on, it’s your Word, I understand.’ 

 

Psalm 57:1-11

 

To the chief Musician, Al-taschith, Michtam of David, when he fled from Saul in the cave.

 

“Be merciful unto me, O God, be merciful unto me:  for my soul trusteth in thee:  yea, in the shadow of thy wings will I make my refuge, until these calamities be overpast.  I will cry unto God most high; unto God that performeth all things for me.  He shall send from heaven, and save me from the reproach of him that would swallow me up.  Selah.  God shall send forth his mercy and his truth.  My soul is among lions:  and I lie even among them that are set on fire, even the sons of men, whose teeth are spears and arrows, and their tongue a sharp sword.  Be thou exalted, O God, above the heavens; let thy glory be above the earth.  They have prepared a net for my steps; my soul is bowed down:  they have digged a pit before me, into the midst whereof they are fallen themselves.  Selah.  My heart is fixed, O God, my heart is fixed:  I will sing and give praise.  Awake up, my glory; awake, psaltery and harp:  I myself will awake early.  I will praise thee, O Lord, among the people:  I will sing unto thee among the nations.  For thy mercy is great unto the heavens, and thy truth unto the clouds.  Be thou exalted, O God, above the heavens:  let thy glory be above all the earth.”

 

Introduction:  A Caveman Psalm

 

“Psalm 57 now.  “To the chief Musician” uhm, “Al-taschith” I never say it right, which means “destroy not,” it’s a “Michtam” again of David, “a golden Psalm,” especially then to be committed to memory, and this one was written “when he fled from Saul in the cave.”  Now this doesn’t tell us whether this is when he fled from Saul and ended up in Adullam, around 20 years of age, or is this when he’s fleeing from Saul when he was up in Engedi, you remember many of you.  How many of you guys have been to Engedi with us?  There’s some Engedi-ites here.  Ah, when he fled from Saul there in Engedi, the Stream of the Wild Goats, we see the Ibex there when we’re there in Israel.  And remember there, he was hiding in the cave, and Saul and his army came down, and the LORD put his finger on Saul’s bladder, and Saul said ‘Excuse me, I gotta go in the cave, guys,’ and there was his life, before David.  And David refused, he said, ‘God forbid I should touch the LORD’s anointed.’  You know it’s a funny thing, because crazy people always use that, so that you’ll leave them alone when they get caught.  Saul wasn’t yelling that, that was David saying ‘I’m not going to go after him.’  Remember the last time we had a ‘prophet’ here, [chuckles] we tried to convince him we were a non-prophet organization, but he wouldn’t go for it, and then he came on a Wednesday night, I wasn’t here that Wednesday night, ah, and he came running down the center aisle, and Jerry was getting up to teach, and he was yelling ‘Don’t listen to Pastor Joe, don’t listen to Pastor Joe,’ and everybody, they grabbed him, they dove on him, they drug him out, and they said “You’re a prophet?”  he said, “Ya.”  “Then why didn’t you know that Pastor Joe wasn’t here tonight?” [loud laughter]  But when they were dragging him out he was saying “Touch not the Lord’s anointed, Touch not the Lord’s anointed, Touch not the Lord’s anointed!”  They always use it for their insanity.  David said to God, ‘God forbid that I should touch the LORD’s anointed.’  He said it to his men, it wasn’t Saul pleading that, who was wrong and in sin.  So, this may have been in Engedi.  The point for you and I is, David’s in the cave.  This is a song for cavemen.  Any of you in the cave this evening?  You just feel like ‘I’m in the cave, just roll the stone in front of the door, just leave me alone for awhile, I’m in the cave.’ He’s a fugitive here.  There are eleven verses, and in eleven verses, 21 times God is spoken of, either in personal pronoun or the name of God, 21 times in eleven verses.  That means if you’re in a cave tonight, probably every sentence you say, you should have God in it at least twice. 

 

‘I’m Going to Take Refuge Under The Shadow Of His Wings’

 

He says, “Be merciful unto me, O God, be merciful unto me:  for my soul trusteth in thee:” and again, David 20 to 23 here probably, “Yea, in the shadow of thy wings will I make my refuge, until these calamities be overpast.” (verse 1)  calamities” that’s not good, by the way.  Interesting, in the Hebrew, both places is says, my soul trusteth in thee”, the Hebrew says “my soul, it takes refuge in thee, yea, in the shadow of thy wings’ again, “will I make refuge”, it’s “will I take refuge.”  In neither place David says ‘He’s going to make refuge,’ in both places he says ‘I’m taking refuge in you.’  ‘My soul is taking refuge in you, I’m going to take refuge in you, LORD, that’s what I’m taking refuge in.’  Not “making”, there’s no making of refuge here for himself, ‘he is taking refuge in God, until’ he says, ‘calamities be overpast’ in the cave.  And he says, “in the shadow of thy wings will I take refuge,” what a wonderful picture.  In his mind, somehow, it says ‘The heavens declare the glory of the LORD, the earth showeth forth his handiwork, night after night they render speech, there’s no language where they’re not heard.’  David had seen so much in God’s creation, of the nature of God, and realized somehow as he had watched some mother bird gather her chicks under her wings, that there was a part of God’s very heart that was reflected in that.  [Comment:  No atheism here with David.  For some studies proving God’s existence, see:  http://www.unityinchrist.com/Does/Does%20God%20Exist.html]  And he’s in the cave here, he said, ‘I don’t want a fortress right now, I don’t want a tower, I don’t want an Apache helicopter, I’m going to take refuge under the shadow of your wings, until the calamities be overpast.’  And so much the heart of God, that Jesus himself, weeping, looking at Jerusalem, said of Jerusalem “Jerusalem, thou that stonest the prophets and killest them that are sent unto thee, how often would I have gathered thee unto myself as a hen gathers her chicks under her wings, and you would not.”  David would.  How many times in our lives, you know, in a difficult circumstance, we give God all kinds of options, ‘Lord, you can pick what’s behind ‘Door A, Door B, or Door C.’  No, what if he’s got a whole different plan, what if he’s just saying, ‘I’m going to gather you under my wings like a hen gathers her chicks,’ and we don’t want him saying to us, ‘and you would not.’  Because he has his way.  Because when he says to Israel ‘you would not,’ he says “Henceforth ye shall see me no more till you say Blessed is he that cometh in the name of the Lord.’  Ultimately they’re going to say ‘Uncle.’  He’s going to come and gather his people, his ancient people Israel [just like he gathered the Jews back into the Promised Land, out of German concentration camps.  That’s how he’s going to get them to say ‘Uncle.’  And this will be the Ten Lost Tribes of Israel, not the Jews who have already been gathered back.  This is a whole different subject.  To get a historic whiff of who this part of Israel may be, you need to look into Old Testament history, combined with some secular history from and just after the same time period.  For this, see http://www.unityinchrist.com/kings/1.html]  So here David says, ‘I chose to do this, of all the different places I could have taken refuge, where I ran is under the shadow of his wings, I took refuge there.’ 

 

‘My Soul Is Among Lions, LORD, But My Heart Is Established’

 

“I will cry unto God most high; unto God that performeth all things for me.” (verse 2)  ‘Most High’  again, ‘whatever my circumstances are LORD, you’re Most High,’ listen to what he says here, “unto God that performeth all things for me.”  That’s remarkable perspective for a young man.  “He shall send from heaven, and save me from the reproach of him that would swallow me up.  Selah.” (verse 3)  ‘What do you think about that?  I’m gonna take refuge under the shadow of his wings, I’m gonna cry to the Most High, he performs all things for me, he’s going to send from heaven, he’s the Most High, he’s going to send down, he’s going to save me, and he’s going to reproach anybody that would mess with me, Selah, what do you think about that?’  That’s a good place for a “Selah.”  He says “God shall send forth his mercy and his truth.” (verse 3b)  Sending it forth, he had cried to God from heaven, he’s going to send forth his mercy and his truth.  If you look down in verse 10 he says again, “For thy mercy is great unto the heavens, and thy truth unto the clouds.”  You know, God’s going to send forth his mercy and his truth.  What do we need?  When we’re in a situation when we’re in some kind of cave, and everybody’s picking on us, and our heart is broken, and it seems like everything is falling apart, and nothing makes sense---I’ll tell you two things we need, we need mercy, and we need truth.  The truth is, he says, ‘God is for me.’  Circumstances are trying to tell me something else, the truth is, he never leaves us or forsakes us.  The truth is, I can take shelter under the shadow of his wings. ‘LORD, you’re going to send forth your mercy and your truth.’  He says, in the middle of all this, remarkably, listen, “My soul is among lions:  and I lie even among them that are set on fire, even the sons of men, whose teeth are spears and arrows, and their tongue a sharp sword.” (verse 4)  Now he uses all of these descriptions to try to describe Saul and the armies that have him surrounded.  I know some of us live there too.  Understand what he’s saying here, though, this evidently is an evening Psalm, because verse 4 seems to indicate “My soul is among lions:” and the King James has and I lie even among them” the Hebrew says, “let me lie down among them”.  So David is saying, look, ‘I’m surrounded with these terrible circumstances, you’re going to send from heaven mercy and truth, I’m going to take shelter under the shadow of your wings, so though my soul is among lions, let me lie down, LORD, let me lie down among them, let me sleep, give me rest,’ “let me lie down among them that are set on fire, even the sons of men, whose teeth are spears and arrows, and their tongue a sharp sword.”  You read some of those descriptions in 1st Samuel, between David when he was fleeing, and how he would lay down, and how Saul and his men couldn’t find him, how they were in caves and found rest, it’s remarkable.  So he says, ‘This is what I am going to do, LORD,’ and then the first refrain, verse 5, which is the same as verse 11, “Be thou exalted, O God, above the heavens; let thy glory be above all the earth.”  He had called him “the Most High.”  let thy glory be above all the earth.”you do this, LORD.’  “They have prepared a net for my steps; my soul is bowed down:  they have digged a pit before me, into the midst whereof they are fallen themselves.  Selah.” (verse 6) ‘LORD, let them be caught up in their own trap, they’re digging a pit for me, LORD, let them fall into it.  Selah, what do you think about that?’  He figures another good place for that.  And then he says this, remarkably here, he says, “My heart is fixed, O God, my heart is fixed:  I will sing and give praise.” (verse 7)  Listen, the Hebrew both times is “establish,” fixed in the sense that it’s solid, it’s secure.  In the middle of enemies, in the middle of mouths chewing on him, in the middle of lions, his description, the most painful circumstances you can imagine, this cave-man David, ‘I’m in a cave, I’m all alone,’ he says this, ‘My heart is fixed, it’s established, O God.  My heart is established, and I will sing and give praise.’  Is your heart fixed, in your cave, whatever it is?  Are you running around screaming in your cave, is it echoing off the walls?  Screaming, running around, banging your head against the wall? or are you saying LORD, my heart’s established, I’m going to sing your praise right here in this cave, Lord.  I got caveman songs that are just coming out of my guitar, they are flowing out, my heart is fixed, O God, my heart is fixed, I will sing and give praise.’ 

 

‘I Will Awaken The Dawn To Praise You’

 

And then, “Awake up, my glory, awake, psaltery and harp:  I myself will awake early.” (verse 8)  Wonderfully he says, “I myself will awake early.”  And if you have the King James you see the word myself is in italics there, it just says “I will awake early”, the Hebrew says, “I will” or “let me awaken the dawn” ok?  He’s in the cave, ‘My heart is established, LORD, I’m going to praise you,’  “Awake up, my glory; awake psaltery and harp:  I will awaken the dawn.”  The dawn is not going to awaken him, he’s going to be up in the dark before the light is up, and he’s going to have his guitar, and he’s going to start to praise the LORD, he’s going to see some light on the horizon, he’s going to realize this is a new day, ‘It reminds me when it was a new day, keeping the flocks for my father, and LORD, I wrote all of those songs, I’m looking out the door of the cave, and here comes the sun,’ not like George Harrison, ‘Here comes the sun,’  Just, ‘LORD, let me awaken the dawn, not let the dawn awaken me, let me awaken the dawn.’  I love that.  Look, I like to be up early, sometimes I need “blanket victory,” particularly when the winter comes and it’s colder, and it’s darker.  You know, I’m pretty good in the summer, it’s getting light and it’s warm.  But in the winter, when the alarm goes off and it’s still dark, and it’s cold, those blankets, I just want to roll…Allen Redpath talked about “blanket victory” and I can relate, I need that.  But the morning is quiet, before the world’s up, before everyone else is up, the phone’s not ringing then, it’s quiet, a great time to praise the Lord, and be still.  “I will awaken the dawn.” 

 

David Begins His Day With Prayer, And Ends His Day In Prayer

 

“I will praise thee, O Lord, among the people:  I will sing unto thee among the nations.” (verse 9) This is a great perspective if you’re in the cave, things are going to change.  Because you know why?  Because some of us, when we’re in the cave are thinking ‘Things are never gonna change, things are never gonna get better, I’m just gonna be a caveman for the rest of my life,’ no, no, he says “I will praise thee, O Lord, among the people:  I will sing unto thee” look,  among the nations.”  “For thy mercy is great unto the heavens, and thy truth unto the clouds.” (verse 10)  He said, ‘LORD, you’re gonna send your mercy and truth down on me,’ in verse 3.  He says here, “For thy mercy is great unto the heavens, and thy truth unto the clouds.” it reaches to the heavens.  and thy truth unto the clouds.”  up into the sky LORD, your mercy and your truth,’  “Be thou exalted, O God, above the heavens:  let thy glory be above all the earth.” (verse 11)  Same thing as verse 5, the refrain again.  “Be thou exalted, O God, above the heavens:  let thy glory be above all the earth.”  You know, David, we get an interesting perspective of this young man, that he ends his days in prayer, he lies down, ‘Let me lie down here LORD, the enemy’s around me LORD, let me do this,’ great way to end the day, in prayer.  Great time, just to lay there in the dark, before you doze off to sleep, ‘Lord, bless the grandkids, Lord,’ go through them all by name, list the kids, their spouses, my wife, the church, just different people, ‘great way to end the day, Lord, I trust you, great day.  You give your beloved sleep, so, love me up now Lord, gonna get some ZZZ’s here.’  And he rises with praise.  That’s a good program, to end the day in prayer, and to begin the day in praise, a wonderful thing, get up in the morning.  At my age, another day, that’s something to praise him for [what are you talking about Pastor Joe, your six years younger than I am!], get up, my eyes work, I might snap, crackle and pop like Rice Crispies for the first ten minutes, but my eyes start to work after awhile, my face goes back where it belongs, ‘And Lord another day, your grace, you’re wonderful, your mercies are new every morning, I praise you Lord.’   It’s a great way to start the day.  I love it in the Old Testament, the morning and the evening sacrifice, to end every day with the blood of the Lamb, and to begin every day with the blood of the Lamb, what a way to live, Jesus in the morning, Lord, I’m washed, I’m cleansed, it’s a new day, by your grace, by your love, underserved, unearned.  And every day, Lord, I was a jerk today, but I’m washed in your blood, Lord.  Your love is unearned, undeserved, you lavish it upon me here, Lord.

 

Psalm 58:1-11

 

To the chief Musician, Al-taschith, Michtam of David

 

“Do ye indeed speak righteousness, O congregation?  do ye judge uprightly, O ye sons of men?  Yea, in heart ye work wickedness; ye weigh the violence of your hands in the earth.  The wicked are estranged from the womb:  they go astray as soon as they are born, speaking lies.  Their poison is like the poison of a serpent:  they are like the deaf adder that stoppeth her ear; which will not hearken to the voice of charmers, charming never so wisely.  Break their teeth, O God, in their mouth:  break out the great teeth of the young lions, O LORD.  Let them melt away as waters which run continually:  when he bendeth his bow to shoot his arrows, let them be as cut in pieces.  As the snail which melteth, let every one of them pass away:  like the untimely birth of a woman, that they may not see the sun.  Before your pots can feel the thorns, he shall take them away as with a whirlwind, both living, and in his wrath.  The righteous shall rejoice when he seeth the vengeance:  he shall wash his feet in the blood of the wicked.  So that a man shall say, Verily there is a reward for the righteous:  verily he is a God that judgeth in the earth.”

 

Introduction:  An Outcry Against A Judicial System That’s Corrupt

 

“Psalm 58, it says “To the chief Musician,” and again “Do not destroy,” a “Michtam,” a golden Psalm, and it has a lot of meaning.  And he’s saying “Do not destroy” because this Psalm is about unjust civil leaders, or wicked judges.  It’s an outcry against a judicial system that’s corrupt.  And that only happened in David’s day, so our…to relate about it today [he’s saying that tongue-in-cheek].  Here’s the Psalmist saying ‘LORD, worldly leaders that are around me are unjust, there’s corruption, the wicked are rising up.’  Again, very troubling to see some of the things [today] in legislation in our country.  It’s very troubling, I can’t imagine our forefathers, imagine you couldn’t say a prayer at a football game, you couldn’t thank God at a graduation, you couldn’t have a nativity scene outside at Christmas time.  [Comment:  The early Separatists at Plymouth Plantation didn’t believe in keeping Christmas because of its pagan origins, but our forefathers in the 1700s were probably observing Christmas by the Revolutionary War.]  You couldn’t sing a Christmas Carol.  It’s changed so much, again, unimaginable.  I’m in an elementary school, 1957, 1958, Ronhearst Elementary School, and every morning you start with a mandatory assembly, and every morning the principle read a Psalm, and everybody bowed their heads, and the principle began every day with a prayer, the whole school.  Every day began with prayer and Scripture reading.  And of course I wasn’t a believer, but as a little kid it put the fear of God in me, every day, it was a great way to start the day.  Now that teacher would get hauled off to jail, thrown out, the principle would be gone in no time.  Just think how things have changed.  Here is an outcry against judicial corruption.  The first 5 verses speak of the problem itself, describes it in poetic ways.  Verse 6, David then asks, it’s a cry for justice, ‘LORD, this is what I want you to do about it,’ it’s not a Christian prayer [it can be for those who believe that the 2nd resurrection is an opportunity for all the “unsaved dead” to come to salvation], notice “break their teeth, O God.”  And then verses 10 and 11 kind of give us the satisfaction of the Psalmist and his heart at the end of everything, and as he realizes how it all will roll out in the end. 

 

Unrighteous Judges, What They’re Like

 

He begins, it’s kind of a question, Do ye indeed speak righteousness, O congregation?  do ye judge uprightly, O ye sons of men?” (verse 1) It’s a mocking question, with a question mark there.  The congregation he’s speaking about, the corrupt, you know the judges were related in that day to being Levitical, this may be before he takes the throne.  At some point David has this outcry, the judges in Israel were religious judges.  [Comment:  This was because the Torah, the Old Testament Law of God was Israel’s Constitution, and in it the Church and State were united under the Levitical Priesthood, it was a theocratic government, and the Levitical priesthood were the administrators of the Law of God, which was also the law of the land.  The Old Testament Law of God contained in the first five books of Moses were the envy of the entire Middle East, with some of the wisest, most merciful and just laws they had ever seen, laws which brought a degree of equal rights to women unseen in the rest of the Middle East, laws of justice and mercy for the poor, and regulations limiting slavery.  But as we have learned, the best laws in a Constitution, if not backed up by righteous judges and a righteous judicial system is useless.]  “Do ye indeed speak righteousness, O congregation?  do ye judge uprightly, O ye sons of men?”  Look, he reminds them, Don’t get things out of perspective, O ye sons of men, you judges,’ even civil authorities, Paul tells us in Romans, that they’re servants of the Lord, civil authorities, ‘the magistrate doesn’t bear the sword in vain.’  He’s going to give an account someday, civil authorities are going to give an account for the position of authority they had in a culture [i.e. their day is coming].  Here, he says ‘Do you indeed speak righteousness, O congregation?’ it’s a mocking question, because he answers that in verse 2.  ‘Do you judge uprightly?’ the idea is, ‘no you don’t, O you sons of men.  You think you’re something?  You’re born, some woman squeezed you out just like the rest of us, you’re just a human being, you sons of men.’  You may think you’re the 5th Circuit or 6th Circuit Court of Appeal, you’re above everybody, you may think you’re the Supreme Court, you ain’t.  There is a Supreme Court, and there there’s one Judge and one Jury all in one person, and he’s never wrong.  So, you know, ‘Remember this, keep life in perspective, you sons of men,’ “Yea, in heart ye work wickedness; ye weigh the violence of your hands in the earth.” (verse 2)  “in the heart”, your motives, “ye weigh the violence of your hands in the earth.”  ‘You know what you’re doing, you know that it’s wrong.’  He says, “The wicked are estranged from the womb:  they go astray as soon as they are born, speaking lies.” (verse 3)  Human nature, sinful.  Mark Twain, I forget, in one of his books, said, “I don’t remember my first lie.”  He said, “I remember my second lie, I was nine days old, and the pin in my diaper had not come loose and stuck me, but I cried like it did.”  He said “It got me tremendous attention, and an extra meal.”  And he said “And I stayed in the habit of lying about the pins in my diapers.”  You know, what he’s saying, the idea is, we’re sinful from the time we’re born.  I read this report years ago, this team of doctors who had studied newborns from one day to a month old, and they felt that within a month, newborns knew how to manipulate the people that were around them.  They knew how to scream, they didn’t understand language yet, but they understand “If I scream this way, somebody’s going to pick me up, if I scream this way I’m going to get attention, if I scream this way, somebody’s going to go ‘Oh, look at the cute baby.’’  You know, that’s sinful nature’s there, ‘the wicked, they’re estranged from the womb, they go astray as soon as they’re born, speaking lies.’  You know, of course, he really gets down on them here, “Their poison is like the poison of a serpent:  they are like the deaf adder that stoppeth her ear; which will not hearken to the voice of the charmers, charming never so wisely.” (verses 4-5)  He says, ‘The truth is, there’s venom,’ you know, he’s talking about the false judges again, they’ve been this way since their birth, and he says ‘they’re venomous.’  You watch the news sometime, sadly, when the news in America is no longer there to inform us, they’re there to “form us” [i.e. it’s pure propaganda, a propaganda machine].  And sometimes there’s such vitriol, they’re so angry about somebody with another position, it’s venomous.  Things are said that should never be said, you’re a newscaster, you should just be telling us what the spiel is, you know.  In Hollywood you see it, just sometimes amongst the politicians, you listen to the way they talk to each other, you think ‘If I was a kid I would have gotten smacked in the mouth by my parents if I talked to my sister that way.’  So he says here, ‘They’re venomous, unjust judges, those that are out for their own thing, they got their own agenda,’ he says ‘it’s like a poisonous serpent.’  Not that they are, but “they’re like,” there’s a venom in that, it poisons, it ruins.  they are like the deaf adder that stoppeth her ear;” probably speaking of the cobra, that stoppeth her ear;” all snakes, by the way are deaf, you don’t go snake hunting and whistle for it, snake-call, snake looks up [laughter].  If you make a noise, they sense vibrations a bit [actually quite well].  But it’s their tongue is their smell, they pick up things in the air.  they are like the deaf adder that stoppeth her ear; which will not hearken to the voice of the charmers,” particularly in this part of the world, particularly Egypt, through that part of the world, snake charmers would have cobras, you’d see it in a basket.  And when they play, the snake senses the vibration, it doesn’t hear that terrible flute music they play, where they come out of the basket really mad, looking for a fight, ‘Stop playing that thing!’  But they sense the vibration, and when they come out they follow the motion of the flute, so the snake charmer moves the flute, and the cobra will follow that.  He says here, ‘these wicked judges, wicked civil leaders, there’s a venomous influence they have, and they’re like deaf adders, they stop their ears, they can’t hear you, they’re indifferent.  You try to tell the truth, you try to say ‘No, this is what’s really going on,’ nobody will listen.’  Greenhouse gases, global warming, you know, when Jason Lyle was here, an astrophysicist a couple weeks ago, he said, “Here’s the remarkable thing,” he said, “when the earth warms from solar flairs, carbon rises, because the more the earth warms, it releases the carbon dioxide from the ocean, so the carbon dioxide level goes up when the earth gets warm.  The earth doesn’t get warm when the carbon dioxide level goes up, it’s backwards.’  And he says, “When the earth cools, carbon dioxide goes back in the water, and those levels go down.”  He said, “But the opposite is not true, the earth is never warmed from carbon dioxide levels going up, and it’s never cooled from them going down.”  They go up when the earth is warmed from solar flairs, in fact, he says, ‘When they talk about global warming, I’d advise you to get your parkas and woodstoves ready, because I think we’re headed into about a 20-year cold-spell,” he said.  Interesting man, but you think ‘Why are they saying that?’  The scientists raise their voices, they refuse to listen, it’s an agenda, there’s a political agenda, it’s a means to an end, it’s called “Crisis Management.”  You create the crisis, and then you present the answer to the problem [see “V For Vendetta”].  I remember years ago, remember the radon, everybody had radon detectors?  Well you know, a couple of our guys were engineers here and they said the thing was, a few of these companies mass-produced hundreds of thousands of radon testing kits before they told anybody about it on the news.  And then when they said ‘Radon! Radon!’ then everybody bought them, it was crisis management, and they sold the radon testing kits, and they made millions of dollars.  So it’s crisis management.  I shouldn’t even know about these things [laughter].  So he says there’s an unjustness to it, there’s a poisonness, it ruins what it infects.  And there’s an indifference, no one, they won’t listen, they won’t hear a voice of reason.  They’re like the serpent that won’t hear the voice of the charmer.  The charmer, never before were they so wisely to charm the snake, there’s no listening, that’s the way the wicked are. 

 

David’s Prayer About The Unjust Judicial System

 

And David finally says this, ‘God, this is my suggestion,’ “Break their teeth, O God, in their mouth:  break out the great teeth of the young lions, O Lord.” (verse 6)  I don’t know where else they’d be, but obviously, “break out the great teeth of the young lions, O Lord.”  Remember he said his enemies in the Psalm before [Psalm 57:4], they were like lions, they had teeth like spears.  He says “break out the great teeth of the young lions, O Lord.  Let them melt away, as waters which run continually:  when he bendeth his bow to shoot his arrows, let them be as cut in pieces.” (verses 6b-7)  Now he puts all these pictures before the LORD, ‘like a lion with those big canine teeth, Lord, just break those out.’  He says, “Let them melt away as waters which run continually” as the wadi’s run out, as the dry season comes, and the water runs out.  He says when he bendeth his bow to shoot his arrows, let them be as cut in pieces.” (verse 7b) as the arrow hitting, cutting in pieces.  He says, ‘How about this,’  “As the snail which melteth, let every one of them pass away:” (verse 8a) he’s making an observation, you see those snails in your garden, they leave those silver lines after them, and they look like they’re melting as they just go away.  That’s what he’s talking about, it’s not talking about you going out there and putting salt on them and watching them just kind of melt away.  He says ‘Like the snail, LORD, which melteth away, leaving that trail, let every one of them just do that, let them diminish as they crawl away.’  like the untimely birth of a woman that they may not see the sun.” (verse 8)  ‘like a miscarriage, that they may not see the sun, don’t let them ever come to fruition with their plans, LORD.’  He says, “Before your pots can feel the thorns, he shall take them away as with a whirlwind, both living, and in his wrath.” (verse 9)  He’s talking about living in the desert, there were no trees out there, what they’d burn is the brambles and the thorns, and they would burn very quickly in the pot as they tried to heat whatever they would be cooking.  He says “Before your pots can feel the thorns, he shall take them away” those brambles were known to burn fast, he says ‘LORD., even before the heat can be felt, take them away, LORD, ah with a whirlwind,’ “both living, and in his wrath.” ‘LORD, take them away alive, LORD, as in a whirlwind [like getting sucked up in a tornado alive].’  He’s really asking for quite a load here, on those that are wicked and unjust. 

 

A Prophetic Ending For The Unjust---Points To The End Of The Age

 

And he comes to this remarkable close.  Listen, he says “The righteous shall rejoice when he seeth the vengeance:  he shall wash his feet in the blood of the wicked.” (verse 10)  The righteous, he’s closing the Psalm with a measure of satisfaction, but we have to get this straight, “The righteous shall rejoice when he seeth the vengeance” that should never be our attitude.  If you have someone you don’t like, you have an enemy, you see them struck down, you see them suffering, the Bible is clear, we should never rejoice in that [it even shows up Proverbs that we should never laugh at the calamity that comes on the wicked in that situation].  Romans 12:19, ‘Vengeance is mine, saith the Lord, I will repay.’  The truth is, there is a time coming, Christ is going to return, he’s going to come through the heavens, his vesture dipped in blood, and you and I are going to follow him.  In fact, the very last Psalm, you don’t have to turn there, I’ll find it, Psalm 149:5-9, it says “Let the saints be joyful in glory, let them sing aloud upon their beds.  Let the high praises of God be in their mouth, and a two edgedsword in their hand, to execute vengeance upon the heathen, and punishments upon the people, to bind their kings with chains, and their nobles with fetters of iron, to execute upon them the judgment written.  This honour have all his saints.  Praise ye the LORD.”  The idea is, there is going to be an ultimate judgment.  [I think this one will be at the 2nd coming, when all the evil kings and nobles will be judged, sort of like the Nuremburg trials at the end of WWII.]  And when it comes, there is a sanctified rejoicing in that, because God is being glorified, and wickedness is finally being put to rest.  It is not ever an excuse for you and I to rejoice seeing the misfortune of someone else, no matter what our feelings are towards them.  I mean, when you think about lost eternity, I don’t wish that on anyone.  The most hateful person in this world, the person through history that you might despise more than anyone else, I could never wish anybody that they would go to hell.  And there are plenty that will.  But personally, I could never wish that, because hell is unending, eternal suffering in outer darkness, separated from the Lord.  [Comment:  Different parts of the Body of Christ have differing beliefs concerning what hell is.  To read about some of these, see http://www.unityinchrist.com/plaintruth/battle.htm]  So, this is a scene, no doubt, the close of the age [i.e. the 2nd coming when Jesus sets foot on the Mount of Olives, cf. Zechariah 14:1-15], that David as a prophet is looking forward to.  And he says, “The righteous shall rejoice when he seeth the vengeance:  he shall wash his feet in the blood of the wicked.” (verse 10)  If it is good for God at that point in time, then it is good for us to behold it.  [Comment:  this event of ‘washing our feet in the blood of the wicked’ will occur as the resurrected, immortal saints ride their white horses behind Jesus as he rides through the Kidron Valley, with the blood of the wicked flowing up to the horse’s bridle.  At that depth, our feet in the stirrups will be immersed in that blood.  Where’s that blood come from?  Read Zechariah 14, when the very shining presence of Jesus, glowing like the sun will melt the armies that have gathered against him in Jerusalem, it will release all their blood.  How many quarts of blood are in each human?  And you could have millions of enemy soldiers converging on Jerusalem at this point in time.]  If what he is doing at that time is righteous vengeance, then it is fine for us to rejoice in what God is finally doing to make everything right again.  “he shall wash his feet in the blood of the wicked.” (verse 10b) the idea is, going through the battlefield at the end of that scene, walking in the blood of the enemy, we know in the Book of Revelation, it says the blood is going to flow from the Valley of Armageddon, over 220 miles north of Jerusalem, and it actually says “outside the city” specifically, the blood’s going to flow to the horse’s bridle.  That’s four-foot deep.  And no doubt it describes that there’s going to be a hailstorm, and the weight of the hailstones, about a hundred pounds apiece.  And the sentence in the Bible for blasphemy, and all the enemies of God are shaking their fists at the sky and cursing God, the sentence in the Bible was stoning for blasphemy.  And you take the entire valley of Armageddon [actually the Valley of Jezreel , the entire north of Israel, all the way down into the south, when the Lord comes from Bazra, from Edom with his dyed garments, you bring down a hailstorm on that, you have the blood of all nations running about four-foot deep outside the city of Jerusalem, and you have the horses bridle, the Lord himself crossing [the Kidron Valley] coming up into the city.  Ah, it’s an unthinkable scene.  It says ‘In that time, the praise of him will be, Thou art faithful, they shed the blood of the prophets, you have given them blood to drink,’ and so forth.  There will be no sense of unjust rejoicing or of any type of morose rejoicing at the death of people.  It will be a praise to a righteous God, who has taken control of the world that was blasphemous and completely in rebellion, and him then finally taking things, and reeling them in and making them right again, the armies of the Lord will wash their feet in the blood of the wicked.  “So that a man shall say, Verily there is a reward for the righteous:  verily he is a God that judgeth in the earth.” (verse 11)  Finally there’s going to be admitting this.  Ultimately, everything that everybody denies now is going to be owned.  Ultimately it says, you know, every knee is going to bow, every tongue is going to confess, of things in the heaven, of things on the earth, things under the earth, that Jesus Christ is Lord, unto the glory of God the Father.  And ultimately the earth is going to confess that God does reward, truly, he does reward the righteous, and truly he does bring judgment in the earth, he’s there.  The world is closed off to that now, doesn’t want to hear about it, doesn’t want to acknowledge it, and the world is, as Peter says in his 2nd Epistle, is willingly ignorant that God is able to do these things in the world we live in. 

 

In Closing

 

So, as we move on, the Psalms come up a little, some of these are a little heavy, I know, they’re looking to the end.  I would say this evening, David’s saying ‘Look, LORD, you’ve numbered all my tears, you know my wandering, your anointing is on my life, you’ve made me these promises, LORD, I am headed to the throne,’ that’s where we’re all headed, ‘but sometimes my heart is broken, this is all so difficult sometimes LORD, sometimes it’s hard to believe your anointing is on my life, your calling, LORD, but you’ve recorded all of my wanderings, all of my tears, they’re written in your books, so I’m going to praise you in your Word, O LORD, I’m going to praise you in your Word, I’m going to put my trust in you.’ (Psalm 56)  That’s a remarkable position to be in.  As we find ourselves in a cave, and everything’s falling apart there, to be able to say ‘LORD, I’m going to find, I’m going to take shelter under the shadow of your wings, that LORD, part of your nature is that you would just gather me in and warm me, and shelter me, and keep me, and that has to be real, LORD, it has to be real to me,’ (Psalm 57) it’s not going to be a big feathery wing that comes over you, it’s going to be the presence of God in his care, his providence, his sovereignty that comes around you, that captivates your mind, captivates your heart.  David said, ‘LORD, I’m surrounded with lions, surrounded with enemies, cause me to lie down in the middle of this, LORD.  Because I’m going to awake, LORD, and the reason is, because my heart is established, my heart is established LORD.  And I’m going to awake, let me LORD, waken the dawn, let me be up before the sun to praise you LORD.  Be exalted, LORD, above the heavens, let your name be exalted above all of the earth.’ (Psalm 57)  And the last Psalm, Psalm 58, even though we’re surrounded with an unjust judicial system, we’re surrounded, you look at leaders around the world that are threatening nuclear war, where you look at some of the terrible things that go on in North Korea, you look at some of the things that are going on in nations where people are just being slaughtered, you know, the South of Sudan, 3 million Christians killed in the last 5 years.  You know there seems to be such injustice throughout the world.  You know what?  The Lord’s going to make it right.  He’s going to make it right.  And in the meantime we shouldn’t be praying like David, ‘break their teeth, LORD, just get ‘em,’ we should be saying “Send one great last revival, at the end of the age Lord.  Let us see a great ingathering.”  Look, we’re here, we’re here.  Where were we?  I was a throw-away, a fixer-upper, I was spending all of my money on drugs.  I was immoral, I was hateful, I was gone.  I don’t know where I’d be now, I certainly wouldn’t be married to the same woman for all these years, I’m too selfish.  If it wasn’t for Jesus I’d never have been a decent father, would never have been a pastor.  I was a throw-away.  Jerry was really a throw-away [laughter].  I mean, you just look at the guys on staff, there’s former heroine addicts, former alcoholics, look at what the Lord has done.  He’s so gracious, and he so loved the world that drives us crazy, that he gave his only begotten Son that whosoever would believe would not perish, but have everlasting life.  You and I have that message, these last days.  You and I need to get to our knees and be praying for our city, for our mayor, for our country, for our President.  The Bible tells us that.  If we’re going to praise him for his Word, his Word says we are to be praying for those in authority, our leaders, our national leaders.  Pray for the President, pray for his mother-in-law, I hear that Michelle’s mom is a believer that lives in the White House with them, helps take care of the girls.  We need to pray there’s a revival there in that house.  There was a revival in my house, there needs to be one in that house.  And he’s just one of the sons of men.  We need to pray that God would graciously save our Senators and our Congressmen. We need to pray that pastors would get born-again, there’s too many places where somebody’s up there telling jokes or stories or something stupid, we need to pray that ministers, priests and pastors, bishops, are going to get born-again, and the Church [greater Body of Christ] is going to be re-awakened, that we have great hope.  These are exciting times to be alive.  So, when we go through these songs, they have a lot to say to us.  All of you cavemen, cheer up, all of you cavemen, cheer up.  ok?  Hide under the shadow of his wings, understand that he knows your journey, he knows your tears, he has you covered.  He’s a loving Father.  Let’s stand, let’s pray, we’ll have the musicians come.  We’ll lift our praise to our Father in heaven…[transcript of a connective expository sermon on Psalm 56:1-13; Psalm 57:1-11 and Psalm 58:1-11, given by Pastor Joe Focht, Calvary Chapel of Philadelphia, 13500 Philmont Avenue, Philadelphia, PA  19116]

 

related links:

 

A Prophetic Psalm of Jesus Christ’s triumphal entry into Jerusalem:

http://www.unityinchrist.com/Psalms/Psalm%2024%201-10.htm

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