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Psalms 8, 9 & 10


God Is Above The Universe---Let’s Consider

The Universe


To the chief Musician upon Gittith, A Psalm of David


We come to Psalm 8, “O LORD our Lord, how excellent is thy name in all the earth! who hast set thy glory above the heavens.  Out of the mouth of babes and sucklings hast thou ordained strength because of thine enemies, that thou mightest still the enemy and the avenger.  When I consider thy heavens, the work of thy fingers, the moon and the stars, which thou hast ordained; what is man, that thou art mindful of him? and the son of man, that thou visiteth him?  For thou hast made him a little lower than the angels, and hast crowned him with glory and honour.  Thou madest him to have dominion over the works of thy hands; thou hast put all things under his feet:  all sheep and oxen, yea, and the beasts of the field; the fowl of the air, and the fish of the sea, and whatsoever passeth through the paths of the seas.  O LORD our Lord, how excellent is thy name in all the earth!” (verses 8:1-9)  This eighth Psalm, it tells us it’s a psalm of David.  It says “upon Gittith”, the word means “winepress,” and most scholars feel this is one of the great songs of Israel that was sung at the time of the Feast of Tabernacles, that would be when the wine would be gathered in.  It is to the chief musician, which means it was to be used in public worship, and it states some very remarkable things.  Now look, you’ll notice it doesn’t begin at verse 4, where it says “what is man,” that’s where our world lives and operates, “what is man?” that’s what everybody wants to know, ‘Why am I here?  What’s my purpose?  How can I get what I need?  How can I satisfy my need?  How can I do this?’ we’re kind of man-centric in our thinking.  Certainly before we were saved, we were certainly that way.  And what is man?  A lot of people defining that for us.  Karl Marx defined that for us, and it cost tens of millions of lives.  The Third Reich defined that and it cost tens of millions of lives.  Charles Darwin defined what man was, highest form of animal, the most evolved, it’s the root of racism, cost millions of lives, abortion, we’re the highest form of creature, we can decide what morality is, there’s no accountability.  We can look around, we’re on top of the food chain, so we can look down on every other living, breathing thing and decide what order it has, importance it has.  But the Psalmist never starts there.  He starts at a much different place.  He says “O LORD our Lord, how excellent is thy name in all the earth!”  ‘O Jehovah,’ notice it’s capital L, capital O, capital R, capital D, if you have King James, most of your translations, if it’s all capitals, it’s YAHWEH, YHVH.  With the YH, we do YAH, the VEH, where we get Jehovah from, from the YHVH, but it’s the Becoming One, it is the name of the Tetragrammaton, Israel’s, the name for her God which she couldn’t  pronounce YHVH has no syllables, how do you say that?  Jehovah, the covenant-keeping God, Yahweh, the Becoming One.  When God reveals himself to Moses in this way, Abraham knew El Shaddai, the Almighty, but Yahweh, Jehovah reveals himself to Moses.  We’ll find the word in the Book of Genesis, because Moses put it to the page when he speaks of the LORD, but he reveals himself to Moses.  But the first time is in Genesis 22 with Abraham, and actually he reveals himself through Moses, but we have Jehovah-Jira, “the LORD is our Provider.”  We have the Lord being our healer, our Shepherd through the Old Testament.  In all of those things he was “whatever we needed him to be.”  He is the “Becoming One,” and that was in regards to man, he’s not the all-powerful one up there with lightning bolts in his hand, he’s not the Ever-Smoking One, you know, he’s gonna turn you to dust One, you know he reveals himself in each of his titles in regards to man’s needs, stooping down, remarkable.  ‘O Lord, Jehovah,’ and then he says “our Lord” you’ll see it’s capital L, small o, r, d, Adonai, our Master, our Sovereign.  It’s a remarkable statement, as David, you know, laying out in the fields no doubt as a boy, many of these impressions made upon his heart, ‘When I consider the moon and the stars,’ you know, if you’ve ever been somewhere outside of city lights where you can get a good look at the stars at night, it’s shocking, it’s remarkable.  And somehow looking up in all of that, at some point he says ‘O LORD, Jehovah God, your power, Master, you stoop down, Adonai, and how excellent, superlative, majestic’ is the idea ‘is thy name in all the earth.’  Look, it says ‘the heavens declare the glory of the Lord’ he’ll write later, ‘the earth sheweth forth thy handiwork.’  So the LORD’s name, whether people like it or not, today, is excellent, is majestic in all the earth (cf. verse 1).  The day’s coming in the Kingdom Age where everyone will acknowledge that.  Everyone’s not acknowledging it now, but that doesn’t change anything at all, the fact that his name is excellent in all the earth.  “O LORD our Lord, how excellent is thy name in all the earth! who hast set thy glory above the heavens.” (verse 1) not in the heavens, the heavens declare the glory of the Lord, but they just declare it.  His glory he says here, is above the heavens.  “who hast set thy glory above the heavens” plural, the sky, the astral heavens, the celestial heavens, above all of that, “who hast set thy glory above the heavens.”  We look at the universe, I remember again, when I was in high school, 1964 to 1968, the heavens were 12 billion light-years wide then.  By the time year 2000 came they’re 20 billion light-years wide [as astronomers know, the universe is still expanding, and has expanded from 1968 to 2000 by 8 billion light-years, amazing!].  The heavens are growing quickly, it’s remarkable, and they’re even bigger now.  David says ‘You’ve set your glory above all of that, it’s immeasurable,’ and yet he says, “Out of the mouth of babes and sucklings hast thou ordained strength” and what a contrast, the heavens to the mouth of babes, “Out of the mouth of babes and sucklings hast thou ordained strength because of thine enemies, that thou mightest still the enemy and the avenger.” (verse 2) let Marx say what he will about God, let Darwin say what he will, it doesn’t matter, there’s lots of voices, “but out of the mouth of babes and sucklings hast thou ordained strength because of thine enemies, that thou mightest still” or cause to stop “the enemy and the avenger.”  i.e. ‘that you might just make them shut up.’  Now I like what Matthew does with this verse, ah, Jesus comes into the Temple, he turns over the tables of the money-changers, all that, but before that the kids are screaming ‘Hosanna, hosanna,’ the kids are screaming that, the children are screaming ‘Hosanna!’ the blind and the lame come to him.  And he had turned over the tables of the money-changers, and it says when the chief priests and the scribes saw the wonderful things that he did, and the children crying in the Temple saying ‘Hosanna, to the Son of David, they were sore displeased,’ you don’t want kids doing that praising Jesus so publicly.  ‘And they said unto him, Hearest thou what these say?  And Jesus said unto them, Yea, have ye never read Out of the mouth of babes and sucklings thou hast perfected praise?’  I like what Jesus does with it.  It says here in the Psalm, he says, “thou hast ordained strength” but Jesus said “Out of the mouth of babes and sucklings thou hast perfected praise” ‘that thou mightest shut up the enemy.’  You know, here’s a God who lays out the heavens, we’re told in Isaiah chapter 40, it says ‘Who hath measured the waters in the hollow of his hand, and he has meted out the heavens, measured out the heavens with the span of his hand.’  So the twenty billion light-years, Jesus said, ‘is about this big, right here.’ [Pastor Joe holding up the palm of his hand, obviously.]  ‘He’s measured out the heavens with the span of his hand, he set his glory above that, and yet out of the mouths of babes and sucklings he’s perfected praise.’  Again, you know I watch my grandkids, you know, they’re reciting verses now, they’re singing ‘Jesus loves me, this I know, for the Bible tells me so,’ and they mean it, more than we do sometimes, they mean it.  Again I ask my one about, her sister is whining about Christ, I ask why, and he says “She doesn’t understand the love of God.”  [loud laughter]  “I tried to tell her, but she doesn’t understand.”  So, out of the mouths of sucklings and babes thou hast perfected praise, Lord, the heavens themselves can’t contain you, you’ve laid it out with the span of your hand, but you can stoop down to a four-year-old and to a five-year-old, and you can touch their heart so that they can sing ‘Jesus loves me, this I know, for the Bible tells me so,’ and they can close their eyes and they can mean it with all their hearts.  And Lord you can shut up the mouths of all your adversaries with that, Lord.  The heavens in all of their complexity and all of their expanse are not as complicated, as attended to, as one child, one babe.  Man, we need to remember that in our culture.  We have thrown off the life of babes and sucklings.  It says here he has perfected praise in their mouths.  And David says ‘You know, when I consider, to think about, when I consider,’ notice, ‘thy heavens, the work of thy fingers, the moon and the stars which thou hast ordained,’ I’ve had the opportunity several times in my life to either be in the desert, in the Grand Tetons in Wyoming, Montana, Kathy and I were in the Canadian Rockies last summer, in places where you don’t have the wash of city lights, and it’s black out at night, and you look up, and the stars are riotous, they’re screaming, you look up, you’re staggered.  You watch and you’ll see shooting stars, there’s all this incredible, you think he laid that out with the span of his hand. 


Considering All This, What Is Man?---Yet God Is Mindful Of Man


He looks at all that, and now he puts the question where it belongs.  “When I consider thy heavens, the work of thy fingers, the moon and the stars, which thou hast ordained; what is man, that thou art mindful of him? and the son of man, that thou visiteth him?” (verses 3-4)  Now you ask “what is man?” now things are in proper perspective.  Now, “what is man, that thou art mindful of him? and the son of man, that thou visiteth him?”  It says “mindful”, you know what “mindful” means?  It means to have your mind full.  He’s mindful of man.  It tells us in Psalm 139 around verses 17 and 18 that ‘the thoughts that God has towards us are more than the grains of sand on the seashore.’  And you think, ‘Yea, I know he’s thinking ‘I’m gonna squash that one, he drives me crazy.’  No, no.  No, no, because Jeremiah says that they [these thoughts God has about us] are good, continually, only.’  Mindful, his mind is full of you this evening, each of you as individuals, since you were a babe, he’s been perfecting praise in your life, since you were a babe.  You know, he watches us born, he told Jeremiah he knew him before he was conceived.  He watches us run, carefree sometimes as toddlers, he sees all the hurt in life, abuse, the sexual abuse, the things we come through, the brokenness, but he knew us from the time we were a child, running carefree, playing.  He sees the brokenness, he sees the pain, and he’s mindful, more than the grains of sand, you sit on the beach.  I don’t like the grains of sand, I don’t like them, they stick between my fingers, get in my ears, they go between my toes, I like the mountains [I’m a beach, ocean and water person, sailor, so I love the beach and sand], but it’s a great illustration.  You just sit there and think ‘How many grains of sand are within view?’  It’s his thoughts towards us are more than the grains of sand, Jeremiah 29:11, and all of those, immeasurable, his thoughts towards us, they’re good, continually, only.  It’s unbelievable.  And here we are, what is man?  You know, you look at all those grains of sand, and here you are sitting on the beach, and you look up and you see the stars, and here you are, this little speck.  You think the sand is specky?  You’re a little speck sitting here.  You know, you look at our sun, 93,000,000 miles away, and it’s a small star in the galaxy and the universe, one of the small stars.  And yet you could take 1,200,000 earths and put them inside the sun.  One million, two hundred thousand earths would fit inside the sun.  Or you could put the earth inside the sun with the moon rotating around it, and have 100,000 miles of crust left.  You think that’s amazing?  You want to take a 24 trillion mile journey to the northeast corner of Orion, and there’s a star there called Betelgeuse, you’re all familiar with Betelgeuse, 415,000,000 miles in diameter [the ruby in an Orion ring I want to have made sometime in the future].  You can take Betelgeuse and you can put our sun inside of it with the earth rotating around it, and have 100,000,000 miles of crust left.  And yet Betelgeuse is just a speck in the galaxy, which is just a speck in the universe.  Lord, you set your glory above the heavens.  And yet in these heavens there’s a speck that’s a galaxy, and in that speck there’s a star that’s a big star, but it’s a big speck, Betelgeuse, and that’s 24 trillion miles from a little bitty star, which is our sun, which is 93,000,000 miles from a tiny wincey ridiculously little speck called earth, and sitting on earth on the beach, there’s a really itty bitty itty bitty little speck called Joe [or Pete, or Andy, or Brandee, or Addie, or Michael or Maria, or Joey, or Mandi, or Steff, or Matt, you get my point].  Now you ask the question, “what is man?”, not some big somebody saying ‘Well I don’t think we should be allowed to say, one day is for God.’  Who cares, you’re this little tiny, wincey, speck, you know.  “When I consider thy heavens, the work of thy fingers, the moon and the stars, which thou hast ordained;” (verse 3)  ‘What is man?  What is man, that you’re mindful of him, Lord?’  ‘What is it you’ve set your heart, mind, your mind is filled with thoughts of me like the grains of sand, and good continually, only.’


Jesus Stepped Out Of Eternity To Become A Little Speck, Grain Of Sand Like Us


“What is man, that thou art mindful of him? and the son of man, that thou visiteth him?” (verse 4)  ‘The son of man,’ the first time that phrase is used in the Bible, “the son of man, that thou visitest him.”  He’s not detached, he’s not detached, “the son of man, that thou visiteth him” no doubt looking forward to Jesus, David sitting in the fields of Bethlehem where he would be born, the Son of man, ‘the Word became flesh, and dwelt among us, we beheld his glory, as the glory of the only begotten of the Father, full of grace and truth.’ (John 1)  He became an itty bitty, itty bitty little one, the One who laid out the heavens, a little speck who walked among us, because he’s mindful of us, he visited us.  He says “For thou hast made him a little lower than angels, and hast crowned him with glory and honour.” (verse 5) “a little lower than the angels” which Hebrews chapter 2 agrees with, a little lower than the angels.  The idea is “to depress or make a little lower”, “made him a little lower than the angels, and hast crowned him with glory and honour.”  The highest achievement in God’s creation is man, the highest thing in creation [i.e. of living creatures, life] is mankind.  Mankind that we throw out the window, mankind that we kill, mankind that we disregard, this is, this is the being, all the rest of it is a stage for mankind.  Everything else God did he did for us, and his heart’s affection is upon us, he can’t stop thinking about you, mindful of you, constantly.  He came down to take on human flesh, he lowered himself into all of that, to walk alongside of us, to be Immanuel, God with us.  And he lowered himself down to all of that, made a little lower than the angels, because man is fallen.  Man was not lower than the angels in God’s creation.  The angels are ministering spirits, sent forth to minister to the heirs of salvation.  Angels are spirits without bodies. [now here we go again into a weird Calvary Chapel interpretation.  As seen in Quantum mechanics, all matter is a holographic image coming from a higher reality outside of Space & Time, which makes what is outside of Space & Time more solid than matter itself, so spirit, the spirit beings in God’s realm are more solid than matter.  See]  Human beings are spirits with bodies, and souls, consciousness.  Animals are bodies with souls without spirits, sorry [again he’s wrong, Solomon has the spirit of an animal, when it dies, goes back into the ground in Ecclesiastes.  Calvary Chapels consciously choose to ignore parts of the Old Testament in the formulation of their denominational doctrine about the spirit within man and the spirit within animals.  See Ecclesiastes 3:19-21, especially verse 21 and Ecclesiastes 9:5]. 


Man Is Over Everything On Earth---But There’s A Problem


And man is fallen [true enough about that], there’s something wrong. Verses 6-8, “Thou madest him to have dominion over the works of thy hands; thou hast put all things under his feet:  all sheep and oxen, yea, and the beasts of the field; the fowl of the air, and the fish of the sea, and whatsoever passeth through the paths of the seas.  O LORD our Lord, how excellent is thy name in all the earth!”  It says here, ‘you’ve crowned him with glory,’ this is the epitome of creation, ‘you’ve given him dominion over the works of your hands, you’ve put all things under his feet, all sheep, all oxen, yea, the beasts of the field, the spotted owl, the blue whale, everything, the fowls of the air, the fish of the sea, whatsoever passeth over the paths of the seas,’ (verses 6-8) all of that man is to have dominion over, but there’s a problem, with that God ordained and God-given place.  Man is fallen.  Man now, you know, is spending his time trying to figure out why he’s here, what he’s doing.  Animals are not doing that.  Don’t let people tell you Spotted Owls are our brother owls, I mean, I love trees, but I don’t talk to trees or hug them, they don’t know that.  In man’s idea with Darwinism, its effect on our educational system, the missing link is down.  Our passage here says the missing link is up.  God has made us a little lower than the angels, we’re a fallen spiritual being, we’re not the highest form of monkey on the planet [I thought we were on the Planet of the Apes, you could have fooled me this all the monkey-business going on].  Now you can decide, you can have your own position, I’d just rather be a little lower than the angels than a little higher than the monkeys, you can choose for yourself.  Again, last year on TV they had this show, I remember this gorilla, they taught her sign language, she knew over a hundred words, just to get a banana.  [Like the movie I like so much Congo, based on a Michael Crichton book by the same name, where they give this young female gorilla named Amy human-like intelligence, which is pure fancy, yet it makes for a nice story.  Personally I think the gorillas are exhibiting more intelligence right now, at least they are not making nuclear weapons which can erase all life from off the planet.  Sometimes less intelligence equates to having more.]  It’s pretty remarkable, they’re intelligent.  But none of them are sitting around making circuits for computers.  None of them are doing transplant surgery, none of them are using lasers to fix cataracts.  I don’t care how much you like your monkey, I do not want your monkey working on my eye with a laser.  There’s a VAST difference.  We’re created in the image of our Creator.  [And this is shown by the fact that mankind is a race of creators as well, we create literature, music, and use our knowledge of science and mathematics to create almost anything we can imagine out of the elements found on the earth, including, stupidly, weapons of mass destruction that can erase life from off this planet.  We can land space probes on a comet traveling at 84,000 mph with a gravity only 1/100th of earths gravity and have it send back pictures.  We are a race of creators, made in the image of the One who created us.]  The problem is, man is fallen, all of that research and development is so that we can send a missile to the other side of the planet and blow up more of what God loves.  We can make bombs go off on the marathon in Boston.  We’re the highest form of life, so we can abort a million babies a year.  We scream when somebody messes with our marathon and three people are killed, and it’s a tragedy, and we turn our blind eye to a million babies that are slaughtered during the year.  A guy in Philadelphia, whatever in the world he’s doing, and only one news network is picking it up.  Thousands, God puts unimaginable value on every human life.  If Darwin is right, and Darwin said, if you read his writings, that the white man is superior, and ultimately he’s going to conquer and rule over the yellow race and the black race, because of survival of the fittest, it’s just evolution.  That makes all of us nothing.  [see]  If you understand Biblical origins, every person in this room is a divine creation of Almighty God, and he loves every single one of us [loud applause].  And not a human alive has a right to look down on another human being.  It’s all part of the beauty of God’s creation.  ‘Lord, you’ve given him dominion over all of these things, but there’s a problem.  But you’re mindful of them, and you visited him.’  David somehow saw the Incarnation, laying in the fields of Bethlehem.  And again, he said, “O LORD our Lord, how excellent is thy name in all the earth!” (verse 9)  He ends how he begins, Jehovah, our Provider, our Banner, our Healer, our Peace, our Shepherd, our Righteousness, the Ever-Present One, all the compound names of God, Jehovah-jira…all the names with Jehovah in them, he’s all of those, and finally in Matthew chapter 1 the angel says ‘you’ll name him Jehovah-shua [or Yahweh-shua, or shorter, Yeshua in Hebrew], the Lord has become our salvation, Jesus,’ “O LORD our Lord, how excellent is thy name in all the earth!” 


Psalm 9


‘Lord, What Do We Do With The Wicked Outside Our Nation, The Other Nations Of The World?


Now it’s hard to do, we’re going to move a little bit, because it’s hard to do Psalm 9 without doing Psalm 10, they go together.  In the Hebrew there’s an acrostic, and every other line begins with one of the letters in the Hebrew alphabet and it moves through alphabetically.  Now it skips a few letters, there’s a whole spiritual reason why that is, but the acrostic runs right into Psalm 10.  If you look at the very end of Psalm 9 it says “Selah”, which is “What do you think about that?” which then takes you right into Psalm 10.  In the Septuagint translation in the Old Testament this is one psalm [i.e. 9 & 10].  In some of the ancient Targum and so forth, it’s one psalm.  There are separate thoughts.  Psalm 9 seems to be saying to God’s people, ‘Look, we have this struggle between the righteous and the wicked, of injustice, of wicked people flourishing, like Psalm 73, being in powerful positions, ‘Lord, what do we do then?’  And particularly for the nation of Israel which has always been persecuted, it seems to be ‘Lord, what do we do with the wicked outside of our nation, the other nations of the world?’  Psalm 10 is a bit different, because it seems to be saying ‘What do we do with the wicked inside of this realm, among us within our nation?’  So application to us today, certainly the world we look at today, we see the insanity, and we ask these big questions, ‘Lord, what do we do?’  Every one of our hearts today as God’s children, in this world, we’re away from home, this is strange territory for us.  And every one of us needs the encouragement of Psalm 9, you know, ‘God is going to come and he’s going to straighten everything out,’ that’s what this Psalm says, he’s going to rule over everything.  [Comment:  That’s what prophecy shows us, most all the prophecies in the Bible.  See]  We have to take solace in that.  And then today the application would be for the 10th Psalm, ‘Now what about those in our midst?’  We can make application if we’re living in compromise, living the way we shouldn’t live, and there are those who slip into the Church, Paul says, who would lead disciples after themselves, they’re wolves in sheep’s clothing, they take advantage.  So we can make some application as we go through.  To me, the wonderful thing is, as I read through everything, ‘Lord, you’re on the throne, you’re on the throne, CBS, NBC, ABC, Fox News, they’re not on the throne, Washington is not on the throne, Moscow’s not on the throne, you’re on the throne, Lord.’  And that’s a wonderful thing that comes across in these two Psalms.  So we have here Psalm 9, again, it means it was to be sung publicly in Israel’s worship.  Muthlabben, the idea is hard to understand, ‘is the death of a son.’  It’s one of the Psalms of David.  Is it written in some context that we don’t know?  Is it just the grieving heart that happens in the death of a son?  How are we to make application, I don’t have any good answer for you in that, but that’s the title here, as we move into it.  And you’ll notice in the first two verses the phrase “I will” there four times.


The Lord Endures Forever, The Wicked Won’t


To the chief Musician upon Muthlabben, A Psalm of David


“I will praise thee, O LORD, with my whole heart; I will shew forth all thy marvellous works.  I will be glad and rejoice in thee:  I will sing praise to thy name, O thou most High.” (verses 1-2) whatever’s going on in the world, God’s on the throne.  “I will praise thee, O LORD, with my whole heart; I will shew forth all thy marvellous works.”  Not half-hearted, you know, how many times are we half-hearted when we’re praising him and worshipping him?  David is saying ‘With my whole heart, with everything I have,’ whatever the context is, whatever the pain of it is, whatever the idea of the death of his son, whatever that has to do with it, David is recognizing that there are wicked people in the world, there are things that should not be going on, it’s hard to wrestle with that, ‘if God’s a God of love and he’s on the throne how could these things be?’  He’s wrestling with all that.  But he says in the midst of it, “I will praise thee, O LORD, with my whole heart”, not half-heartedly, “I will shew forth all thy marvellous works.” what a great thing to do with our kids and our grandkids and the next generation, make sure they know the truth and do that without compromise.  “I will be glad and rejoice in thee:” not in my surroundings, “I will sing praise to thy name, O thou most High.” (verse 2) ‘O Lord, O Lord, how excellent is thy name in all the earth.’  “ I will sing praise to thy name, O thou most High.”  Then he talks about what the Lord will do.  “When mine enemies are turned back, they shall fall and perish at thy presence.” (verse 3)  ‘Lord, you’re the one,’  “For” notice, we’re going to have “thou hast” four times [actually five].  “For thou hast maintained my right and my cause; thou satest in the throne judging right.” (verse 4)  ‘Lord, you’re the one, Lord, whose on the throne, whatever it seems like is happening around me, you judge correctly, Lord, you have maintained my cause,’ because his cause was the Lord’s cause, Thou hast rebuked the heathen, thou hast destroyed the wicked, thou hast put out their name for ever and ever.” (verse 5)  He sees the end here, David as he’s writing.  “O thou enemy, destructions are come to a perpetual end:  and thou hast destroyed cities; their memorial is perished with them.” (verse 6)  Everything the enemy had done has come to a perpetual end.  “Thou has destroyed cities” I’m afraid there is more of that ahead of us.  “But the LORD shall endure for ever:  he hath prepared his throne for judgment.” (verse 7)  When we see this world falling apart around us, you and I, by the Holy Spirit and by God’s Word will be reminded, ‘This is not our home.’  When all things are shaken which can be shaken, we’ll be reminded ‘it’s the Lord who endures forever.’  You know, I believe we will see a wonderful season in front of us with prodigals returning home [oh I hope so, Pastor Joe].  Because there’s a whole lot of them out there, and they know too much [my own kids, holding God at arms length, asking me to pray this or that for them, but never darkening the door of the church, so far].  And when the world begins to disintegrate and fall apart, they’re going to run home.  They’re not gonna become Buddhist or Hare Krishna’s, they’re going to run back and say ‘Oh Jesus, Oh Jesus, I’m serious now Jesus, Oh Jesus’ and we’re going to put out our arms, we’re not going to judge them, we’re going to put out our arms, and we’re going to welcome them home with all their unsaved friends [applause].  Because we’re all going to be reminded that he’s the one. 


The Lord Will Judge The World And Administer Justice


“But the LORD shall endure for ever:  he hath prepared his throne for judgment.  And he shall judge the world in righteousness, he shall minister judgment to the people in uprightness.” (verses 7-8)  That’s the real Supreme Court, by the way.  Whatever decision they [our supreme court] make in June, it don’t matter.  “he shall judge the world” not the United States, the world “in righteousness, he shall minister judgment to the people in uprightness.” “judgment” i.e. “justice.”  Won’t it be wonderful to finally see justice in the world?  Again, you know, listen, we watch this political experiment, I’m thankful for the United States, my Dad was in the Naval Department for over 30 years, I love our country.  There’s lots of things wrong with it, but it’s the best thing afloat.  And it’s way different than it was, and when we hear the one side saying, screaming ‘Well there needs to be more social justice,’ there does.  There needs to be Medicare, there does.  There needs to be Welfare, there does.  This nation is wealthy enough that poor people should be taken care of.  The problem is, because there are sinful poor people, then everybody that can work that would rather take a hand-out, abuses the hand that is reached out to the genuinely needy.  And then they scream, and they yell about the “fat-cats” that are making too much money, and there’s truth in that---you think of Fanny Mae and Freddy Mack and what happened on Wall Street, how they abuse everything.  The problem is, this is a country where people, should be able to, people come here from other countries, and in ten years they’re millionaires.  This still is a remarkable country, but because there’s sinful people among the fat-cats, that take advantage of that side of the system, then less fortunate people are taken advantage of by the guys that are abusive.  You know, a hundred years ago, when people in this country became millionaires, they built orphanages, they built hospitals, they had a consciousness that they were blessed, and they could be thankful, and they were able to give back.  But sin has ruined, it’s sin, on the poor end, on the rich end, we can’t point the finger, it’s sin.  [What is sin?  The apostle John defines it in 1st John 3:4, “sin is the transgression of the law”, i.e. the laws of God.]  We need a revival in this country, not a monetary fix, we need a revival, we need repentance, we need to come back to God.  And they can legislate whatever they want to legislate.  Understand, if we would be who we’re supposed to be, ‘If my people who are called by my name, would humble themselves and pray,’ if everybody in the country got saved, there doesn’t have to be abortion laws, or to decide what marriage is, they don’t have to worry about alcoholism and drugs.  If a revival sweeps across the country we would see remarkable things happen, no matter what they legislate.  [This happened once, in Rochester, New York.  Charles Finney started a revival in that city, and for years the people running the courts and jails had nothing to do, the police sat idle, because crime dropped down to nothing, everybody was in church and paying attention to God.]  So we need to, in this hour, pray.  We need to be here on Sunday night praying, be in each other’s homes praying, we need to get our hearts before the Lord, because he is on the throne.  He’s the one who is going to judge.  He’s the one who is still in charge.  He’s the one who rules [who will rule the world, technically, after Genesis 3, Satan is ruling by default due to the fall of Adam, who relinquished control, so the 2nd Adam is needed at the 2nd coming].  “he shall judge the world in righteousness, he shall minister judgment [justice] to the people in uprightness.”  He’s going to minister justice, how wonderful that will be, to the people in uprightness. 


‘For Thou, O LORD, Hast Not Forsaken Them That Seek Thee’


“The LORD also will be a refuge for the oppressed, a refuge in times of trouble.  And they that know thy name will put their trust in thee:  for thou, O LORD, hast not forsaken them that seek thee.” (verses 8-10)  That’s a good bumper sticker “For thou, O LORD, hast not forsaken them that seek thee.”  Even when we feel forsaken, his Word [right here] stands above our emotions.  Even when we feel lonely and we’re brokenhearted, his Word says “thou, O LORD, hast not forsaken them that seek thee.”  And then he says “Sing praises to the LORD, which dwelleth in Zion:  declare among the people his doings.  When he maketh inquisition for blood, he remembereth them:  he forgetteth not the cry of the humble.” (verses 11-12)  You know, Abraham said he can separate the just from the unjust.  “Have mercy upon me, O LORD; consider my trouble which I suffer of them that hate me, thou that liftest me up from the gates of death:” from, we have two gates here, one in 13, one gate in 14, what a contrast, “from the gates of death” we don’t want to be there, that’s not a fun place to be, if you’ve ever been close to those gates.  When we go through them we go into glory.  But when you’re near the gates of death, and you realize your mortality, how frail you really are, how quickly life can be taken, man it changes your perspective, it changes your perspective.  He says “thou liftest me up from the gates of death:  that I may shew forth all thy praise in the gates of the daughter of Zion:  I will rejoice in thy salvation.” (verses 13-14)  ‘the gates of the city, Jerusalem, I will rejoice in thy salvation, amen.’


‘The Wicked, They’re Snared In The Work Of Their Own Hands, But The Needy Won’t Always Be Forgotten’


“The heathen” the nations “are sunk down in the pit that they made:  in the net which they hid is their own foot taken.” (verse 15)  They made their own pit, in the net which they hid, that’s where their feet are caught, they’re caught in their own trap.  “The LORD is known by the judgment which he executeth:  the wicked is snared in the work of his own hands.  Higgaion.  Selah.” (verse 16)  “Higgaion,” ok, it means “meditate.”  Listen, it says ‘The Lord by the judgment that he executes, he does what’s right, he does what’s just, he does what’s good, but the wicked, they’re snared in the work of their own hands, meditate, and when you’re done that, Selah, what do you think about that?’  It’s obviously more than just Selah, it’s ‘meditate about it first and then think about it.’  ‘The Lord is known in his doing, his ways are obvious, his judgments are good.  The wicked, on the other hand, they’re going to be caught in their own doing, there’s no way away from that, meditate on that, think about it.’  Because the wicked are not getting ahead, they’re not getting away with anything, they’re not getting a heads-up on everybody.  It may seem like that, it’s not happening.  You can be envious, ‘I can’t believe this guy down the street, you know, he’s got a crack-house, he’s making money hand-over-fist, and he wins the lottery?! on top of that.  Lord, I’d give you half a lottery if I won, I can’t believe this jerk, everything goes his way.’  They’re not getting away with anything, that’s temporary, it’s going to flee away.  Meditate on this, “The LORD is known by the judgment which he executeth:  the wicked is snared in the work of his own hands.” (verse 16) ‘meditate on that, and when you meditate on it, what do you think of that? Selah.’  “The wicked shall be turned into hell, and all the nations that forget God.” (verse 17)  ‘Don’t say that, that’s offensive.’ [laughter] ‘You know, you’re not being seeker-friendly, you’re using the H-word,’ “The wicked shall be turned into hell, and all the nations that forget God.  For the needy shall not always be forgotten:  the expectation of the poor shall not perish for ever.” (verses 17-18)  How wonderful.  How wonderful.  “Arise, O LORD; let not man prevail:” we can say that as we watch the news, can’t we, “let the heathen be judged in thy sight.  Put them in fear, O LORD:  that the nations may know themselves to be but men.  Selah.” (verses 17-20)  ‘What do you think about that? Selah.’  ‘Lord, put things in the right perspective, so all these high faluting power-mongers, do what you’re going to do Lord, so they can sit around and realize ‘I’m just a little speck on the beach here, I’m just a man, I’m just a man.’ 


Psalm 10


What Do We Do About The Wicked In Our Midst?


“Why standest thou afar off, O LORD?  why hidest thou thyself in times of trouble?” (verse 1) ‘why does it seem sometimes you’re watching things happen?’  “The wicked in his pride doth persecute the poor: let them be taken in the devices that they have imagined.  For the wicked boasteth of his heart’s desire, and blesseth the covetous, whom the LORD abhoreth.” (verses 1-3)  It says in the Book of Proverbs, ‘cursed is the one who blesses the covetous.’  It says the wicked do that, they bless the covetous, because, you know, one hand washes the other, one rich person, ‘you know, if you pass some legislation for me I’ll do this for you, if you do this here, I’ll do that.’  It says “the wicked boasteth of his heart’s desire” his own intentions and his own heart’s desire, “and blesseth the covetous, whom the LORD abhoreth.  The wicked through the pride of his countenance, will not seek after God:  God is not in all his thoughts.  His ways are always grievous; thy judgments are far above out of his sight:  as for all his enemies, he puffeth at them.” (verses 3-5) he thinks he’s invincible. 


‘He Hath Said In His Heart’


Now three times it’s going to tell us here, in verse 6, and in verse 11 and in verse 13 “he hath said in his heart” and he’s going to tell us now, this is the rationale of people that don’t know the Lord [i.e. non-believers].  This is how they think.  What we need to do is make sure we don’t get caught up in this.  ok?  “He hath said in his heart, I shall not be moved: for I shall never be in adversity.” (verse 6)  Listen, Christians in compromise, and they start to get themselves into sin, that doesn’t happen like that snap! no Christian’s on fire, read the Word every day, pray, and fast and think in the Lord, and the next thing you know falls into sin.  Doesn’t happen, it doesn’t happen.  All sin has a history.  [he appears to be going off course here, this verse seems to apply to the unbeliever more than the believer.]  What happens is the Christian starts to doubt God for some reason, doubt that God’s going to provide something he’s longing for in his life.  Starts to think ‘If I just wait around to marry a Christian man I’m going to be an old maid, because all Christian men are weird.’  Hey, come on, we do 30 weddings a year, somebody’s finding somebody around here.  Or ‘All Christian girls are weird, I’m a part of date-an-unbeliever-evangelistic-association, you know, that’s the only way I’m going to get,’ and what you’re saying is, ‘If I obey God he’s gonna rip me off.  If I do it God’s way I’m going to get left out, if I can do it God’s way it’s not going to work out,’  ‘God’s Word is not God’s Word’ is what you’re saying.  [I don’t see this explanation in this verse, think he’s way off course, but that’s just me.]  He says here, ‘Don’t rationalize like that,’ because I watch people build a whole house of cards, it becomes an illusion, they convince themselves to step over some line, and an hour after they do it they’re saying ‘My God, what did I do?  I would give my right arm if I could turn this around.’  “He hath said in his heart, I shall not be moved: for I shall never be in adversity.  His mouth is full of cursing and deceit and fraud:  under his tongue is mischief and vanity.  He sitteth in the lurking places of the villages:  in the secret places doth he murder the innocent:  his eyes are privily set against the poor.” (verses 6-8) I’m not sure what they are, but don’t go there, stay out of the lurking places and the villages.  Right?  “He lieth in wait secretly as a lion in his den:  he lieth in wait to catch the poor, when he draweth him into his net.” (verse 9)  As a lion in his den, he’s planning, he’s scheming, he’s going to make his move.  Again, second time, “he lieth in wait to catch the poor, when he draweth him into his net.  He croucheth, and humbleth himself, that the poor may fall by his strong ones.” (verse 10)  He perceives him like a beast here.  Here’s the next thing he says about the wicked [He’s still applying this to a fallen believer, but I think this is not about believers.  Pastor Joe must have had a problem he was trying to address by slipping this reasoning, interpretatin into verse 6.]  “He hath said in his heart, God hath forgotten:  he hideth his face; he will never see it.” (verse 11)  David had done that, David knows as he writes, you know with Bathsheba, you know.  He had fallen into sin, he had sent her husband into battle to be murdered, and he waited a whole year, trying to hide it.  And he admits in Psalm 32 and 51, ‘my bones were dried up, as long as I kept my mouth shut, I didn’t confess my sin, I was dry, I was parched, it was terrible.’  But he convinced himself, in verse 11, “He hath said in his heart, God hath forgotten:  he hideth his face; he will never see it.” Then he’s finally going to say it, ‘before thee and thee only have I sinned and done this great evil in thy sight.’  Somehow before them, you know, we’re embarrassed, ‘What if people find out? What if my wife finds out, what if my husband finds out?  What if my boss finds out?’  Wait a minute.  If that’s how we’re measuring our behavior, you’re gonna blow it.  It has to be, what’s the one, it says ‘Before him all things are open and naked, before the One whom we have to do.  His eyes go to and fro about the earth, but Lord, what are you thinking of this?  Am I pleasing you in this, Lord, I’m going to stand before you one day and hear Well done thou good and faithful servant?’  And we can get in this mindset.  And this is what happens, backsliders find backsliders to hang out with.  [He’s misapplying this set of Scriptures to address a problem he has in his congregation.  Now what he’s saying is true.  But I wouldn’t try to be hanging it on this set of Scriptures, it’s a stretch here to do that.]  Backsliders don’t like to hang out with people who are on fire.  And then they have their own vocabulary, ‘They’re going to worship the Lord, they’re going to sing the same song over and over again,’ they find this little puss-pocket to be a part of…and they convince each other, because the one whose compromised wants somebody else to compromise with so they can feel good about themselves being compromised, so they can drag everybody down with them.  They say ‘God has forgotten, he’s never gonna see it.’  David says, “Arise, O LORD; O God, lift up thine hand:  forget not the humble.  Wherefore doth the wicked contemn God?  he hath said in his heart, Thou wilt not require it.” (verses 12-13)  ‘I’m gonna get away with it, you’re not going to require this Lord, I’m gonna get away with it, nobody’s seeing it, I’m not going to get called into account for it, it’s not a big deal, I believe in your grace, Lord I’ll blow it and then I’ll confess tomorrow and you’ll forgive me, and there won’t be a problem.’  Listen, that’s why Martin Luther broke away from the Catholic Church, because he saw them selling indulgences, and he saw the rich people, you had to buy indulgences so you wouldn’t spend a lot of time in purgatory.  So he saw the rich people, on Friday morning, they went out and bought indulgences, because they thought ‘I’m gonna get drunk tonight, I’ll probably get in a fist fight, I’ll probably sleep with a prostitute, let me get enough indulgences to cover all of my behavior,’ and he would go out Friday morning, the rich person, and buy all of that, you know, they were prophetic indulgences for the sin he was going to commit, and he probably covered all the extras too, where the poor person couldn’t afford to do that.  And Luther, who was a Catholic priest, looking at that thinking ‘This isn’t right!  This isn’t how it works, it shouldn’t be this way.’ 


‘Thou Art The Helper Of The Fatherless’


David says, ‘He hath said in his heart, thou wilt not require it, I’m going to get away with this, there’s a way around it, there’s an angle.’  “Thou hast seen it; for thou beholdest mischief and spite, to requite it with thy hand:  the poor committeth himself unto thee; thou art the helper of the fatherless.” (verse 14)  You look through the Bible, look at the Old Testament, all the places where God says ‘You mess with the widow, you mess with the orphan, you’re messing with me.’  [Look up the words “fatherless” and “widow” in a Strongs concordance to see what God has to say on this subject, he says quite a lot, especially in the Old Testament.]  “Break thou the arm of the wicked and the evil man:  seek out his wickedness till thou find none.” (verse 15)  I told you.  You mess with the fatherless, his prayer is “break the arm of the wicked and the evil man” I don’t think we should pray that, we’re in the New Testament now [why not, might clean up society and make things right].  I’m glad he prays this, I kind of like that.  “Break thou the arm of the wicked and the evil man:  seek out his wickedness till thou find none.  The LORD is King for ever and ever:  the heathen are perished out of his land.” (verse 16)  By the way, that’s our Lord, he is King for ever and ever, “the heathen” nations “are perished out of his land.  LORD, thou hast heard the desire of the humble:  thou wilt prepare their heart, thou wilt cause thine ear to hear:” (verse 17) Lord, you’re going to work, you’re going to establish their heart, you’re going to be gracious because of who you are, “thou wilt cause thine ear to hear:” how wonderful he ends all of this, “to judge the fatherless and the oppressed, that the man of the earth may no more oppress.” (verse 18) on behalf of the orphan and the oppressed [that includes orphans or fatherless by divorce, single moms struggling to raise a son or daughter, we have plenty of those in our nation today], “that the man of the earth may no more oppress” that the earthly man no longer have the upper hand and hurt everybody. 


In Closing


So look, you go through these, obviously we’re not going to jump into chapter 11.  Great Psalms, great songs in Israel, I love the A Psalm, when we do get to Bethlehem when we’re in Israel it’s a great study to do out there in the shepherds fields, you think of what David was seeing, what was in his heart, you know, twenty-seven hundred years ago, remarkable.  If you’re discouraged about the world we’re living in today, you need encouragement, you read Psalm 9.  It’s gonna be made right, there’s one God, he’s on the throne, he’s going to make it all right, nobody’s getting away with anything.  You read Psalm 10, and we can exhort one another while it’s day, we should help one another to faith and to good works.  It isn’t wrong to challenge somebody, it says if you see a brother overtaken in a fault, with a spirit of meekness, you should seek to restore that one, it isn’t just the pastor’s job, this is your family too, look around.  It’s the best dysfunctional family going.  And we’re all adult children of sinning parents, and so will your kids be.  And it’s incumbent upon all of us, if you see someone, you know they’re compromising, it’s a detriment to them, you don’t go on a whisper campaign, ‘Hey, you know what?  Guess what so and so’s doing?’ no, get on your knees and pray for them.  Don’t go to a prayer-meeting and say ‘Lord, we know what so and so is doing,’ it’s just a way of gossiping in the name of prayer.  You pray, and when the Lord tells you, you go to your brother or your sister privately, and you say ‘Come on, man, you’re blowing it, what’s going on in your life? be honest with me.  I’m going to pray for you.’  and it says to restore such an one in the spirit of meekness, that word “restore” is the word used for restoring a broken bone, it may take six weeks, it’s not gonna happen in one conversation, it’s not going to happen through one prayer.  Sometimes you need to come along side of someone for a month, a month and a half and hold them accountable and pray with them and talk to them, and to help them get back on their feet again.  That’s incumbent upon all of us.  Look, look around the room, these are God’s kids, they’re blood-bought.  [there had to have been something specific he was addressing for his congregation here.  This advice is true, but how he’s applying Psalm 10 in this regards is somewhat out of context, where Psalm 10 is specifically talking about “the wicked,” which is not the backslidden believer by any stretch of the imagination.]  He set his glory above the heavens, and yet he’s mindful of everybody in this room.  And there may be people here that are bugging you, but his thoughts toward them are more than the grains of the sand on the seashore, and good continually, only.  I don’t think that way.  I think things I shouldn’t think about people that get under my skin.  But the wonderful thing is, he got under our skin, he came and he put our skin on, and he walked among us, and he died for us, and we’re all in process, all of us, we’re all in process.  So if the world is frustrating, from the Middle East, to the moral conditions in our nation, to Boston, all of that [the Marathon bombing must have just taken place when he gave this sermon], just remember whose on the throne.  Remember how this is all going to issue out in the end.  Remember that he so loved the world that drives you crazy, that he gave his only begotten Son that whoever believes in him would not perish, that’s how we got in.  We’re the “whosoever’s” that should not perish, but have everlasting life.  And it’s incumbent upon us, then, to give an answer to every man [or woman] for the hope that we have.  We know what the end of the story is, we know who wins, we have the last chapter, there’s glory awaiting, there’s a throne, there’s a Kingdom, a majesty, we’re going to shine like the stars of heaven, no more tears, no more sorrow, no more death, no more prejudice, no more sickness, no more ill, none of it, it’s all going to be gone.  That’s our future, we’re passing through.  But we want to take as many with us as possible.  Amen?  Let’s stand, let’s pray [loud applause].  Read ahead, Psalm 11, 12, 13, however far we get, read the next three.  Hopefully the Rapture will come first, then you can talk to David about them.  ‘Father, we thank you for the privilege we have to gather, Lord, thank you for these ancient songs.  And Lord, your name is wonderful to us Lord, it’s like ointment poured forth, Lord, the name of the LORD, it’s like the balm of Gilead, Lord, it’s an ointment, it’s healing, Lord to us, sweeter than honey Lord Jesus.  We love to say your name, Lord Jesus [Yeshua], and all that it brings to our hearts.  And Lord we are still growing in grace and in the knowledge of who you are Lord, we read these things, and they stir our hearts, but honestly Lord, sometimes we don’t feel like you’re thinking about us all day with only good thoughts.  Sometimes Lord because of the way we’ve been brought up, or Lord we’ve been caught in a legalistic situation Lord, sometimes we think you’re making a list, checking it twice, we get you confused, Lord, that you’re watching us to find us messing up, Lord.  Lord, this evening give us your Word, give us your Word, Lord, in our hearts, that we might believe that your thoughts towards us are more than the grains of sand, and good continually only.  Lord, when the world overwhelms us, Lord, when wickedness seems to be ruling the day, Lord, remind us, Lord, that you will rule, that you’ll deal out justice, that you’ll care for the poor, the afflicted, that things will be made right, Lord.  And we agree with David, Lord, let the nations be brought to their knees and the hot-shots, Lord, that they might realize that they are only men, and you alone are the LORD of Lords and the King of kings. Now Father we put all of these things before you, Lord don’t let us in the machinations of our minds, sort through stuff and think we can get away with something that you don’t’ say, Lord, keep us from any of those calculations of our mind, Lord.  As sons and daughters, continue to raise us up, Lord, into your image, Lord.  As we sing this last song let it be a sweet savour before your throne, Lord Jesus, we pray in your name, for your glory, amen.’…[connective expository sermon on Psalms 8:1-9; 9:1-20; 10:1-18, given by Pastor Joe Focht, Calvary Chapel of Philadelphia, 13500 Philmont Avenue, Philadelphia, PA  19116.] 


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God created the vast universe, the heavens and the earth.  see,


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