Tag Archives: Salvation

Singing with the King (99) – One Stop Shop

You alone are God. (Psalm 86:10)

Last time we looked at this Psalm with a more or less theological approach. We considered this verse the way David was seeing it, the way he was seeing and knowing the LORD. But then we continued on with more verses from this Psalm to understand why David knew this to be.

Protect me, for I am devoted to you. Save me, for I serve you and trust you. You are my God. Be merciful to me, O Lord, for I am calling on you constantly. Give me happiness, O Lord, for I give myself to you. O Lord, you are so good, so ready to forgive, so full of unfailing love for all who ask for your help.  But you, O Lord, are a God of compassion and mercy, slow to get angry and filled with unfailing love and faithfulness. (vs. 2-5, 15)

Notice the couplets:

Protect me— I am devoted to you.

Save me— I serve and trust you.

Be merciful to me— for I am calling on you.

Give me happiness— I give myself to you.

Then David lists off a string of characteristics about his God, who alone is God: good, ready to forgive, full of unfailing love, compassionate, merciful, slow to get angry, filled with unfailing love, and faithfulness. Who wouldn’t want to come to a God like that?

I mention all this again because God being the “one and only” is more than just a theological truth, it’s a relational truth. What I mean by that? Not only is He God alone, He’s all you need. Consider these following verses:

In heaven I have only you, and on this earth you are all I want. (Ps 73:25)

The Lord is my shepherd; I have all that I need. (Ps 23:1)

Take delight in the Lord, and he will give you the desires of your heart. (Ps 37:4)

The apostle Paul picks up on this theme in in his letter to the Philippians: And my God will supply all your needs according to His riches in glory in Christ Jesus. (4:19)

So now we have in effect, a double-edged sword. The LORD, he is God alone. And he’s all that you need. God does not call you into an exclusive relationship, just to exclude you from all else. Your salvation need and you relational need are one.

Your salvation is both eternal (John 6:40), and to the uttermost (Hebrews 7:25).

Your heart has more than you can ever ask or imagine:

Now to Him who is able to do immeasurably more than all we ask or imagine, according to His power that is at work within us, to Him be glory in the church and in Christ Jesus throughout all generations, for ever and ever! Amen. (Ephesians 3:20-21)

The greatest need for your heart? The greatest need for your soul? Jesus Christ… Only.

Singing with the King (67) – Joy!

What joy for the nation whose God is the Lord, whose people he has chosen as his inheritance. (Psalm 33:12)

Dancing in the Sun3I don’t want to draw an parallels between Israel as a nation and any other nation today or even in the ancient world. Israel has been and is unique. But the parallel we can draw is about the people He has chosen as an inheritance. Paul tells us in Romans:

The Spirit Himself testifies with our spirit that we are children of God, and if children, heirs also, heirs of God and fellow heirs with Christ… (Romans 8:16-17a) For us, it’s not about a particular nation or nationality; it’s about being His Chosen People—the Church: And I saw another angel flying through the sky, carrying the eternal Good News to proclaim to the people who belong to this world—to every nation, tribe, language, and people. (Revelation 14:6)

If the Good News has been preached to you, then you are indeed an heir of God and fellow heir with Christ. And now here comes the question: How’s your joy?

If you were truly joyful, what would your testimony look like? Would people be asking you about that joy? Of course they would. And sharing Christ with them would be neither problematic nor inconsistent. The problem is, we are NOT a joyful lot; for we think there is little in us that would attract another to Jesus. But is that true?

The fact is we HAVE joy.

No wonder my heart is glad, and I rejoice. My body rests in safety. For you will not leave my soul among the dead or allow your holy one to rot in the grave. You will show me the way of life, granting me the joy of your presence and the pleasures of living with you forever. (Psalm 16:9-11)

The commandments of the Lord are right, bringing joy to the heart. (Psalm 19:8)

You have turned my mourning into joyful dancing. You have taken away my clothes of mourning and clothed me with joy. (Psalm 30:11)

I have inherited Your testimonies forever, for they are the joy of my heart. (Psalm 119:111)

“Oh, what joy for those whose disobedience is forgiven, whose sins are put out of sight. Yes, what joy for those whose record the Lord has cleared of sin.” (Romans 4:7-8)

You received the message with the joy that comes from the Holy Spirit. (1 Thessalonians 1:6)

It is one of the fruit of the Spirit: But the Holy Spirit produces this kind of fruit in our lives: love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness,  gentleness, and self-control.

As you can see, there are is a multitude of reasons to be joyful. Joy is both a consequence and a gift. It’s time to exhume that gift, embrace that gift, explain that gift, exemplify that gift and export that gift.

I don’t see joy overtaking us as a nation. If it does. it will have be done one heart at a time—hearts that have received the inheritance of God.

 

Singing with the King (23) – Ends of the Earth

All the ends of the earth have seen the salvation of our God. ( Psalm 98:3b)

You are Here

God could have done a quiet work of salvation, for He chose a small, even insignificant, people, in a remote part of the planet. They had many huge and notable empires nearby: Egyptians, Babylonians, Persians, Greeks, Romans, etc. But there was tiny Israel, always with another conqueror breezing through, and making them a (remote and inconsequential) part of an “intergalactic” empire. But one of the reasons God chose a small people was to ensure that they would never (try though they must) get the credit for their salvation. This was very much a God-thing, and could not be confused for anything else. So when All the ends of the earth have seen the salvation of our God, they were seeing the salvation of our God.

Now the question needs to be asked: Why? If this was an “Israel only” to-do, why should all the earth see it.

Well, Israel may have been God’s Chosen people, but all earth’s peoples were made by Him—all had His image stamped upon them.

There were those who were aliens who would recognize that the God of Israel was indeed the Lord of all. In the context of this Psalm, it was because they had seen the salvation of our God.

The stranger who resides with you shall be to you as the native among you, and you shall love him as yourself, for you were aliens in the land of Egypt; I am the LORD your God. ( Leviticus 19:34)

So show your love for the alien, for you were aliens in the land of Egypt. (Deuteronomy 10:19)

God had spoken to Israel on many occasions, reminding them they were aliens; Perhaps the greatest thing about the New Covenant—all of us aliens can now draw close to the Lord God through the shed blood of Jesus.

But now in Christ Jesus you who formerly were far off have been brought near by the blood of Christ. (Ephesians 2:13)

After all, We have an Advocate with the Father, Jesus Christ the righteous; and He Himself is the propitiation for our sins; and not for ours only, but also for those of the whole world. (1 John 2:2)