Tuesday, May 10, 2016
Thanking God For a Permanent Home
A Psalm and Song at the dedication of the house of David.
“I will extol thee, O LORD; for thou hast lifted me up, and hast not made my foes to rejoice over me.” (Psalm 30:1)
As the title states, this psalm was a song prepared for the dedication of David’s house in Jerusalem, after he became king. For years he had been forced to run from Saul, unable to live openly most of the time for fear of being killed. Time after time God protected him, delivering him when capture or death seemed inevitable, finally making him king and causing the death of his enemies. David wanted to give God the glory and praise for what he had done on David’s behalf, and the dedication of his home offered the perfect opportunity.
“O LORD my God, I cried unto thee, and thou hast healed me. O LORD, thou hast brought up my soul from the grave: thou hast kept me alive, that I should not go down to the pit.” (Psalm 30:3-3)
Time after time, God had heard David’s prayers and answered him. Just at the point where it looked like David would surely be killed, God spared his life, causing Saul to miss with his spear twice, and forcing him to defend himself against the Philistines when he seemingly had David trapped. Each time David escaped unharmed, despite Saul’s determination to kill him.
“Sing unto the LORD, O ye saints of his, and give thanks at the remembrance of his holiness. For his anger endureth but a moment; in his favour is life: weeping may endure for a night, but joy cometh in the morning. And in my prosperity I said, I shall never be moved.” (Psalm 30:4-6)
Believers ought to sing God’s praises when they think about what he is like. Unlike people he doesn’t hold grudges. While he may get angry and punish us, once the punishment has accomplished its purpose, it finished, and we never suffer for it again. When God blesses, it is literally and emotionally life. While we may suffer for a little while, it is a fleeting thing that will end shortly. As we see God’s blessing we realize that there is nothing that can take us away from God’s love. We will never lose our salvation.
As Hebrews 13:5-6 tells us, we should be satisfied with what he has provided because he promised to always be there for us. “Let your conversation be without covetousness; and be content with such things as ye have: for he hath said, I will never leave thee, nor forsake thee. So that we may boldly say, The Lord is my helper, and I will not fear what man shall do unto me.” We have nothing to worry about.
“LORD, by thy favour thou hast made my mountain to stand strong: thou didst hide thy face, and I was troubled. I cried to thee, O LORD; and unto the LORD I made supplication. What profit is there in my blood, when I go down to the pit? Shall the dust praise thee? shall it declare thy truth? Hear, O LORD, and have mercy upon me: LORD, be thou my helper.” (Psalm 30:7-10)
When God showed his favor, David was able to be confident in his blessings, but when God stepped back it got his attention and he began to pray for restoration. As Romans 8:32 asks, “He that spared not his own Son, but delivered him up for us all, how shall he not with him also freely give us all things?” After paying so much for our salvation, it doesn’t make any sense that God would throw it all away over some minor infraction on our part. For his saints to be cast into hell would bring him no glory or praise.
Fortunately, God understands we are just human and is willing to forgive our sin, recognizing our weakness as Hebrews 4:15-16 tells us. “For we have not an high priest which cannot be touched with the feeling of our infirmities; but was in all points tempted like as we are, yet without sin. Let us therefore come boldly unto the throne of grace, that we may obtain mercy, and find grace to help in time of need.” Because Jesus has experienced the temptations we experience, he can understand how easily we give in, and we don’t need to be afraid to ask for forgiveness or help.
Thou hast turned for me my mourning into dancing: thou hast put off my sackcloth, and girded me with gladness; To the end that my glory may sing praise to thee, and not be silent. O LORD my God, I will give thanks unto thee for ever.” (Psalm 30:11-12)
By Making him king and enabling him to build himself a home, God had turned David’s fear and worries to a time of celebration. He was no longer embarrassed or trying to hide, but was openly enjoying his life. God had caused it to happen so David could enjoy it and sing his praises, and he was committed to giving him thanks, to praising him forever.