Let’s turn to the sixty-eighth psalm. This sixty-eighth psalm has been blotted as one of the most beautiful and victorious of all the psalms. From a literary standpoint it is unexcelled. It has been a psalm that has brought inspiration to many people of God throughout the ages. It is said that as the Savonarola and the monks were being led to the fires in the piazza of Florence that they were chanting this psalm together of the ultimate triumph of our Lord. So it begins with a call for God’s triumph.
Let God arise, let his enemies be scattered: let them also that hate him flee before him (68:1).
It seems many times in history that God in his patience and in his longsuffering allows evil to triumph. As we look around and we see the conditions of a sin dominated world there is so often this cry from our heart, “O God arise, let your enemies be scattered Lord, let those that hate you flee. Lord do something, don’t just sit there. Get things going”. I think that when we pray, “Thy kingdom come, thy will be done in earth as it is in heaven” that there are times when there is a real urgency to that prayer as we see the problems within the world for which we live and we see the conditions by which we are surrounded. O how we long for that ultimate triumph of God.
He goes on in a very figurative way talking about those who hate God, the enemies of God.
As smoke is driven away, so drive them away: (68:2).
Smoke that is carried away by the wind and sort of dissolves in the air, Lord let them be carried away.
as wax melteth before the fire, so let the wicked perish at the presence of God (68:2).
When God does move, these powerful forces of evil will just dissolve. We look at the powerful forces of evil and we see how they are entrenched, it seems like evil triumphs and has the upper hand and yet what are they before God?
But let the righteous be glad; let them rejoice before God: yea, let them exceedingly rejoice. Sing unto God, sing praises to him name: extol him that rideth upon the heavens by his name JAH, and rejoice before him (68:3-4).
They’re rejoicing because of God’s ultimate triumph in that day, sing unto God, sing praises, rejoice and extol him by his name JAH. We have here one of the names of God, we know the YAWEH, this JAH is the contraction of the YAWEH. It’s a name that signifies the “becoming one” the “I am” and the JAH is used in conjunction with other Hebrew words to describe what he is. The name of Jesus is the Hebrew is Joshua; this first JAH and Shewa is salvation so it is “I am salvation”. The JAH is used in many of the Old Testament names and of course we have it in the “Hallelujah” the praise to JAH the name of God, he rides through the heavens by his name JAH.
A father of the fatherless, and a judge of the widows, is God in his holy habitation (68:5).
The God of the underdog, the God of the oppressed, the God of the poor and the needy, the God of the orphans, the God of the bereaved widow.
God setteth the solitary in families(8:6).
Those who are alone God brings together into the family, the family of God.
he bringeth out those which are bound with chains: but the rebellious dwell in a dry land (68:6).
God delivers his people. Now we will move into God’s deliverance of Israel out of the bondage of Egypt. He will speak now in the next portion of the psalm of God bringing the people through the wilderness to the Promised Land.
O God, when thou wentest forth before thy people, when thou didst march through the wilderness; The earth shook, the heavens also dropped at the presence of God: even Sinai itself was moved at the presence of God, the God of Israel (68:7-8).
The cloud came down and covered Mount Sinai as Moses went up into the cloud. The mountain was moved at the presence of God.
Thou, O God, didst send a plentiful rain, whereby thou didst confirm thine inheritance, when it was weary (68:9).
The interesting thing as God was leading the children of Israel through the wilderness there was the cloud by day and the fiery pillar by night. The cloud by day is a glorious provision of God through that hot wilderness. The cloud provided a cover, as shelter, for the people as well as for the reminding consciousness for them of the presence of God with them. god refreshed the people when they were weary.
Thy congregation hath dwelt therein: thou, O God, hast prepared of they goodness for the poor. The Lord gave the word: great was the company of those that published it (68:10-11).
God gave his word there on Mount Sinai and the word spread among the people. Actually the word of God was something that was really prized by the people. The name of God was prized by the people.
The love of God filled their hearts. In fact, later on God said to Israel, “Where is the love of your espousal when I brought you out into the wilderness and you were so in love with me that you wrote on the walls the holiness unto the Lord”. Have you ever seen a person who is in love how they sort of scribble on their notebooks and draw hearts and couple their names with the one that they love? There is that beauty and excitement of Love. God said, “ I remember when it was that way. When you were so excited about my love” for God had delivered them from the bondage of Egypt and brought them into the wilderness. At first their experience in the wilderness with God was just a beautiful marvelous thing as they wrote all over the place, holiness unto the Lord and praises unto the Lord. A good kind of a graffiti filled the camp of Israel.
Kings of armies did flee apace: and she that tarried at home divided the spoil (68:12).
God gave victory to the Israelites over their enemies and women who stayed at home divided the spoil. God gave to them the spoil of their enemies.
Though ye have lien among the pots, yet shall ye be as wings of a dove covered with silver, and her feathers with yellow gold. When the Almighty scattered kings in it, it was white as snow in Salmon (68:13-14).
Salmon is a mountain near Shechem. Occasionally it gets snow but the snow melts very quickly of Mount Salmon. So the Almighty scattered the kings in it and it was as the snow in Salmon. That is, the kings sort of melted away.
The hill of God is as the hill of Bashan; an high hell as the hill of Bashan. Why leap ye, ye high hills? this is the hill which God desireth to dwell in; yea, the LORD will dwell in it forever (68:15-16).
It’s talking about the fact that God’s chosen Mount Zion for his dwelling place. It’s in a sense saying ye mountains of Bashan which are the higher mountains in the area of Naphtali that bordered Lebanon. They are higher and more lofty than Mount Zion. Mount Zion isn’t really much of a mountain its sort of a little hill and it isn’t much of that even. Yet God has chosen Mount Zion, so it’s sort of chiding. He didn’t choose the mountains of Bashan. “Why did you leap?” (68:16) is said in frustration. Why didn’t you choose us Lord as your dwelling place? He has chosen Zion.
The chariots of God are twenty thousand, even thousands of angels: (68:17).
The Hebrew there is thousands times thousands or millions of angels. We read in Revelation of ten thousand times ten thousand, a hundred million angels. So the chariots of God are twenty thousand.
even thousands of angels: the Lord is among them, as in Sinai, in the holy place (68:17).
Now the psalmist, as so often in the case of David because he was a prophet, began to laps into prophecy. These next scriptures are actually prophetic of Jesus Christ. Paul quotes them in Ephesians four as referring to Jesus Christ.
Thou hast ascended on high, thou hast led captivity captive: thou hast received gifts for men; (68:18).
In Isaiah sixty-one the prophecy concerning Jesus Christ declares
“The spirit of the Lord God is upon me because the Lord has anointed me to preach the good tidings to the meek. He has sent me to bind up the broken hearted to proclaim liberty to the captives and the opening of the prison to them that are bound”.
When Jesus began his public ministry he came into the synagogue of Nazareth and they handed him the scroll of Isaiah. He opened this scroll and he read this passage of scripture to them and then he sat down and said, “This day has the scripture been fulfilled in your eyes”. What was he to do? Preach the good tidings to the meek, bind up the broken hearted and to proclaim liberty to the captive. Notice, verse eighteen again, “Thou hast ascended on high, thou hast led captivity captive [the captives from captivity] and you have received gifts for men” (68:18).
Before the death of Jesus Christ it was impossible for the Old Testament saints to enter into that perfected state because it was impossible that the blood of goats could put away their sins. The sacrifices of the goats and the lambs were all anticipatory. They looked forward to the sacrifice that God would provide in Jesus Christ. They served to cover the sins, they could not put away the sins. We are redeemed from our vain manner of living not with the blood of goats, silver or gold but with the precious blood of Jesus Christ who was slain as a lamb without spot or blemish. Thus all of those who died up until the time of Christ went into the grave which in the Hebrew was Sheol and in the Greek it was Hades.
In Luke chapter sixteen Jesus tells us that Hades was divided into two compartments. He tells the story of a certain rich man who faired sumptuously everyday and of a poor man that was brought daily and laid at his gate begging for bread or hoping for the bread that would fall from the rich man’s table. In those days when they ate they didn’t use utensils. They didn’t have plates and knives, forks, spoons and napkins. The food was usually in bowls and consisted of soups and sauces in bowls and maybe the lamb or the beef out there on the table. You would just take and pull off the meat with your hands and eat it with your hands. You would take the bread and pull the bread off from the loaf and dip it in the sauces and soups. You still do that in eating over there today. I love the sauces and the bread and this business of dipping in the sauces, great stuff.
Naturally, eating that way your hands would get pretty greasy and there’s no napkins. At the end of the meal you would take the bread and pull it off and you’d wipe your fingers and hands off with the bread. That bread you would just toss aside. That’s the bread for the little dogs. The woman said “the children eat the bread that fall from the master table” or the little dogs and puppies eat the bread that would fall. That’s what Lazarus was waiting for. He was a poor man filled with soars lying there eating the crumbs that fell from the rich man’s table.
However, Lazarus died. He was carried by the angels to Abraham’s bosom. The rich man also died. In Hades, in hell, he lifted up his eyes Being in torment he saw Abraham afar off and Lazarus being comforted in Abraham’s bosom. He cried and said, “Father Abraham have mercy on me and send Lazarus to me that he might take and dip his finger in water and touch my tongue for I am tormented in this heat”. Abraham said, “Son remember that you in your lifetime had the good things and Lazarus the evil. Now he is comforted while you’re tormented. Moreover, besides this, there is a gulf that is fixed between these two places so it is impossible for those that are here to come over there or those that are their to come over here”. He spoke then of the two places and this impassable gulf between the two.
In Hebrews chapter eleven speaking of Abraham and the Old Testament saints it said, “These all died in faith not having received the promise”. They saw it afar off. They believed that God would send his sacrifice that would take away sins and they believed in the promise of God. They died in faith not having received it. God having reserved some better thing for us that they, apart from us, could not come into the perfected state. That is apart from the work of Jesus Christ they could not come into the perfected state.
In a sense, they were in a prison. They were being held captive by death. Jesus said, “I am the resurrection and the life. He that believeth in me” those in the past, “though they were dead yet shall they live. He who lives and believes in me shall never die”. These are going to be delivered from their captivity so that when Jesus died his spirit went into Hades, to the place of Abraham’s bosom. There he proclaimed to them the finished work of the cross. When he rose from the dead he led the captives from their captivity. This psalm was fulfilled.
In Matthew twenty-seven we read that the graves of many of the saints were open and they were seen walking in the streets of Jerusalem after his resurrection from the dead. In the second chapter of the book of Acts, as Peter is preaching his message concerning Jesus Christ, he speaks about him being crucified and buried and how that he descended into hell. He declared that it was not possible that he could be held by it. He quoted the psalm that said, “Thou wilt not leave my soul in hell, neither will you allow the holy one to see corruption”. Peter affirmed “this same Jesus hath God raised from the dead, he did not leave him hell”.
“He who has ascended” that is Jesus who has ascended into heaven. Paul tells us in Ephesians four, is the same one who first of all descended into the lower parts of the earth. But when he ascended he led the captives from their captivity and he gave gifts unto men. “To some apostles, prophets, evangelists, pastor, teachers for the perfecting of the saints for the work of the ministry.” One further scripture in Peter where he declares that Jesus, when he died, went and preached to those souls that were in prison but he came to set them free from the prison, to loose the captives and he led them from their captivity.
So an interesting prophecy concerning Jesus Christ buried here in this psalm of exalt and praise unto God for his victory and for his triumph. Of course the tremendous triumph of Jesus over the grave, over death and hell.
Thou has ascended on high, thou hast led captivity captive: thou hast received gifts for men; (68:18).
Paul quotes this in Ephesians four.
yea, for the rebellious also, that the LORD God might dwell among them. Blessed be the Lord, who daily loadeth us with benefits, (68:18-19).
I love it. I’ve got that one underlined. I think of how the Lord loads on his benefits daily. “Blessed be the Lord, who daily loadeth us with benefits” (68:19). O my how God has just loaded his blessings on our lives. How we praise him for all of these blessings and these benefits.
even the God of our salvation. He that is our God is the God of salvation; and unto God the Lord belong the issues from death. But God shall wound the head of his enemies, and the hairy scalp of such and one as goeth on still in his trespasses (68:19-21).
It is thought that this perhaps was a reference to Absalom and his beautiful curly hair and he was going on in rebellion against his father and became an enemy of God going on in his trespasses.
The Lord said, I will bring again from Bashan, I will bring my people again from the depths of the sea: That thy foot may be dipped in the blood of thine enemies, and the tongue of thy dogs in the same (68:22-23).
David perhaps when he had fled from Absalom the promise of “I will bring you back your foot will dip in the enemies, the dogs will lick the same”.
They have seen thy goings, O God; even the goings of my God, my King, in the sanctuary (68:24).
Now he is describing the worship of the people. It must be wonderful and it must have been a wonderful thing to have national worship where the whole nation gathers to worship God. Think of what that would be, think of the glory of that kind of national worship where the nation congregates together to acknowledge God and to worship God. He describes this. Of course they did this three times a year. The people would gather in Jerusalem for the feast days three times a year to worship God there in the temple. There would be these processions, there would be this glorious congregating of the people before the Lord and the various means of worshiping and the dances and the women with their timbrels, the singing and tribes coming in as a group together. It must have been glorious.
It’s interesting even at the present time to go over in Jerusalem at the beginning of the Sabbath. They welcome the Sabbath day at the Western Wall. Hundreds of people gather there at the Western Wall on Friday evening as the sun is going down to welcome the Sabbath and to worship God. In the upper portion the Jewish section of Jerusalem, there is a Yeshiva, a school for young men aspiring to be rabbis. It’s always a fascinating site when they come down to the Western Wall. As they come down there are usually five or six abreast, their arms over each other and they come down singing the psalms, chanting and dancing. They have a little dance step as they come together. It’s a moving sight to see them come to worship this way. When they get down in the pavement in front of the pavement of the Western Wall then they begin their dances and singing unto the Lord. It is a very moving and touching sight.
The singers went before, the players on instruments followed after, among them were the damsels playing with timbrels (68:25).
Think of what it would be when the whole nation would gather to worship. The singers were going in the front and then the players with their instruments following. After them where the young girls playing their tambourines. Do you get the picture now? Here they come to worship the Lord. In the front are those that are coming singing the praises to God, those that with the instruments following behind them and then the girls with their tambourines. Sort of like the Rose Ball Parade, here they come to worship God.
Bless ye God in the congregations, even the Lord, from the fountain of Israel. There is little Benjamin (68:26-27).
Benjamin was one of the smallest tribes of Israel but they’re the representatives from Benjamin.
with their ruler, (68:27).
The word with was added in and should not have been. He is referenced to Saul coming from the tribe of Benjamin, the first king to rule over Israel. Little Benjamin their ruler.
and the princes of Judah, and their council, (68:27).
Notice “and” is inserted
the princes of Zebulun, and the princes of Naphtali (68:27).
Zebulun and Naphtali were two of the northern most tribes. They were powerful tribes and were in the fertile part of the land and thus they were prosperous tribes. Judah and Benjamin represented the southern most tribes as did Naphtali and Zebulun represent the northern most tribes.
Thy God hath commanded thy strength: strengthen, O God, that which thou hast wrought for us. Because of thy temple at Jerusalem shall kings bring resents unto thee (68:28-29).
This again is going into prophecy. We know that in the kingdom age when Jesus is reigning on Mount Zion “then shall the kings of the earth gather together annually bringing their presents and laying them before him”.
When were over in Tonga last year to celebrate the king’s seventieth birthday, the various tribal groups of the Tonganese people, each one had their dances and their songs. The king was sitting in this little thatched raised area and we were near by in a thatched area watching as the various tribal groups from the different islands, one after another would come. The people, the women especially, singing. They have an interesting style of music which you’ve got to hear to appreciate and believe it. The men would be dancing doing their tribal dances which were usually declaring some war that they had gone through. They have their spears and do their dances and the rhythms. It was a very exciting thing.
Then the ladies would bring out the presents for the king for his seventieth birthday. They would bring out tappacloth that was eight feet wide and from here to the back wall as a present to the king. They were offering their presents at this time. This is sort of what’s going to be happening in Jerusalem when Jesus reigns over the earth and the kings of the earth will gather yearly in Jerusalem bringing to him the presents. What a sight that will be gathering there at the table.
Rebuke the company of spearmen, the multitude of the bulls, with the calves of the people, till every one submit himself with pieces of silver: scatter thou the people that delight in war. Princes shall come out of Egypt. Ethiopia shall soon stretch out her hands unto God. Sing unto God, ye kingdoms of the earth; O sing praises unto the Lords; (68:30-32).
He’s talking about this glorious reign of God through Jesus Christ over the earth when the various nations would come and stretch out their hands to God.
To him that rideth upon the heavens of heavens, which were of old; lo, he doth send out his voice, and that a mighty voice. Ascribe ye strength unto God: his excellency is over Israel, and his excellency is over Israel, and his strength is in the clouds. O God, thou art terrible [awesome] out of thy holy places: the God of Israel is he that giveth strength and power unto his people. Blessed be God (68:33-35).
David really was brought at this point to the peak. He begins with that glorious God who will triumph over all of his enemies. He goes back into their history, how that God was with the people, brought them out of the bondage, triumphed over their enemies, brought their enemies before them and even though they were driven out would bring them back. Of course he ends with this glorious reign of God when the whole earth acknowledges Jesus really as the king and as Lord and the praises unto him, “Blessed be God” (68:35) strength and power.
Psalm sixty-nine is a psalm that is quoted more in the New Testament than any other psalm with the exception of psalm twenty-two. Psalm twenty-two is the most quoted psalm of the New Testament, psalm sixty-nine is the second most quoted psalm and it is again acknowledged to be a Messianic psalm. It is a psalm of prophecy concerning the coming Messiah. It in many places there are references to Jesus Christ which are quoted in the New Testament from this psalm.
SAVE me, O God; for the waters are come in unto my soul. I sink in deep mire, where there is no standing: (69:1-2).
I’m going down in the quicksand, I am going down in the mud and there is nothing underneath I am being swallowed up in this quicksand.
I am come into deep waters, where the floods overflow me (69:2).
David begins the psalm with a cry for help because of the circumstances of life are overwhelming. He can’t handle the conditions and is being swallowed up by the problems and sinking in the mire. Notice verse fourteen, “Deliver me out of the mire, don’t let me sink: let me be delivered from those that hate me, and out of the deep waters” (69:14). So he speaks about going through this experience and then of course he cries unto God for help in fourteen, “Don’t let me sink, deliver me out of the deep waters” (69:14).
I am weary of crying: my throat is dried: (69:3).
There is nothing left.
mine eyes fail while I wait for my God (69:3).
Isn’t it interesting how that our timetable so often does not jive with God’s timetable? I have so many times in my life thought that God was too late. He had a tremendous opportunity to have done something.
I, like Martha, many times when Jesus finally arrived at Bethany but her brother had already died four days earlier and she said, “Lord if you would only have been here my brother wouldn’t have died”. I’m so often like Martha say, “Lord if you only have done something last week I wouldn’t be in this mess. You missed the chance to work and now it’s too late”. So many times that you just think God you had your chance and you’re too late now and it’s all over. Martha discovered that it wasn’t too late. In fact, by God waiting he was able to perform even a greater miracle raising Lazarus from the dead, calling him forth out of the grave. It was a even a greater miracle than had he come on time and said, “Okay Lazarus come out of your bed and be well” that would have been marvelous but my by waiting look what he was able to do. He called him forth from the grave.
God is never to late. It’s just that our timetable is so often off. I don’t like those lessons of faith. I find my heart rebelling against them. It would be so much easier on me if God would just run on my schedule. But O the lessons I have learned of the power of God and of the faithfulness of God. When I thought he was too late, it’s all over and what he did was even greater over and over again.
David was crying unto the Lord until his throat was dry. He shed so many tears that his body was dehydrating.
mine eyes fail while I wait for my God. They that hate me without a cause are more than the hairs of mine head: they that would destroy me, being mine enemies wrongfully, are mighty: then I restored that which I took not away (69:3-4).
It is thought that perhaps this was written at the rebellion of David’s son Adonijah or perhaps Absalom. They wanted the throne, they wanted the crown and David more or less advocated to Absalom. He didn’t state a fight. Now David didn’t fight to get the crown. God gave the kingdom to David. David didn’t fight Saul to get the kingdom. In fact, David refused to fight Saul though Saul was bent upon killing David, David refused to fight him. So he said, “I didn’t take the crown away”. It was given to him by God, he didn’t take it away nor would he take it away from Saul. Yet I have restored or given that which I did not take away.
O God, thou knowest my foolishness; and my sins are not hid from thee (69:5).
How true that is. God knows our foolishness, our folly, we don’t hide our sins from him.
Let not them that wait on thee, O Lord God of hosts, be ashamed for my sake: let not those that seek thee be confounded for my sake, O God of Israel (69:6).
Don’t let my foolishness and my sin Lord stumble others. That is so often the tragic result of the sins of those in leadership is that it does stumble others. When David did sin and Nathan came to rebuke him for it the charge that he made was, “You have caused the enemies of God to blaspheme”. When a leader sins it causes shame among the people of God.
We think of the shame that was brought to Christianity as a result of Jim Baker and Jimmy Swaggart. David is praying, Lord, don’t let this happen. You know my foolishness, you know my sin. Those that are waiting upon you Lord don’t let them be ashamed because of what I have done. Those that are seeking me Lord don’t let them be confused because of what I have done. But then David goes on.
Because for thy sake I have borne reproach; shame hath covered my face (69:7).
He changes completely now and he talks about the reproach that he had suffered for God and the shame that had been brought to him.
I am become a stranger unto my brethren, and an alien unto my mother’s children (69:8).
When David was chosen over his brothers to be the king, God said to the prophet Samuel “Go down to the house of Jesse and anoint one of his sons how long will you morn for Saul. I’ve rejected him. Go down to the house of Jesse and anoint his son as a king”. So he went down to the house of Jesse and said to Jesse and had him bring his sons in one at a time. His first son was a handsome guy with a great physique. Samuel looked at him and said “this must be the one, good looking, strong, well-built” and the Lord said, “No Samuel, he’s not the one. Man looks on the outward appearance, I’m looking at the heart.” So Jesse began to parade his sons before Samuel and after they all paraded by and the Lord didn’t give him the okay Samuel said, “Is that all the sons you have? Do you have anymore?” Jesse said, “There’s one more but he’s just a kid. He’s out there watching the sheep” and he said, “Call him in”. When Samuel saw David the Lord spoke and said, “this is the one” so he took the oil and poured it over him. It made his brothers jealous and so David speaks about that.
I am become a stranger unto my brethren, and an alien unto my mother’s children (69:8).
There was a jealousy that arose in their hearts because of God’s choice of David over them. So “for thy sake I borne reproach” (60:7) reproach from his family.
The reproach of the world is one thing but the reproach of the family is something else again. Reproach from those with in the body of Christ I think is much more difficult to bare than the reproach that comes to us from the world. When I’m reproached by my own brothers it’s more hurtful. David said, “If it were an enemy that reproached me I could handle it. But it was you my own friend, my dear close brother. We went into the house of God together, we had sweet fellowship together”. That’s hard to take when those that are close to turn.
God was the one who chose David and it caused his brothers to become like strangers to him, they became alienated from him but David made a declaration.
For the zeal of thine house hath eaten me up; (69:9).
David had a great desire to build a house for God. He had a great desire to bring the nation together in spiritual worship of God. The first thing he did was move the tabernacle to Jerusalem so that Jerusalem could be the center of worship for the people. The tabernacle prior to that was north of Jerusalem in Gilgal. So David had to move the tabernacle to Jerusalem. Then he desired to bring the arc of the covenant and place it in the tabernacle in Jerusalem so that the people would have a place to gather to worship God. It was his heart, the zeal of the house of the Lord was eating him up.
Then he said he wanted to build a magnificent house for God. Here I am in this beautiful palace and here’s God over there in a tent, a tabernacle. That’s not fair. I want to build a glorious house for God. It’s got to be more glorious than any building on the earth. So in expressing his desire to his friend Nathan, “the zeal of the house of the Lord is eating me up” Nathan said, “Splendid. Go for it David”. The Lord said to Nathan, “You spoke out of turn. David can’t build me a house. His hands are bloody. Go back and tell him that he wont be able to build me a house but I’ll build him a house.
The Lord didn’t say David couldn’t prepare for the building of the house. David gathered the gold, the silver and the wood. He drew the plans. When he was dying, he turned over to Solomon the plans and the wealth. Billions of dollars in wealth for the building of the house of God.
As the Lord said, “I will build you a house” and referred to the fact that the Messiah, Jesus Christ, would be of the seed of David and the line of David. The one who came of David, it was later declared of him, “The zeal of thine house hath eaten me up”. When Jesus came into the temple in Jerusalem and saw the corruption and the merchandising, when he drove out the money changers, overturned their tables, drove out those that were selling the doves and oxen then the disciples remember the scripture that said, “The zeal of thine house hath eaten me up”. So that same zeal for the house of God that was in David was in David’s descendant Jesus Christ.
and the reproaches of them that reproached thee are fallen upon me (69:9).
David recognized that the reproaches that he was receiving were actually the attitude that worldly people have who hate God and are against God. As God’s representative, people who hate God pour upon me the venom of their hatred against God. The problem is that we are so prone to take this personally as though they hate me. No, they hate God that I represent. “Blessed are ye” Jesus said, “when men shall revile you and persecute you and say all manner of evil against you falsely for my sake. Rejoice and be exceeding glad, great is your reward in heaven”.
The reproaches that we have as a Christian are really the world’s expression of their hatred of Jesus Christ. Jesus said, “they hate me because I testify of them” told them the truth. He called their corrupt practices corrupt and he called their hypocrisy, hypocrisy. He wasn’t going around trying to make men feel good about himself. He was saying you are a sinner and except you repent, you’re going to perish. He was so straight and so direct that they hated him. They hated him so much they crucified him. The world has not changed.
The carnal mind is enmity against God and is not subject to the law of God and neither indeed can be. Men hate God but they take their reproach out on God’s people. So the reproach people had towards God they vented on Jesus who came as God’s representative to man. He was more than that, he was God dwelling amongst us. They finally had their opportunity to do to God what their wicked hearts desired as they sought to destroy him.
There are people today who are seeking to destroy God. There are men today who have signed the Humanist Manifesto. The Humanist Manifesto is their manifesto by which they are declaring their intention of destroying God. They want to destroy God out of the minds and out of the life of our nation. Unfortunately these men have been extremely successful. They are devoting their fortunes and their lives to destroying God. “The reproaches of them that reproached thee are fallen upon me” (69:9). If you stand up for God, if you dare speak up for God, if you dare to renounce sin, if you dare to speak out against homosexuality or abortion or the issues then they begin to reproach you. If you just go along and say everything is fine, everybody has a spark of good and I’m just here to make you feel better about yourself the world will pat you on the back and say you’re a fine fellow. If you really start being straight, calling sin, sin then the reproaches will begin to come because the carnal mind is enmity against God, no subject to his law either in deed can be.
When I wept, and chastened my soul with fasting, that was to my reproach (69:10).
They even reproach me for that seeking of God.
I made sackcloth also my garment; and I became to them. They that sit in the gate speak against me; (69:11-12).
The gate of the city was a place of public gatherings, it was a place where the courts were held and it was no doubt the place of gossip also.
and I was the song of the drunkards (69:12).
The television comics begin to make fun of you, begin to make fun of your stance for righteousness, the reproach of men against God.
But as for me, my prayer is unto thee, O LORD, in an acceptable time: O God, in the multitude of thy mercy hear me, in the truth of thy salvation. Deliver me out of the mire, (69:13-14).
God I’m afraid I’m going down, I’m sinking.
Deliver me out of the mire, and let me not sink: let me be delivered from them that hate me, and out of the deep waters. Let not the waterflood overflow me, neither let the deep swallow me up, and let not the pit shut her mouth upon me. Hear me, O LORD; for thy lovingkindness is good: turn unto me according to the multitude of thy tender mercies. And hide not thy face from thy servant; for I am in trouble: hear me speedily (69:14-17).
The cry unto God for help. He’s being reproached, the people have turned against him because he dared to stand for God. He had a great zeal for the house of God, the things of God, and it brought the ire of the enemies of God upon him. He’s in trouble, he feels he is sinking.
Draw nigh [near] unto my soul, and redeem it: deliver me because of mine enemies. Thou hast known my reproach, and my shame, and my dishonour: mine adversaries are all before thee (69:18-19).
It is comforting for me to realize that the Lord knows what I’m going through.
Reproach has broken my heart; (69:20).
It’s not easy to handle reproach, it’s a difficult thing. In fact I think that’s one of the most difficult things of the Christian walk is the reproach that we bare for the cause of Christ and for the testimony of Jesus Christ. The world hates him and if we dare declare that Jesus is the only way to salvation, that being a Buddhist, being a Hindu, being a Muslim is not going to get you there apart from Christ, you’re not going to make, then the reproach comes heaping upon us as narrow bigoted fundamentalist. They say it with a snare. God knows the reproach, the shame, the dishonor.
Reproach hath broken my heart; and I am full of heaviness: and I looked for some to take pity, but there was none; and for comforters, but I found none (69:20).
This is prophetic of Jesus. Imagine what Jesus must have gone through in that last week as the king, as the Messiah to Israel. On the day that God had promised, he came into Jerusalem and he presented himself as their Messiah. Fulfilling the prophecies. As Zachariah had said, “Rejoice greatly, O daughters of Jerusalem, shout for joy for behold thy king cometh unto thee but lowly, he’s sitting on the colt, the fowl of an ass”. There he was riding in on the little donkey. He came into the temple and there he saw again the corrupt practices, the money changes and there again he disrupted that whole commercialism of their religion. They rejected him, they scorned him, they said “who gave you the authority to do this?” and they despised and rejected him. Then they were plotting and looking for a way to kill him. Must have been heavy.
Jesus knew what was going on. He knew that Judas had conspired to betray him. There at the last supper he was in heaviness. He said, “My soul is sorrowful unto death”. He said to Judas, “What you do, do quickly. Go on out and take care of your business”. Then he went over to his disciples in the garden of Gethsemane, heavy, heavy, heavy. The pressures, the battle, the spiritual battle were heavy. He said to his disciples, “Watch and pray”.
He took Peter, James and John a little closer and to them he said, “Teary ye here. Watch and pray”. Then he went away and knelt before God and began to agonize before the Father. The scepter of the cross was in front of him, that bitter cup of taking man’s sins and dying in man’s place. That pure holy Son of God is to have dumped on him the filth and the scum of the world. A horrible cup and his cry “Father is it possible let this cup pass from me”. That spiritual battle that was going on and he came back to his disciples. Why? No doubt to receive some encouragement and some strength. There they were asleep. He woke them and said, “Watch and pray lest you enter into temptation. The spirit indeed is willing but your flesh is weak. Could you want not watch with me one hour?”
and I looked for some to take pity, but there was none; and for comforters, but I found none (69:20).
It was alone my Savior prayed in dark Gethsemane. The disciples failed completely but the Bible says that God sent angels to him to strengthen him and to minister to him. We remember that when they brought him the next day to Golgotha, to Calvary, that they offered him vinegar that was mixed with gall. He did not receive it, he tasted it but would not swallow it. But finally after hanging on the cross for close to six hours he cried, “I thirst” and they filled a sponge with vinegar and put it on hyssop and put it to his lips. The psalmist, a thousand years before, prophesying of this.
They gave me also gall for my meat; and in my thirst they gave me vinegar to drink (69:21).
Amazing prophecies of scripture.
Let their table become a snare (69:22).
Paul quotes this in Romans eleven, nine and ten. The Jews, their table, let it be a snare before them.
and that which should have been for their welfare, let it become a trap. Let their eyes be darkened, that they see not; and make their loins continually to shake (69:22-23).
As a result, of course, the rejection of Jesus Christ the Jews suffered tremendously being destroyed by the Roman troops.
Pour out thine indignation upon them, and let thy wrathful anger take hold of them. Let their habitation be desolate; (69:24-25).
That’s exactly what happened in seventy AD when the Roman troops came in and ravaged the nation. Those Jews that did survive that holocaust were carried away captives and the place where they once lived became desolate. Their habitation was desolate. It is interesting that this also is spoken of by Peter as referring to Judas Iscariot, his habitation be desolate. So the place that held as an apostle was desolate and they cast lots.
And let none dwell in their tents (69:25).
They were driven out.
For they persecute him whom thou hast smitten; (69:26).
Isaiah fifty-three said, “We did esteem him as smitten, stricken of God”. Jesus was smitten of God for our sins.
and they talk to the grief of those whom thou hast wounded (69:26).
He was wounded for our transgressions, he was bruised for our iniquities.
Add iniquity unto their iniquity: and let them not come into they righteousness (69:27).
Those who reject Jesus as the Messiah fail to enter into the righteousness of God though the sought the righteousness of the law. Paul said, “they never attain to it yet those who believed did attain to that righteousness that would be accepted by God” those who sought it by the law never did attain it.
and let them not come into thy righteousness. Let them be blotted out of the book of the living, and not be written with the righteous (69:28).
The Bible says, “Whoever’s name is not found written in the book of life will be cast into the lake that is burning with fire, this is the second death”. Here he is asking God to block their names out of the book of the living and that they not be written with the righteous.
But I am poor and sorrowful: let thy salvation, O God, set me up on high (69:29).
The psalmist in the beginning was speaking of the reproach and the misery that he was going through asking God for help because he was sinking in the mire, set me up on high out of that pit and miry clay.
I will praise the name of God with a song, and will magnify him with thanksgiving (69:30).
Tonight we expressed our praise to God in song, we magnified him with songs of thanksgiving.
This also shall please the LORD better than an ox or bullock that hath horns and hoofs (69:31).
In Hebrews it says, “Let us therefore offer unto God the sacrifice of praise, even the fruit of our lips”. God wants that praise, that worship from our hearts more than he wants the sacrifices of the ox or the bullock.
The humble shall see this, and be glad: and your heart shall live that seek God (69:32).
For the LORD heareth the poor, and despiseth not his prisoners. Let the heaven and earth praise him, the seas, and every thing that moveth therein. For God will save Zion, and will build the cities of Judah: that they may dwell there, and have it in possession. The seed also of his servants shall inherit it: and they that love his name shall dwell therein (69:33-36).
This is being fulfilled right now. God is building up Zion, the cities of Judah and the waste places are being inhabited again. Soon the king shall come and they that love his name shall dwell therein.
May the Lord bless and keep you in His love, fill you with His spirit, guide you with His wisdom and strengthen you for this week. Let the word of God dwell in your hearts richly through faith. May you be able to comprehend just how much God does love you as He unfolds His plan for your life, in Jesus name.
Edited & Highlighted from “The Word For Today” Transcription, Pastor Chuck Smith, Tape #7187