God is working on it

“The Lord is my rock and my fortress and my deliverer; The God of my strength, in whom I will trust; My shield and the horn of my salvation, My stronghold and my refuge; My Savior, You save me from violence. I will call upon the Lordwho is worthy to be praised; So shall I be saved from my enemies.” 2 Samuel 22:2-4 NKJV

Didn’t we read this Psalm before? On April 19 – a month ago. Right?
What do you mean this isn’t a Psalm?! It is Psalm 18 – yes! And last time we spoke of it we also talked about how great and big and powerful and righteous and just (and sometimes angry) God can be. And how God has complex emotions, like we do. Today – we should dig in even deeper into the nature of God, described here in David’s psalm.

Dear Heavenly Father – As always, please open eye to see and our ears to hear what you are saying! Lord – open our understanding that we may know you. Please do not let us miss out on what you want and need from us today. And please keep us and bless us and shine your face upon us and pour out grace over us and give us peace! Thank you! – In Jesus name we pray, Amen

Today’s reading is from the book of 2 Samuel, chapters 22-23 and from the Book of Psalms, chapter 57 (embedded below the image below for your convenience).  

With the timing of current event – it is fitting that we circle back to this Psalm again a month after we read it the first time. But we are supposed to be reading the Bible chronologically and not reading this with Psalm 18 seems a bit out of order.  How did this happen at the beginning of David’s formal reign as king as well as happen at the end of David’s reign?

I think whoever designed the plan for reading through chronologically decided to use this powerful psalm as endcaps around David’s time as King.  All of the Psalms are highly debated as to when they were originally written and which hardship David had when with which Psalm – which time in a cave hiding was he hiding from Saul or hiding from his son? So they are just sprinkled in here in between reading about David’s life. And the timing all seemed to work out just fine and hopefully you aren’t too confused about the order of events. Basically we looked at David’s life in a big chunk, in order of the other events in the Bible – but his life wasn’t broken down in order and nicely organized.

As an end cap – and with the unrest in Israel – it is beautiful that God permitted it to be read today by people all over the world who are following the chronological plan. It is like God is reminding us all, in such a time as this, about how BIG and AWESOME He is. How good, solid and reliable he is. How amazing God’s precious ability to reach us when most of the time we are so manically ensnared by the cares of this world and/or what our fleshly eyes can see that we don’t see His sovereignty and mighty hand in motion – at work – doing what the word set out to do.

“But Jesus replied, “My Father is always working, and so am I.” John 5:17 NLT

“so is my word that goes out from my mouth: It will not return to me empty, but will accomplish what I desire and achieve the purpose for which I sent it.” Isaiah 55:11 NIV

God’s word says what will happen and be fulfilled in these days, this time in history – his word will be accomplished on earth. Accomplished in the world, in Israel, in our respective nations, in our respective homes – and in our lives personally. Because God is so big and so good, He can do all of that!!! That is why He never stops working!

We should pray that God’s Kingdom comes and that God’s will be done as Jesus taught us to pray. We should pray it over our own life personally and well as over this world. We should pray for the peace of Israel as we recently read in the Psalms that we should be praying and we should be praying for our own peace as well as peace for all who believe.

Side note: I know a few very chaotic people who always have something dramatic going on and are always caught up with some adrenaline filled whirlwind of what eventually turns out to be nothing.  Recently while helping a friend I have encountered and have to interact with one such person daily.  So as we speak of praying for peace – we should pray for peace that passes understanding for the peace of God (which is a mighty warrior able to guard hearts) to come fall upon them.  Chaos is a tool of the enemy and I knew to pray against it immediately however, God has more recently revealed to pray for peace. She runs at the mouth causing much of the drama. She speaks poorly of me behind my back. She needs peace. Peace that is powerful enough to hold her mouth shut. As we have studied before peace isn’t a sweet drugged out hippy concept. It guards, it protects, and it can shut mouths.  Peace is a powerful godly tool – we do not pray enough for it. So let’s correct that and pray down the peace!!!

RELATIONSHIP:
Do you already have a relationship with a powerful God who cares about your every need because He loves you? Did you know my God can communicate with you and protect you – He has a plan for you to prosper if you just submit to His will and let His plan play out in your life!!! God wants a relationship with you and has already made a plan for your life. He loves you so much He sent His son to this world, to die as a sacrifice for your sins and rise from death with victory over sin and the ability to have a personal relationship with you.
9 If you declare with your mouth, “Jesus is Lord,” and believe in your heart that God raised him from the dead, you will be saved. 10 For it is with your heart that you believe and are justified, and it is with your mouth that you profess your faith and are saved.” Romans 10:9-10 NIV
Here is a prayer for you to pray:
Jesus, I believe you are the way, the truth, the life, and the only way to the Father. I believe you are the son of God, you came to Earth and lived. That you died on the cross as a sacrifice for my sins, and rose again so that I may be saved from my sins and be able to get to know you. I declare: Jesus, you are Lord!
Therefore, I confess that I am a sinner and I ask that you forgive me of my sins and come into my life. Help me to turn away from my sins and transform me into what you have lovingly created me to be. Help me through a real personal relationship grow and accept your will for my life – that I may live in your blessings. Please walk with me, and talk with me – I accept a relationship with you and with our Father God, through you. In the name of Jesus I pray ~ Amen

MEMORY WORK: Mark 16:17-18 – This month is a two for one special!!!
NKJV – “And these signs will follow those who believe: In My name they will cast out demons; they will speak with new tongues; they will take up serpents; and if they drink anything deadly, it will by no means hurt them; they will lay hands on the sick, and they will recover.”
NAS – “These signs will accompany those who have believed: in My name they will cast out demons, they will speak with new tongues; they will pick up serpents, and if they drink any deadly poison, it will not harm them; they will lay hands on the sick, and they will recover.”
ESV – “And these signs will accompany those who believe: in my name they will cast out demons; they will speak in new tongues; they will pick up serpents with their hands; and if they drink any deadly poison, it will not hurt them; they will lay their hands on the sick, and they will recover.”
NLT – “These miraculous signs will accompany those who believe: They will cast out demons in my name, and they will speak in new languages. They will be able to handle snakes with safety, and if they drink anything poisonous, it won’t hurt them. They will be able to place their hands on the sick, and they will be healed.”
NIV – “And these signs will accompany those who believe: In my name they will drive out demons; they will speak in new tongues; they will pick up snakes with their hands; and when they drink deadly poison, it will not hurt them at all; they will place their hands on sick people, and they will get well.”

Thank you for reading.
May the God of peace keep you and bless you. May you stay focused on Christ and covered in grace.
Maranatha ~ Come Lord Jesus!

BIBLE READING: 2 Samuel 22-23, Psalms 57 NKJV

2 Samuel 22-23

Praise for God’s Deliverance

22 Then David spoke to the Lord the words of this song, on the day when the Lord had delivered him from the hand of all his enemies, and from the hand of Saul. And he said:

“The Lord is my rock and my fortress and my deliverer;
The God of my strength, in whom I will trust;
My shield and the horn[a] of my salvation,
My stronghold and my refuge;
My Savior, You save me from violence.
I will call upon the Lord, who is worthy to be praised;
So shall I be saved from my enemies.

“When the waves of death surrounded me,
The floods of ungodliness [b]made me afraid.
The sorrows of Sheol surrounded me;
The snares of death confronted me.
In my distress I called upon the Lord,
And cried out to my God;
He heard my voice from His temple,
And my cry entered His ears.

“Then the earth shook and trembled;
The foundations of [c]heaven quaked and were shaken,
Because He was angry.
Smoke went up from His nostrils,
And devouring fire from His mouth;
Coals were kindled by it.
10 He bowed the heavens also, and came down
With darkness under His feet.
11 He rode upon a cherub, and flew;
And He [d]was seen upon the wings of the wind.
12 He made darkness canopies around Him,
Dark waters and thick clouds of the skies.
13 From the brightness before Him
Coals of fire were kindled.

14 “The Lord thundered from heaven,
And the Most High uttered His voice.
15 He sent out arrows and scattered them;
Lightning bolts, and He vanquished them.
16 Then the channels of the sea were seen,
The foundations of the world were uncovered,
At the rebuke of the Lord,
At the blast of the breath of His nostrils.

17 “He sent from above, He took me,
He drew me out of many waters.
18 He delivered me from my strong enemy,
From those who hated me;
For they were too strong for me.
19 They confronted me in the day of my calamity,
But the Lord was my support.
20 He also brought me out into a broad place;
He delivered me because He delighted in me.

21 “The Lord rewarded me according to my righteousness;
According to the cleanness of my hands
He has recompensed me.
22 For I have kept the ways of the Lord,
And have not wickedly departed from my God.
23 For all His judgments were before me;
And as for His statutes, I did not depart from them.
24 I was also blameless before Him,
And I kept myself from my iniquity.
25 Therefore the Lord has [e]recompensed me according to my righteousness,
According to [f]my cleanness in His eyes.

26 “With the merciful You will show Yourself merciful;
With a blameless man You will show Yourself blameless;
27 With the pure You will show Yourself pure;
And with the devious You will show Yourself shrewd.
28 You will save the humble[g] people;
But Your eyes are on the haughty, that You may bring them down.

29 “For You are my lamp, O Lord;
The Lord shall enlighten my darkness.
30 For by You I can run against a troop;
By my God I can leap over a wall.
31 As for God, His way is perfect;
The word of the Lord is proven;
He is a shield to all who trust in Him.

32 “For who is God, except the Lord?
And who is a rock, except our God?
33 [h]God is my strength and power,
And He makes [i]my way perfect.
34 He makes [j]my feet like the feet of deer,
And sets me on my high places.
35 He teaches my hands [k]to make war,
So that my arms can bend a bow of bronze.

36 “You have also given me the shield of Your salvation;
Your gentleness has made me great.
37 You enlarged my path under me;
So my feet did not slip.

38 “I have pursued my enemies and destroyed them;
Neither did I turn back again till they were destroyed.
39 And I have destroyed them and wounded them,
So that they could not rise;
They have fallen under my feet.
40 For You have armed me with strength for the battle;
You have [l]subdued under me those who rose against me.
41 You have also [m]given me the necks of my enemies,
So that I destroyed those who hated me.
42 They looked, but there was none to save;
Even to the Lord, but He did not answer them.
43 Then I beat them as fine as the dust of the earth;
I trod them like dirt in the streets,
And I [n]spread them out.

44 “You have also delivered me from the [o]strivings of my people;
You have kept me as the head of the nations.
A people I have not known shall serve me.
45 The foreigners submit to me;
As soon as they hear, they obey me.
46 The foreigners fade away,
And [p]come frightened from their hideouts.

47 “The Lord lives!
Blessed be my Rock!
Let God be exalted,
The Rock of my salvation!
48 It is God who avenges me,
And subdues the peoples under me;
49 He delivers me from my enemies.
You also lift me up above those who rise against me;
You have delivered me from the violent man.
50 Therefore I will give thanks to You, O Lord, among the Gentiles,
And sing praises to Your name.

51 He is the tower of salvation to His king,
And shows mercy to His anointed,
To David and his descendants forevermore.”

David’s Last Words

23 Now these are the last words of David.

Thus says David the son of Jesse;
Thus says the man raised up on high,
The anointed of the God of Jacob,
And the sweet psalmist of Israel:

“The Spirit of the Lord spoke by me,
And His word was on my tongue.
The God of Israel said,
The Rock of Israel spoke to me:
‘He who rules over men must be just,
Ruling in the fear of God.
And he shall be like the light of the morning when the sun rises,
A morning without clouds,
Like the tender grass springing out of the earth,
By clear shining after rain.’

“Although my house is not so with God,
Yet He has made with me an everlasting covenant,
Ordered in all things and secure.
For this is all my salvation and all my desire;
Will He not make it increase?
But the sons of rebellion shall all be as thorns thrust away,
Because they cannot be taken with hands.
But the man who touches them
Must be [q]armed with iron and the shaft of a spear,
And they shall be utterly burned with fire in their place.”

David’s Mighty Men

These are the names of the mighty men whom David had: [r]Josheb-Basshebeth the Tachmonite, chief among [s]the captains. He was called Adino the Eznite, because he had killed eight hundred men at one time. And after him was Eleazar the son of [t]Dodo, the Ahohite, one of the three mighty men with David when they defied the Philistines who were gathered there for battle, and the men of Israel had retreated. 10 He arose and attacked the Philistines until his hand was weary, and his hand stuck to the sword. The Lord brought about a great victory that day; and the people returned after him only to plunder. 11 And after him was Shammah the son of Agee the Hararite. The Philistines had gathered together into a troop where there was a piece of ground full of lentils. So the people fled from the Philistines. 12 But he stationed himself in the middle of the field, defended it, and killed the Philistines. So the Lord brought about a great victory.

13 Then three of the thirty chief men went down at harvest time and came to David at the cave of Adullam. And the troop of Philistines encamped in the Valley of Rephaim. 14 David was then in the stronghold, and the garrison of the Philistines was then in Bethlehem. 15 And David said with longing, “Oh, that someone would give me a drink of the water from the well of Bethlehem, which is by the gate!” 16 So the three mighty men broke through the camp of the Philistines, drew water from the well of Bethlehem that was by the gate, and took it and brought it to David. Nevertheless he would not drink it, but poured it out to the Lord. 17 And he said, “Far be it from me, O Lord, that I should do this! Is this not the blood of the men who went in jeopardy of their lives?” Therefore he would not drink it.

These things were done by the three mighty men.

18 Now Abishai the brother of Joab, the son of Zeruiah, was chief of [u]another three. He lifted his spear against three hundred men, killed them, and won a name among these three. 19 Was he not the most honored of three? Therefore he became their captain. However, he did not attain to the first three.

20 Benaiah was the son of Jehoiada, the son of a valiant man from Kabzeel, [v]who had done many deeds. He had killed two lion-like heroes of Moab. He also had gone down and killed a lion in the midst of a pit on a snowy day. 21 And he killed an Egyptian, [w]a spectacular man. The Egyptian had a spear in his hand; so he went down to him with a staff, wrested the spear out of the Egyptian’s hand, and killed him with his own spear. 22 These things Benaiah the son of Jehoiada did, and won a name among three mighty men. 23 He was more honored than the thirty, but he did not attain to the first three. And David appointed him over his guard.

24 Asahel the brother of Joab was one of the thirty; Elhanan the son of Dodo of Bethlehem, 25 Shammah the Harodite, Elika the Harodite, 26 Helez the Paltite, Ira the son of Ikkesh the Tekoite, 27 Abiezer the Anathothite, Mebunnai the Hushathite, 28 Zalmon the Ahohite, Maharai the Netophathite, 29 Heleb the son of Baanah (the Netophathite), Ittai the son of Ribai from Gibeah of the children of Benjamin, 30 Benaiah a Pirathonite, Hiddai from the brooks of Gaash, 31 Abi-Albon the Arbathite, Azmaveth the Barhumite, 32 Eliahba the Shaalbonite (of the sons of Jashen), Jonathan, 33 Shammah the [x]Hararite, Ahiam the son of Sharar the Hararite, 34 Eliphelet the son of Ahasbai, the son of the Maachathite, Eliam the son of Ahithophel the Gilonite, 35 [y]Hezrai the Carmelite, Paarai the Arbite, 36 Igal the son of Nathan of Zobah, Bani the Gadite, 37 Zelek the Ammonite, Naharai the Beerothite (armorbearer of Joab the son of Zeruiah), 38 Ira the Ithrite, Gareb the Ithrite, 39 and Uriah the Hittite: thirty-seven in all.

Footnotes

  1. 2 Samuel 22:3 Strength
  2. 2 Samuel 22:5 Or overwhelmed
  3. 2 Samuel 22:8 So with MT, LXX, Tg.; Syr., Vg. hills (cf. Ps. 18:7)
  4. 2 Samuel 22:11 So with MT, LXX; many Heb. mss., Syr., Vg. flew (cf. Ps. 18:10); Tg. spoke with power
  5. 2 Samuel 22:25 rewarded
  6. 2 Samuel 22:25 LXX, Syr., Vg. the cleanness of my hands in His sight (cf. Ps. 18:24); Tg. my cleanness before His word
  7. 2 Samuel 22:28 afflicted
  8. 2 Samuel 22:33 DSS, LXX, Syr., Vg. It is God who arms me with strength (cf. Ps. 18:32); Tg. It is God who sustains me with strength
  9. 2 Samuel 22:33 So with Qr., LXX, Syr., Tg., Vg. (cf. Ps. 18:32); Kt. His
  10. 2 Samuel 22:34 So with Qr., LXX, Syr., Tg., Vg. (cf. Ps. 18:33); Kt. His
  11. 2 Samuel 22:35 Lit. for the war
  12. 2 Samuel 22:40 Lit. caused to bow down
  13. 2 Samuel 22:41 given me victory over
  14. 2 Samuel 22:43 scattered
  15. 2 Samuel 22:44 contentions
  16. 2 Samuel 22:46 So with LXX, Tg., Vg. (cf. Ps. 18:45); MT gird themselves
  17. 2 Samuel 23:7 Lit. filled
  18. 2 Samuel 23:8 Lit. One Who Sits in the Seat (1 Chr. 11:11)
  19. 2 Samuel 23:8 So with MT, Tg.; LXX, Vg. the three
  20. 2 Samuel 23:9 Dodai, 1 Chr. 27:4
  21. 2 Samuel 23:18 So with MT, LXX, Vg.; some Heb. mss., Syr. thirty; Tg. the mighty men
  22. 2 Samuel 23:20 Lit. great of acts
  23. 2 Samuel 23:21 Lit. a man of appearance
  24. 2 Samuel 23:33 Or Ararite
  25. 2 Samuel 23:35 Hezro, 1 Chr. 11:37

Psalms 57

Prayer for Safety from Enemies
To the Chief Musician. Set to [a]“Do Not Destroy.” A Michtam of David when he fled from Saul into the cave.

57 Be merciful to me, O God, be merciful to me!
For my soul trusts in You;
And in the shadow of Your wings I will make my refuge,
Until these calamities have passed by.

I will cry out to God Most High,
To God who performs all things for me.
He shall send from heaven and save me;
He reproaches the one who [b]would swallow me up. Selah
God shall send forth His mercy and His truth.

My soul is among lions;
I lie among the sons of men
Who are set on fire,
Whose teeth are spears and arrows,
And their tongue a sharp sword.
Be exalted, O God, above the heavens;
Let Your glory be above all the earth.

They have prepared a net for my steps;
My soul is bowed down;
They have dug a pit before me;
Into the midst of it they themselves have fallen. Selah

My heart is steadfast, O God, my heart is steadfast;
I will sing and give praise.
Awake, my glory!
Awake, lute and harp!
I will awaken the dawn.

I will praise You, O Lord, among the peoples;
I will sing to You among the [c]nations.
10 For Your mercy reaches unto the heavens,
And Your truth unto the clouds.

11 Be exalted, O God, above the heavens;
Let Your glory be above all the earth.

Footnotes

  1. Psalm 57:1 Heb. Al Tashcheth
  2. Psalm 57:3 snaps at or hounds me, or crushes me
  3. Psalm 57:9 Gentiles

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