Psalm one hundred and sixteen, in an overall sense there is one interpretation of this psalm that interprets it as a psalm that deals with the suffering of Christ. It would make Christ the principle speaker in the psalm. “That precious in the sight of the Lord is the death of Satan” would make Christ the speaker; that’s one interpretation. Another interpretation of the psalm says it is the Nation of Israel who went through this period of death so to speak. The nation was scattered throughout the world and they cried to the Lord and the Lord heard and delivered them and walked before the Lord in the land of the living. They see it as the nation Israel. Those are the interpretations.
In just reading the psalm as it is and it’s valuable to see it as it is, there is possibility and credibility with the interpretations but you know my style isn’t to try to interpret the scripture. My style is to just to take it at face value and read it for what it says rather than read into it. There are values and you can look at it that way. Looking at the psalm just from a plain looking at it, the psalmist himself. It would seem that the psalmist is talking about an experience that he had where he almost died and thought he was going to die. He was given up for dead and he figured this was it, he’s not going to get well and he’s going to die. He cried unto the Lord and the Lord healed him or raised him up Thus the psalm is written on the basis of man thinking he was going to die.
The sorrows of death encircle me, the pains of the grave grab hold of me: I found trouble in sorrow and so I called in the name of the Lord. I was inflicted and you have delivered my soul from death and my eyes from tears, and my feet from falling (Psalm 116:3-8).
So the psalmist really thought that he was going to die. He called upon the Lord and the Lord answered and healed him. So he opens the psalm having been healed.
I LOVE the LORD, because he hath heard my voice and my supplications (116:1).
He answered my prayer. When I thought it was all over, when I thought I was dying, when I was given up for dead and he cried to the Lord he heard me, he answered my prayers. Thus this great feeling of love for God because of this answered prayer and this deliverance from the grave so to speak. He was just about dead and yet the Lord healed him and he expressed “I LOVE the LORD, because he has heard my voice and my supplications” (116:1).
Because he hath inclined his ear unto me, therefore will I call upon him as long as I live (116:2).
He really learned the value of calling upon the Lord. Because God has answered, because God has brought me from the grave I will call upon him as long as I live.
The sorrows of death compassed [encircled] me, and the pains of hell (116:3).
The word translated hell is the Hebrew word Sheol. The Hebrew word Sheol meant the grave and everyone who died was buried. The grave was the idea of Sheol it isn’t really the place of torment and suffering for the wicked dead. It can mean that but it meant the grave. Prior to the death of Jesus Christ all of those who died went into Sheol, the place of the departed dead or the souls of the dead. At that time Sheol, Hades or hell was divided into two compartments. Jesus speaks about this in Luke’s gospel chapter sixteen. For the rich man faring sumptuously every day died and went to hell. The poor man who lay at his gate, full of sores and survived from the crumbs, which fell from the master’s table, he also died and was carried by the angels into Abraham’s bosom. Abraham’s bosom contrasted where the place of the rich man. And in hell he lifted up his eyes, being in torments, and seeing Abraham afar off, and Lazarus being comforted. And he said, Father Abraham, send Lazarus.
In the Old Testament those saints who died though they were saints went into Sheol, the grave, into hell where they were waiting for the fulfillment of God’s promise. The purpose of the coming of Christ was to set at liberty those that were bound and opened up the prison doors. So when Christ died he descended into hell according to Acts chapter two in the message of Peter. In Peter’s epistle he speaks about it and Paul also speaks about in Ephesians chapter four.
When he ascended he led the captives from the captivity. Prior to him it was impossible that they could enter into the heavenly scene apart from the sacrifice of Jesus Christ. “Blood of bulls and goats do not put away their sins. It could cover their guilt or sins but could not put away their sins. It took the sacrifice of Jesus Christ to put away sins. So the door to heaven wasn’t open to man until Jesus put away our sins by his death upon the cross. Thus now Jesus said, “I am the resurrection and the life. Either though me, Abraham and the others though they were dead yet they shall live, and those that live and believe in me shall never die”.
We go immediately into the presence of the Lord. Paul said, “We who are in these bodies do often groan earnestly desiring to be free from our bodies not to be an embodied spirit. I want to receive my new body, which is from heaven, for I know that as long as I’m living in this body I am absent from the Lord. I would choose rather to be absent from this body that I might be present with the Lord”.
So I’ll never die, I will move and I thank God for that. I would hate to think that I was going to live forever in this body as decrepit as it’s getting. To think of going on and getting to the place where the people have got to put the food in your mouth and slobber runs all over. You just lie there and they say, “How are you feeling” and you answer “ugh”. I couldn’t handle that. Thank God I’m going to move out of this old corruptible body and to this building of God, this mansion that Jesus has gone to prepare for me. My wife is going to send out change of address cards saying, “Chuck moved out of this old worn out tent and is now living in a beautiful mansion near the presence of God.
In the Old Testament Before the finished work of Christ upon the cross, all those that die, even in vain, went into the grave, into Sheol where they were comforted in Abraham’s bosom until the finished work of Christ who went down and announced to them his victory when he broke the gates of hell and led the captives from their captivity and they now are with him in glory. So the psalmist is talking about the grave.
The sorrows of death compassed me, and the pains of hell gat hold upon me: I found trouble and sorrow. Then called I upon the name of the LORD; O LORD, I beseech thee, deliver my soul. Gracious is the LORD, and righteous; yea, our God is merciful (116:3-5).
Notice verse three, four and five you that are interested in sermonizing. In verse three talks about where I was, I was near death and I was dying. In verse four I called upon the name of the Lord and what I learned, the Lord is gracious, he is righteous and he’s merciful because he heard me.
It is an amazing thing when you think of God. I love the discovery that was announced in this journal this past week by these astronomers back there in Massachusetts was this wall of galaxy five hundred million light years long. Our Milky Way galaxy is only a hundred thousand light years. They call it the wall in the sky and it goes from horizon to horizon. It’s causing tremendous interest in the scientific community because it’s going to totally blast the big band theory. That was not meant to be a pun but it worked out that way. The big bang is going to explode. I was wondering if they discovered the wall of heaven, from horizon to horizon is God’s dwelling place. Who knows? Wouldn’t that be exciting?
The fact that the God who created this universe will listen to your prayers when you are in trouble and when you are distressed. When you cry unto the Lord he hears us. That’s just mind boggling to me. God, as vast as he is, yet he’s concerned with you and he listens to you when you call. That’s marvelous. Not only does he listen but he’s gracious, he’s righteous, he’s fair, he’s just and yes he is merciful.
The LORD preserveth the simple: (116:6).
Aren’t you glad you’re simple? I’ve met some pretty complex people and it’s good to be simple. When you are two-faced and living a false kind of a life you have to be very complex. When you are just you, you can be simple.
I was brought low, (116:6).
Again speaking of his experience of almost dying.
And he helped [delivered] me. Return unto thy rest, O my soul; for the LORD hath dealt bountifully with thee (116:6-7).
You think of how good God has been I can just rest in the Lord. I don’t have to worry about things; I don’t have to fret about things. It’s amazing that when we do get sick and we are weak we begin to fret about things. The Bible speaks in a very poetic sense about the person who becomes very aged where things like flies become a major problem to them, when small little things become a big worry. That’s true when you are weak too, when you don’t feel like getting out of bed the washing can seem just monstrous and the house is just overwhelming when you’re not feeling good. You begin to worry about all these things, all these worries and fears and anxieties begin to grip your heart. Then when the Lord comes through, he answers your prayers and you’re feeling great again you say, “O return to thy rest O my soul”. Go back to just resting in God because God has dealt bountifully with you.
For thou has delivered my soul from death, mine eyes from tears, and my feet from falling. I will walk before the LORD in the land of the living (116:8-9).
I’m going to live and because I’m going to live I’m going to walk before the Lord. Notice the “I will” in psalm one hundred and sixteen, “I will call upon him” (116:2), “I will walk before him in the land of the living” (116:9), “I will take the cup of salvation” (116:13), “I will pay my vows” (116:17) and “I will offer to thee the sacrifice of thanksgiving” (116:18). So the “I wills” of the text.
Incidentally, through psalm one hundred and eighteen are the Hallel psalms. These are the psalms that are sung during the feast of the Passover. The fact that Jesus sang this psalm with his disciples before going out to the Garden of Gethsemane gives a lot of interesting interpretation if you want to interpret this as being Jesus Christ. Prophetically, and it’s very possible, much of the prophecy had a two-fold fulfillment. Chuck Missler has taught you that and he’s correct in that issue, he tells you to prove everything else but I’ll let you know Chuck’s correct in that one. It’s interesting, He can dig out more stuff than I ever thought existed and I love to hear his tapes.
If you look at this prophetically, as much scripture can be interpreted in a dual sense, the immediate and then there is the prophetic aspect to it and that’s true of any of the psalms. If you think of this as prophetic of Jesus’ death of the cross, then thinking of Jesus singing it knowing that it was a reference to him as he sang, the disciples didn’t know. This could be one of the psalms that Jesus explained to the two disciples on the road to Emmaus as he opened up the scriptures to them. From Moses and on through the prophets he has expounded how that these were all talking about him, about his death and his resurrection. Here you have the death and the resurrection; “the pains of hell, the grave, sorrows of death encircle me, the Lord was gracious, he rose from the dead and he kept his word”.
I believed, therefore have I spoken: I was greatly afflicted. I said in my haste, All men are liars (116:10-11).
Be careful what you say in haste. Words spoken in haste often have to do when recounted and recanted it is best to cool down before you speak.
Then the important question, Here I am in God’s grace and mercy, God healed me, I should have died but God preserved me.
What shall I render unto the LORD (116:12).
What can I give to God?
For all his benefits toward me? (116:12).
Here God has given me life. What can I give to God to really show the appreciation? As we were pointing out this morning, in reality there is nothing in the material sense that we can give to God that isn’t his already. “The earth is the Lord’s and the fullness thereof all they that dwell there in”. God doesn’t need anything from us. It’s ludicrous to think of giving to God from a material standpoint as though God needed something from me materially. Thus when I think about giving to God it has to be in the realm of spirit or myself.
I read this story one time of a mission service where they passed the offering plate there was this old Indian sitting in the back row. As the usher held out the plate he said, “Lower it please” so the lowered it. He said “Lower it more” and he kept saying that until the usher just put it on the floor. The Indian stood in the plate and said, “That’s all I have to give”. Really, that’s what God wants. He wants you. I think that a lot of times we try to sort of buy our way and give him our substance when he wants us. “I don’t have time for you this week Lord so I’ll put an extra five in the offering and hope that satisfies you”. No, he wants you! He’s looking for that fellowship with you, that’s why he created you, that’s what he longs for, just you. He longs for time with you, fellowship with you and the giving of yourself to him.
It’s interesting that the psalmist asks what he shall give to God and then he says he will take the cup of salvation.
I will take the cup of salvation, (116:13).
It is interesting thinking about giving to God and the first thing we do is talk about what we are going to take. It doesn’t make sense does it? You say, “What shall I give you but I’ll take the cup of salvation”. It makes real sense because I can’t give anything to God until I’ve first taken the cup of salvation and thus having a relationship with God. You see, it is our sin that broke the fellowship and it is our sin that separated us from God, it’s sin that stands in the between coming to God thus we have to first of all receive the forgiveness of our sins. We have to receive that cup of salvation that was offered to us by Jesus Christ.
I will take the cup of salvation, and call upon the name of the LORD (116:13).
Once I’ve taken the cup of salvation the door’s open for my prayers and the door’s open for communion. I cannot call upon God unless I’ve been washed and cleansed from my sin, I’ve received the cup of salvation.
I will pay my vows unto the LORD now in the presence of all his people (116:5).
In another psalm David said, “I will pay my vows that I made in the days which I was in trouble”. Well, this psalmist was in trouble. Whether it was David or not we don’t know for sure but he was in trouble, he thought he was dying. He probably made a lot of promises to God; “If you just let me live I’ll really serve you Lord”. So he says that he will pay his vows in the presence of all his people. It makes you think it is probably David for a public figure like that all the things you do are always in the presence of all of the people.
Precious in the sight of the LORD is the death of his saints (116:15).
This just sort of seems to be inserted in here and it doesn’t really seem to fit. The guy is just rejoicing that God did not let him die but that God healed him and raised him from this affliction from which he thought he was going to die. Then in reflecting upon it he says, “Precious in the sight of the LORD is the death of his saints” (116:15). Ponder on that one for a while. Our attitude towards death and God’s attitude towards death, precious in the sight of the Lord. If a person is a saint of God, if a person is a believer in Jesus Christ, when they die in the eyes of Lord is just precious because he is receiving his child home and he is bringing him on to glory. They are going to have that glorious face to face confrontation. The child is going to enter into the awesome glory in the presence of God as the saint passes that veil we call death to awe that’s precious. He is coming home. So it doesn’t seem to fit contextually but yet it is just throne in there.
O LORD, truly I am thy servant; I am thy servant, and the son of thine handmaid: thou hast loosed my bonds (116:16).
The bonds of death.
I will offer to thee the sacrifice of thanksgiving, and will call upon the name of the LORD (116:17).
Again, God is good. God has heard my prayer. Then it is only right and natural that I should thank God for his goodness, for his mercy and for his grace towards to me. In fact in Leviticus it was a part of the peace offering. A part of the peace offering was the offering of thanksgiving in the seventh chapter of Leviticus.
I will pay my vows unto the LORD now in the presence of his people, (116:18).
He said that earlier and now he’s repeating it.
In the courts of the LORD’S house, in the midst of thee, O Jerusalem. Praise ye the LORD (116:19).
Another one of the Hallel psalms, a very short one. Again it is one that was sung by Jesus in the Passover feast.
O PRAISE the LORD, all ye nations: praise him, all ye people (117:1).
Through the death of Christ salvation is now to be offered to the world and taken to the world. Jesus said to his disciples “Go to all the world. Preach the gospel to everyone”. So Psalms one hundred and seventeen says to take it to the whole race of people, to all of the nations and to all of the people. Praise the LORD. Why do we praise the Lord?
For his merciful kindness is great toward us: and the truth of the LORD endureth for ever. Praise ye the LORD (117:2).
A beautiful little short psalm here joining the whole the world to praise the Lord for his merciful kindness is great. I have to confer with that when I look at the things that are transpiring in the world today God is merciful and God is kind that he has not already wiped out mankind. I mean surely we are deserving, that is the world apart from Christ, the judgement of God. Thank God we have escaped the judgement of God through our faith in Jesus Christ. We are no longer appointed to wrath. The day of God’s wrath is coming and I can’t see that it can be too far off.
Peter tells us in his second epistle that “In the last days there would be scoffers saying Where is the promise of his coming. Since our fathers have fallen asleep all things continue as they were from the beginning”. A description of uniformitarianism, the world just goes on. Everything that we can see can be explained by the process that we can observe. Life does not have to be created, the processes that we can observe can show us how life can come into existence. That is a fallacy. I don’t see any cells being created out of mud, I don’t see any transitions taking place, and I don’t see any half men half apes. If we went through that transitional state it is continuing. Why aren’t monkeys still loosing their tales? Half cat half dogs, I don’t see any transitions. How can you explain by the processes that we can observe this transition from one species to another when we don’t have any evidences of transitional forms now?
It seems to me that if we did evolve every transitional form of the evolving order should be observable now. Surely we should have found some fossils of these transitional forms in the same abundance that we find the fossils of the plain species. It’s really a fallacy to say that the whole process from fish to man is observable. I can’t observe it, I don’t see and I can’t find an explanation in the forms of life today in the species forms.
Peter went on to say that in the last days they are going to say, “They are willingly ignorant that God destroyed the world with a flood”. The judgement of God came upon those people that were existing at the time of Noah. They came to the place where they went too far. Though God’s mercy is great there is a limit. God said at the time of Noah “My spirit will not always strive with man”. What was happening at the time of Noah? We read that “Everyone was doing that which was right in his own eyes” or the philosophy of existentialism had prevailed in that society, you make your own rules of what feels good to you or if it’s wrong or right to you. There is not absolute truth so it was a period of existentialism, everybody doing that which was right in his own eyes.
“The thoughts and imagination of a mans heart” the same thing. The thoughts and imagination of mans own heart was evil continually. They had gotten into Satanism, the worship of Satan. They got into genetic engineering and God said “That’s enough” and judgement came.
People don’t like to think about a God of judgement. That’s the whole thing behind the evolutionary theory. “I don’t want to think that God is going to judge me for what I do. I’m going to do what I please and I don’t have to worry about God disapproving of what I’m doing. Thus I don’t want to retain God in my mind; I want to put God out of my mind. I want to explain the universe apart from God so I don’t have to think about a creator.” We look at the world today and we’re just about in the same boat that Noah was in, the same ark that he was in.
God destroyed Sodom and Gomorrah. The final straw was the blatant parading of the homosexuals, the defiance of God’s natural law. The aggressive militant behavior of the homosexuals was the final straw. God said “That’s it” and he destroyed Sodom and Gomorrah. God intervened with judgement. The Nation of Israel, God’s people, though they were the people of God they turned from God and they began to worship there idols. They worshiped Asheroth, the female goddess of sexual passion. Pornography, the little pornographic dolls and idols representing Asheroth were designed inflame peoples passion, to arouse or stimulate. As a result of that the sexual licentiousness of open prostitution, free sex and then as a result of that there were unwanted pregnancies and the destruction of new life. The babies were offered on the fires to Molech. God said, “Though they are my people, that’s it”. When they got to the place of behaving like the heathens around them, when they were giving over to pornography, open licentious living and then destroying the babies that came from that kind of life the judgement of came and he Babylonians who carried them away into captivity. He brought the Assyrians who carried the Northern Kingdom of Israel into captivity and said, “That’s it”.
It is interesting that in the United States today all of these things are existent and growing. In the United States today our educational system has been captured by the humanists and they are the existential philosophy of doing what you feel like. If it feels good, feels right, then do it. Everybody’s doing that which is right in their own eyes. Our land is so filled with pollution and corruption. Television, I don’t the watch the major channels anymore except for the football games. I mean they are getting worse all the time. It’s like they are seeing how much they can get by with before the righteous people really get up on arms. The filth! What they’re doing is planting in the minds of men evil so that the thoughts of man are evil continually.
The traditions of Sodom and Gomorrah of parades, festivals and the homosexuals becoming militant and aggressive forcing there lifestyle. It’s Sodom and Gomorrah all over. Pornography, the United States has become the pornographic capital of the world. Free sex, you don’t have go but a few blocks over here on Harbor Boulevard to see the things that existed in the decadent age of Israel. Then with it the unwanted pregnancies and so the aborting of twenty-five million plus babies so far.
The things that brought the judgement of God on Israel are prevalent today. How can we think by any stretch of our imagination that we can escape the judgement of god when we are doing the very things that brought God’s judgement upon Israel, upon Sodom and upon the world? We are living in a fools paradise if we think that we can do these things without pain by experiencing the judgement of God upon our lives. If ever there were a time when the church ought to be desperate before God in our prayers and intercession for our nation is today. His merciful kindness is great towards us but his truth endures forever. In truth and in righteousness God will judge. Thank God, if you’re a child of God, “There is therefore no condemnation, no judgement Jesus beareth forth”. No fear of judgement but I fear for the world, concern for the world.
Psalm one hundred and eighteen is the last of Hallel psalms. It is a psalm that is known as Messianic psalm, that is it is a prophecy definitely concerning Jesus Christ. So as Jesus sang this psalm with his disciples he was fully cognizant of the fact that portions of it refer directly to Him. I wonder how it would be singing the psalm knowing it’s talking about you.
O GIVE thanks unto the LORD; for he is good: because his mercy endureth for ever. Let Israel now say, that his mercy endureth for ever. Let the house of Aaron now say, that his mercy endureth for ever (118:1-3).
Then he comes down to you.
Let them now that fear [reverence] the LORD say, that his mercy endureth for ever (118:4).
Well why don’t we say it? “His mercy endureth forever.” Good.
Now talking about the mercy of the Lord.
I called upon the LORD in distress: the LORD answered me, and set me in a large place (118:5).
We sometimes get so narrow in our view, we think of ourselves. We need to be expanded; the Lord puts me in a large place and broadens my horizons, my visions.
The LORD is on my side; (118:6).
The psalmist says.
I will not fear: what can man do unto me? (118:6).
There is a lot of Satanism today, a lot of power of darkness, there are a lot of spirit forces and powers that are being unleashed in these days and in our society through the many Satanist groups. They fast and pray for the demise and the destruction of the church and for the destroying of the ministry. People say, “Aren’t you afraid you know that God will destroy you?” The Lord is on my side; I will not fear what man can do unto me. That great statement of Paul in Romans chapter eight where he said “With God before, who could be against us?” We need to know that “greater is he that is with us than he that is in the world”. God is on our side. I love that.
The prophet that came to Asa the king returning from victory over the Nubians said, “The Lord is with you as long as you will be with him”. Well listen, I plan to be with him the rest of my life. I can confidently say, “The Lord is with me”. The Lord is on my side because I am on his side Because the Lord is on my side, because the Lord is my strength, because the Lord is my defense and because the Lord is with me I will not fear what man can do to me. I love that kind of confidence that comes from realizing. When you begin to fear or when you begin to anxious thoughts just remember the Lord is on your side and “If God’s before you who can be against you?”
The LORD taketh my part (118:7).
He sticks up for me.
The LORD taketh my part with them that help me: therefore shall I see my desire upon them that hate me (118:7).
My enemies aren’t going to triumph over me; I will triumph over them because the Lord will take my part.
It is better to trust in the LORD than to put confidence in man (118:8).
How many of you have put your confidence in a person and you’ve turned out to be disappointed you, you thought this guy’s really sincere and you put your confidence in man only to be greatly disappointed? I’m certain that that’s happened to all of us. It’s better to put your trust in the Lord and never be disappointed. He’ll never let you down. He said, “I will never leave you or forsake you” it is better to put your trust in the Lord than in the confidence of man.
It is better to trust in the LROD than to put confidence in princes (118:9).
Even they can let you down.
All nations compassed [encircled] me about: but in the name of the LORD will I destroy them (118:10).
Though the whole world be gathered against me God is on my side and I’m going to come out victorious. The Lord and we can whip anybody and everybody.
They compassed me about; yea, they compassed me about: but in the name of the LORD will I destroy them. The compassed me about like bees; they are quenched as the fire of thorns: for in the name of the LORD I will destroy them. Thou hast thrust sore at me that I might fall: (118:11-13).
You tried to destroy me; you tried to bring me down.
but the LORD helped me (118:13).
All of this goes back to the Lord is on my side I’m not going to fear though all the nations of the world encircled us and tried to wipe us out, in the name of the Lord I’m going to come out victorious. You tried to destroy me that I might fall but the Lord is help me.
The LORD is my strength and son, and is become my salvation (118:14).
He delivered me. It’s glorious to know the strength of the Lord. In seeing the victories of the Lord the songs of praises and triumph of victory through Jesus Christ.
The voice [songs] of rejoicing and salvation is the tabernacles of the righteous: the right hand of the LORD doeth valiantly. The right hand of the LORD is exalted: the right hand of the LORD doeth valiantly. I shall not die, but live, and declare the works of the LORD (118:15-17).
Jesus said, “He who lives and believes in me will never die”.
I shall not die, but live, and declare the works of the LORD. The LORD hath chastened me sore: but he hath not given me over unto death (118:17-18).
He’s put me through some real trials, gone through some deep water but I’m still here.
Open to me the gates of righteousness: I will go into them, and I will praise the LORD: This gate of the LORD, into which the righteous shall enter. I will praise thee: for thou hast heard me, and art become my salvation (118:19-21).
Beginning with verse twenty-two we have direct reference to Jesus prophetically.
The stone [Christ] which the builders refused is become the head stone of the corner. This is the LORD’S doing; it is marvellous in our eyes (118:22-23).
There is a story that at the building of the temple of Solomon the stones were queried away from the building site. They were so perfectly hewed out and carved that they interlocked without the benefit of mortar so that the whole temple was built without the sound of a tool, a trowel, but just taking the rocks hewn away from the sight and brought to the sight all numbered and to be set according to the perfectly designed plans. So without mortar they put the whole thing together with interlocking rocks, a marvelous feet. The story goes that a rock came from the quarry and as they looked at it they couldn’t figure where it went. All of the rocks seemed to be in order there, all of the stones that came seemed to all fit and there seemed to be no place for the stone that had come from the quarry so they cast it aside and through it over into the bushes.
Of course the building of the temple was a period of years so that by the time the temple was complete only the chief cornerstone was missing. According to the story they sent the quarries and said, “We are ready to finish and celebrate. We are going to have the laying of the cornerstone so send the chief cornerstone”. The quarry sent a message “We’ve already sent it”. So the thing back and forth and finally one guy said “I remember throwing a stone over there in the bushes” and went over and got the thing out. Sure enough there was the chief cornerstone of the whole building.
Whether or not the story is true, the illustration is true. Jesus Christ is the chief cornerstone, upon which the church is to be built, which set aside by the religious leaders of Judaism. The stone which they set aside they rejected. God has made him to be the chief cornerstone, upon this rock I will build my church. The confession of Peter that “You are the Messiah the son of the living God”. So that when Peter was brought before the Sanhedrin and he was being challenged and question because of the miracle of the lame man being healed, Peter said “This is the stone” referring to Jesus Christ, “which was set of not by you goaders but God has made him the chief cornerstone and neither is there salvation for there is no other name in and among men whereby we must be saved.” So Peter quotes this and makes a direct reference to Jesus Christ, the chief cornerstone who was setteth not by the religious leaders of that day and yet God has exalted him, God made him the chief cornerstone.
This is the LORD’S doing (118:23).
It was the Lord who made him the chief cornerstone.
it is marvellous in our eyes. This is the day (118:23-24).
The day of redemption. God’s day of bringing the Messiah. If this is a reference to the very day that the Messiah came.
This is the day which the LORD hath made; we will rejoice and be glad in it (118:24).
Many times people wake up on a beautiful morning like this morning where the sky is clear and the sun is coming up over the southern portion to the hills to the south here and we look out and say, “Oh this is beautiful”. No, no he’s not talking about December of nineteen eighty-nine he’s talking about one special day in the history of man when he would keep his promise and send the Messiah. That day came, it was the day of man’s redemption, the day of the fulfillment of God’s promise, the day in which the Messiah made his entry into Jerusalem according to the prophecy of Zachariah riding on a donkey, the humble Lord riding on a donkey. That was the day that the Lord had made. The very next verse in Hebrew starts “Hosanna”
Save now, I beseech thee, O LORD: O LORD, I beseech thee, send now prosperity (118:25).
You remember what the disciples were crying when Jesus made his entry on the donkey? They were crying this psalm. They started quoting this psalm.
Blessed be he that cometh in the name of the LORD: (118:26).
That’s what they were saying while he was riding on the donkey. The day that the Lord had made, the day that the Lord had prophesied and here was the Messiah riding in on this donkey according to the promise and right on schedule. Four hundred and eighty years after the commandment had gone forth to restore and rebuild Jerusalem, right on schedule. The disciples, recognizing it, began to quote this psalm.
The Pharisees, when the heard the disciples quoting the psalm and knowing that it was a psalm that related to the Messiah said “Lord, you better tell them to shut up, that’s blaspheme”. You remember the answer of Jesus? “If they at this moment would hold there peace the very stones would start crying out for this is the day that the Lord has made.” If man doesn’t rejoice and be glad in it then the stones themselves will begin to rejoice, they’ll cry out the praises unto the Messiah. But you remember how in looking at Jerusalem he began to weep. Luke’s gospel chapter nine-teen tells us that as he wept he said “O Jerusalem, if you only knew the peace you could have with this thy day”. The day of peace but man rejected and set aside the stone. The stone that was rejected by those builders, the religious leaders of that day, God has made to be the chief cornerstone.
It’s a very pertinent psalm as far as prophecy is concerned. Prophetic of our Lord’s entry into Jerusalem, the presenting to Israel their Messiah who was rejected by the builders, the religious leaders.
Blessed be he that cometh in the name of the LORD: we have blessed you out of the house of the LORD (118:26).
Then the declaration.
God is the LROD, which hath shewed us light: (118:27).
bind the sacrifice with cords, even unto the horns of the altar (118:27).
Jesus who came as the Messiah, the Savior, became the sacrifice. Nailed to the cross he became the sacrifice for our sins.
Thou art my God, and I will praise thee: thou art my God, I will exalt thee (118:28).
Then the repetition.
O give thanks unto the LORD; for he is good: for his mercy endureth for ever (118:29).
Surely the goodness of God was manifested, his mercy was manifested. They all came together in the person of Jesus Christ, God’s Messiah, our Lord and Savior.
Father again, we thank You for Your word and Your Holy Spirit, which You’ve sent to teach us all things and to give us understanding of Your mercy and of Your truth that endures forever. May we hide thy truth away in our hearts Lord that we might not sin against Thee. Lord keep us from evil, that it would not destroy us. Help us Lord to walk before You in a way that would bring pleasure to You. This week Lord be with us as we gather together in our separate groups with our families to remember the goodness of God and how that You’ve dealt so bountifully with us and to give thanks to You Lord for all that You are and all that You’ve done. Lord, make this special time for Your people draw us unto yourself, fill us with Your Spirit and Your love, in Jesus name
Edited & Highlighted from “The Word For Today” Transcription, Pastor Chuck Smith, Tape #7205