God, Our Deliverer
Text: Psalm 7:1 (KJV) “O, Lord my God. In Thee do I put my trust: save me from all them that persecute me, and deliver me.”
David wrote this Psalm in response to the slanderous accusations of those who claimed that he was trying to kill King Saul and seize the throne (cf. I Samuel 24:9-11). David did not take revenge or strike back but asked God to deliver him. When I was a child, I was abused by adults but God delivered me. He physically put me in a foster home and spiritually helped me to forgive my abusers and leave their judgment to Him. Friend, trust Him today to deliver you. God loves you and He will take your case and bring restoration to your life and reputation.
When I am afraid!
Text: Psalm 56:3 (NIV) “When I am afraid; I will trust in You.”
David wrote this Psalm when he fled from King Saul and was in enemy (Philistine) country. We have an enemy named Satan. He tries to make and keep us afraid of him. Jesus says in Matthew 10:28, “Do not be afraid of those who kill the body, but cannot kill the soul. Rather, be afraid of the One who can destroy both soul and body in hell.” So dear friend, instead of being afraid of the world or the devil, fear God and trust in Him for your salvation.
All means All
Text: Psalm 54:7a (KJV) “For He hath delivered me out of all trouble.”
Dear friend, sometimes we feel that we will not be able to make it through our trials, whether they be financial problems, sickness, job loss, depression, or loneliness. David said of God: “He hath delivered me out of all trouble.” Know today that all means all of our trouble. Remember in closing the great Hymn of the Faith, “All The Way, my Savior leads, what have I to ask besides…”
Who You Gonna Call For Help?
Text: Psalm 121:1-2 (KJV)”I will lift up mine eyes unto the hills, from whence cometh my help. My help cometh from the LORD, which made heaven and earth.”
Dear friend, today’s text shows us that our ultimate and only help comes from the LORD, the maker of heaven and earth. If you are suffering from an illness, He is Jehovah Rophi, The Lord your Healer. If you need finances, He is Jehovah Jireh, The Lord your Provider. If you are lonely, He is a Friend that sticketh closer than a brother. He is our Help in all our needs; come to HIM today.
Who Knows Best?
Text: 2 Samuel 2:1 (KJV) “And it came to pass after this, that David enquired of the LORD, saying, `Shall I go up into any of the cities of Judah?’ And the LORD said unto him, `Go up.’ And David said, ‘Whither shall I go up?’ And he said, ‘Unto Hebron.’ ”
David knew that King Saul was dead and that God promised he would be the new king. David still asked God, “Where should I go?” Dear friend, perhaps today you do not know which way to go or what decision to make! People may rudely say, “Just go in the way that makes sense.” No, dear friend, bring the matter before God first as He knows the best way for your life, and He knows the perfect timing for you.
“Have Thine Own Way Lord, Have Thine Own Way, Thou Art the Potter, I am the clay.”
Do you have a heart for the lost?
Text: Psalm 9:7 (KJV) “The wicked shall be turned into hell, and all the nations that forget God.”
Charles Spurgeon wrote, “The nations fell into neglect because they forgot GOD. Neglect destroys men. Only sit still, don’t trust GOD and your damnation is sure.” Dear Friend, today I encourage you to share the gospel with the lost as they are neglecting coming to God.
“Rescue the perishing, care for the dying, JESUS is merciful, JESUS WILL SAVE.”
How will you live?
Text: I Chronicles 2:3 (KJV) “And Er, the firstborn of Judah, was evil in the sight of the LORD; and He slew him.”
The Bible teaches that the way we live today will determine how we will be remembered by others and how we will be judged by GOD! What we do now does matter. John Calvin, the great preacher and theologian did not want to go to Geneva, but he submitted and went there anyway. God turned that city over for him to deliver it from the wickedness of sin. God told me when I was praying what is true for all: “Do not put geographical limitations as to where you will serve me; instead remember you will be happiest when you are in the center of my will where “the joy of the LORD is your strength.”
“I am thine own LORD. I have heard your voice to me.”
God is my king
Text: Psalms 44:4(KJV) “Thou art my King, O God: command deliverances for Jacob.”
In our battles with the world, the flesh, and the devil, let us remember today’s word from the Psalmist, “Thou Art my King,” and ask the LORD alone to deliver us in our miseries and trials. Only He can deliver us.
“My deliverer is coming; my deliverer is standing by.”
Keep me from evil
Text: I CHRONICLES 4:10(KJV)” And Jabez called on the God of Israel, saying, `Oh that thou wouldest bless me indeed, and enlarge my coast, and that thine hand might be with me, and that thou wouldest keep me from evil, that it may not grieve me!’ And God granted him that which he requested.”
Jabez prayed to be delivered from all evil and disaster. Dear friend, today please seek God to not only protect you from evil, but also to guard your thoughts and actions from evil. Remember I Thessalonians 5:22: “Abstain from every appearance of evil”. Abstain means to refrain or keep away.
“Sin is the only thing that can rob a child of his joy in the LORD.” H.A. Ironside
God is The Author and Focus of All Holidays (HOLY DAYS)
Text: Psalm 81:1-3(KJV)”Sing aloud unto God our strength: make a joyful noise unto the God of Jacob. Take a psalm, and bring hither the timbrel, the pleasant harp with the psaltery. Blow up the trumpet in the new moon, in the time appointed, on our solemn feast day.”
Dear Friends, Psalm 81 was called a holiday (HOLY DAY) hymn and was written by Asaph to celebrate the Feast of Tabernacles. Israel’s holidays (HOLY DAYS) reminded the nation of God’s great miracles and were times for praise and worship. They were also times to sit down and reflect on God’s many blessings and to renew one’s strength in God during the struggles they
faced. I encourage you:
1) On St. Valentine’s Day–Do not focus on candy hearts, chocolate, roses etc. Instead, focus on Jesus, The Rose of Sharon, our Lord who gives us eternal life and loves us so very much that He shed his blood for all our sins!
2) On St. Patrick’s Day–Do not focus on drinking, wearing the green, and reveling. Instead, focus on how Patrick listened to God’s call and shared the Gospel with the lost souls in Ireland. Ask God “Who can I share the Gospel with?”
3) On Easter Sunday–Do not focus on egg hunts, chocolate bunnies, and that so-called Easter Bunny! Instead, focus on Christ’s hope that He gives us in his Resurrection.
4) On the 4th of July –Do not focus on BBQ’s and fireworks. Instead, focus on the freedoms we have in Christ and also how we are free in this country to worship Him without persecution, unlike many of our brethren in other countries.
5) On Labor Day–Do not focus on how hard you work and value just another day off. Instead, focus on being faithful in your work for Jesus and looking forward to HIM saying to you, “Well done, thou good and faithful servant, enter thou the joy of the LORD.” (Which I pray that we all hear on that day).
6) On Thanksgiving Day–Do not focus on a good home-cooked meal, football, and the Macy’s Parade. Instead, focus on being thankful to God for all your blessings (your salvation, health, food, clothing, shelter, spouse-if you are married, children, parents, pets, jobs, home, clothes, spiritual gifts, God’s safety and protection, etc.).
7) On Christmas Day–Do not focus on presents (prezzies as us Scots say), trees, mistletoe, tinsel, etc. Instead, focus on JESUS, the reason for the season, THE GREATEST GIFT IN OUR LIVES.
The Big Two
Text: Psalm 81:1-3(KJV)”Who forgiveth all thine iniquities; who healeth all thy diseases.”
David in this Psalm gave praise to God for His glorious acts and many blessings. Dear Friend, today, think about the Big Two that God has blessed us as believers in Christ with.
First, He forgiveth all our iniquities (sins). I love how the Puritans wrote in the 1699 Geneva Bible notes: “This is the beginning and chiefs of all benefits, remission of sin.” We can also empathize with two men: 1) the Scotsman who put on his tombstone one powerful word- “FORGIVEN”; 2) and, with the Irishman who said “The Lord Jesus Christ has forgiven me of all my sins, and He is never going to hear the end of it.”
Secondly, He heals all our diseases. Thank God I was sick, but He healed me. He is Jehovah Rophi, The Lord our Healer. All true healing comes from Him and there is no such thing as “incurable disease” to Him and His Power.
All For One, And One For All
Text: Psalm 133:1″Behold, how good and how pleasant it is for brethren to dwell together in unity!”
Dear Friend, in today’s text, David writes how harmony/unity is pleasant and good. We as believers in Christ may not always agree on “petty” things, but we need to agree on major doctrines, especially that salvation is found in God’s grace through faith and trust in Christ alone and not good works, or any other means. “For by grace are ye saved through faith; and that not of yourselves: it is the gift of God: Not of works, lest any man should boast” (Ephesians 2:8-9). Let’s not give the Church of God a bad rap by arguing about minor issues. Remember today the cool saying of the Three Musketeers, “ALL FOR ONE, AND ONE FOR ALL.”
Be Careful Child of God What You Wish For
Text: Psalm 106:15(KJV) “And He gave them their request; but sent leanness into their soul.”
Dear Friend, we see in today’s Psalm that Israel was spiritually blinded in the wilderness to what God wanted because all they did was whine that they wanted meat instead of manna, which was a type of spiritual food as well as physical food. God gave them quail to eat but also sent them a severe plague. “And while the flesh was yet between their teeth, ere it was chewed, the wrath of the LORD was kindled against the people, and the LORD smote the people with a very great plague. And He called the name of that place Kibroth-hattaavah because there they buried the people that lusted” (Numbers 11:33-34). Sometimes, as believers in Christ, we whine to God, “LORD, give me what I want…” God knows what is best for us. Trust in his care and provision, dear friend. I for one do not want any “leanness into my soul” which could also be interpreted as loss of fellowship with God and his Holy Spirit. Matthew Henry wrote, “What is asked in passion is often given in wrath.” Ouch! Let’s us sing and live the praises of God!
“HOLY SPIRIT, FILL ME UP. I SURRENDER ALL I HAVE TO YOU, HOLY SPIRIT. COME AND FILL ME UP.”
Don’t Let Your Three Enemies (The World, The Flesh, and The Devil) Steal Your Joy
Text: 2 Samuel 6:16 (KJV)
“And as the ark of the LORD came into the city of David, Michal, Saul’s daughter, looked through a window and saw king David leaping and dancing before the LORD; and she despised him in her heart.”
Dear Friend, we see in today’s text that King David joyously danced and praised GOD at the return of the Ark of God to Israel. Michal, his first wife (here called Saul’s daughter, probably due to her having a similar worldly spirit to her father), despised (Hebrew word: bazah—literally, “to have disdain, think to scorn, or act as a vile person”) her husband because he had the Joy of The Lord in celebrating the Ark’s return. Our three greatest enemies, the world, the flesh and the devil, try to steal our joy. Remember these words from Nehemiah 8:10, “Then he said unto them, go your way, eat the fat, and drink the sweet, and send portions unto them for whom nothing is prepared: for this day is holy unto our Lord: neither be ye sorry; for the joy of the LORD is your strength.”
I love the note in the 1599 Geneva Bible on today’s text: “The worldings are not able to comprehend the emotions that move the children of GOD by all manner of means.” So be encouraged, dear friend, and keep on praying, keep on worshipping GOD, and keep on dancing and celebrating in the JOY OF THE LORD, OUR STRENGTH.
Kiss The SON
Text: Psalm 2:12(KJV) “Kiss the Son, lest He be angry, and ye perish from the way when His wrath is kindled but a little. Blessed are all they that put their trust in him.”
Dear Friend, we see in today’s text that King David said that we are to “Kiss the SON, lest HE be angry. Kiss means to fasten up and equip with weapons/armor (like the ARMOR OF GOD), and to kiss. The SON is Jesus Christ, GOD’S ONLY BEGOTTEN SON, and heir of The Throne of God. How are we to kiss JESUS, you ask? I submit to you three ways:
1. Fully surrender your life and will to JESUS, as your Savior, Lord and King.
2. Be ready for his coming.
3. And here is something that I started while living in Ghedi Air Base, Italy. Before I read God’s Word, I say, “Speak, LORD, Your servant Joseph is listening.” Then I literally kiss the cover of my Bible before opening and reading it.
Purify My Heart
Text: I Chronicles 15:14 (KJV) “So the priests and the Levites sanctified themselves to bring up the Ark of the LORD God of Israel.”
Dear Friend, we see in today’s text that priests sanctified themselves (set themselves apart; purified themselves) so that they could bring the Ark of the Lord to Jerusalem. Today we also need to purify our hearts by reading and meditating on His Word, praying and listening to Him (yes, not just rattling off our wish list, but also listening), and laying aside the sin that so easily besets us. (Cf. Hebrews 12:1)
In The Secret, I Want to Know You More and More and More
Text: Psalm 25:14(KJV)
“The secret of the LORD is with them that fear HIM; and He will shew them His Covenant. ”
We see in today’s text that the “SECRET” (Hebrew: cowd–interpreted as “intimacy, a secret, counsel”) of the LORD is found when we submit to Him in reverence and holy fear, not coming to Him half-heartedly, flippantly, or whining. If we submit to Him (THE KING OF THE UNIVERSE) reverently, and full of holy fear and awe, He will show his covenant and will reveal to us his wisdom, knowledge, and guidance in the secret things like He did with Moses, Daniel, and The Apostles Paul and John. Proverbs 1:7 says, “The fear of the LORD is the beginning of knowledge: but fools despise wisdom and instruction. Let us lift our voices with the modern worship song “I Want to Know You (In The Secret).” The words are, “LORD JESUS, I want to know YOU more; I want to hear you; I want to see YOUR FACE; I WANT TO KNOW YOU MORE AND MORE AND MORE!”
GOD is Our Protector!
Text: 2 Samuel 8:6b/2 Samuel 8:14b (KJV) “And the LORD preserved (“saved” in the 1599 Geneva Bible; “helped” in the NASB version) David whithersoever he went.”
Those who know me, know that I am a fan/collector of comics before 1977. In the comic books when a person or “a fair damsel” in distress was in need of help, along came “SUPERMAN,” “CAPTAIN AMERICA,” “WONDER WOMAN,” or in the days of the old west, “THE LONE RANGER AND TONTO.” As much as I like superheroes, I am personally glad that JESUS, MY LORD AND SAVIOR, has protected and preserved me from all harm/evil wherever I have gone, am going, and will go. One example was when Serene, my beautiful wife, and I were stationed for two years at ‘Ghedi Air Base, Italy. GOD protected and encouraged us with other godly believers in CHRIST to start and maintain a Christian presence via a church where there was no church and where the Base “idol” looked like a demon, or even Dagon, the idol of the Philistines. Like all followers of the LORD, one day these precious believers and my wife and I will receive crowns of glory in heaven to cast at Jesus’ feet because we relied on JESUS, THE TRUE SUPER-MAN, OUR LORD, SAVIOR AND PROTECTOR.
Love Your Enemies!
Text: Matthew 5:44 (KJV) “But I say unto you, Love your enemies, bless them that curse you, do good to them that hate you, and pray for them which despitefully use you, and persecute you.”
Dear Friend, this text convicted me today because I go to a job daily where all there is, is sarcasm and rudeness since we are all losing our jobs soon. Also, I am the only one in my work area to profess Christ as Lord and Savior. So today, I encourage both you and me to bless and not curse, and to love our enemies. How do we do this? Only through the power of the HOLY SPIRIT. “Kindness gets you ahead in this life and the next, but rudeness is repulsive” (Pastor Gary Hoyt).
“Now as to my persecutors, I forgive all of them. But, I wish that they would seek forgiveness of HIM (JESUS), who hath it to give.” -CAPTAIN JOHN PATTON, A SCOTTISH COVENANTER AND MARTYR
The Victory is the Lord’s
Text: Psalm 20:7 (KJV) “Some trust in chariots, and some in horses: but we will remember the name of the LORD our God.”
In today’s text, King David was rejoicing after GOD gave him the victory in battle. When we have the victory in our lives in our many battles with our three enemies, the world (due to it’s mind games/systems/values, not flesh and blood people), our flesh (which does not like to be aligned with GOD’s perfect will for our lives), and the devil and his imps, we need to pause and give all the GLORY AND HONOR for the victory–right then and there–to our LORD AND SAVIOR, JESUS CHRIST!
“Without GOD’S blessing I look for no success, and for every success my prayer is that all glory maybe given unto HIM, to WHOM it is properly due.” -General Thomas Johnathan “STONEWALL” Jackson, American Civil War hero and (who died in battle)
Can I Get a Witness?
Text: Psalm 66:16 (NIV) “Come and listen, all you who fear GOD: let me tell you what HE has done for me.”
In today’s text, King David was so overwhelmed with praise for all that GOD had done in his life that he could not help but be a witness to tell others about GOD. We, as believers in Christ, are bound to tell others the GOOD NEWS about JESUS. It also helps us to keep an “answer to prayer” log. Then we can say to others, “LOOK WHAT MY GOD DID FOR ME AND FRIEND HE WANTS TO COME INTO YOUR LIFE AND DO GREAT THINGS FOR YOU!”
I close with the wonderful footnote from the 1599 GENEVA BIBLE about our text today: “It is not enough to have received GOD’S benefits and to be mindful thereof, but also we are bound to make others to profit thereby and praise GOD.”
Text: 2 Samuel 11:27c (KJV) “But the thing that David had done displeased the LORD.”
In today’s text, we see that after King David’s sin of committing adultery with Bathsheba and sending her husband to be murdered, GOD was displeased. We need to focus on God’s desires and not ours. We also need to flee temptation. If you are married, remember not to even look with lust at someone other than your spouse, even the first time. Don’t fall for the lie, “Oh another look won’t hurt anyone.” Or, if you are single, pray and wait on the LORD for a CHRISTIAN spouse. Also, when a person commits physical adultery, he/she also commits spiritual adultery because we as BELIEVERS IN CHRIST ARE THE BRIDE OF CHRIST. When a person commits adultery, he/she sins against GOD, THEIR SPOUSE, THE OTHER PERSON INVOLVED, AND THEIR OWN BODY, WHICH IS THE TEMPLE OF THE HOLY SPIRIT. Let’s stop sin at the thought life.
Are You Happy?
Text: Psalm 32:1 (KJV) “Blessed is he whose transgression is forgiven, whose sin is covered.”
In today’s text, we see that King David expressed his joy at having sins forgiven and he confessed and repented of his sins with Bathsheba. The word “blessed” is the Hebrew word esher, which is translated, “HOW HAPPY!” Are you and I really happy that our sins are forgiven in CHRIST? Do we walk around with smiles on our faces? Do we walk into a room radiating “THE JOY OF THE LORD”? I hope that we do, and not do the opposite by frowning all day long and grumbling about the “toys” that we don’t have. Let’s stop and sing “Blessed assurance, JESUS is mine, I am born of HIS SPIRIT, washed in HIS BLOOD!”
In GOD We Trust
Text: Psalm 4:5 (KJV) “Offer the sacrifices of righteousness, and put your trust in the LORD.”
King David wrote Psalm 4, when he was asking his enemies to reconsider their support of his rebellious son Absalom who wanted to take over David’s kingdom. King David said in our trials/testing to trust in the LORD. Trust is the Hebrew word, BATACH which means to be confident in, secure, sure, hope in, and trust in. We should not only trust CHRIST for our salvation, but also trust in HIS ability to answer our prayers, whether we need healing, a job, finances, help dealing
with a “difficult” person, release from discouragement, or help overcoming temptation. Don’t let IN GOD WE TRUST just be a slogan on the dollar bill.
“Trusting as the days go by, trusting as the moments fly, trusting HIM whatever befalls, I’m trusting JESUS that is all.” (HYMN)
How to Handle Unjustified Criticism
Text: 2 Samuel 16:12 (KJV) “It may be that the LORD will look on mine affliction, and that the LORD will requite me good for his cursing this day.”
Shimei kept cursing and criticizing King David unjustly. (I have three people at work who daily criticize me for everything).
How can we handle unjust and unmerited criticism?
1. Forgive our enemies.
2. Pray for that critical person to come to salvation in Christ.
3. Maintain our composure.
4. Ignore their criticism. Don’t take it to heart.
5. Look to JESUS AND KNOW THAT HE WILL VINDICATE US! THE BATTLE BELONGS TO THE LORD!
Whose Company Do You Want to Keep?
Text: Psalm 26:5(KJV) “I have hated the congregation of evildoers; and will not sit with the wicked.”
King David wanted to show that he was loyal and committed to GOD by not “hanging out” with the people of this worldly system, i.e., the wicked. We do need to share the Gospel with the lost but we are not to let their character affect our words, thoughts, and actions and try to be just like them. Choose Christian friends wisely and spend time with those who will encourage you to walk the walk and talk the talk of faith in Christ. In the words of my Scottish gran, who told me this many times growing up, “IF IT WALKS AND QUACKS LIKE A DUCK, THEN GUESS WHAT, IT IS A DUCK.
“I AM A FRIEND OF GOD, HE CALLS ME FRIEND” -Phillips, Craig and Dean
In The Morning
Text: Psalm 5:3(KJV) “My voice shalt thou hear in the morning, O LORD; in the morning will I direct my prayer unto thee, and will look up.”
David’s secret to having a close relationship with GOD is that he sought and spent time with GOD first thing in the morning. I am both amazed and humbled when I read of how the great Puritans, Scottish Covenanters, and especially the LORD JESUS CHRIST HIMSELF, rose up early in the morning to be in a solitary place spending time with GOD. Let us follow in our LORD’s footsteps and in the footsteps of those great believers and seek GOD first thing in the morning.
Hymn: “HOLY, HOLY, HOLY LORD GOD ALMIGHTY, EARLY IN THE MORNING MY SONG SHALL RISE TO THEE.”
Who Is God?
Text: 2 Samuel 22:32(KJV) “For who is God, save the LORD and who is a rock, save our God?”
In today’s text, King David says that there is no GOD except the LORD. Don’t make a god in your life of money, power, prestige, fame, material things, a family member or friend, a spouse, or a even blatant idol like one of the false religions out there. Instead, come and fall humbly before our LORD AND SAVIOR, THE LORD JESUS CHRIST, and accept HIM alone today!
“THERE IS NONE LIKE YOU, O LORD.”
O, Come Let Us Worship
Text: Psalm 95:6(KJV) “O come, let us worship and bow down: let us kneel before the LORD our maker.”
King David said that we need to come before GOD and worship HIM wholly. We need to fall down and kneel before the LORD, OUR GOD, OUR MAKER. In olden days and even today, when a person comes before a king or queen, they bow and when then are knighted they even kneel in the king or queen’s presence. I exhort us to do so, not before earthly kings, but before the KING AND MAKER OF THE UNIVERSE, GOD HIMSELF.
Charles Spurgeon wrote, “My happiest moments are when I am worshipping GOD, really adoring THE LORD JESUS CHRIST and having fellowship with the ever-blessed SPIRIT. To me it the nearest approach to what it will be in Heaven.”
Encourage The Youth
Text: 1 Chronicles 22:16c(KJV) “Arise therefore, and be doing, and the LORD be with thee.”
King David, in today’s text, encouraged his son, the young Solomon, to make preparation to build the Temple of GOD and to live for GOD. Today I want to exhort us to encourage the youth that we see in our families, neighborhoods, jobs, and churches to be doing the work of GOD, and tell them that GOD WILL BE WITH THEM. I also commend and thank those of you who are already doing this in using your gifts in ministry, teaching, sharing, arts, etc.! KEEP ON DOING GOOD FOR THE KINGDOM OF GOD!
“DO NOT SAY I’M TOO YOUNG; HERE AM I LORD, SEND ME.”