Saturday, April 23, 2011

Reflecting on the Psalms: Chapters 26-28

Psalm 26

A Psalm of David.

1Judge me, O LORD; for I have walked in mine integrity: I have trusted also in the LORD; therefore I shall not slide.
2Examine me, O LORD, and prove me; try my reins and my heart.
3For thy lovingkindness is before mine eyes: and I have walked in thy truth.
4I have not sat with vain persons, neither will I go in with dissemblers.
5I have hated the congregation of evil doers; and will not sit with the wicked.
6I will wash mine hands in innocency: so will I compass thine altar, O LORD:
7That I may publish with the voice of thanksgiving, and tell of all thy wondrous works.
8LORD, I have loved the habitation of thy house, and the place where thine honour dwelleth.
9Gather not my soul with sinners, nor my life with bloody men:
10In whose hands is mischief, and their right hand is full of bribes.
11But as for me, I will walk in mine integrity: redeem me, and be merciful unto me.

12My foot standeth in an even place: in the congregations will I bless the LORD.

Psalm 27

A Psalm of David.

1The LORD is my light and my salvation; whom shall I fear? the LORD is the strength of my life; of whom shall I be afraid?
2When the wicked, even mine enemies and my foes, came upon me to eat up my flesh, they stumbled and fell.
3Though an host should encamp against me, my heart shall not fear: though war should rise against me, in this will I be confident.
4One thing have I desired of the LORD, that will I seek after; that I may dwell in the house of the LORD all the days of my life, to behold the beauty of the LORD, and to enquire in his temple.
5For in the time of trouble he shall hide me in his pavilion: in the secret of his tabernacle shall he hide me; he shall set me up upon a rock.
6And now shall mine head be lifted up above mine enemies round about me: therefore will I offer in his tabernacle sacrifices of joy; I will sing, yea, I will sing praises unto the LORD.
7Hear, O LORD, when I cry with my voice: have mercy also upon me, and answer me.
8When thou saidst, Seek ye my face; my heart said unto thee, Thy face, LORD, will I seek.
9Hide not thy face far from me; put not thy servant away in anger: thou hast been my help; leave me not, neither forsake me, O God of my salvation.
10When my father and my mother forsake me, then the LORD will take me up.
11Teach me thy way, O LORD, and lead me in a plain path, because of mine enemies.
12Deliver me not over unto the will of mine enemies: for false witnesses are risen up against me, and such as breathe out cruelty.
13I had fainted, unless I had believed to see the goodness of the LORD in the land of the living.

14Wait on the LORD: be of good courage, and he shall strengthen thine heart: wait, I say, on the LORD.

Psalm 28

A Psalm of David.

 1Unto thee will I cry, O LORD my rock; be not silent to me: lest, if thou be silent to me, I become like them that go down into the pit.
2Hear the voice of my supplications, when I cry unto thee, when I lift up my hands toward thy holy oracle.
3Draw me not away with the wicked, and with the workers of iniquity, which speak peace to their neighbours, but mischief is in their hearts.
4Give them according to their deeds, and according to the wickedness of their endeavours: give them after the work of their hands; render to them their desert.
5Because they regard not the works of the LORD, nor the operation of his hands, he shall destroy them, and not build them up.
6Blessed be the LORD, because he hath heard the voice of my supplications.
7The LORD is my strength and my shield; my heart trusted in him, and I am helped: therefore my heart greatly rejoiceth; and with my song will I praise him.
8The LORD is their strength, and he is the saving strength of his anointed.

9Save thy people, and bless thine inheritance: feed them also, and lift them up for ever.

Chapter 26

At the end of the race, I will have walked in my integrity and I look forward to God's examination (vv. 1-2). Matthew Henry comments on this psalm by stating the following, "David here, by the Spirit of prophecy, speaks of himself as a type of Christ, of whom what he here says of his spotless innocence was fully and eminently true, and of Christ only, and to Him we may apply it. We are complete in him. The man that walks in his integrity, yet trusting wholly in the grace of God, is in a state of acceptance, according to the covenant of which Jesus was the Mediator, in virtue of his spotless obedience even unto death." I wanna be spotless when God judges me and I like the fact that I can walk with integrity while trusting in the Lord. To me, that means that my standards and the (right) way in which I go about doing, say, a math test can be done with integrity and not cheating. So it's (positive) human nature for me as well as living in a way where I can have faith in God. "Heart" in verse 2 can be translated as "kidneys." God expresses His love to me in different ways and I feel that I continue to walk strongly in Him (v. 3). If I didn't walk in His truth, then I'd imagine that He wouldn't express His love to me even though He loves no matter what. What I mean by "express His love to me" is He wouldn't bless me if I didn't walk in His truth to receive His blessings. I shouldn't serve Him just to receive His blessings either (Hebrews 11:6). For most part, I don't get involved with bad influences (vv. 4-5) and doing means that I don't have to deal with the consequences that come with getting involved with bad influences. I am thankful that God has helped me to steer clear of those who could mess my life up. I will show God that I am innocent before Him so I can be near His altar. I imagine that if I did not come to repentance, I wouldn't have the opportunity to go before His altar. I do look forward to that day, though. I will express praise for the wonderful things He has done in my life (v. 7), which I kind of already do, so I imagine that the praise will be tenfold since there's probably some more great things that He's gonna do in my life and I probably don't even know what they're gonna be. He'll reveal those things, though, in His timing. The place where God dwells is a great place (v. 8) and I think that it's always a wonderful experience tobe in His presence, especially when the Holy Spirit reveals Himself and fires everyone up while they're worshipping. That's kinda what happened at my church's Good Friday service earlier: the Holy Spirit was just moving in the service during the worship time and it was a great experience. I think I even felt His touch as a result of the Holy Spirit being at work during the work during thr worship time. It's always a great thing to feel His touch, even if it's just for a short while. God will seperate from those who end up in hell (v. 9) since He probably figures that I don't wanna get involved with them since they try to bribe the innocent (v. 10). I am thankful that God will make sure that I am eternity with Him since I have decided to live for Him and not live in a way which would lead me to hell. I will continue to walk in a way which my integrity is pleasing to God (v. 11) and I can be thankful for Him since He makes sure I don't fall away from Him, which is what is meant by "My foot standeth in an evil place" in verse 12.

Chapter 27

Since God is my light and my salvation, I don't have to be afraid of anything (v. 1). It's amazing how such a simple truth has such an impact on how I live as a Christian when I am facing fear and darkness. It's as if God gives me the strength to help me to overcome fear so I don't have to live as a slave to it. I don't have to worry about being of afraid my enemies when God's involved, which I think also applies to verses and 3. It's probably even the main point of the first three verses if I were to sum them up. I can't go wrong with dwelling in His house every day (v. 4), especially since doing so is such an uplifting experience. To use an example, I will say that the Good Friday service was an uplifting experience and(probably) just a dose of what heaven will be like in terms of being in the Lord's presence and admiring His beauty for eternity. God has hidden from trouble in the past (v. 5), like that time when I gave into Satna's lies. God intervened in such a way that I was protecteted by the enemy and I praised Him as a result of it (v. 6). God heard my voice (v. 7) and I did my part by seeking Him (v. 8). I guess verse 9 would apply to me because God didn't hide from me when I cried out to Him -- He helped me out. Matthew Henry comments on verse 10 by stating, "God's time to help those that trust in him, is, when all other helpers fail. He is a surer and better Friend than earthly parents are, or can be. What was the belief which supported the psalmist?" What I get out of that is that even if my parents abandon me, God will still be there for me. I don't think my parents are gonna abandon me anythime soon, but it's nice knowing that God's still gonna be with me even if everyone one in the world abandons me. God leads me in a straight path so I won't give into my enemies (v. 11). To me, that means that I can (continue to) depend on God's way instead of deciding not to, which would result in following a path that is pleasing to the flesh. God will not give me over to my enemies (v. 12) because doing so is not in His nature. He leads me in truth and life, not death and destruction. I am excited to see His goodness where the living dwells (v. 13) since His goodness doesn't seem to dwell in, say, a realm of death and sorrow. Wherever God is, His goodness is with His and I am thankful He's always there for me and that He expresses His goodness towards me. I just gotta wait for Him to help me out when I am dealing with a problem (v. 14), like that time I waited on God to help me out during the time I gave into the enemy's lies. I guess when waiting for Him to help out, He'll do it a way that is far beyond what one expects.

Chapter 28

Matthew Henry comments on the first verse or so by stating the following: "David is very earnest in prayer. Observe his faith in prayer; God is my rock, on whom I build my hope. Believers should not rest till they have received some token that their prayers are heard." That's really encouraging, especially that last part. I cry out to God to answer my prayers, sometimes even write in my prayer journal, and wait for His repsonse. Gotta make sure what I say to Him aligns with His will, though, and that my heart's in the right place. Verse 3 kind of reminds me of Psalm 27:13, which I commented on already. What I get out of it, though, is that I shouldn't hang out with people that try to deceive others ("which speak peace to their neighbours"). God's gonna pour out His wrath among the deceivers as He sees fit (v. 4), especially do not see His works as something of excellence (v. 5). Even though those verses don't really apply to me, I just wanna say that I'd hate to be in the shoes of one who oppresses God and His people. I am thankful that God continues to supply my needs (v. 6), even the little things like food and water. Without His strength, I'd be spiritually vulnerable (v. 7). I'm not saying that I'm spirtually invulnerable -- I'm saying that I am strong spiritually and can deal with certian things that the enemy may throw at me. I am thankful that He is my strength and that I can depend on Him for that. His strength is what gets me through trials (v. 8; "the saving strength of his anointed") and I praise Him for His strength that helps me through tough times. Verse 9 reminds of how God is my Shepherd. Since I consider God to be my inheritance, I see that as a shepherd/sheep relationship, because by being one of His sheep, I have acknwoledged the fact that He is my Shpeherd. If I wasn't one of His sheep, I wouldn't consider Him to be my inheritance -- or rather, my Shepherd.

                                                   Sources used:

Henry, Matthew. "Concise Commentary on Psalms 26". "Matthew Henry Concise Commentary
on the Whole Bible". <>.

Henry, Matthew. "Concise Commentary on Psalms 27". "Matthew Henry Concise Commentary
on the Whole Bible". <>.

Henry, Matthew. "Concise Commentary on Psalms 28". "Matthew Henry Concise Commentary
on the Whole Bible". <>.

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