Tuesday, August 20, 2013

A Personalized Look at Psalm 37:1-26

2 Cor. 5:21 God made him who had no sin to be sin for us, so that in him we might become the righteousness of God.

Rom. 5:19 For just as through the disobedience of the one man the many were made sinners, so also through the obedience of the one man the many will be made righteous.

In Christ, we have become the righteousness of God, because of the cross, because of His grace.  It's by His grace that we have been saved, through faith, it's a gift from God.  Not of our works, so we have no reason to boast.  We have been made righteous because of the work of the one Man, Jesus Christ.  We became righteous through faith in the Son. It's a gift of His grace, not a result of anything we have done.  What an amazing God!
     In light of this reality, I was reading Psalm 37 this morning. Over and over again David, the author of this Psalm, gives commands to God's righteous people. We are the righteous ones and these commands are to us today. He says:

Do not fret because of evil doers.
Do not be envious of workers of iniquity for they shall be cut like the grass.  They will wither.
Trust in the Lord and do good.
Dwell in the land and feed on His faithfulness.
Delight also in the Lord and He shall give you the desires of you hearts.
Commit your way to the Lord
Trust also in Him
    And He will bring it to pass. He shall bring forth your righteousness as the light, and your justice as the noon day.
Rest in the Lord
Wait patiently for Him
Do not fret because of him who prospers in his way...
Cease from anger and forsake wrath
Do not fret -- it only causes harm.

Can you hear the command to abide in God?  Trust, dwell, feed, commit, rest, wait, do not fret, do not be angry.  Trust in God.  Wait patiently for Him.  He is trustworthy, David is saying.  God is faithful and will not let us down. David moves from these commands to promises God gives to His righteous ones. We have been made righteous in Christ and these promises are ours.  As I read through the Psalms, I personalize them to apply to us, His righteous ones. Below, I am going to write parts of Psalm 37:1-26 in a more personalized way:

As we trust in the Lord, doing good, delighting ourselves in Him, He will give us the desires of our hearts.  (Having given us a new heart in Christ and having made our hearts righteous in Him, we desire what His heart desires.  We desire His will, and His glory. We desire that His kingdom should come.)  As we commit our way to Him, trusting in Him, He will lead us in His way. He will make our righteousness shine and bring justice as bright as the noon day sun.  

As we rest in Him, waiting patiently on Him, not fretting because evil people appear to prosper, we will inherit the earth. The wicked will be cut off and will be no more.  But we, the meek (those bridled and under the reign of God) will inherit the earth and delight ourselves in the abundance of peace.  

The wicked may plot against against us, but the Lord laughs at him.  For He sees his day is coming.  Though the wicked seek to slay the poor and needy and those who have upright conduct, their sword will pierce their own heart and their bows will be broken.  (They will not prevail against us!)

It's better to have the little the righteous has than to have the riches of many wicked people.  For the arms of the wicked will be broken, but the Lord upholds the righteous. (He upholds us!)

The Lord knows our days and our inheritance will be forever!  We will not be ashamed in the evil time; we will be satisfied even in times of famine. But the wicked and the enemies of the Lord will perish, they will vanish away.

Our steps are ordered by the Lord (the steps of a good man, and we have been made good in Christ!) And the Lord delights in our way.  Though we fall, we shall not be utterly cast down; for the Lord upholds us with His hand.  I have been young and now am old, but I have not seen the righteous forsaken nor his descendants begging bread!  (We will not be forsaken by God!)  The righteous one is ever merciful and lends; and his descendants are blessed...

It seems that the power of David's life was in his abiding in and waiting on God. He knew God would come through even if the timing appeared delayed, even if enemies seemed to prosper.  Yet, still David proclaimed faith in God and waited on God.  Our strength is the same as David's.  Our peace is in trust, in abiding in the merciful God who delights in His people, who DELIGHTS IN US!!   He is 
trustworthy!  He will bring about our inheritance and it will last forever and ever. We will not be ashamed.  He will not forsake us or give up on us.  He will bring about all He has promised us in Christ!

What an awesome God we serve!  What an amazing gospel that we should be the righteous ones thanks to the work of the cross!!