July 12

Read Psalms 101 -- 105

In Today's Reading:

Personal commitment to the Lord's ways; a cry in distress; gratefulness to God for His mercy; His mighty power; God's providence over Israel.

Verses for Today:

He hath not dealt with us after our sins; nor rewarded us according to our iniquities. For as the heaven is high above the earth, so great is His mercy toward them that fear Him. . . .The mercy of the Lord is from everlasting to everlasting upon them that fear Him . . . to those that remember His Commandments to do them (103:10-11,17-18).

David vowed: I will behave myself wisely in a perfect way. . . . I will set no wicked thing before [my] eyes (Psalms 101:2-3). Among other things, this means that David chose his friends wisely, saying: A froward heart shall depart from me: I will not know a wicked person (101:4), meaning I will have nothing to do with anything or anyone that is evil.

A few of the many reasons for praising the Lord are given in this psalm, but it is the loving Lord Himself Who is our highest reason for praise. First, we praise Him for Who He is, the all-powerful, all-wise, righteous Creator. We also praise Him for "all He has given us." But the greatest reason we praise Him is for His mercy and forgiving love in cleansing us from all sin through His death on the cross. He has assured us that, as far as the east is from the west, so far [has] He removed our transgressions from us (103:12).

Once again, David was inspired to record prophecy that reached beyond the life, death, resurrection, and ascension of Jesus all the way to His coming millennial kingdom reign when He will uphold equal justice for all throughout His kingdom. We can sing with the psalmist: Bless the Lord, O my soul: and all that is within me, bless His Holy Name (103:1).

Oh! How we should love our wonderful Savior, Who forgives our sins against Him as well as those we commit against others. This is a reminder that His unlimited forgiveness is the model for the true disciple of Christ. Let us remember: If [you] forgive not men their trespasses, neither will your Father forgive your trespasses (Matthew 6:15; Mark 11:26).

Yes, once we have repented of our sins, asked forgiveness, and accepted Jesus Christ as our Savior and Lord of our lives, our past sins are forgiven and forever removed from us. We become a new creature in Christ (2 Corinthians 5:17). We are to believe Christ and His Word and refuse to live under the condemnation of Satan for past sins. Therefore, it is an act of unbelief on our part to bring up former sins -- either ours or those of others. Forgiven also means no longer remembered, not only by God, but by us as well (1 John 1:9; 2 Peter 1:9). With all guilt of sin removed forever, we too can join with David: I will sing unto the Lord as long as I live: I will sing praise to my God while I have my being. My meditation of Him shall be sweet: I will be glad in the Lord (Psalms 104:33-34).

Christ Revealed:

As the One Who [forgives] all your iniquities; Who [heals] all [your] diseases (Psalms 103:3). Forgiveness of sin and the healing power of God describe the ministry of our Lord Jesus, Who was sent to preach deliverance to the captives, and recovering of sight to the blind, to set at liberty them that are bruised, To preach the acceptable year of the Lord (Luke 4:18-19; Matthew 9:6).

Word Studies:

101:4 froward heart = an obstinate and evil mind; not know = have nothing to do with; 101:5 cut off = destroy; suffer = tolerate; 101:6 perfect = blameless way; one of integrity; 101:7 tarry = continue; 102:26 wax = grow; 104:9 bound = boundary; 104:13 chambers = dwelling place.

Prayer Needs:

Government Officials: Rep. J.D. Hayworth (AZ) and Rep. Bill McCollum (FL) · Pray for your pastor · Country: Mauritania (3 million) in western Africa · Major language: Hasaniya Arabic · Islamic state with no mission work allowed · 99+% Muslim; .5% Roman Catholic · Prayer Suggestion: Intercede in prayer for others by name (Luke 22:31-32).

Optional Reading: 1 Timothy 3

Memory Verse for the Week: Romans 1:18