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The Daily Press

May 8 – Read John 10:23–38

The Pharisees had become obsessed with trying to trap Jesus in his words so they would have an excuse to kill him.  However, every time they made an attempt they only succeeded in exposing their own hypocrisy.  In these verses, Jesus tells the Pharisees that they do not believe because they are not of his sheep, which makes the Pharisees fume.  Jesus asks them which good work they plan to kill him for performing.  The agitated Jews respond that they are seeking to kill him because he claimed he was God.  In response, Jesus just feeds their frustration by referring to Psalm 82, where the judges are referred to as gods, since their power is given them by God.  Jesus isn’t trying to backtrack and deny the truth of his divinity, but his time has not yet come, so he destroys their trap quickly.

Sing or pray Psalter #223.

 

May 9 -Read Psalm 36

Just ask my dad, birds are very protective of their young.  Before coming to the Protestant Reformed Churches, he served in the US Navy.  During one deployment in Alaska he unwittingly got too close to an eagle’s nest, and those enormous birds starting swooping down at his head. Birds make him nervous to this day.

Psalm 82:3 refers to us as “God’s hidden ones.”  Calvin says that this phrase is explained by the fact that we are hidden under the shadow of God’s wing, as stated here in Psalm 36.  Just as a bird will do anything to protect her young, God will always be watching over us.  Since we are under his wing, the world can’t get to us without going through him first.  Nothing happens that wasn’t according to God’s perfect plan.

Sing or pray Psalter #163.

 

May 10- Read Psalm 2

Psalm 83:5 says of the church’s enemies, “that they are confederate against thee.”  When we hear the word confederate, most of us probably think of the Civil War.  “Confederate” means joined by an agreement or treaty.  During the time of the Civil War, the states of the Confederacy were joined together to create a country separate from the United States.  Since the name United States was already taken, these states chose the name Confederate States, which has basically the same meaning.

The wicked men and nations of the world hate one another, but one thing that unites them is hatred of the church.  Psalm 2 talks about the rulers of the earth taking counsel together to destroy God’s people.  We have seen this in the world empires throughout all of history, and we see it happening again today, with organizations such as the United Nations and European Union.

Sing or pray Psalter #224.

 

May 11 -Read Judges 4:10–24

In Psalm 83 Asaph calls upon God to judge Israel’s enemies, as he has done in the past.  An example of this past judgment is the story of Jabin and Sisera.  Jabin was the king of Hazor, and Sisera was the captain of his army.  We read of a Jabin, king of Hazor, twice in the Old Testament.  The first time we hear about Jabin, he has gathered a huge army to fight against Israel and Joshua, but the Lord delivers Israel, Hazor is burned, and Jabin is killed (Joshua 11).  In Judges 4, we read about the Jabin who has Sisera as the captain of his army.  Israel has fallen into sin, and Jabin has taken them captive, but God delivers his people again.  Just as Barak needed a woman (Deborah) to get him going, so Sisera was killed gruesomely by a woman (Jael).  Israel was so weak that no man was willing to stand up and be their leader, but God still delivered his people.

Sing or pray Psalter #13.

 

May 12- Read Psalm 83

In geography class we are learning about Europe, and just finished talking about the story of St. Patrick.  It’s interesting to study the stories that have largely been lost behind modern-day festivals.  Patrick was born in Britain, but was forced into slavery in Ireland as a teenager.  Although he escaped, he later returned to Ireland and became a famous missionary.  Patrick went to find his former master and forgive him, only to find that the man had burned his mansion down around himself.  It was too much for the man’s pride to be publicly forgiven by his former slave.

When we talked about this in class, the students had a hard time understanding why this situation caused the man to take his own life.  A worldly man without his pride has nothing to live for. In Psalm 83, Asaph calls on God to shame the wicked.  Pride is a very dangerous thing, and something against which we must always be on guard.  Instead of looking for judgment on the wicked to feed our own pride, we must seek it, “That men may know that thou, whose name alone is Jehovah, art the most high over all the earth” (v.18).

Sing or pray Psalter #104.

 

May 13 -Read Psalm 84

During my years in Iowa, I worked as a CNA at a nursing home behind our house.  The people who lived there often watched the religious channel.  I quickly learned how much the televangelists love to tell fantastic stories in an effort to get people to donate large sums of money.  They were always talking about this or that person who gave their life savings to the church, only to find the next day that they had won the lottery or something ridiculous like that.

One verse that these false teachers might use to defend their position is the second part of Psalm 84:11, where we read that “no good thing will [God] withhold from them that walk uprightly.”  This is the infallible word of God and definitely true, but not in the way many interpret it.  Everything that God gives us is good, but that good thing might be sickness, death, or abandonment.  It might be the loss of our job or the hatred of our coworkers.  Earthly riches are good in themselves and can be used for the cause of the kingdom, but God is not bribing us into good behavior with the promise of earthly things.

Sing or pray Psalter #226.

 

 

May 14- Read Psalm 84

David longed for the house of the Lord.  The exact reason is unknown, but David had been unable to visit God’s house for a long time.  It could have been when Saul was chasing him, or when he fled from his son Absalom.  Either way, David yearns to be able to worship God in his house.  Daniel must have yearned for the same thing.  Three times a day he faced Jerusalem and prayed, even when it meant death.  The sick and the aged who are prevented from worshipping in God’s house surely know this same feeling of the longing desire to be in God’s house, worshipping with their fellow saints.

Those of us with the freedom and ability to worship twice every Sunday also need to long for God’s house.  That is where the preaching is, the main means of salvation, and where we can be strengthened and taught by our fellow saints.  We must not take this for granted, for it may happen in our lifetime that this freedom is taken away.  Let it be true for us also that a day in God’s courts is better than a thousand dwelling with the wicked (Ps. 84:10).

Sing or pray Psalter #225.

 

May 15 -Read Psalm 28

“For the Lord God is a sun and shield” (Psalm 84:11a).  Just as the sun brings life to the earth, so God gives his people true life through his Son’s shed blood.  Just as the burning sun lights the world, so God’s Son has brought us light when we were in the darkness of sin.  Not only has God given us life, but he also preserves that life.  He is the creator and the sustainer.  Many today blatantly deny this beautiful truth.  They want to portray God as the clockmaker who creates the clock and then lets it run on its own.  However, this is in direct contradiction to this passage and the rest of Scripture.  In order for us to have life, we need God not only to give that life to us, but also to preserve it.  We are weak and there are temptations all around us.  We thank God for the confidence we have in knowing that he is not only a sun, but also a shield.

Sing or pray Psalter #75.

 

May 16- Read Psalm 85

Easter will be long past when you read this devotional, but as I write, it’s only a couple of weeks away.  Therefore, it came to mind when I read Psalm 85:2, which says, “Thou hast forgiven the iniquity of thy people, thou hast covered all their sin.”  Our sins were covered by Christ’s death on the cross and his resurrection on the third day, which we celebrate on Easter Sunday.  The world celebrates this day as well, though they just associate it with bunnies and eggs.  Although these ideas are not found in Scripture, I thought it interesting that there are some spiritual ideas behind these traditions.  Eggs have been used for centuries as a symbol of life, fertility, and rebirth, and rabbits were associated with it because of the rapidity with which they reproduce.  God has given us these pictures in creation of the life that has been merited for us by his Son’s death on the cross.

Sing or pray Psalter #232.

 

May 17- Read Luke 24:1–12

The Roman Catholics go even further in their use of eggs to picture the resurrection of Christ.  Eggs are painted all different colors today, but they were initially painted red to symbolize the blood of Christ.  The eggshell represented Christ’s tomb, while the cracking of the egg pictured his rising from the dead.  Eggs were also eaten in large quantities at this time, since Easter marks the end of Lent, a forty-day period in which the Roman Catholics are forbidden to eat eggs.  Lent is supposed to symbolize Christ’s fasting in the wilderness.  There is even an egg rolling contest at the White House on the morning after Easter.  According to History.com, this event has no religious significance, but some people like to think it’s a picture of the stone being rolled away from the tomb on that sacred Sunday long ago.  These non-scriptural examples might not be the best, but it’s amazing to see the countless pictures of heavenly truths that our God has given us in his creation.

Read or pray Psalter #183.

 

May 18 -Read Psalm 85

Remember the Muslim clock kid from last year?  A 14-year-old boy brought a homemade “clock” to school to show his teacher, but was instead expelled and humiliated because the device looked like a bomb.  People heard about this story and were in an uproar.  Many became so infuriated they began crying out for the lynching of this racist school administrator.  Obama even stepped in and kindly invited the persecuted child to the White House.

As it turns out, the whole thing was staged to create an outcry over treatment of Muslims in this country.  Lies like this are everywhere, and yet people are so quick to believe them.  As we near another presidential election, this can be seen quite clearly.  The candidates will say anything that makes the others look like monsters, while spewing grandiose promises of prosperity and tranquility that have no foundation in reality.  This is what characterizes the kingdoms of this world.  On the other hand, the kingdom of God is characterized by “mercy and truth”, as we read in Psalm 85.  May this be the kingdom that we seek.

Sing or pray Psalter #21.

 

May 19 -Read Psalm 86

Most of us have probably heard of purgatory.  The Roman Catholic Church teaches that after death you go to this place called purgatory, where payment for sins must be made before you can enter heaven.  Which verse in this chapter do you think they use to help “prove” this false teaching?

Psalm 86:13 reads, “For great is thy mercy toward me: and thou hast delivered my soul from the lowest hell.”  According to Roman Catholicism, this “lowest hell” refers to purgatory.  This teaching is a direct attack on Christ.  Calvin goes so far as to say that it is “too rotten to stand in need of refutation.”  What does it matter that Christ died for us when we still have to pay for those sins ourselves anyway?  Going down into the “lowest hell” here just pictures the dark times in the life of every Christian.  Sometimes we feel as if God has abandoned us, but we are always brought back by the beautiful truth of salvation by grace alone.

Sing or pray Psalter #233.

 

May 20- Read Psalm 86

The world is destitute of unity.  They are always seeking it, but cannot find what they seek outside of Christ.  We see examples of this all around us.  Entertainment stars will speak openly of “becoming another person” when they perform.  I remember hearing an interview with one pop star who had actually given a name to the person she became during concerts.  She was very clear in explaining that this person was the opposite of who she was in everyday life.  Also, the world always wants only to “live in the moment.”  They want this thing one minute and that the next.  Their whole life is a string of contradictions.  How can the people of the world expect to be able to unite together when they can’t even have unity within themselves?  The elect are the only ones to whom this unity has been given.  By God’s grace, we pray with David, “Teach me thy way, O Lord; I will walk in thy truth; unite my heart to fear thy name” (Psalm 86:11).

Sing or pray Psalter #371.

 

May 21- Read I Kings 18:16-40

It’s amazing to imagine what it must have been like to be at this event.  This lone man in ragged clothing plans to take on 450 of the wisest and most powerful in the country?  What is he thinking?  Then the prophets of Baal begin to call on their god, and the crowd waits in anticipation.  Nothing happens.  Time goes by, and the crowd begins to grow restless.  In desperation, the Baal prophets turn suicidal, cutting themselves and jumping on the very altar they are asking their god to enflame.  Finally they must give up, and Elijah steps forward.  The crowd cranes their necks to see what he’s doing.  What?  He’s pouring WATER on the altar?  He did it again?  What’s he doing now?  Praying?  I think he’s going to have to do more than that.  Suddenly, a huge explosion blows them backwards.  A ball of fire has descended from heaven and devoured the entire altar, including the water around it.  The people are all shaking, and fling themselves upon the ground in fear, including Ahab himself.  Truly, “Among the gods there is none like unto thee, O Lord; neither are there any works like unto thy works” (Psalm 86:8).

Sing or pray Psalter #182.

 

May 22 -Read Matthew 24:29–44

By nature, we are pretty quick to jump to the conclusion that other people just aren’t quite as smart as we are.  Keeping this in mind, think about what it must have been like to be Noah building the ark.  Can you even imagine how much people must have laughed at him?  Here was this man attempting to build a floating animal village because water would come pouring down from the sky and cover the entire planet.  I’m sure that got more than a couple of raised eyebrows.  The amount of faith that God must have given Noah to be able to complete this task is truly a testament to his preservation of his people.

In Psalm 86:17 David requests of God, “Shew me a token for good; that they which hate me may see it, and be ashamed.”  The laughter of the wicked was stopped in their mouths at the time of the flood, and the same will be true at the end of the world.  Just when it seems as if the Church has been completely wiped out, God will send his Son as a token for good to the righteous and a token for evil to the wicked.

Sing or pray Psalter #235.

 

May 23 -Read Psalm 87

Psalm 87:3 says, “Glorious things are spoken of thee, O city of God.”  What are those glorious things?  God spoke of the temple in 2 Chronicles 7:16: “For now have I chosen and sanctified this house, that my name may be there forever: and mine eyes and mine heart shall be there perpetually.”  Psalm 48:2 says, “Beautiful for situation, the joy of the whole earth, is mount Zion, on the sides of the north, the city of the great King.”

Such beautiful words are spoken of the Old Testament Zion, and yet even more are spoken of the New Testament church.  “Husbands, love your wives, even as Christ also loved the church, and gave himself for it; that he might sanctify and cleanse it with the washing of water by the word, that he might present it to himself a glorious church…” (Eph.  5:25–27).  “But ye are a chosen generation, a royal priesthood, a holy nation, a peculiar people; that ye should show forth the praises of him who hath called you out of darkness into his marvelous light” (1 Peter 2:9).  In spite of its weaknesses, let us never be ashamed to belong to the glorious church of God.

Sing or pray Psalter #238.

 

May 24- Read Isaiah 51:9–16

Rahab is compared to the dragon, the kingdom of antichrist, in this passage.  It is also used this way in other places throughout scripture, including Psalm 87:4.  The word denotes one that is raging, according to Gesensius’ Hebrew Lexicon.  This fact, along with the context in which it is found, has led scholars to conclude that the term refers to Egypt.

Upon learning this, I became curious about how this Rahab and the woman who saved the Israelite spies were connected.  As it turns out, they aren’t.  Although they have been translated the same in English, these are actually two completely different words in the Hebrew.  The Rahab of Isaiah 51 is spelled correctly, but the woman Rahab would probably be better spelled as Rachab.  This is because the pronunciation of the name requires a guttural sound that we don’t use in English, a sound not used in pronouncing the Rahab of this passage.

Sing or pray Psalter #237.

 

May 25- Read Psalm 88

The man who wrote Psalm 88 was a man of prayer.  He prayed all the time, but especially in times of affliction.  “Is any among you afflicted?  let him pray…” (James 5:13).

Earnestness characterizes this prayer of the psalmist— “But unto thee have I cried” (v.13) and “stretched out my hands unto thee” (v.9).  His prayers are also constant: “I have called daily upon thee” (v.9), yea “I have cried day and night before thee” (v.1).  Third, his prayers were directed to God, and he expected and desired an answer from God: “Incline thine ear unto my cry” (v.2).

Some compare these prayers of the psalmist to Christ’s prayers in the Garden of Gethsemane.  Both were men of sorrows.  Both cried to God in the midst of their sufferings.  The psalmist said in verse 3, “For my soul is full of troubles: and my life draweth nigh unto the grave.”  Christ told his disciples in the garden, “My soul is exceeding sorrowful, even unto death” (Matt. 26:38).  Christ, when praying to his Father, ends his prayer with submission: “Nevertheless, not as I will, but as thou wilt” (Matt. 26:39). May we do the same in our trials.

Sing or pray Psalter #240.

 

May 26- Read Job 40

As I was writing the previous devotional, I was reminded of Job.  He also was a man of sorrow.  Great was the tribulation that God placed upon him.  In fact, he prayed that he might die, his affliction was so great.  As one tribulation after another fell upon him, he, like the psalmist, thought that God had forsaken him.  Indeed, in Job 3:1 it says, “After this opened Job his mouth, and cursed his day.”  He wished he had never been born.  Had God truly forsaken Job?  Did God truly hide his face from the psalmist (Ps.88:14)?

“Then the Lord answered Job out of the whirlwind, and said… Where wast thou when I laid the foundations of the earth?” (Job 38:1,4).  He rebukes Job for questioning and doubting him.  “Shall he that contendeth with the Almighty instruct him?  He that reproveth God, let him answer it” (Job 40:2).  Who are we to question God?  If we are ever tempted to doubt God, may we fall on our knees like Job and say, “Behold, I am vile; what shall I answer thee?  I will lay mine hand upon my mouth” (Job 40:4).

Sing or pray Psalter #202.

 

May 27- Read Psalm 89:1–18

The psalmist begins this psalm by praising God.  The first fourteen verses speak of the power, wisdom, and wonder of our God.  Verses 15–18 then speak of how amazing it is to belong to God, to be part of his church, and to be one of his children.  Verse 15 says, “Blessed is the people that know the joyful sound: they shall walk, O Lord, in the light of thy countenance.”

What is the “joyful sound” that we hear?  This could refer to the shout of a victorious army.  God was present in the battles that Old Testament Israel fought, and they often returned with joyful shouts of victory.  This “joyful sound” could also refer to the joyful singing Israel did while offering sacrifices and observing the feast days.  After all, they were free to worship their God how he commanded.  Finally, the sound of the jubilee trumpet was a “joyful sound” to the slaves and debtors, because it signified their freedom.  To us, the gospel is a joyful sound.  It is a sound of victory, of liberty, and of communion with God.  Blessed are the people who hear it!

Sing or pray Psalter #241.

 

May 28 – Read Psalm 89:16–29

Recently we watched a nature video in class, which included a clip of male ibexes fighting for the right to mate.  It was amazing to see, but I still can’t believe that their horns and necks were able to withstand the blows.  These mountain-dwelling animals would rear up on their hind legs and hurtle themselves down on their opponent from above.  Their heads crashed with such force that it was painful to watch.  A male ibex’s horns are enormous and very important in determining his rank.  In fact, the dominant male’s horns curved around into nearly a complete circle.

The Bible uses this picture of a horn often to symbolize strength and power.  This chapter speaks of the horn of the righteous being exalted in Christ.  In verse 17, the psalmist is speaking to God and saying, “For thou art the glory of their strength: and in thy favor our horn shall be exalted.”  Then, God himself speaks in verse 24 and confirms that the horn of the righteous will be exalted in his name.  Through Christ, we have true confidence in our salvation.

Sing or pray Psalter #242.

 

May 29- Read Zachariah 8:1–8

We live in dark times.  There is no denying that fact.  As technology advances more and more speedily, wickedness keeps pace alongside.  The church is being attacked on every side.  The final tribulation is near.  In times like these, how can we not live in fear?  How can we have joy?

Recently, a sermon was preached in our church on that very subject.  The text was Zachariah 8:5, which reads, “And the streets of the city shall be full of boys and girls playing in the streets thereof.”  Children play only when they feel safe, and the children in this verse are a picture of God’s people.  How can we feel safe in these times?  The answer is found in Psalm 89:35: “Once have I sworn by my holiness that I will not lie unto David.”  God will never forsake his covenant.  He has sworn this by his own holiness, as there is none greater than he is.  We live in the consciousness that all the signs of the times around us are happening exactly according to God’s will, which culminates in Christ’s return on the clouds of glory to deliver us from this world of sin.  Knowing this gives us true joy even in life’s most difficult trials.

Sing or pray Psalter #243.

 

May 30- Read Ephesians 2:1–10

One of the few talk radio stations our car picks up happens to be Roman Catholic.  Since the CD kept skipping on me today during my drive home, I decided to give it a listen.  The host was talking about the subject of free will.  He said that God was such an advocate of free will that he allowed Adam and Eve to fall into sin.  He was willing to live with the consequences of their sinful actions.

So God had no intention of sending his Son to this earth to suffer and die for his people until man messed everything up?  The coming of Christ was Plan B?  Of course it wasn’t.  Christ has always been the center of history.  Ephesians 2 talks about how God preordained all the events of history and determined that we would be saved, “That in the ages to come he might shew the exceeding riches of his grace in his kindness toward us through Christ Jesus.”  Psalm 91 says that no evil can befall us with God our Father watching over us.  Yes, Adam and Eve sinned grievously at the fall, but God used that sin for the good of his people.

 

May 31- Read Psalm 89:19–52

There are many phrases in verses 19–37 promising that God’s covenant with David will last forever.  Verse 28: “My mercy will I keep for him for evermore, and my covenant shall stand fast with him.” Verse 29: “His seed also will I make to endure forever, and his throne as the days of heaven.”  Verse 36: “His seed shall endure forever, and his throne as the sun before me.”  Verse 37: “It shall be established for ever as the moon…”

Then, suddenly, verse 39 reads, “Thou hast made void the covenant of thy servant: thou hast profaned his crown by casting it to the ground.”

This psalm uses the name of David, but it is also speaking about Christ.  It appeared as if God had broken his covenant.  First the ten tribes rebelled against David’s line, and then Assyria conquered Judah, and the people were scattered.  Christ was forsaken by the Jews and hung on the cross.  What happened to God’s promises?  We, with the psalmist, must remember that God’s plan is perfect.  His works always fulfill his word and never contradict it.

Sing or pray Psalter #48.

 

June 1- Read John 15:1–17

Psalm 90 is believed by many to be the only psalm written by Moses.  He wrote this psalm for the Israelites as they were nearing the end of their forty years of wandering in the wilderness.  He comforts the Israelites in verse one.  Although they have been wandering without a home for decades, God has been and always will be their dwelling place.

Proof for the Israelites could be found in their ancestors, who were wanderers in Canaan.  They lived in tents, and yet they were at home wherever they went, for God was their dwelling place.  We also must have God as our true home.  We must not love our toys, our clothes, and our homes more than our Bibles.  Matthew 6:19–21 says, “Lay not up for yourselves treasures upon earth…but lay up for yourselves treasures in heaven… For where your treasure is, there will your heart be also.”

We dwell in God by loving him and keeping his commandments.  John 15:10 says, “If ye keep my commandments, ye shall abide in my love; even as I have kept my Father’s commandments, and abide in his love.”

Sing or pray Psalter #246.

 

June 2- Read Proverbs 8:22–36

Psalm 90:2 is one of my favorite verses in the Bible, maybe because I enjoy hiking so much.  My favorite part is standing on top of a mountain and just seeing mountaintops for miles and miles.  Standing there brings to my mind Psalm 90:2, “Before the mountains were brought forth, or ever thou hadst formed the earth and the world, even from everlasting to everlasting, thou art God.”

Proverbs 8 also speaks of the everlastingness of God.  It is about wisdom, and God is wisdom.  Even before the world was created, wisdom was there.  “I was set up from everlasting, from the beginning, or ever the earth was” (Prov. 8:23).  We must seek wisdom, “For whoso findeth [wisdom] findeth life, and shall obtain favor of the Lord” (Prov. 8:35).

Sing or pray Psalter #254.

 

June 3- Read Psalm 90:1–6

It says in Psalm 90:3, “Thou turnest man to destruction: and sayest, Return, ye children of men.”  Matthew Henry gives four meanings for the last phrase, “Return, ye children of men.”  First, God through sicknesses and other afflictions is often calling his people to return to him, to repent of their sins, and to live a new and godly life.  Second, sometimes God brings us so low, even near to death, and then returns us to life again.  1 Samuel 2:6–7 says, “The Lord killeth, and maketh alive: he bringeth down to the grave and bringeth up.  The Lord maketh poor, and maketh rich: he bringeth low, and lifteth up.”  Third, all men die and our bodies return to the dust of which that they were made.  “Then shall the dust return to the earth as it was: and the spirit shall return unto God who gave it” (Eccl. 12:7).  Fourth, at the end of time, all men will be raised to face the final judgement.  Daniel 12:2 says, “And many of them that sleep in the dust of the earth shall awake, some to everlasting life, and some to shame and everlasting contempt.”

Sing or pray Psalter #244.

 

June 4- Read Psalm 90

In Psalm 90 Moses speaks about the brevity of man’s life.  Who better to speak of this than the man who just watched an entire generation die in the wilderness?   Moses also knew of the patriarchs, many of whom lived close to a thousand years.   Yet, what is a thousand years compared to infinity? II Peter 3:8 states, “But, beloved, be not ignorant of this one thing, that one day is with the Lord as a thousand years, and a thousand years as one day.”

Our God not only has no beginning and no end, but he also remembers everything that has happened in eternity.  The events of a thousand years ago, or even a hundred years in the future are present in his mind as if they were happening at this moment.  Many of us probably can’t remember what we had for breakfast last week Monday, but God remembers.  He knows what every person in the world had for breakfast two years ago.  More importantly, he knows all our needs and will always supply them.  What an amazing God we have!

Sing or pray Psalter #247.

 

June 5- Read Psalm 91

Psalm 91 is a psalm about security.  Security, according to Webster’s dictionary, means to have safety from danger of any kind, and to have such a certainty and confidence in that safety that one is free even from fear.  This is the kind of security we have in God.  We can be without fear from the dangers that surround us, for we have the certain knowledge that God will deliver us.  “He shall cover [us] with his feathers, and under his wings shall [we] trust” (Ps.91:4).

Only those who make God their habitation can know this security.  As was discussed a couple days ago, our home must be with God in order to have security and peace.  Isaiah 26:3 says, “Thou wilt keep him in perfect peace, whose mind is stayed on thee: because he trusteth in thee”.  Therefore, the wicked will never know perfect peace because they do not love God.

Sing or pray Psalter #248.

 

June 6 – Read 2 Samuel 5:6–10

In 2014, after fifteen years of excavation, archeologists uncovered most of the “Spring Citadel” (biblicalarchaeology.org).  Boasting twenty-three foot thick walls, this fortress guarded the spring at Gihon, which provided water for many of the inhabitants of Jerusalem.  This is believed to be the stronghold mentioned here in 2 Samuel.  In addition, it was likely the place where Solomon was anointed king in 1 Kings 1:33–34.

The Jebusites were so confident in the security of their stronghold that they claimed even the blind and lame would be able to defend it.  However, God gave David the victory.  The thickest-walled fortresses of the world are nothing before God.  He is the only fortress (Psalm 91:2) who provides complete security.

Sing or pray Psalter #249

 

June 7- Read Luke 22:39–46

We just learned about this story in Bible class at school.  Here we get a glimpse at the agony Jesus went through as the time of his death drew near.  In fact, he was in such agony that “there appeared an angel unto him from heaven, strengthening him” (Luke 22:43).  What an amazing comfort it is to know that the angels are watching over us, just as they did the man Jesus.  The Bible is full of passages that make this clear to us.  Psalm 91:11, Matthew 18:10 and Hebrews 1:14 are three examples of texts in which we are told that God has commanded his angels to watch over the elect.  Then there is the story of Elisha and the Syrians in 2 Kings 6.  Elisha and his servant are surrounded by an enormous army, and the servant is in despair, but through Elisha’s prayer the eyes of his servant are opened to see that “the mountain was full of horses and chariots of fire round about Elisha” (2 Kings 6:17b).  Man is truly powerless before the God of hosts.

Sing or pray Psalter #299.