Devotional thought for today – 11/18/21

Psalm 86-9 Bible Quote - All Nations Worship God - Postmillennialism

PSALM 86

CONTEXT: C.H. Spurgeon’s Treasury of David states:

TITLE. A Prayer of David. We have here one of the five psalms entitled Tephillahs or prayers. This psalm consists of praise as well as prayer, but it is in all parts so directly addressed to God that it is most fitly called “a prayer.” A prayer is none the less but all the more a prayer because veins of praise run through it. This psalm would seem to have been specially known as David’s prayer; even as the ninetieth is “the prayer of Moses.” David composed it, and no doubt often expressed himself in similar language; both the matter and the wording are suitable to his varied circumstances and expressive of the different characteristics of his mind. In many respects it resembles Ps 17:1-15, which bears the same title, but in other aspects it is very different; the prayers of a good man have a family likeness, but they vary as much as they agree. We may learn from the present psalm that the great saints of old were accustomed to pray very much in the same fashion as we do; believers in all ages are of one genus. The name of God occurs very frequently in this psalm, sometimes it is Jehovah, but more commomly Adonai, which it is believed by many learned scholars was written by the Jewish transcribers instead of the sublimer title, because their superstitious dread led them to do so: we, labouring under no such tormenting fear, rejoice in Jehovah, our God. It is singular that those who were so afraid of their God, that they dared not write his name, had yet so little godly fear, that they dared to alter his word.

DIVISION. The psalm is irregular in its construction but may be divided into three portions, each ending with a note of gratitude or of confidence: we shall therefore read from Ps 86:1-7, and then, (after another pause at the end of Ps 86:13), we will continue to the end.

Out text for today comes from the middle of the Psalm, v.8-13, and follows David’s declaration in v.8 that there is no other god like unto the Lord. To this he adds:

All nations whom thou hast madethat is every creature from every part of the world for God created the heavens and the earth and all that it contains Philippians 2:10-11

shall come and worship before thee, Whom else is worthy? What other god, has complete dominion over the universe and all creation? Psalm 103:19, Isaiah 46:9-10

O Lord; and shall glorify thy name. The Westminster Shorter Catechism declares: Q. 1. What is the chief end of man? A. Man’s chief end is to glorify God, and to enjoy him forever.

Gill’s Exposition of the Entire Bible All nations whom thou hast made,…. All nations, or the inhabitants of all nations, are made by the Lord, and of the blood of one man, Acts 17:26, and which as it shows the obligation of all men to come and worship, as is said should be; so likewise that the Lord, who has made them, is able to make them come to do homage to him, as follows:

shall come and worship before thee, O Lord; “come”, spiritually, by faith and repentance, to the Lord himself, being drawn by the power of his efficacious grace through the ministry of the word; and, locally, to the house and ordinances of God, to attend upon them, and wait on him in them; and “worship” both externally, according to his revealed will; and internally in the exercise of grace, in spirit and in truth: this is prophetically said of the conversion of the Gentiles in Gospel times, especially in the latter day; see Revelation 15:4. Kimchi and Arama say this will be in the time of the Messiah:

and shall glorify thy name; the Lord himself, with their bodies and spirits, which are his; and ascribe the glory of their salvation to him, and glorify him for his mercy towards them in their redemption and conversion; glorify that and every perfection of his, displayed in their salvation; and also his Gospel, which brings them the news of it; see Romans 15:9.

Sunday Sermon Series – 11/17/21

14 The secret of the Lord is with them that fear him; and he will shew them his covenant.
15 Mine eyes are ever toward the Lord; for he shall pluck my feet out of the net. Psalm 25:14-15

CONTEXT: From C.H. Spurgeon’s Treasury of David

TITLE. A Psalm of David. David is pictured in this Psalm as in a faithful miniature. His holy trust, his many conflicts, his great transgression, his bitter repentance, and his deep distresses are all here; so that we see the very heart of “the man after God’s own heart.” It is evidently a composition of David’s later days, for he mentions the sins of his youth, and from its painful references to the craft and cruelty of his many foes, it will not be too speculative a theory to refer it to the period when Absalom was heading the great rebellion against him. This has been styled the second of the seven Penitential Psalms. It is the mark of a true saint that his sorrows remind him of his sins, and his sorrow for sin drives him to his God.

SUBJECT AND DIVISION. The twenty-two verses of this Psalm begin in the original with the letters of the Hebrew alphabet in their proper order. It is the first instance we have of an inspired acrostic or alphabetical song. This method may have been adopted by the writer to assist the memory; and the Holy Spirit may have employed it to show us that the graces of style and the arts of poetry may lawfully be used in his service. Why should not all the wit and ingenuity of man be sanctified to noblest ends by being laid upon the altar of God? From the singularity of the structure of the Psalm, it is not easy to discover any marked divisions; there are great changes of thought, but there is no variation of subject; the moods of the writer’s mind are twofold—prayer and meditation; and as these appear in turns, we should thus divide the verses. Prayer from Ps 25:1-7; meditation, Ps 25:8-10; prayer, Ps 25:11; meditation, Ps 25:12-15; prayer, Ps 25:16-22.

Verse 14. The secret of the Lord is with them that fear him. Some read it “the friendship:” it signifies familiar intercourse, confidential intimacy, and select fellowship. This is a great secret. Carnal minds cannot guess what is intended by it, and even believers cannot explain it in words, for it must be felt to be known. The higher spiritual life is necessarily a path which the eagle’s eye hath not known, and which the lion’s whelp has not travelled; neither natural wisdom nor strength can force a door into this inner chamber. Saints have the key of heaven’s hieroglyphics; they can unriddle celestial enigmas. They are initiated into the fellowship of the skies; they have heard words which it is not possible for them to repeat to their fellows. And he will shew them his covenant. Its antiquity, security, righteousness, fulness, graciousness and excellence, shall be revealed to their hearts and understandings, and above all, their own part in it shall be sealed to their souls by the witness of the Holy Spirit. The designs of love which the Lord has to his people in the covenant of grace, he has been pleased to show to believers in the Book of Inspiration, and by his Spirit he leads us into the mystery, even the hidden mystery of redemption. He who does not know the meaning of this verse, will never learn it from a commentary; let him look to the cross, for the secret lies there.


SERMON

A Sermon on Psalm 25:14

Geerhardus Vos

Preached October 15, 1902 in the Chapel of Princeton Theological Seminary, Princeton, New Jersey

Devotional Thought for Today – 11/15/21

22 Wherefore thou art great, O Lord God: for there is none like thee, neither is there any God beside thee, according to all that we have heard with our ears. 2 Samuel 7:22

2 Samuel 7

CONTEXT: David here in this Chapter is relating to Nathan the desire to build the temple. Matthew Henry breaks is down as follows: David’s care for the ark. (1-3) God’s covenant with David. (4-17) His prayer and thanksgiving. (18-29)

Our text is part of the later a prayer of David acknowledging the greatness and glory of God. John Gill comments on this:

John Gill’s Exposition of the Whole Bible

Wherefore thou art great, O Lord God,…. In his name, nature, persons, and perfections, purposes, promises, and works:

for [there is] none like thee; for his essence and attributes, for his greatness and goodness, for what he is in himself, for what he is to his people, and has done for them:

neither [is there any] God beside thee; there is but one God, the living and true God, the former and maker of all things; all others are but fictitious and factitious gods, see 1 Samuel 2:2;

according to all that we have heard with our ears; concerning what he did in the land of Egypt upon the Egyptians, and in the wilderness, in favour of the Israelites, and in the land of Canaan, by driving out the inhabitants before the people of Israel, and in the times of the judges, in raising them up to deliver his people.

How often do we take time to express the Greatness and Glory of God?

GTY BLOG Series: Profiles in Godliness

The woman at the well is a familiar figure to most churchgoers. This poor Samaritan woman from John chapter 4 has managed to gain a semi-regular role in many Sunday sermons and Wednesday night Bible studies. She has been held up as a poster child for everything from social justice to stylistic worship preferences. Yet a careful examination of the passage reveals one of the most profound theological lessons in all of history—one that every true Christian must grasp.

A Strange Encounter on Sacred Ground

A Life-Changing Conversation

A Stunning Revelation

An Amazing Transformation

Devotional Thought for Today – 10/12/21

God's Decree Quote by Thomas Boston

The Westminster Shorter Catechism asks:

  Q. 7. What are the decrees of God?

 A. The decrees of God are, his eternal purpose, according to the counsel of his will, whereby, for his own glory, he hath foreordained whatsoever comes to pass.

The WSC confirms what Paul wrote in Romans 11:36, all God degrees, that is all God does is for His Glory. I have written and said this ad museum, it is never about us and always about God.

Paul makes an equally compelling appeal to the church in Colessea when in 3:23 he writes, ‘do all as unto the Lord’ {paraphraased}. Why v.24 tells us because we serve the Lord Christ! Who else deserves more glory and honor? You or I?

My question for you today is what sort of church are you attending (hopefully you are following the Biblical mandate for church attendance)? Is the emphasis there on you or God, your “experience” or glorifying the sovereign ruler of the universe?


Other Resources:

God’s Decrees Are… by Thomas Boston

What are the Decrees of God? – From the Shorter Catechism explained

Of God’s Decree – LBC 1689 with Scripture

God’s Decree And Creation

The Decrees of God by A W Pink

The Decrees of God by Charles Hodge

Devotional Thought for Today – 10/11/21

20 Hear counsel, and receive instruction, that thou mayest be wise in thy latter end.
21 There are many devices in a man's heart; nevertheless the counsel of the Lord, that shall stand. Proverbs 19:20-21

Proverbs 19

CONTEXT: Defining the direct context of any Proverb is difficult mainly because of the way the book is written. Unlike most books of the Bible there are no clear plots, themes etc. dividing each Chapter or no main character to follow.

Wisdom, in all its form is the only real theme and it is presented in snippets sometime one or two verses other times multiple but almost never (I am thinking of C.31) a whole chapter.

For our main text today we have two themes that intersect: The foolish and ungodly {son} never seem to learn (v.13-20) and man {son} proposes and God purposes (v.21-29).

One thing should be clear to all who read it, wise counsel is never to be neglected and God alone is controls the plans of mankind.

Hawker’s Poor Man’s Commentary reads:

A foolish son is the calamity of his father: and the contentions of a wife are a continual dropping. House and riches are the inheritance of fathers: and a prudent wife is from the LORD. Slothfulness casteth into a deep sleep; and an idle soul shall suffer hunger. He that keepeth the commandment keepeth his own soul; but he that despiseth his ways shall die. He that hath pity upon the poor lendeth unto the LORD; and that which he hath given will he pay him again. Chasten thy son while there is hope, and let not thy soul spare for his crying. A man of great wrath shall suffer punishment: for if thou deliver him, yet thou must do it again. Hear counsel, and receive instruction, that thou mayest be wise in thy latter end. There are many devices in a man’s heart; nevertheless the counsel of the LORD, that shall stand. The desire of a man is his kindness: and a poor man is better than a liar. The fear of the LORD tendeth to life: and he that hath it shall abide satisfied; he shall not be visited with evil. A slothful man hideth his hand in his bosom, and will not so much as bring it to his mouth again. Smite a scorner, and the simple will beware: and reprove one that hath understanding, and he will understand knowledge. He that wasteth his father, and chaseth away his mother, is a son that causeth shame, and bringeth reproach. Cease, my son, to hear the instruction that causeth to err from the words of knowledge. An ungodly witness scorneth judgment: and the mouth of the wicked devoureth iniquity. Judgments are prepared for scorners, and stripes for the back of fools.

I do not wish to swell the commentary for the reasons before given. And indeed if the Reader be under divine teaching, this will supersede all observations of mine. But I hope he will find in all these verses, more or less, somewhat to lead his mind to Christ, and in Christ to find the truest application.

Devotional Thought for Today – 10/09/21

Proverbs 20:5 KJV - Counsel in the heart of man is like deep water;

CONTEXT: Matthew Henry comments: A man’s wisdom is here said to be of use to him for the pumping of other people, and diving into them, 1. To get the knowledge of them. Though men’s counsels and designs are ever so carefully concealed by them, so that they are as deep water which one cannot fathom, yet there are those who by sly insinuations, and questions that seem foreign, will get out of them both what they have done and what they intend to do. Those therefore who would keep counsel must not only put on resolution, but stand upon their guard. 2. To get knowledge by them. Some are very able and fit to give counsel, having an excellent faculty of cleaving a hair, hitting the joint of a difficulty, and advising pertinently, but they are modest, and reserved, and not communicative; they have a great deal in them, but it is loth to come out. In such a case a man of understanding will draw it out, as wine out of a vessel. We lose the benefit we might have by the conversation of wise men for want of the art of being inquisitive.

Two things can be learned here. First, that man generally does not like to be told (counseled) what to do and second, a wise counselor can get someone to open up about things (issues).

As a Chaplain for Veterans, Hospice, and the ill, and the Incarcerated I can assure you this is a fact. Folks always fall into one of two categories, one they can’t wait to tell you their story and it’s usually full of half-truths or second, they are reluctant to talk at all. It is my job to listen and when appropriate counsel them.

A growing and disturbing trend in evangelical churches recently has seen a decline in Pastors/Elders who are willing to take on the role of Counselor. As the following Grace to You devotional shows (at least to me) their reasoning is flawed.


Drawing Near

Giving Godly Counsel

“Concerning you, my brethren, I myself also am convinced that you yourselves are full of goodness, filled with all knowledge, and able also to admonish one another” (Rom. 15:14).

Scripture is the source of godly counsel.

QOTW – What is a Christian Work Ethic?

Question: “What is a Christian work ethic?”

Answer: Colossians 3:23-25 says, “Whatever you do, work at it with all your heart, as working for the Lord, not for men, since you know that you will receive an inheritance from the Lord as a reward. It is the Lord Christ you are serving.”[…]

Source: https://www.gotquestions.org/Christian-work-ethic.html

Devotional Thought for Today – 10/06/21

Martin Luther Quote - Bondage Of the Will Against Free Will

Psalm 51:5

The above verse is one of many in the Bible that clearly show man’s inability to save himself in any fashion. In Reformed or Covenant Theology this is known as Total Depravity.

The doctrine of Total Depravity is often seen as a bad thing in evangelical circles. their reasoning is not based upon Biblical thinking but man’s thinking. If one assumes man is basically good, (an unbiblical fact if ever there was one) then it is easy to dismiss the doctrine of Total Depravity. They will argue things like God created and it was good, all true all pre-fall. They will use terms like we were created in God’s image and are only marred, implying an easy fix, you go hang on a cross at Calvary with the weight of mankind’s sin on your shoulders and tell me how easy a fix that is! Another popular response is ‘Christianity isn’t meant to be a downer’ really so we should avoid speaking on sin or hell, Jesus certainly didn’t.

If however, one takes in the Whole Counsel of God on the matter, there are a overwhelming number of verses declaring man is anything but good and we should never shy away from preaching, teaching and sharing that Whole Counsel in Spirit and Truth.

My favorite is:

John 3:19-20 KJV - And this is the condemnation, that light is come into  the world, and men loved darkness rather than light, because their deeds  were evil.

RELATED RESOURCES:

Charles Spurgeon on Calvinism — Total Depravity – Ligonier …

Total depravity – is it biblical? | GotQuestions.org

 Radical Depravity Arthur W. Pink (1886-1952)

Does God get a say in preferred pronoun?

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In a recent article for the leftist Religion News Service, Mark Silk, professor of religion in public life at Trinity College and contributing editor of RNS, advocates the use of “they” for God. His proposal comes at the junction of the efforts to change the general usage of the English language and the push to neuter specific language about God–both agendas driven by the sexual revolution…

SOURCE: Does God get a say in preferred pronoun?


God’s not “They:” Divine Pronouns Matter