Sunday, September 26, 2010

Speech on Psalms 27

There are times in our lives when our world comes crashing down on us; if anything can go wrong, it will. When life seems to be going in a downward spiral, you’re at the end of your rope and you can’t tie a knot to hold on - fear often takes hold of us. Fear traps us in the belief that nothing will ever improve, that we are ensnared and will never escape.

Julius Caesar once remarked that even the shouts of his enemies were music to his ears, but he was terribly afraid of thunder. When it vaguely looked like a storm was brewing, he began to shiver and shake. Stalin was constantly in fear of being poisoned or killed. He had 8 bedrooms which could be locked up like safes in a bank. Nobody ever knew in which of these bedrooms he slept on any given night.

We fear losing our health, our wealth, our family; our friends. We fear losing the promotion or even the job. We fear growing old, will pass in exams etc. but even more, we fear death.

On his return visit to many parts of the world, Herbert Hoover (31st president of America) was asked by a reporter what, in his judgment, was the prevailing mood of the peoples in the lands he had visited. "The dominant emotion everywhere in the world is fear. This applies to every part of human activity; finance, industry, farmers, workers, thinkers, and government officials."
Actually is there any need of these fears? God has an answer to our problem of fear. The answer to our fears, the solution to our worries lies in the simple understanding of God’s presence.

It is the Psalms 27.

1. The LORD is my light and my salvation-- whom shall I fear? The LORD is the stronghold of my life-- of whom shall I be afraid?

2. When evil men advance against me to devour my flesh, when my enemies and my foes attack me, they will stumble and fall.

3. Though an army besiege me, my heart will not fear; though war break out against me, even then will I be confident.

4. One thing I ask of the LORD, this is what I seek: that I may dwell in the house of the LORD all the days of my life, to gaze upon the beauty of the LORD and to seek him in his temple.

5. For in the day of trouble he will keep me safe in his dwelling; he will hide me in the shelter of his tabernacle and set me high upon a rock.

6. Then my head will be exalted above the enemies who surround me; at his tabernacle will I sacrifice with shouts of joy; I will sing and make music to the LORD.

7. Hear my voice when I call, O LORD; be merciful to me and answer me.

8. My heart says of you, "Seek his face!" Your face, LORD, I will seek.

9. Do not hide your face from me, do not turn your servant away in anger; you have been my helper. Do not reject me or forsake me, O God my Savior.

10. Though my father and mother forsake me, the LORD will receive me.

11. Teach me your way, O LORD; lead me in a straight path because of my oppressors.

12. Do not turn me over to the desire of my foes, for false witnesses rise up against me, breathing out violence.

13. I am still confident of this: I will see the goodness of the LORD in the land of the living.

14. Wait for the LORD; be strong and take heart and wait for the LORD.

Psalm 27 can be divided into 2 parts. David wrote verses 1 - 6 when life was good. God was answering all his prayers. Perhaps it was after he had killed Goliath. He wrote verses 7-12 when life was difficult He thought that God was hiding from him. He wrote verses 13-14 when he put the 2 parts together. When life is difficult we must remember the good times. When we think that God has forgotten us, we must remember the times when he did not forget us. We must be like David in Psalm 27:14. We must wait for the Lord. One day he will give us help. If we believe this, it will make us strong.

Verse 1 – 3: "The Lord is my light" means many things. One is that he shows us what to do in life. "The LORD is my hiding place" means that when trouble comes the LORD will be with us in it. He will give us help to live through it, he will not leave us by ourselves. Verse 2 says that David thought that bad men (like animals) wanted to eat him. But these bad men fell down and they did not hurt David. Perhaps David remembered Goliath. Goliath said that he would feed David's body to the wild animals and birds. But David killed Goliath. David believed that because God gave him help in the past he will in the future. The same is true for us. Every time God gives us help we are more sure that he will give us help in the future.

I am not afraid, but it is not because I am strong or wise.I am not afraid,but it is not because I have power or position.I am not afraid,but it is not because I have health or wealth.I am not afraid; but it is not because my circumstances or relationshipsI am not afraid for one glorious reason;I have been lit by the Lord of Light.

Verse 4 – 6: Here are 4 words for where the LORD lives: house, palace, hiding place and tent. They are not 4 different places. They all describe where God is. For David it was either the tent with the ark in it, or heaven. The ark was where the Jews kept special things that made them think of God. Heaven is where God lives. If we are Christians then God lives in us. We are the house of God.

Verse 7 – 9: Here the psalm changes. In verses 1-6 life was good for David. Now life is difficult. David thinks that God has forgotten him. David prays to God, "Answer me". He thinks that he hears a voice inside him that says, "Look for my face". So David continues to pray. He says, "You gave me help in the past ~ do not forget me now".

Verses 10 – 12: Verse 10 tells us that David is sure that God will answer him one day. Even if his parents forget him, God will never forget him. In verses 11-12 David tells us that he has many enemies that want to hurt him. Some, as Cush in Psalm 7, tell lies about him. Lies are words that are not true. So David prays for a straight path. This means one that is safe.

Verses 13 – 14: This starts with something very strange. Verse 13 has no beginning. In Hebrew it is " . . . . . if I had not believed to see the goodness the LORD is in the land of the living". This is not a mistake, as some people think. It means that everyone that reads the psalm can put their own words in. What would happen to you if you did not believe in the Lord? But because you do believe in the Lord you are ready to wait for his answers. You may wait a long time, but be brave and strong. One day, God will answer you, if you believe in him.

Jesus said, "I am the light of the world. People that follow me will not walk in the dark. They will have the light of life". (John 8:12.)

Believe in Lord. Don't be afraid of anything. Jesus knows everything about you. He will lead you. May God Bless You.

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