INSTRUCTION FOR HOPE

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OPERATORS INSTRUCTIONS

Psalms have been demonstrations of the power of worship.  They often show us a situation full of danger and discomfort initially.  As the Psalmist moves pat fear and into faith by praising God, we have witnessed answers coming from heaven as God speaks through the song writer.  Worship lifts us from the world and opens a way to communication with God.  This psalm is a song of instruction.  It does again demonstrate how to overcome the storms through worship that celebrates and glorifies God.

I will sing of the mercies of the LORD for ever: with my mouth will I make known thy faithfulness to all generations.   For I have said, Mercy shall be built up for ever: thy faithfulness shalt thou establish in the very heavens.  I have made a covenant with my chosen, I have sworn unto David my servant,  Thy seed will I establish for ever, and build up thy throne to all generations. Selah.  And the heavens shall praise thy wonders, O LORD: thy faithfulness also in the congregation of the saints.  Psalm 89:1-5

A maschil is a song of instruction and wisdom, so praising God is the first step in that direction.  As so many psalms have led us to praise God we are again encouraged to tell all generations about his faithfulness.  If you want wisdom, receive it and share it.  Again the Lord injects his own conversation into the worship as he acknowledges David as his servant.  The excitement of this relationship rises to another prophesy of the descendant of David who will possess the eternal throne.  The singer declares that God’s faithfulness will be known in heaven and in the gathering of believers.

For who in the heaven can be compared unto the LORD? who among the sons of the mighty can be likened unto the LORD?  God is greatly to be feared in the assembly of the saints, and to be had in reverence of all them that are about him.  O LORD God of hosts, who is a strong LORD like unto thee? or to thy faithfulness round about thee?  Thou rulest the raging of the sea: when the waves thereof arise, thou stillest them.  Thou hast broken Rahab in pieces, as one that is slain; thou hast scattered thine enemies with thy strong arm.  Psalm 89:6-10

To lift the Lord to the world we should know that he is also the highest in the spiritual realm.  Wherever truly spiritual people assemble God is feared.  He controls the physical worlds he created, and he controls the destinies of men and nations.

The heavens are thine, the earth also is thine: as for the world and the fulness thereof, thou hast founded them.  The north and the south thou hast created them: Tabor and Hermon shall rejoice in thy name.  Thou hast a mighty arm: strong is thy hand, and high is thy right hand.  Justice and judgment are the habitation of thy throne: mercy and truth shall go before thy face.  Blessed is the people that know the joyful sound: they shall walk, O LORD, in the light of thy countenance. Psalm 89:11-15

Ownership of the worlds that God created is clearly his.  The nations acknowledge his sovereignty.  Justice is his domain and the people who know the joy of the psalm of worship know the spiritual light.  The singer has been giving glory to God, and he will be joined in the song by the Lord himself speaking prophetically through him.

In thy name shall they rejoice all the day: and in thy righteousness shall they be exalted.  For thou art the glory of their strength: and in thy favour our horn shall be exalted.  For the LORD is our defence; and the Holy One of Israel is our king.  Then thou spakest in vision to thy holy one, and saidst, I have laid help upon one that is mighty; I have exalted one chosen out of the people.  I have found David my servant; with my holy oil have I anointed him: Psalm 89:16-20

Those who know the joy of the Lord rejoice because they are increased by God’s own righteousness.  Joy breeds confidence, and there is no greater confidence than the Lord.  The joy of celebration song about the Lord induces fellowship with him.  Lord, you spoke to your servant in a vision, revealing a chosen one.  The singer relates the words of God as the worship moves on into prophesy.  This is how the Holy Spirit makes personal communication with us in sermons and worship.  This is how the psalm is a teaching tool, showing us a path to direct communion with God.  The Lord continues to reveal his chosen one.

With whom my hand shall be established: mine arm also shall strengthen him.  The enemy shall not exact upon him; nor the son of wickedness afflict him.   And I will beat down his foes before his face, and plague them that hate him.  But my faithfulness and my mercy shall be with him: and in my name shall his horn be exalted.  I will set his hand also in the sea, and his right hand in the rivers. Psalm 89:21-25

This chosen one will be strengthened by me, the Lord says.  When a prophetic word is emerging from a song or a sermon we witness the greatest demonstration of the Holy Spirit.  This is the manifestation in the Old Testament, and it continues to this day.  In this psalm the Lord continues his message, promising to exalt his son.

He shall cry unto me, Thou art my father, my God, and the rock of my salvation.  Also I will make him my firstborn, higher than the kings of the earth.  My mercy will I keep for him for evermore, and my covenant shall stand fast with him.  His seed also will I make to endure for ever, and his throne as the days of heaven.  Psalm 89:26-29

David is pleasing to God but his descendant is the focus of this message now.  This is the seed of David, but he is more than David.  The seed of David will be made eternal, a king of kings forever.  In the joy of this psalm is the communion of revelation from God.

If his children forsake my law, and walk not in my judgments;  If they break my statutes, and keep not my commandments;  Then will I visit their transgression with the rod, and their iniquity with stripes.  Nevertheless my lovingkindness will I not utterly take from him, nor suffer my faithfulness to fail.  My covenant will I not break, nor alter the thing that is gone out of my lips.  Once have I sworn by my holiness that I will not lie unto David. Psalm 89:30-35

God promises to discipline the children of David and of Israel, but he will not turn against them.  He has made a covenant with David and with Israel, and he will bring them salvation as he promises.

His seed shall endure for ever, and his throne as the sun before me.  It shall be established for ever as the moon, and as a faithful witness in heaven. Selah. But thou hast cast off and abhorred, thou hast been wroth with thine anointed.   Thou hast made void the covenant of thy servant: thou hast profaned his crown by casting it to the ground.  Thou hast broken down all his hedges; thou hast brought his strong holds to ruin.  Psalm 89: 36-40

The seed of David is Messiah, and he will be eternal, and faithful to God and man.  But the world has witnessed his life and hated him.  His own people of Israel, and all nations  have despised his royal claim and denied him.  He was accused and mounted on a tree as a public disgrace.

All that pass by the way spoil him: he is a reproach to his neighbours.  Thou hast set up the right hand of his adversaries; thou hast made all his enemies to rejoice.  Thou hast also turned the edge of his sword, and hast not made him to stand in the battle.  Thou hast made his glory to cease, and cast his throne down to the ground.  The days of his youth hast thou shortened: thou hast covered him with shame. Selah.  Psalm 89: 41-45

Because he was hanged on a tree he was falsely branded as a sinner and a reproach to all.  He was not here to rebel against the world, and never offered to raise a sword in battle.  Mankind revealed human nature by ending his young life shamefully.  The Lord has spoken to all of us in this psalm.  The singer feels the loss of God’s presence in the conclusion of this worship.

How long, LORD? wilt thou hide thyself for ever? shall thy wrath burn like fire?  Remember how short my time is: wherefore hast thou made all men in vain?  What man is he that liveth, and shall not see death? shall he deliver his soul from the hand of the grave? Selah.  Lord, where are thy former lovingkindnesses, which thou swarest unto David in thy truth?  Remember, Lord, the reproach of thy servants; how I do bear in my bosom the reproach of all the mighty people;  Wherewith thine enemies have reproached, O LORD; wherewith they have reproached the footsteps of thine anointed.  Blessed be the LORD for evermore. Amen, and Amen.  Psalm 89: 46-52

How Long will you hide, Lord?  Will the world be left with only the fruit of sin; crime, plagues, and war?  Is man made only to die without hope?  Where is the hope you promised to David now?  Israel and the children of David are hated by the world today, and our enemies have accused the brethren.  When they demean us, they also insult your anointed messiah.  May God be blessed as we learn how your promise will be delivered.

Friends of faith, trust God to deliver Israel, and prepare to welcome the sons of Abraham to the Kingdom of God.  YOU are the ambassadors to share the joy of this lesson with the world.  You too may enter the joy of worship and discover revelation from God in this rapture of joy.  When you encourage others to trust Yeshua your personal experience and the word of God can become anointed in your faith.  Your encouragement of others can become instruction coming directly from God as the Holy Spirit enables you.  Answer the call to worship expecting to be inspired and used to build the kingdom of faith.

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EXHORTATION

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 HAMAS Rocket Men

UNENDING ENCOURAGEMENT

Here are two Psalms that again reach out to the sons of Korah.  Their ancestor had caused trouble by attempting self promotion in service to God.  If the sins of the fathers may be passed down through generations, the mercy of God continues to invite them home.  We all encounter the soil on the road of life, and so Jesus ordained a spiritual foot washing.  God cares about those of us who as believers are experiencing temptation to fail.

(A Psalm or Song for the sons of Korah.)

His foundation is in the holy mountains.  The LORD loveth the gates of Zion more than all the dwellings of Jacob.  Glorious things are spoken of thee, O city of God. Selah.  I will make mention of Rahab and Babylon to them that know me: behold Philistia, and Tyre, with Ethiopia; this man was born there.  And of Zion it shall be said, This and that man was born in her: and the highest himself shall establish her.  The LORD shall count, when he writeth up the people, that this man was born there. Selah.  As well the singers as the players on instruments shall be there: all my springs are in thee.  Psalm 87:1-7

Mount Zion and Jerusalem are established as a focal point for the attention of God.  He will honor good men from many places.  He has promised salvation to whosoever is willing to obey Him.  For those who are born in Zion God has promised salvation and some special attention.  While the sons of Korah may be drawn to manmade religions, their heritage of Jerusalem gives them a special promise.  Those designated to serve in the temple as musicians and singers are also more honored in Israel.

Christians of gentile heritage may be proud to be grafted into Zion through faith in Yeshua.  Still a promise of salvation remains for Israel, even if they may not yet acknowledge the grace being offered to them.  It was natural for many of Israel to be conservative about such an ancient God.  If some human traditions tempt them away from a revelation of grace, they are not deprived of the promise of the prophets.  So could we be in danger of the same spiritual pride by presuming to be better than the Sons of Korah?  Jesus showed us that Jews are the source of salvation, because he was Jewish.

Ye worship ye know not what: we know what we worship: for salvation is of the Jews.  But the hour cometh, and now is, when the true worshippers shall worship the Father in spirit and in truth: for the Father seeketh such to worship him.  God is a Spirit: and they that worship him must worship him in spirit and in truth.  John 4: 22-24

As God continues to encourage the Sons of Korah to stay near him are we Christians even more guilty of man made doctrines that can separate us from God?  The other sons of Korah perished in the wilderness, and gentiles too are being removed from the tree of life.

And if some of the branches be broken off, and thou, being a wild olive tree, wert graffed in among them, and with them partakest of the root and fatness of the olive tree;  Boast not against the branches. But if thou boast, thou bearest not the root, but the root thee.  Thou wilt say then, The branches were broken off, that I might be graffed in.  Well; because of unbelief they were broken off, and thou standest by faith. Be not highminded, but fear:  For if God spared not the natural branches, take heed lest he also spare not thee.  Behold therefore the goodness and severity of God: on them which fell, severity; but toward thee, goodness, if thou continue in his goodness: otherwise thou also shalt be cut off.  And they also, if they abide not still in unbelief, shall be graffed in: for God is able to graff them in again.  For if thou wert cut out of the olive tree which is wild by nature, and wert graffed contrary to nature into a good olive tree: how much more shall these, which be the natural branches, be graffed into their own olive tree?  For I would not, brethren, that ye should be ignorant of this mystery, lest ye should be wise in your own conceits; that blindness in part is happened to Israel, until the fulness of the Gentiles be come in.  And so all Israel shall be saved: as it is written, There shall come out of Sion the Deliverer, and shall turn away ungodliness from Jacob:  For this is my covenant unto them, when I shall take away their sins.  Romans 11:17-27

Today Israel is under a siege of rocket fire.  It seems the aggressor because Hamas is using civilians as shields against air strikes.  The rockets of Gaza seem crude but they have a real mission.  First they turn public opinion against Israel, while forcing their hand.  Secondly they allow technicians to discover the weaknesses of the Iron Dome anti-missile shield.  Dumb rockets are cheap, and the interceptor missiles cost about $60,000 apiece.  But the technology loss could turn the tide of battle.  Fortunately the nations of the world do not understand who the real shield of Israel is.  One day Israel will fully understand who that shield is too.  Those born of Jerusalem will be the first to see.

The LORD also shall save the tents of Judah first, that the glory of the house of David and the glory of the inhabitants of Jerusalem do not magnify themselves against Judah.  In that day shall the LORD defend the inhabitants of Jerusalem; and he that is feeble among them at that day shall be as David; and the house of David shall be as God, as the angel of the LORD before them.  And it shall come to pass in that day, that I will seek to destroy all the nations that come against Jerusalem.  And I will pour upon the house of David, and upon the inhabitants of Jerusalem, the spirit of grace and of supplications: and they shall look upon me whom they have pierced, and they shall mourn for him, as one mourneth for his only son, and shall be in bitterness for him, as one that is in bitterness for his firstborn.  In that day shall there be a great mourning in Jerusalem, as the mourning of Hadadrimmon in the valley of Megiddon.Zechariah 12:7-11

As Joseph was presumed dead, so Yeshua was also presumed to be pierced and dead also.  Yet as Joseph, Yeshua will return as the Messiah of Israel, with deliverance and salvation for the Sons of Korah.  They will have time to mourn, and to be forgiven as well.

For the sons of Korah there may be mourning as they identify the temptations that try to remove them from the grace of God.  For the brethren of Yeshua our hope is in daily repentance.  We have entered the house of the Lord by faith in Yeshua.  Are we given a place of honorable service only to consider our own religious rituals more important?  Do we “help” God by gossiping about our neighbors?  Do we leave the house to make an offering at the house of the Accuser of the Brethren?  God wants us to pull back to the safety of his sanctuary.

(A Song or Psalm for the sons of Korah, to the chief Musician upon Mahalath Leannoth, Maschil of Heman the Ezrahite.)

O LORD God of my salvation, I have cried day and night before thee:  Let my prayer come before thee: incline thine ear unto my cry;  For my soul is full of troubles: and my life draweth nigh unto the grave.  I am counted with them that go down into the pit: I am as a man that hath no strength:  Free among the dead, like the slain that lie in the grave, whom thou rememberest no more: and they are cut off from thy hand.  Thou hast laid me in the lowest pit, in darkness, in the deeps.  Psalm 88:1-6

The unidentified psalmist sings to God, not just about him.  This is the prayer of one who is full of troubles.  This is a bitter lament, not a celebration of life.  The singer is deeply into the blues as he finds himself in the lowest pit of despair.  He  is separated from the source of life, our God.

Thy wrath lieth hard upon me, and thou hast afflicted me with all thy waves. Selah.  Thou hast put away mine acquaintance far from me; thou hast made me an abomination unto them: I am shut up, and I cannot come forth.  Mine eye mourneth by reason of affliction: LORD, I have called daily upon thee, I have stretched out my hands unto thee.  Wilt thou shew wonders to the dead? shall the dead arise and praise thee? Selah.  Shall thy lovingkindness be declared in the grave? or thy faithfulness in destruction?  Shall thy wonders be known in the dark? and thy righteousness in the land of forgetfulness?  Psalm 88:7-12

God doesn’t need to strike us for punishment; merely turning from us takes away our hope.  When I was in Scouts our scoutmaster was an imposing and dignified figure.  One night a boy had a nightmare and awakened crying out “Slim won’t look at me!”  How much more do we need affirmation from the creator who breathed life into our world?

This psalmist is expecting death and asks how God would be glorified in a dead world.

But unto thee have I cried, O LORD; and in the morning shall my prayer prevent thee.  LORD, why castest thou off my soul? why hidest thou thy face from me?  I am afflicted and ready to die from my youth up: while I suffer thy terrors I am distracted.  Thy fierce wrath goeth over me; thy terrors have cut me off.  They came round about me daily like water; they compassed me about together.  Lover and friend hast thou put far from me, and mine acquaintance into darkness.  Psalm 88:13-18

I have known elderly men who passed from life both with and without faith in God.  The man of faith seemed demented to some but his scripture and his joy remained intact as he passed through the veil of death.  He had already seed what was awaiting him and he was at peace.  The man who was educated in the world seemed sharp and competent, but his nights and dreams were filled with terrors.  To live in your own strength is the ultimate weakness.

This Psalmist has felt lost, separated from one he esteemed to be a friend and a lover.  The Lord he has cried out to is not without hearing or feeling.  He will not die in despair, for our God is faithful.

So shall they fear the name of the LORD from the west, and his glory from the rising of the sun. When the enemy shall come in like a flood, the Spirit of the LORD shall lift up a standard against him.  And the Redeemer shall come to Zion, and unto them that turn from transgression in Jacob, saith the LORD.  As for me, this is my covenant with them, saith the LORD; My spirit that is upon thee, and my words which I have put in thy mouth, shall not depart out of thy mouth, nor out of the mouth of thy seed, nor out of the mouth of thy seed’s seed, saith the LORD, from henceforth and for ever.  Isiah 59:19-21

RESTORATION

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FALLEN WARRIORS

Asaph is contributes Psalm 85 and David returns with a prayer in Psalm 86.  For Asaph to write a Psalm for the sons of Korah, he addresses descendants of the survivors of the rebellion in Moses time.  The sons of Korah still served in the temple, in positions of honorable ministry.  They also still possessed free will, and the temptation to stray as their fathers had.

(To the chief Musician, A Psalm for the sons of Korah.)

LORD, thou hast been favourable unto thy land: thou hast brought back the captivity of Jacob.   Thou hast forgiven the iniquity of thy people, thou hast covered all their sin. Selah.  Thou hast taken away all thy wrath: thou hast turned thyself from the fierceness of thine anger.  Turn us, O God of our salvation, and cause thine anger toward us to cease.  Wilt thou be angry with us for ever? wilt thou draw out thine anger to all generations?  Wilt thou not revive us again: that thy people may rejoice in thee?  Psalm 85:1-6

Asaph acknowledges the gifts of God and the good history of Israel in his care.  Even as he praises God for past help he is asking that the people be turned back to their old faith.  He sees some anger from God for their ways, and looks for mercy.  Does he hold out hope for the Sons of Korah to turn from their sin?  It seems they retained a few bad ways from the old days.  Still, Asaph does not expect God to hold a grudge forever.

Shew us thy mercy, O LORD, and grant us thy salvation.  I will hear what God the LORD will speak: for he will speak peace unto his people, and to his saints: but let them not turn again to folly.  Surely his salvation is nigh them that fear him; that glory may dwell in our land.  Mercy and truth are met together; righteousness and peace have kissed each other.  Truth shall spring out of the earth; and righteousness shall look down from heaven.  Yea, the LORD shall give that which is good; and our land shall yield her increase.  Righteousness shall go before him; and shall set us in the way of his steps.  Psalm 85:7-13

Asaph offers intercessory prayer for God’s peace to his people and his saints; the masses and the righteous few.  The sons of Korah had been forgiven and he prays they will not return to errors of their elders.  All need to stay on the straight path, forgiven and forgiving.  Prosperity will follow those who follow God.  There is hope for all of us, no matter how our fathers may have failed.

While Asaph offers intercession for others, David is seeking mercy for his own failings.  In both cases we can see that people can have a high place in serving God and still be tempted to fall away.  God’s own people fail daily and need to make the repairs of repentance daily.

(A Prayer of David.)

Bow down thine ear, O LORD, hear me: for I am poor and needy.  Preserve my soul; for I am holy: O thou my God, save thy servant that trusteth in thee.  Be merciful unto me, O Lord: for I cry unto thee daily.  Rejoice the soul of thy servant: for unto thee, O Lord, do I lift up my soul.  For thou, Lord, art good, and ready to forgive; and plenteous in mercy unto all them that call upon thee.   Give ear, O LORD, unto my prayer; and attend to the voice of my supplications.  Psalm 86: 1-6

David submits his personal need and comes humbly to petition God for his needs.  David joins in a relationship with God daily for forgiveness and mercy.  David asks God to hear out his request.

In the day of my trouble I will call upon thee: for thou wilt answer me.   Among the gods there is none like unto thee, O Lord; neither are there any works like unto thy works.  All nations whom thou hast made shall come and worship before thee, O Lord; and shall glorify thy name.  For thou art great, and doest wondrous things: thou art God alone.  Teach me thy way, O LORD; I will walk in thy truth: unite my heart to fear thy name.  I will praise thee, O Lord my God, with all my heart: and I will glorify thy name for evermore.  Psalm 86: 7-12

Psalms often come with news of trouble, but God is acknowledged as the cure for all of these.  As the psalmist promises to continue praising God to the world the psalm, or song, gathers energy.  Here David is looking forward to more praise and awareness of the great works has and will do.

For great is thy mercy toward me: and thou hast delivered my soul from the lowest hell.  O God, the proud are risen against me, and the assemblies of violent men have sought after my soul; and have not set thee before them.  But thou, O Lord, art a God full of compassion, and gracious, longsuffering, and plenteous in mercy and truth.  O turn unto me, and have mercy upon me; give thy strength unto thy servant, and save the son of thine handmaid.  Shew me a token for good; that they which hate me may see it, and be ashamed: because thou, LORD, hast holpen me, and comforted me.  Psalm 86: 13-17

David already knows that God is merciful because of past victories so he can face the challengers.  The psalm is showing the confidence of the often confirmed compassion of God.  David knows that he needs grace for his failures but he is expecting that help.  He asks for a token, a sign of God’s deliverance which his enemies too can see.  When the world sees the evidence that God’s people are really being favored by God a few are prepared to accept.  This is a token, a warning to the violent and corrupt of the world.  The psalms again move beyond threats to the excitement of God’s personal answer.  This kind of intercession and repentance still works today.

God is more concerned about the righteous falling away, and a few unrighteous may still turn to join us as well.  To praise God produces his intervention and the victories that carry momentum towards our victory.  Let us not forget our own behavior and the warriors on our left and right.  Remember the rewards of serving in the house of God and call our own to follow the banner, the cross.