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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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Psalms 59:1-17

 

To the chief Musician, Al-taschith, Michtam of David, when Saul sent, and they watched the house to kill him.

 

“Deliver me from mine enemies, O my God:  defend me from them that rise up against me.  Deliver me from the workers of iniquity, and save me from bloody men.  For, lo, they lie in wait for my soul:  the mighty are gathered against me; not for my transgression, nor for my sin, O LORD.  They run and prepare themselves without my fault:  awake to help me, and behold.  Thou therefore, O LORD God of hosts, the God of Israel, awake to visit all the heathen:  be not merciful to any wicked transgressors.  Selah.  They return at evening:  thy make a noise like a dog, and go round about the city.  Behold, they belch out with their mouth:  swords are in their lips:  for who, say they, doth hear?  But thou, O LORD, shalt laugh at them; thou shalt have all the heathen in derision.  Because of  his strength will I wait upon thee:  for God is my defense.  The God of my mercy shall prevent me:  God shall let me see my desire upon mine enemies.  Slay them not, lest my people forget:  scatter them by thy power; and bring them down, O Lord our shield.  For the sin of their mouth and the words of their lips let them even be taken in their pride:  and for cursing and lying which they speak.  Consume them, that they may not be:  and let them know that God ruleth in Jacob unto the ends of the earth.  Selah.  And at evening let them return; and let them make a noise like a dog, and go round about the city.  Let them wander up and down for meat, and grudge if they be not satisfied.  But I will sing of thy power; yea, I will sing aloud of thy mercy in the morning:  for thou hast been my defense and refuge in the day of my trouble.  Unto thee, O my strength, will I sing:  for God is my defense, and the God of my mercy.”

 

Introduction

 

“Psalm 59, as far as we have come.  It says “To the chief Musician,” so this is to be played publicly.  It’s hard to tell sometimes whether the introduction is a postscript from the end of the Psalm that’s in front of it, or an introduction, because they’re just written in the Hebrew between the Psalms.  But the Septuagint tells us this is “a Michtam of David,” it’s a golden Psalm, it’s something to be taken to the heart, no doubt committed to memory.  And “when Saul sent, and they watched the house to kill him” to kill David, the Septuagint agrees with that, it’s the same title it gives to us.  This is an extremely difficult time in David’s life.  He’s probably about 20-years-old, if that, he’s a young man.  He has come to prominence in the kingdom, in the Valley of Elah, as he faced Goliath, and the giant was slain, and he’s come into the court of Saul.  Saul asked ‘Who is this youth?, finds out he’s of the house of Jesse, he’s the one that had been playing the harp, driving the evil spirits away from Saul.  And again, Saul’s jealousy had arisen against David.  David had, in great faith, submitted to God, hadn’t done anything wrong, he had done what was right, and Saul would send him out to battle, he had tremendous victory over the Philistines, and then Saul would just become more jealous.  And God’s hand was on David, was blessing David.  And then finally Saul takes and gives his daughter, Michal, to David, because she was a rascal.  And he didn’t want to bless David, he thought that would trip David up.  So, David in his court again, Saul seeking to kill him, throwing a javelin at him, he gets out of the court, he goes to his home, and Saul then sends some of his men to watch the house of David, and to capture him there, and to kill him.  Twice in the Psalm, in verses 6 and 14, he says they’re like dogs.  So, some of the scholars entitle this Psalm “Beware of Dogs.”  They’re watching the house of David where he lives with Michal, the king’s daughter, he’s the king’s son-in-law.  This is all a family thing.  And his wife (Michal) says ‘If you don’t get out of here he’s going to kill you, you’re going to end up dead.’  So David then, with a rope, climbs down through the window, like Saul of Tarsus in the New Testament escaped over the wall, David escapes that way, there’s nothing prestigious or honourable about that.  He’s the LORD’s anointed king, Samuel had anointed him.  But he will for years, be learning to be the king that he was anointed to be.  And sadly, his wife takes an idol that somehow David had allowed in the house, lays this teraphim, this idol in the bed, and puts goats hair on to kind of form the hair, and Saul’s men come, and they want to take David and kill him, and Michal says ‘No, he’s sick, he don’t feel good, he has goat’s head disease.’  And no doubt if they had looked at him they would have said, ‘I don’t know what he’s got, but I don’t want to touch him,’ and they went back and they told Saul, and said ‘David’s sick, he’s ill man, he’s got something,’ Saul said, ‘Go on back, and get the bed, and bring him to me in the bed and I’ll kill him.’  So they go back to the house, and find out it’s a statue instead and so forth, and then they come back and report it to Saul, and Saul gets his daughter and he’s yelling at her, and she says, ‘You know what, dad, he threatened me, he told me if I didn’t do this, he was going to kill me.’  So, his father-in-law has turned against him, his wife has turned against him, all things are falling out against David, and David’s plea is ‘I haven’t done anything wrong.’  Look, it’s hard enough when we do something stupid, or we do something wrong, and it comes down on our head, and we realize, ‘Well, I got myself into this one, you know, I messed up.’  But it’s really harder when we do everything right, we do everything we believe will please the Lord, we do everything to the best of our ability, and then something comes down on our head, and we think ‘Lord, where are you?’  Some people at that point, they throw their faith out the window.  [David must be asking God] ‘What’s the deal?  I do everything the right way, I do everything you want me to do, you send this crazy prophet to me, he anoints me, pours out the oil on my head, I’m Israel’s king…no I’m not, I’m Israel’s clown, I’m running all the time.’  David’s seminary was bears, and lions, and giants, and betrayal, and war, and famine, and fleeing from his family.  David’s seminary, if you say ‘Lord, make me like David,’ are you sure?  Take the correspondence course, trust me.  And David is a very young man, and writes this Psalm, in the context of fleeing from his house, finding out his wife Michal has betrayed him to Saul, the king, saying ‘He threatened to kill me, he was going to murder me, I had to do it dad,’ and no doubt, very alone, very much struggling in his faith, in the sense that ‘What do I do now?  LORD, what’s the deal?  I do everything I think you want me to do, and this is where I end up.’  This is not a movie you’re watching on TV, this is a real-life deal, he is running from people with weapons that want to kill him, he’s running from the king.  He’s running, this is, you know, this is like having black helicopters chasing you in America or something, you know, it’s as crazy as having drones flying over America to shoot people, that’s how crazy this is. 

 

Who Does David Turn To When His Family Life Turns Upside Down Through Betrayal?

 

So he’s running from his own king here, and the Psalm says this, “Deliver me from mine enemies, O my God; defend me from them that rise up against me.” he says, “Deliver me from the workers of iniquity, and save me from bloody men.” (verses 1-2) that would have been out the window with a rope for David here.  For he says, “For, lo, they lie in wait for me soul:” ‘for my very life,’ “the mighty are gathered against me; not for my transgression, nor for my sin, O LORD.” (verse 3) ‘I didn’t do anything wrong, not for my sin, O LORD.’  “They run and prepare themselves without my fault:  awake to help me, and behold.” (verse 4)  ‘It’s not my fault,’  And his plea, ‘Awake,’ or ‘Arouse thyself,’ probably more properly,  King James says “to help me,” the idea of it is, “Arise to meet me, and behold.”  ‘LORD, meet me, LORD, and look at this with me, this situation, look where I’m at.’  You know, wonderfully, as this young man in a very difficult situation, he turns to the LORD.  Look, young people today, 18, 19, 17, 15, 16, Satan is at war against our homes and our families.  This is a young man in a broken home, his father-in-law wants to kill him, his wife has betrayed him, this is heartfelt stuff.  And so many today, when they get in a situation like this, they want throw their faith out the window, they think ‘What’s the point, you know, what’s the deal, Lord?’  I serve you, and this is what I get?’  You think, what are the options, what are you going to do, are you going to become a Buddhist?  What are you going to do?  You going to go out, and then you have to worry about Karma.  Are you going to go out there and drink [i.e getting drunk], go out there and use inhalants?  You sit somewhere quietly and cut yourself?  What are you going to do?  This song gives us some important answers, I think.  That’s why it’s a Michtam, it’s a golden Psalm, it’s to be put in the mind, it’s to be put in the heart, it’s to be thought about.  Because there isn’t anybody in this room that hasn’t felt some sense of betrayal at some point or another.  Is there anybody here that hasn’t been hurt in one way or another?  And sadly, I know and watch adults, and it’s not their fault, that sometimes are ten, twenty, thirty, forty years out of a bad situation, out of a bad home, out of an abusive situation, and still, you can see how they keep their own defense mechanisms up, you can see how little they want to be vulnerable, you can see, you can still see the effects of that.  You know, it isn’t the way God designed it, it’s not the way family is supposed to function, it’s not the haven we’re supposed to experience.  It’s so sad when you see somebody and they talk about their Father in heaven, and they almost have to cringe, because the idea they have of a father is so wrong, and so bad, and so abusive.  What do we do?  This is all real stuff for David.  This is all real stuff in his life, and the harder thing here is, he says, ‘Look, it’s not for my transgressions, not because of my sin, it’s not my fault.’  And instead of just throwing restraint to the wind, he says, ‘LORD, arise LORD, meet with me, I need to find you in this situation, it stinks, it isn’t just a bad day, it isn’t just a hangnail, these are people chasing me, they want to kill me, this is the level of betrayal, and now my wife has entered into it.  LORD, you need to arise, I need to meet with you, you need to be as real as my heartache and all the things I’m going through.’  He says, ‘Arise, meet with me, and behold, I need to know you’re looking at this with me, and considering it, I need to know LORD, that it’s before your heart.  I need to know that.’  Verse 5, he says, “Thou therefore, O LORD God of hosts, the God of Israel, awake to visit the heathen:  be not merciful to any wicked transgressors.  Selah.”  O LORD God of hosts,” “Jehovah Elohim Saboath”  The LORD of hosts, this is a 20-year-old calling remarkably, understanding the God of Israel, understanding he’s a covenant-God, the LORD.  He says now, “awake to visit all the heathen:” and look what he says here, “all of the nations, all of the heathen,” “be not merciful to any wicked transgressors.  Selah.” (verse 5b)  David backs up, and he gets the big picture, somehow he stands back, he says ‘This is earth, this ain’t heaven, this is the way it is, there’s injustice, there’s things going on all around me that shouldn’t be going on, all of the heathen nations around me are filled with these things.  LORD, this is the way it is, but you’re the LORD God of hosts, of armies, of hosts, you’re the God of Israel, awake, and LORD, visit all of the nations, don’t be merciful to any of the wicked, to any transgressors.  Selah, what do you think about that?’  He says, ‘LORD, you’re not partial, it’s not just me, it’s not just my life, it’s all of the wicked in the earth, all of the transgressors LORD, you’re going to deal with all of this, not just in Israel, but Moab and Ammon and all of the countries, LORD, that surround us, and all of the earth.’  He somehow, God gives him this big picture, and he says ‘all of the nations, LORD, don’t be merciful to any of those that are wicked transgressors,’ and he compares them to dogs, “They return at evening:  they make a noise like a dog, and go round about the city.” (verse 6) he’s drawing a picture, ‘they’re carousing, they’re walking around,’  of the ones that had surrounded his house, he says, “Behold, they belch out with their mouths:  swords are in their lips:  for who, say they, doth hear?” (verse 7)  that is what the wicked do, “for who, say they, doth hear?”  Nobody knows.  He says, ‘This is what the wicked do, they go on around, they got their plans, they’re slinking around in the dark, they’re thinking ‘Nobody’s up on them, nobody knows what’s going on,’ he says, ‘that’s what they’re saying in their heart.’  ‘Who hears us?  nobody knows what we’re doing.’  And David’s response “But thou, O LORD, shalt laugh at them; thou shalt have all the heathen in derision.” (verse 8)  ‘You’re the LORD God of hosts, you’re the God of Israel, this must be laughable to you, I haven’t done anything wrong, I’ve served you, I’ve done what’s right, and the wicked are flourishing, and they just think they’re going to get away with it?  LORD, there is a standard that’s universal, it’s not just my life, it’s not just Israel, I know you’re going to deal with this, they carry on,’ and the wicked are the same today.  ‘Who hears, who knows?  We can get away with this, nobody knows.’  ‘But you O LORD, you’ll laugh at them in derision, in scorn,’ “thou shalt have all of the nations in derision.  Because of his strength will I wait upon thee:  for God is my defence.” (verse 9)  i.e. ‘because of the strength of the enemy, this is what I’m going to do LORD,’ “for God is my defense” ‘he is my stronghold.’  Ah, because of the strength of the transgressor, the wicked, of the adversary, the one who says ‘I can do whatever I want, nobody’s going to stop me, nobody’s going to do this.’  You hear people say stuff, you hear people say stupid stuff like ‘I’m going to give a piece of my mind to the man upstairs.’  No you ain’t.  You’re going to fall down and shake when he appears.  This young man in his 20’s says this.  ‘When I think of the strength of the enemy, LORD, I’m going to wait upon you, LORD, that’s what I’m going to do.  I’m going to stand back, I’m going to wait upon you.’  for God is my defense.”  King James says “defense”, it’s really “my stronghold.”  He says, ‘LORD, you’re the very stronghold, I’m going to park in you, I’m going to pull into your presence, you’re like a cave, like a fortress, you yourself are my stronghold, I’m going to hold up in you.’  That’s remarkable.  

 

“Consume Them In Wrath…Let Them Know That God Ruleth In Jacob Unto The End Of The Earth”

 

Verse 10, he says, “The God of my mercy shall prevent me:  God shall let me see my desire upon mine enemies.”  King James “prevent me”, it’s “go before me”  ‘he’s going to precede me.  LORD, you’re the God of my mercy, you’re in charge of the mercy that’s going to come on my life, and you’re going to go before me.’ “God shall let me see my desire upon mine enemies.” (verse 10b)  “Slay them not, lest my people forget:  scatter them by thy power; and bring them down, O Lord our shield.  For the sin of their mouth and the words of their lips let them even be taken in their pride:  and for cursing and lying which they speak.  Consume them in wrath, consume them, that they may not be:  and let them know that God ruleth in Jacob unto the ends of the earth.  Selah.” (verses 11-13)  By the way, that hasn’t changed.  God still reigns in Jacob, unto the ends of the earth.  That has not changed one bit, God is eternal, he never changes.  So he’s saying here, ‘LORD, you’re going to go before me, you’re the God of my mercy, you’re going to go before me, in all of this there’s a measure of safety for me.  Don’t just slay them LORD, don’t just smoke ‘em, drive them away, let this be visible, let there be a lesson in this.’  Now, in the New Testament, we’re to turn the other cheek, pray for those who despitefully use you, pray for your enemies, we’re not allowed to say this.  It’s why I enjoy it so much, listening to David say it, because I’m not allowed to say it, ‘LORD, slay them, LORD, break their teeth LORD, smoke ‘em.’  You know, David says ‘LORD, don’t even just kill them, just drive them away, let there be a lesson in it, let it be something visible, let people see what you’re going to do, and consume them in your wrath.’  I know that sounds terrible, consume them in your wrath, but remember this, the Old Testament, one Old Testament scholar I read says, “The Old Testament has no refrain as terrible as this, ‘the wrath of the Lamb.’”   The Old Testament knows nothing of that, “The wrath of the Lamb.”  Here it says, “Consume them in wrath, consume them, that they may not be:  and let them know that God ruleth in Jacob unto the ends of the earth.  Selah.” (verse 13)  ‘LORD, do this in such a way that there’s a lesson, and they’re going to know LORD that you’re on the throne.  Selah’  Something that’s going on today, this is a lesson that Iran should learn quickly, that God has never retracted “I will bless them that bless thee, and I will curse him that curseth thee.” (Genesis 12:3)  It’s still in place.  All the history of the world, you look at every nation that’s turned against Israel, it should make us pray for our president, pray for our country, because the God of Jacob ruleth unto the ends of the earth, it has not changed. 

 

With All This Going On In David’s Life, He Says ‘I’m Going To Sing, Lift My Voice To God’

 

“And at evening let them return; and let them make a noise like a dog, and go round about the city.” here it goes again, “Let them wander up and down for meat, and grudge if they be not satisfied.” let them be miserable, “But I will sing of thy power; yea, I will sing aloud of thy mercy in the morning:  for thou hast been my defense and refuge in the day of my trouble.  Unto thee, O my strength, will I sing:  for God is my defense, and the God of my mercy.” (verses 14-17)  the God of my mercy, the haschied, my stedfast love.’  Listen, here’s the deal with this Psalm, Michtam, this is a golden Psalm, it’s to be remembered, it’s to be committed to memory, it was to be sung publicly, and the deal was this.  Here’s a young man.  You think how troubled our world is today.  You think how Satan is warring against the home, and warring against the family, and wanting to destroy young lives and take them away.  And David says here, look, ‘No matter how bad this gets, you have to understand, I was there.’  And God puts this to the page for us, which is still speaking this evening.  You know, ‘I didn’t do anything wrong, watching my father’s flocks, for a bunch of sheep I put my life on the line against a lion and a bear.’  Any of us willing to do that?  ‘And then the glory of Israel was at stake, the glory of the God of Israel, the army wasn’t doing anything, so I marched out on the battlefield and killed a giant with a sling.  Saul sent me out to kill 100 Philistines, I killed 200.  Everything I did, I did what was right, I did above and beyond, and for that I get this.  And he wants to kill me, I did nothing wrong with him, I did everything right.  My own wife, the closest person to me turns from me.’  God takes Jonathan away from him.  Here’s a guy that’s got every reason in the world to throw everything away, and instead of that, you hear him saying ‘LORD, you’re my strength, you’re my stronghold, LORD, I didn’t do anything wrong, this isn’t because of my sin,’ he’s looking around, he’s saying, ‘this is not because of my transgression.’  It’s going to be very different when we get to Psalm 61.  But he said, ‘I didn’t do anything wrong, I have no fault, LORD, this is coming down on my head, for what?  for being faithful to you?  for standing up for your glory?  For doing this?’  And then what he says, he says, ‘You know what I’m going to do?’  All of you who find yourself in a similar circumstance, please commit this to memory, ‘I’m going to run to him, because he’s my stronghold.  He himself is where I find mercy, not in a particular set of circumstances, he himself, he is my stronghold.  When everything is coming down around me, when I sense his presence, when he arises and he meets with me,’ if that ain’t real, then we’re just playing a Christian game.  He says, ‘When he meets with me, I have the great sense he sees it all, he beholds, he understands what I’m going through.  And what I’m going to do, I’m going to sing, I’m not gonna drink, I’m not gonna smoke, I’m not gonna snort, I’m not gonna get cut, I’m gonna sing.’  Doesn’t that sound crazy?  I think ‘Whatever he’s high on this, that’s better than anything I’ve ever taken.’  No, no, he’s high on the LORD, he’s high on the Truth of the one who loves him and sustains him.  You know more about the LORD than he does, through the New Testament.  You have light that he doesn’t have.  Look, in your worst days, instead of saying ‘I ain’t going to church. What’s the point, why should I go to church?...no, no, David says, ‘You know what I’m going to do, I’m going to sing.  I’m going to church, I’m going to sing.  I’m going to lift my voice, I’m going to lift my heart, I’m going to let it out, I’m going to let it float up to heaven, I’m going to sing.’  That’s way better than the other alternatives that the Devil wants to give out.  ‘I will sing of thy power, that’s what I’m going to do.  I’m going to sing aloud of thy mercy, in the morning, might wake up the kids, but that’s what I’m going to do.’  “for thou hast been my defense and my refuge in the day of my trouble.  Unto thee, O my strength, will I sing:  for God is my defense, and the God of my mercy.” (verses 16b-17) 

 

Psalm 60:1-12

 

To the chief Musician upon Shushan-eduth, Michtam of David, to teach; when he strove with Aram-naharaim, and with Aram-zobah, when Joab returned, and smote of Edom in the valley of Salt twelve thousand.

 

“O God, thou hast cast us off, thou hast scattered us, thou hast been displeased; O turn thyself to us again.  Thou has made the earth to tremble; thou hast broken it:  heal the breaches thereof; for it shaketh.  Thou hast shewed thy people hard things:  thou hast made us to drink the wine of astonishment.  Thou hast given a banner to them that fear thee, that it may be displayed because of the truth.  Selah.  That thy beloved may be delivered; save with thy right hand, and hear me.  God hath spoken in his holiness; I will rejoice, I will divide Shechem, and mete out the valley of Succoth.  Gilead is mine, and Manasseh is mine; Ephraim also is the strength of mine head; Judah is my lawgiver; Moab is  my washpot:  over Edom will I cast out my shoe:  Philistia, triumph thou because of me.  Who will bring me into the strong city?  who will lead me into Edom?  Wilt not thou, O God, which hadst cast us off?  and thou, O God, which didst not go out with our armies?  Give us help from trouble:  for vain is the help of man.  Through God we shall do valiantly:  for he it is that shall tread down our enemies.”

 

Introduction

 

“Psalm 60.  It says here “to the chief Musician upon Shushan-eduth, the idea is “of lilies.”  We don’t know, it seems to be a Psalm that was sung in the Spring, probably relative to Passover.  Is it a postscript for the Psalm we just read, or an introduction to Psalm 60?  It’s hard to be dogmatic.  Certainly as we get to “Michtam of David,” again, this is a golden Psalm, and it’s “to teach,” there’s something to be learned, and it says this “when he” when David “strove with Aram-naharaim,” now Aram, when it says Aram it’s talking about Syria, “Aram-naharaim” is “Aram at the two rivers,” speaking of the Tigris and the Euphrates.  “Aram-zobah,” it would be east of Hamath, in the area of Lebanon today.  And if you want to go back and read in the Old Testament, just listen, it’ll be on the tape, you want to read 2nd Samuel 8, 1st Chronicles 18, 1st Kings 11, this is a time when David is subduing all of the enemies of Israel.  He has taken up the sword of Joshua, which was laid down.  You know Joshua went in and remarkably began to take the land, and there were great exploits.  But then you move into era of the Judges, and it says God had to leave some of the enemy in the land to teach them how to do war, to trust in him, to move in faith.  But it becomes a time when everybody’s doing what’s right in their own eyes.  And the enemy isn’t driven out of the land, and you follow that then through the Judges, through the book of Ruth, you go on.  David now has come to power.  Saul didn’t do it, Saul didn’t slay Agag, he was supposed to do those things, and Samuel comes and says ‘What’s the deal, man?  I told you, you were supposed to put Agag to death.’  Saul answered to him, ‘Well, I brought him as a prisoner, and I brought some sheep,’ when Samuel had said ‘What’s this bleating of sheep and lowing of oxen I hear in my ears?’  ‘Well I brought them for sacrifice.’  And Samuel has to say to Saul, ‘To obey is better than sacrifice, to hearken is better than the fat of rams, because rebellion is like the sin of witchcraft, and stubbornness is like idolatry.’  And old Samuel, this old wiry, white haired, long-bearded, you know, Gandolf prophet says, ‘Get me a BIG machete, something,’ because it says, ‘Now bring Agag to me,’ and it says ‘He hewed him in pieces.’  You know, Jerry and I just listened to David Guisik, and he said, “Samuel had a street-rep.” [subdued laughter]  He hacked this guy to smithereens, in pieces.  In fact, then when he comes to Bethlehem, everybody’s worried and said ‘Are you come peaceably?’  I mean, this is an old prophet, it’s kind of the guy you like having around.  But the land hadn’t been cleared.  When David comes to power, and he finally takes the throne, he begins to move, and he is dealing with all of the enemies of Israel.  God had given Israel the land, all the way to the Euphrates River. All the way north of Damascus, all the way south down to Egypt.  You know, they’re always arguing over the West Bank, you ain’t seen nothing yet.  Wait till the Kingdom comes and see the land that Israel has.  It stretches far and wide. [Comment:  The other border was the River of Egypt, which is the Nile River.  In the Millennial Kingdom of God, the re-gathered nation of Israel, all 12 tribes, may inherit from God the enlarged area between these two large rivers, maybe from their source-headwaters to where they empty into their respective oceans.  That is one large hunk of real estate.]  And David expanded the kingdom from 6,000 square miles to over 60,000 square miles.  Now, there’s something wrong, he’s moved up north of Damascus, then Syria was bigger than modern Syria today [and it’s large today], it reached all the way to the Syria-Aram of the two rivers, and it was a huge area of influence.  And David is having remarkable victory after victory after victory, and somehow as he gets way up there, he hears that Edom had heard that the armies of Israel were that far north, and they made an incursion into the south, figuring ‘We can cut Israel in half now, there military strength is not in the area.’  David then, freaked out, realizing ‘We may not have the manpower in the South,’ he sends Joab down there, and Joab goes down with some Special Forces and confronts Edom, and slaughters 12,000, another place says 18,000 in the Valley of Salt, and there’s an incredible victory that breaks the back of Edom from that point onward. 

 

All Of Israel’s Physical Defeats Are Secondary Defeats---It’s The Same With Us

 

But what happens is, is David is up in the North, fighting the battles of the LORD, he gets word about this attack from behind in the South, and in the first 4 verses here he’s saying ‘LORD, what’s the deal?  You’re letting this happen.  LORD, what have we done wrong?  How have we displeased you?’  Because he’s seeing victory after victory after victory.  And perhaps, like David at the very end of his life, when he sends to number Israel, to take a census, and God judges him, perhaps at this point there is a measure of pride in the heart of David, because it’s victory after victory after victory after victory.  And then David starts to hear about a defeat, and this is what he realizes, because he’s taken up the sword of Joshua, he’s doing what no one has done since the days of Joshua, and he realizes, all of Israel’s defeats are secondary defeats.  Israel was promised by God victory over their enemies, and if Israel was ever defeated, it was because they were defeated somewhere in the spiritual realm first.  From lack of prayer, lack of seeking the LORD, a lack of repentance, pride.  And he realizes, ‘LORD, their couldn’t have been something going wrong unless first there was something wrong with us, LORD, but you show us what that is.’  So that’s the deal.  Look, you and I, we need to realize in our lives, you can take this nationally, you can take this personally, any defeat that we have is a secondary defeat.  We first have had a defeat spiritually somewhere, we haven’t prayed, we haven’t sought the Lord, there’s some reason that a defeat has come our way, and we need to say ‘Lord, what is it?’  Our victories are all secondary.  He grants a victory to us because we walk in his ways, we walk in his will.  The second after a victory, we can stand around and say ‘Man, I got this down, don’t I.  You see the way I use a sword.’  No, you are as dependent after a victory as you were a second before the victory, on the Lord.  And here David writes this song, and he has a great sense of that.  Way up North away from Jerusalem, way up, victory after victory, he says, and you’re going to see in the first 4 verses, “thou” eight times.  He knows the LORD is the one whose allowed this.  He says, “O God, thou hast cast us off, thou hast scattered us, thou hast been displeased; O turn thyself to us again.” (verse 1)  ‘What is it LORD, what’s the deal here, what have we done wrong?’  “Thou hast made the earth to tremble; thou hast broken it:  heal the breaches thereof; for it shaketh.” (verse 2)  “heal the breaches” he says, ‘where the walls are broken down here, our defenses,’ “heal the breaches thereof;. for it shaketh.”  The land of Israel, the whole earth, he says, is shaking.  “Thou hast shewed thy people hard things:  thou hast made us to drink the wine of astonishment.” (verse 3)  ‘LORD, we’re amazed at what’s taking place here.’  

 

You’ve Given Us A Banner, LORD, Why’s This Happening To Us?

 

And yet he says this, “Thou hast given a banner to them that fear thee, that it may be displayed because of the truth.  Selah.” (verse 4)  ‘What do you think about that?  I’m struggling here, it seems you’ve cast us off, there’s something going wrong, we’re breaking down, we’ve seen victory after victory after victory, all of a sudden LORD this is taking place, what needs to get straightened in our hearts, LORD?  What do we need to make right here?  Help me understand, help me see,’ he says, ‘you’ve given us a banner.’  No doubt, he knows the story of Moses and the children of Israel coming out of Egypt, when they get in Exodus 17 in the Wilderness, that Amalek comes and attacks them from behind, and he feels he’s been attacked from the South, from the hinder parts, and they start to take down the weak and the elderly and so forth, and then Moses enters into the battle there with Amalek and so forth.  And Aaron and Hur help him hold up the staff and there’s victory, it’s supernatural.  But he builds an altar there and he calls the name of that place Jehovah-nisi, the LORD is our banner.  And David, knowing that, because his victories had been supernatural, he says, ‘LORD, you’ve given us a banner,’ no doubt thinking of Jehovah-nisi, “to them that fear thee,” ‘LORD, we stand in awe of you, you’ve done that, and you’ve given us this banner,’ “that it may be displayed because of the truth.  Selah.” ‘That the nations might see, that it might be a testimony, Selah, what do you think about that?’ 

David Begins To Anticipate Victory Now---The Victory Is God’s Not Ours

 

And then he says this, this banner, LORD, because of your faithfulness,’ “That thy beloved may be delivered; save with thy right hand, and hear me.  God hath spoken in his holiness; I will rejoice, I will divide Shechem, and mete out the valley of Succoth.” (verse 6) ‘LORD, this is your Word, it can’t be retracted.  “I will rejoice, I will divide Shechem, and mete out the valley of Succoth.” (verse 6b)  Now, what he’s going to do here, is he gives us a picture somewhat of the Jordan Valley, of the North and the South.  Shechem is on the west side of the Jordan River.  Ah, how many of you have been to Israel?  Come’on, why don’t you guys just go to Israel with us?  What’s the problem?  But if you’d gone you would really appreciate all this.  When we go up on the mountains and look at the whole Jordan Valley, you can see Gilead, you can see Jabok, you can see the whole expanse.  On one side, the Israeli side, today, is the area of Shechem, on the other side is Succoth where the River Jabok is and so forth, he’s looking on both sides of the Jordan River here.  He says, “I will divide Shechem, and mete out the valley of Succoth.” (verse 6b) i.e. ‘measure out the valley of Succoth.’  “Gilead is mine, and Manasseh is mine; Ephraim also is the strength of mine head; Judah is my lawgiver;” you remember Reuben, Gad, and half the tribe of Manasseh took the other side of the Jordan River, as they went to come into the land with Joshua.  ‘Gilead, up in that beautiful area, Manasseh, is mine,’ David says, ‘You’ve given this to me,’ ‘Ephraim, on Israel’s side, on the west side of the Jordan, also is the strength of my head,’ this is the head of the nation, [Ephraim was the lead tribe of the northern House of Israel, composed of ten tribes] the Northern part of the nation.  ‘Judah’ he says, ‘is my lawgiver.’  That’s where Jerusalem is, and so forth.  “Moab is my washpot:  over Edom will I cast out my shoe:  Philistia, triumph thou because of me.” (verse 8)  ‘is my washpot, it’s a disdain, the Moabites and so forth.’  And he says, “over Edom will I cast out my shoe:” like throwing your shoe at a slave, and having responsibility for that.  Hard to translate here, verse 8c, “Philistia, triumph thou because of me.”  It seems to indicate ‘Philistia, I will shout over Philistia.’  or ‘over Philistia I will shout.’  The idea is, even over the area of Philistia there’s going to be a shout of triumph.  So he’s first telling us about the defeat (due to Edom attacking in the South), he’s going to say it in verses 5 to where we read down to 8, but there are the promises of God, and in verse 9 now he begins to anticipate victory.  He says, “Who will bring me into the strong city?  who will lead me into Edom?” (verse 9)  no doubt, thinking of Petra, speaking of Edom and Philistia.  Ah, “Who will bring me into the strong city?  who will lead me into Edom?” you know, you watch Indiana Jones, the Last Crusade, where they go through that crevasse and end up in Petra.  How many of you guys have been to Petra?   Talk to somebody with their hand raised afterwards.  It’ll blow your mind, it’s remarkable.  You go through this long crevasse, and you come in, it was a city the size of Manhattan, minimum of 300,000 inhabitants, [living quarters] all carved into the stones, remarkable, even today, treasuries, banks, idolatry, all of the tradesmen would pull in there for rest.  It was defendable because it was this long narrow crevasse that you had to go through to get into it.  He says here, “Who will bring me into the strong city?  who will lead me into Edom?” he says, Wilt not thou, O God, which hadst cast us off?  and thou, O God, which didst not go out with our armies?” (verse 10) ‘LORD, it seems like you cast us off, but you’re the one that’s going to do this.’  “and thou, O God, which didst not go out with our armies?” ‘you’re the one, LORD.’  “Give us help from trouble:  for vain is the help of man.” (verse 11) and this I think kind of gives us a sense of the Psalm, “for vain is the help of man.” (verse 11b)  underline that in your Bible.  That’s a good bumper-sticker, by the way, VAIN IS THE HELP OF MAN.  Because you know what, when we get in trouble, we get mad at people all the time, don’t we, ‘They don’t do this, they don’t do that, they won’t help us.’   David realizes ‘No, there’s no secondary causes, we’re God’s people, he’s given us a banner.  If there’s something cooking, LORD, that’s between you and me, help me understand, LORD, help me to know how to move forward, if you’re with me, who can be against me?’  If God is for us, who can be against us?  He’s given us victory.  ‘If I’m blowing it, if I’m messing up, then show me where, LORD.’  And look, you and I should have no confusion, because this is an open-book test, it’s an open-book test.  He says, “Give us help from trouble:  for vain is the help of man.” he may have been overconfident, early on, as he moves on.  Now he’s realizing ‘LORD, you’re the one who has to do this, it seems like you’ve cast us off, but you’ve given us a banner, LORD, you weren’t going out with our armies, now give us help from trouble, I understand LORD, vain is the help of man.  Now I’m not even going to trust Joab, as he goes into the South, you’re going to have to do that, he may be my greatest general, but LORD, you alone are going to secure this.’  “Through God we shall do valiantly:  for he it is that shall tread down our enemies.” (verse 12)  Look, great for us, ‘We wrestle not against flesh and blood, but against principalities and powers, rulers of darkness in high places,’ the New Testament says (Ephesians 6:12)  There is warfare, there is warfare.  Christians make two mistakes with [spiritual] warfare.  One is they give the enemy more press than the Bible gives them, ‘The devil made me do it, the devil made me do it, the devil made me do it, the devil made me eat the extra donut.’  He did not.  You ate it.  The devil can only be at one place at one time.  He’s not omnipresent, I’m sure he’s hassling the President, he’s hassling Putin, he’s trying to get somebody to push a button somewhere, he’s got more important things to do than hassle you.  Again, you have some buck-private demon liar that hassles you, he’s ugly, he’s mean, but there is warfare, through the power of suggestion, you know.  When Joe Wheeler was here, again, he said he had written 30 books for James Dobson, he’s written 50 books on his own, and one of the books he wrote for Dobson about turning off the remote, he studied the past 25 years or so of, you know, remote-controlled TV, then to cell-phones, then to I-phones, and Ipads, and just, now we have the whole world in front of us now.  And he says, what scientists have observed, that so many young people in cyberspace, and their experience and what they observe is everything they pull right up to their face, their brains are not actually developing synapses that can anticipate.  Because 50 years ago or 100 years ago, people are reading a book, they’re reading a story, and they’re saying ‘I bet I know what happens!  I know who the bad guy’s gonna be!’  Or even you remember growing up watching a Sherlock Holmes or something, ‘I know what it’s going to be, didn’t I tell you that was who it was going to be?’  and you think ahead, you anticipate.  They said, sadly now, a whole generation is not even developing the processes to anticipate.  So they aren’t anticipating consequences when they sin, they’re not anticipating the fruit of what they’re doing, coming down and having to deal with it somewhere down the line.  We’re producing a generation who are so into cyberspace, they’re only downloading what Big Brother determines they can download, somebody’s determining what they get, you know, it’s on the menu, you don’t pick it yourself.  And we’re getting so ingrained in that, we’ve forgotten how, we’re not training our minds to think ahead, to anticipate, to look forward.  Of course the Scriptures are always telling us to anticipate, ‘understand, this is what’s going to happen [that is what Bible prophecy is all about], God is going to have victory in the end, he’s the one who comes out on top, we know the end of the story, he is the Lord of lords, he is the King of kings.’  You know, when there’s terrible things that come, we need to sit down, we need to take inventory, ‘Lord, help me think, help me look forward, help me understand, what am I doing, help me iron these things out.’  And I believe that he is of course always faithful to do that. 

 

Psalm 61:1-8

 

To the chief Musician upon Neginah, A Psalm of David.

 

“Hear my cry, O God; attend unto my prayer.  From the end of the earth will I cry unto thee, when my heart is overwhelmed:  lead me to the rock that is higher than I.  For thou hast been a shelter for me, and a strong tower from the enemy.  I will abide in thy tabernacle for ever:  I will trust in the covert of thy wings.  Selah.  For thou, O God, hast heard my vows:  thou hast given me the heritage of those that fear thy name.  Thou wilt prolong the king’s life:  and his years as many generations.  He shall abide before God for ever:  O prepare mercy and truth, which may preserve him.  So will I sing praise unto thy name for ever, that I may daily perform my vows.”

 

Introduction

 

“Now, Psalm 61.  “To the chief Musician upon Neginah” “smitings, which some feel was a postscript to the last Psalm, because it’s seemed like smitings.  This is a Psalm of David.  Most scholars agree, this is written in regards to Absalom’s rebellion.  David when he fled Jerusalem, if you remember, he crosses over the Kidron, he goes up the Mount of Olives, he moves then across the Jordan, and he’s up in the area of Gilead and Mahanaim, with Barzillai, an old tribal leader up there, an old man who loves David, and has brought out everything for his troops, for his men, offered him hospitality (cf. 2nd Samuel 17:22, 27-29).  And David no doubt at this point in time has heard that Absalom is dead, the rebellion has turned.  And yet David feels so far from the Tabernacle, so far from the Ark of the Covenant that he sent back to Jerusalem, and he writes this Psalm in great heartache.  In Psalm 59 remember he said, “It’s not my fault, I didn’t sin.  I didn’t transgress.”  This is a Psalm he writes realizing that if it wasn’t for his sin, you know, this disaster wouldn’t be talking place in his own home and own kingdom.  Remember, when Nathan came to him after his sin with Bathsheba and Uriah, and he told him in the parable, he says “thou art the man, thus saith the LORD God of Israel, I anointed thee king over Israel, I delivered thee out the hand of Saul, I gave thee thy master’s house, thy master’s wives,’ his harem, a sign of the kingdom passing out of Saul’s hands, ‘into they bosom, I gave thee the House of Israel, and of Judah, and if that had been too little I would have given you moreover, whatever things you would have asked, I would have given anything.  Wherefore hast thou despised the commandment of the LORD to do evil in his sight, thou hast killed Uriah the Hittite with the sword, you have taken his wife to be thy wife, and hast slain him with the sword with the children of Ammon.  Now therefore the sword shall never depart from your house, because you have despised me, and you’ve taken his wife, thus your wives will be put out in the sun, you’re going to be shamed in all of this.’ and he says, ‘Thou did it secretly, but I will do these things before Israel to be seen.’  And David said to Nathan ‘I have sinned against the LORD.’ and Nathan said unto David, ‘The LORD hath also put away thy sin,’ remarkable, ‘thou shalt not die.  Howbeit, because by this deed thou hast given great occasion to the enemies of the LORD to blaspheme, the child also that was born of thee shall surely die,’ and so forth.  So David has this incredible sense of his failure.  He was never the king or the father he had been earlier in his life, and as he writes this Psalm, let’s read it, “Hear my cry, O God; attend unto my prayer.  From the end of the earth will I cry unto thee, when my heart is overwhelmed:  lead me to the rock that is higher than I.  For thou hast been a shelter for me, and a strong tower from the enemy.  I will abide in thy tabernacle for ever:  I will trust in the covert of thy wings.  Selah.  For thou, O God, hast heard my vows:  thou hast given me the heritage of those that fear thy name.” it turns Messianic, no doubt he sees more, “Thou wilt prolong the king’s life: and his years as many generations.  He shall abide before God for ever:  O prepare mercy and truth, which may preserve him.  So will I sing praise unto thy name for ever, that I may daily perform my vows.” (verses 1-8)  David now, no doubt from the area of Mahanaim, looking down south, feeling far from the Ark of the Covenant and worship.  Hearing that Absalom his son is dead, hung up in a tree by his hair, he knows the Scripture that says ‘Cursed is everyone that hangeth in a tree,’ no doubt he had cried and carried on ‘O Absalom!  O Absalom!  O Absalom!’ and Joab finally said ‘David, stop it!  You’ve got a victory, you’ve got the kingdom back again, you’re causing your men to feel shamed instead of feeling, rejoicing in the victory.’  But David, in the context of this, is thinking ‘If I hadn’t committed adultery, if I hadn’t committed murder, this is all come on my house, Nathan said this would come, LORD I know you’ve forgiven me,’ he’s told us in Psalm 51, ‘God, create in me a clean heart, bara, from nothing, regenerate, cause to exist something that wasn’t there, create in me a clean heart.’  You know, he’s gone through those things, but he still carries this, and we get much of it, he was never the king he was again, but he was a much greater Psalmist towards the end of his life, signing off again, “the sweet Psalmist of Israel,” not the giant-slayer, not the king, he signs off as “the sweet Psalmist of Israel.” 

 

David Cries Out, Realizing He’s Blown It

 

And here with a broken heart, “Hear my cry,” is “my lamentation” or “my piercing cry” , David very visceral, very emotional.  “Hear my cry, O God; attend unto my prayer.” (verse 1)  Listen, this is for anybody whose blown it.  Anybody here whose murdered anybody, committed adultery, you’ve blown it big-time, you probably haven’t out-sinned David, but you’ve blown it big-time, and you’re thinking ‘Can God ever forgive me, can God ever be gracious to me again?’  And the answer is yes, the answer is yes.  Through the death of his Son on the cross, the Lamb of God that taketh away the sin of the world.  The answer is yes.  No matter how far away you feel this evening, you can come back to him, he loves you.  His mercies are new every morning.  He says “Hear my lamentation, my piercing cry, O God; attend unto my prayer.” (verse 1)  “From the end of the earth will I cry unto thee, when my heart is overwhelmed:  lead me to the rock that is higher than I.” (verse 2)  He hears us from anywhere, way up north.  when my heart is overwhelmed” great thing, don’t we all know that?  Do we all know this, “I will cry unto thee, when my heart is overwhelmed,” do we all know that?  If you don’t, you just got saved this morning on the way in or something.  ‘When my heart is overwhelmed I will cry unto thee,’ and then he’s asking for grace, ‘lead me, the adulterer, the murderer, LORD, lead me, LORD.’  No longer ‘I’m going with the sword in my hand, I’ve got Joshua’s sword, I’m whupping everybody.’ It’s not longer, ‘I didn’t do anything wrong, there’s no transgression,’ he’s coming from a completely broken place, and he says “lead me to the rock that is higher than I.” (verse 2b)  You can pray that this evening.  [Comment:  I remember as a new-believer, and starting to fellowship within the Worldwide Church of God, and because of God’s indwelling Holy Spirit having a love for God’s law, as David expressed in Psalm 119:97, and in the flush of that spiritual first-love, obeying every law and precept I could find in God’s Word, and I know it was in the power of God’s Spirit, but I was cocky, feeling I was keeping all the law, all the do’s and don’ts, almost the same attitude reflected in David’s Cave Psalms, “I didn’t do anything wrong.”  Looking back, I see that this was a physical level of obedience.  Many could come into a church, be emotionally or intellectually convinced that God exists, and the Bible is his Word, but never really receive God’s Holy Spirit, and believe they’re “members in good standing, real Christians,” doing all the “minister” says, and not really be with it spiritually, it’s merely a legalistic trip they’re on.  And some churches, due to a wrong paradigm they’re on about this, don’t realize many of their members could be in this boat.  I did have the Holy Spirit though, as time and experience showed me.  But as I matured, and discovered the far deeper element of real obedience, as I grew older and wrestled with sin at the thought level, as Jesus told us to in Matthew 5:17-48, I found myself in a huge struggle, and not always winning, but more often than not, loosing, as Paul so aptly expressed in Romans 7:21-25.  It was then that I discovered that churches can’t legislate obedience from the pulpit or through their slick publications and booklets (those things should guide and teach, but not attempt to enforce or legislate obedience), true obedience has to come from the heart, the heart of God being placed within us, as we see the corrupt nature in us that prevents us from achieving obedience at the thought level, and cry out to God as David did in Psalm 51, to create, bara, from nothing, that clean heart within me.  Real obedience can’t be enforced or legislated from the pulpit, but has to come from the heart, and that, through a lifetime of grace-oriented spiritual overcoming and growth in the knowledge of the Lord Jesus Christ.  These churches that demand a high level of obedience to the law of God before baptism and the receiving of the Holy Spirit have got the cart before the horse.  Any semblance of real obedience doesn’t come until the Holy Spirit of God dwells within an individual and grants spiritual power and understanding, and leads and guides that individual out of sin.  And that leading and guiding out of sin is a lifetime process, baptism and the receiving of the Holy Spirit is only the beginning of the long spiritual journey to maturity and eternal life.  David in the Psalms after the Uriah-Bathsheba incident has now been brought to this higher level of obedience and spiritual maturity.]   “lead me to the rock that is higher than I.”  You can pray that this evening.  “For thou hast been a shelter for me, and a strong tower from the enemy.” (verse 3)  You have to let Jesus be that for you.  Satan is the enemy, he’s the accuser of the brethren.  It tells us in Revelation chapter 12 that he accuses the Christian day and night, 24/7, without stopping.  But it says there ‘They overcame by the blood of the Lamb, and by the word of their testimony.’  Not because they were worthy.  He says, ‘You’ve been a shelter for me, and a strong tower from the enemy.’  “I will abide in thy tabernacle for ever:  I will trust in the covert of thy wings.  Selah.” (verse 4)  Some try to make reference to the Ark of the Covenant and the cherubim on the lid of the Mercy Seat here in this verse, we’re not sure.  No doubt David in the wilderness had seen a mother hen, and then Jesus had said ‘How often would I have gathered thee under my wings as a hen gathers her chicks, and you would not.’  He senses the covert, the place where I can hide, shelter, LORD, it’s under your covering, it’s not a physical place.’  “I will trust in the covert of thy wings.  Selah.” ‘What do you think about that?’ Looking back, he says this, “For thou, O God, hast heard my vows:  thou hast given me the heritage of those that fear thy name.” (verse 5)  ‘LORD, looking back, you’ve been faithful to me LORD, I’ve done things wrong, you know I fear your name, LORD, I hold you in great reverence and esteem, I know I’m a sinner saved by grace, you’ve given me the heritage of those that fear thy name.’ 

 

David Sees And Prophecies Of The Messiah

 

He says, “Thou wilt prolong the king’s life:  and his years as many generations.” (verse 6)   He looks forward now.  In the Promises he knows that there is for his own throne, the House of David, in this also no doubt he’s seeing the Messiah.  “He shall abide before God for ever:  O prepare mercy and truth, which may preserve him.  So will I sing praise unto thy name for ever, that I may daily perform my vows.” (verses 7-8)  His son has just been killed.  He’s driven from his kingdom.  He is as down in circumstances as anybody could possibly get.  And again, something he learned when he was 20-years-old, and we’re hearing it again, “So will I sing praise unto thy name for ever, that I may daily perform my vows.” (verse 8)  Interesting in the Hebrew “perform” there, the word “shalom” is part of the root there, ‘that I may have peace, LORD, perform, there’s peace in this for me now, LORD.’ 

 

In Closing

 

Psalm 59, you’re sitting here this evening, ‘I’m getting the rotten end of the stick, and it ain’t my fault,’ just wait, it will be someday.  [I love you Joe!  When you’ve been a Christian for awhile, you’ll see what he’s talking about.  See my previous comment.]  But it’s not tonight.  ‘It ain’t my fault, I didn’t do anything wrong, I don’t deserve this, LORD, I’m going to trust you, I’m going to look to you LORD, stir yourself, meet with me, please LORD.  Because if I know you’re watching all this, I can take it.  Because the wicked, they’re like dogs, there’s no end to this, they’re prowling around.  And LORD, it’s not just me, this is who you are in time and eternity in the whole earth, in the history of mankind.  So what I’m going to do LORD, I’m crushed, I’m down, I’m betrayed, I’m gonna sing.’  Next Psalm (Psalm 60) warfare.  And Christians are either in warfare, going out of warfare, or going into warfare, you’re in one of those three places.  And he says there, ‘OK LORD, what’s the deal, I’m running into a snag here, I’m not sure what’s wrong.  You’ve given us a banner, you’ve said we’re your own, you know, you and I are sealed with the Spirit of Promise until the day of redemption, we’re going to experience victory, LORD, whatever it is here that’s wrong, show me, because your name’s at stake, your truth is at stake,’ and he finally goes on to say, ‘You know what, I’m going to trust you, trusting man is a vain thing.  There’s no human, there’s no human strength that can do this, it’s yours LORD, and it’s your reputation, it’s your battle, it’s not mine, I’m not gonna do this, I’m going to let you fight my battles, this is what I’m going to do, when I’m feeling defeated, when I’m attacked from behind, this is what I’m going to do, I’m going to sing.’  Ok, so if that’s you tonight, that’s good advice for you.  ‘I’m going to sing.’  Last one (Psalm 61), towards the end of his life, he’s messed up, he’s had major sins, things wrong, looking at things falling apart around him, brokenhearted, his son whom he loved, Absalom, been hung in a tree, God has as much said to him ‘He’s lost, David, he was bad seed, he never turned, he died in rebellion, it says cursed is everyone that hangs in a tree.’  David’s heart is deeply broken, deeply troubled.  And he’s not going to God boldly anymore saying ‘It’s not my fault, I didn’t do anything,’ he’s owning it.  And he’s just saying ‘I’m going to take shelter under the shadow of your wings, LORD, you’re my strong tower, you’re my strength, you’re everything, I got nothing, you’re everything, LORD, you’re the one that’s faithful.  And LORD, your Kingdom’s coming, preserve your King, he’s going to live forever.  And what I’m going to do with my broken heart, and my sense of unworthiness is this, I’m going to sing.’  OK?  Rob, I think we should sing, don’t you?  From the beginning of our life to our old age, [applause] from the beginning of our life to our old age, I think that theme, as we go through this ancient Hymn Book, I’m going to sing.  Let’s stand, let’s pray…[transcript of a connective expository sermon on Psalm 59:1-17, Psalm 60:1-12 and Psalm 61:1-8, given by Pastor Joe Focht, Calvary Chapel of Philadelphia, 13500 Philmont Avenue, Philadelphia, PA  19116]

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