Read Psalms 72 -- 77
God has never forsaken His faithful servants, even though, at times, it seems that we are left alone. The psalmist was inspired to remind us: Unto You, O God, do we give thanks . . . for Your Name is near Your wondrous works declare (Psalms 75:1). The psalmist praised the Lord for the assurance that no effort against the faithful people of God, regardless of how powerful, can hinder His ability to protect and bless them. Praise and thanksgiving lead to a renewed assurance that God controls both the present and the future of His people.
When we are confronted by problems we are taught to pray that the Almighty God will protect, guide and strengthen us. However the psalmist was also led to foresee that some precious saints would suffer violence because of their faith and was led to write: Precious shall their blood be in His sight (72:14). As we remain faithful to the Lord in times of crisis, He will enable us to remain strong even unto death. Fear none of those things which you shall suffer: behold, the devil shall cast some of you into prison, that you may be tried; and you shall have tribulation ten days: be faithful unto death, and I will give you a crown of life (Revelation 2:10). Our lives belong to Him and, as the righteous Judge, He allows for each of us what will best glorify Him as well as prepare us for eternity with Him.
No one is ever relieved of his responsibility before God. The call to faithfulness, service, or suffering is according to the sovereignty of God and the abilities He has given us. Therefore, we may be sure that, whatever handicaps or lack of abilities we may have, or how the forces of evil seem to prevail, all are ultimately meant for our good and for His glory.
Trusting in the Lord means sincerely praying for guidance that He will work out His will in and through our lives, regardless of circumstances, while we faithfully fulfill our God-given responsibilities.
God is referred to as the God of Jacob (Psalms 75:9); therefore, we will profit by studying why God wonderfully blessed and protected Jacob. Esau had threatened to murder his brother Jacob over the birthright God had foretold would be Jacob's. God knew that Esau would despise the birthright and that Jacob would cherish it enough to risk his life to secure the final blessing of Isaac which would confirm that God had chosen Jacob to possess the Abrahamic covenant.
Twenty years later, when Esau received word that Jacob was returning home, Esau went out to meet him with 400 of his servants (Genesis 32:6). It appeared that Esau would now fulfill his vow to kill Jacob. This threat led Jacob to pray all night, during which time he received the new name of Israel, a name that reflected his character and position as a prince who had power with God and with men. . . . and (God) blessed him there (32:24-29). After they met the next morning, Esau went on his way without incident. As Jacob did, In all thy ways acknowledge Him, and He shall direct thy paths (Proverbs 3:6).
Christ Portrayed: As the righteous Judge: He shall . . . break in pieces the oppressor (Psalms 72:4). Psalms 75:8 describes the judgment of God upon those who refuse to accept the salvation so freely offered by Jesus, the Lamb of God (John 1:29,34-36). They must one day face the wrath of the Lamb (Rev. 6:15-17; compare II Thess. 1:8-9).
Word Studies: 73:4 bands means painful diseases; 73:21 grieved and pricked in my reins means became bitter and was deeply disturbed; 74:2 the rod means the tribe; 74:4 set up their ensigns for signs means replaced the symbols of God for their own symbols; 75:5 speak not with a stiff neck means defy not God.
Government Officials: Rep. Richard Armey (TX) and Rep. Gerald (Jerry) Weller (IL) · Pray for Bible Pathway Faith Promise Supporters · Pray for the Bible Pathway International Radio broadcast in memory of William H. Malone · Country: Norway (4 million) in northern Europe · Major language: Norwegian · Religious freedom · 95% Protestant; .4% Roman Catholic · Prayer Suggestion: Pray and fast in secret so that only the Lord knows (Matthew 6:16-18).
Optional Reading: II Thessalonians 1
Memory Verse for the Week: II Corinthians 5:10-11,15