Tuesday, October 17, 2017

HOW LONG O LORD?

Today’s Reading: Psalms 89

Click scripture link to read online or HERE to listen online (then click the symbol of the audio speaker above the scripture portion).

 

This mosaic outside of St. Gabriel’s church in Nazareth (also known as the Greek Orthodox Church of the Annunciation) depicts the angel Gabriel announcing to Mary the news that she would bear a Son who would rule over the throne of David forever.

GOOGLE MAPS – To see where the photo was taken, click HERE.

 

Key Verses: Psalm 89:1, 15

I will sing of the mercies of the Lord forever;

With my mouth will I make known Your faithfulness to all generations…

Blessed are the people who know the joyful sound!

They walk, O Lord, in the light of Your countenance.

 

First of all, how about a spiritual lift? Click here to join in singing “of the mercies of the Lord forever!” After all, the intention of Ethan, the composer of this hymn, is that we should sing the words of our key verse. According to verse 15, we are a blessed people because we “KNOW THE JOYFUL SOUND!” The choir and orchestra may well have been intended to build to a crescendo from verses 1 to 15. Ethan’s faith is strong. He believes that God will keep His promise that the dynasty of King David will continue (read 1 Kings 8:22-26). He believes this in spite of the fact that the last ruling monarch of David’s line had been taken captive into Babylon. The last 15 verses of this Psalm seem to show that it was written prophetically or that Ethan lived and wrote after the events of the destruction of Jerusalem. Ethan, in his emotionally-charged poetry, cries out, “How long, Lord? Will You hide Yourself forever?”

It would be approximately 500 years later that the permanent occupant of David’s throne would be born of the Virgin Mary. Let us read about the “Anointed One.” Those words, “Anointed One,” are the English translation of the Hebrew word “Messiah.” Let us all read from Luke’s Gospel 1:26-33. Luke picks up on the words from Psalm 89:36-37 and quotes from the Angel who appeared to Mary with this message concerning the Child she was about to conceive, “The Lord God will give Him the throne of His father David… of His Kingdom there will be no end!” Amen!!! Amen!!! Amen!!!

PRAYER FOR TODAY:

Lord Jesus, You are my King, my forever Sovereign. You rule over my heart and mind. I recommit to this fact every day as I meditate on this blog’s Scripture portion. I pray that I will live today, and every day, as Your ambassador, representing You well! Thank You for grace to do this. Amen!!!

100 PERSONAL WORDS:

As a boy in school here in Canada, a former colony of Britain, I would sing heartily, “God save our gracious King” (George VI). On the main street of the village of Brighton, Ontario, back in 1959, while Queen Elizabeth II passed by in an open convertable car, Norma-Jean played the accordion and I led approximately 5,000 people crowding the sidewalks in singing, “God save the Queen.” The difference with the King who sits on David’s throne is that He saves us when we call on Him! The Bible declares that, “Whosoever shall call on the Name of the Lord shall be saved!”

Yours for the Glory of the King who does not need to be saved, but who Saves!!!

David

Monday, October 16, 2017

O CITY OF GOD

Today’s Reading: Psalms 87-88

Click scripture link to read online or HERE to listen online (then click the symbol of the audio speaker above the scripture portion).

 

These graves that line the hillside of the Mount of Olives can be seen from the southern wall of the Temple Mount in Jerusalem. The Mount of Olives, or Mount Olivet, is a mountain ridge east of, and adjacent to, Jerusalem’s Old City. It is named for the olive groves that once covered its slopes. The southern part of the Mount was the necropolis (large cemetery) of the ancient Judean kingdom. The Mount is central to Jewish tradition since it has been used as a Jewish cemetery for over 3,000 years and holds approximately 150,000 graves. Several key events in the life of Jesus, as related in the Gospels, took place on the Mount of Olives, and in the Book of Acts it is described as the place from which Jesus ascended to Heaven.

GOOGLE MAPS – To see where the photo was taken, click HERE.

 

Key Verse: Psalm 88:3-4

For my soul is full of troubles,

And my life draws near to the grave.

I am counted with those who go down to the pit;

I am like a man who has no strength,

 

Psalm 87 may be an expansion of Psalm 86:9, which prophesies a day when “all nations which You have made shall come and worship before You, O Lord, and shall glorify Your name!” Zion (Jerusalem) is not just a city, the capital of Israel, but the capital city of the Kingdom of God on earth.

Psalm 88 may be a prophetic utterance fulfilled by Jesus when He was put in the pit after His arrest. This Psalm has been printed on a laminated card and placed there on the altar in that pit for all visitors to read who descend into it (below the ancient ruins of the High Priest Caiaphas’ house — see the photo in a previous blog here).

Heman, the composer of this psalm, seems to be without hope. While David wrote songs of deep despair, he always at some point expressed hope and praise to God. In spite of the fact that Heman did not express his confidence in God to deliver him, he did “cry out day and night” to God. Heman must have had faith in God or he would not have called on God to hear his cry.

PRAYER FOR TODAY:

Lord God, I am blessed! I may not be able to identify with Heman in his prayer of lamentation for myself, but I can identify with others who are going through deep troubles. I cry to You, Lord, for Your intervention in the lives of hurting people who are being crushed by tragedy. Lord Jesus, just before You descended into the pit, and just before Your death and resurrection, You put Your all-powerful arms under people in deep despair in order to lift them out of their pit. I pray that I will be used of You, Lord, as Your arms to lift others into the experience of Your peace and love. Amen!!!

100 PERSONAL WORDS:

[Note: This was originally written October 16th, 2015]

God willing, I will not experience too soon the words of our key verse, at least not today, because my youngest grandson is playing in a high school football game I want to see. Actually, I believe I’m ready any time the Lord says, “Come!”

I have often stood on the Mount of Olives where I have viewed the scene of these graves in the photos. The Jewish people place small stones on top of the graves of those they wish to remember. The bodies are buried with the feet pointing to the Eastern Gate of Jerusalem in expectation that when Messiah comes, they will stand up in the resurrection and will see the Messiah enter. In His prophetic entrance into Jerusalem on Palm Sunday, Jesus rode the donkey through these graves and into the city’s Eastern Gate. I’ve just read John’s account of Jesus’ ride (John 12:12-22), and Luke’s record (Luke 19:28-44).

Yours in the great hope of the coming of the Messiah and the resurrection,

David

Here is a view of many Jewish graves from a hole in the wall of a walkway that leads down the Mount of Olives.

Sunday, October 15, 2017

THE MEETING & THE KISS

Today’s Reading: Psalms 84-86

Click scripture link to read online or HERE to listen online (then click the symbol of the audio speaker above the scripture portion).

 

Golgotha (meaning “skull” in Aramaic) also called Calvary (from Latin calva, meaning “bald head” or “skull”), may be at this skull-shaped hill in Jerusalem. It is an ancient quarry through which a main road passes just outside the Damascus Gate. The prophet Jeremiah wrote in Lamentations 1:12, “Is it nothing to you, all you who pass by? Behold and see if there is any sorrow like my sorrow, which the Lord inflicted on me in the day of His fierce anger.” Thousands of people “pass by” each day here at the Arab East Jerusalem Bus Station. Without exception, the Romans always crucified people beside the most busy roads in order to show an example to as many people as possible.

GOOGLE MAPS – To see where the photo was taken, click HERE.

 

Key Verse: Psalm 85:10

Mercy and truth have met together;

Righteousness and peace have kissed.

Our key verse found fulfillment at the cross of Christ! God’s mercy to the entire human race was made available at the Cross! God’s Truth and righteousness, for which Jesus made the ultimate sacrifice, was satisfied. The Apostle Paul, a Jewish Rabbi, wrote, “Having made peace through the blood of His cross…” (Read Colossians 1:15-22).

Psalm 84 should cause us to ask of ourselves this question: When is the last time we longed to go to church with such an intense desire?

Psalm 85 is a cry to God for revival, a hymn to be sung in the house of God! After such a fervent prayer, confidence fills the heart and mind of the writer. “YES, the Lord will give what is good!” (Psalm 85:12a).

In Psalm 86, King David gives reasons why he believes that the Lord will hear his prayer, preserve him, save him, show mercy, teach him, deliver him, strengthen him and give him a sign. When we speak out our confidence in God, our faith is increased.

PRAYER FOR TODAY:

Lord God, You help the helpless. That’s me! I’m confident in Your salvation because You are my God and I trust in You! “You, Lord, are good and ready to forgive” (86:5a). “You, O Lord, are a God full of compassion, and gracious, longsuffering and abundant in mercy and truth” (86:15). Therefore, O Lord, I’m filled with faith in You as I kneel in Your presence to call upon You for this new day. I pray in the Name of the One who brought mercy and truth together, and through Whom righteousness and peace have kissed each other, the Lord Jesus Christ. Amen!!!

100 PERSONAL WORDS:

The eternal, all-powerful, all-loving, all-wise God has provided a way for His unchangeable “rule of law” to be satisfied. God’s Son, fully God, took upon Himself the punishment which I deserved, so that eternal justice has been satisfied. That “kiss” referred to in our key verse presents a picture of what happened as Jesus, fully God, suffered in my place.

I can do no less than give myself again to God for this new day and for the rest of my life. Again this morning I am quoting my daily confession, “I have been crucified with Christ; it is no longer I who live, but Christ lives in me; and the life which I now live in the flesh I live by faith in the Son of God, Who loved me and gave Himself for me” (Galatians 2:20).

 

David

Saturday, October 14, 2017

GALILEE OR DEAD SEA

Today’s Reading: Psalms 81-83

Click scripture link to read online or HERE to listen online (then click the symbol of the audio speaker above the scripture portion).

 

The Dead Sea, also called the Salt Sea, borders Jordan to the east and Israel and Palestine to the west. Its surface and shores are 423 metres (1,388 ft) below sea level…Earth’s lowest elevation on land. The Dead Sea has attracted visitors from around the Mediterranean basin for thousands of years. Biblically, it was a place of refuge for King David. It was one of the world’s first health resorts (for Herod the Great), and it has been the supplier of a wide variety of products, from balms for Egyptian mummification to potash for fertilizers. People also use the salt and the minerals from the Dead Sea to create cosmetics. As the Jordan River flows south, it picks up salts and other chemicals which eventually kill all life by the time the waters reach the Dead Sea. There is no escape from the Sea except by evaporation, which concentrates the deadly chemicals even more. Likewise, throughout the years in the flow of Israel’s history, the people absorbed the sins of the surrounding nations and death spiritually was the result (Psalm 83).

GOOGLE MAPS – To see where the photo was taken, click HERE.

 

Key Verse: Psalm 81:13

Oh, that My people would listen to Me,

That Israel would walk in My ways!

 

Psalm 82:5b tells us, “All the foundations of the earth are unstable.” The Bible is not a textbook on natural science, but when a statement is made on the subject, it is correct. The people could not have known about the great tectonic plates that move continents, causing earthquakes and opening up huge chasms such as the Jordan Valley. Geologists have calculated the increase of the salt in the Dead Sea, and a formula has been developed. If the formula is reversed to figure out the decrease of salt, it is possible to guess at the time when no waters flowed down to the lowest place on earth, and no salt was washed into that sea, which has no outward flow. This was not millions of years ago, but in the time from the flood of Noah to the fire and brimstone of the destruction of Sodom and Gomorrah (Genesis 7:11-24 & Genesis 19:24-29).

Our key verse tells us that God longs for His people to return to Him. If they had maintained their relationship with God consistently, they would have enjoyed the river of constant blessings instead of curses, defeat and death over and over again.

PRAYER FOR TODAY:

Lord God, I pray for consistency every day to draw from Your river of life as Your presence and purpose flows through time. Please grant me sufficient grace that I may not pick up the corrosive death-producing culture of this world. In Jesus’ Name I pray. Amen!!!

100 PERSONAL WORDS:

I love the description of the “pure river of water of life,” which the Apostle John shared with us from his vision of the “Throne of God (Revelation 22:1-2). That river flows through Jesus Himself (John 4:7-14) and also John 7:37-39, where I’ve just read that Jesus cried out, “If anyone thirsts, let him come to Me and drink. He who believes in Me, as the Scriptures have said, out of his heart will flow rivers of living water.” There are several places in the Hebrew Scriptures to which Jesus referred. I’ve just looked up one of those and read Isaiah 43:19-21.

The upper Jordan flows from the pure sources at the base of Mount Herman in the north down to the fresh, life-filled Sea of Galilee. Then the water proceeds to descend down through that deep scar in the earth’s surface, known as the Rift Valley, into a place where no life can exist. I’ve tried to swim in the Dead Sea. It was very awkward, given the water’s unusual buoyancy (10 times more salty than the ocean). When I tried to swim, the tendency was for my head to sink under the surface and my feet to rise as I floated. At another time, after a long horseback ride along the upper Jordan, with my muscles aching and sore, my sons, who assist me in this blog, and I plunged into the waters for the most refreshing swim of our lives. The difference between the pure waters flowing from the mountains toward the Sea of Galilee and the eventual destiny of those waters (the Dead Sea) was enormous! Life and death is in those waters. I must stay constantly in the Living Waters, not picking up the death-producing contamination of this world as I travel through it.

Yours for choosing LIFE!!!

David

The shorelines of the Dead Sea are covered in some areas by massive salt deposits, as seen in this photo.

Friday, October 13, 2017

GOD’S FACE AND FAVOUR!

Today’s Reading: Psalms 79-80

Click scripture link to read online or HERE to listen online (then click the symbol of the audio speaker above the scripture portion).

 

Date palms flourishing in the Israeli heat of the Jordan Rift Valley.

GOOGLE MAPS – To see where the photo was taken, click HERE.

 

Key Verse: Psalm 80:14-15

Return, we beseech You, O God of hosts;

Look down from heaven and see,

And visit this vine

And the vineyard which Your right hand has planted,

And the branch that You made strong for Yourself.

 

Psalm 79 pictures Jerusalem destroyed by surrounding nations. Yet, at the time of Asaph, Jerusalem was in the process of building the Temple. Under David and Solomon they experienced a period of safety and prosperity. Therefore, Asaph was given a prophecy of a time to come when the Babylonians, the Greeks, and the Romans would, at various times, fulfill this prophecy. Approximately one third of the Bible is prophecy. Therefore, we would do well to be aware of what will come on the earth in our future or in the future of our children.

Three times in Psalm 80 we’ve read the prayer, “Restore us, O God!” Our key verse cries out for God’s return and reminds God that He has planted His people as a vineyard. Three times also Asaph prays for God’s face to shine upon them. Without the sunshine, the vineyard cannot be healthy. We need to cry out for God’s favour on our land, repenting for our sins and the sins of the people of this world.

PRAYER FOR TODAY:

Thank You, Father God, that You have restored me and others in our time by sending “the true Vine,” our Lord Jesus Christ! May I see Your face in Jesus today. I pray for Your continuing grace, Your favour, making Your face to shine upon us all. I ask with faith in the One who said, “I am the true Vine,” Jesus, Himself. Amen!!

100 PERSONAL WORDS:

I’ve just read Isaiah 5:1-7. This is a song sung by Isaiah about the vineyard of God’s people hundreds of years after Asaph’s song and just before the fulfillment of Asaph’s prophecy by the army of Nebuchadnezzar, king of Babylon. I’ve also read John 15:1-11, where Jesus, the true Vine, shows us the way to live so that, as Jesus said, “Your joy may be full.” The key words are: “Abide in Me (as a branch abides in the vine) and My words abide in you.”

Yours for constantly abiding in Christ and having fullness of joy,

David

Thursday, October 12, 2017

LIMITING THE HOLY ONE

Today’s Reading: Psalms 78

Click scripture link to read online or HERE to listen online (then click the symbol of the audio speaker above the scripture portion).

 

A teacher brings a class of boys to visit the En Gedi Nature Reserve and loses control, as they jump fully clothed into the water! Here David took refuge from Saul. Perhaps David refreshed himself in this very waterfall. In the Jewish schools of Israel, the teachers do as our key verse says. In Israel the students are called Talmudim (translation = disciples).

GOOGLE MAPS – To see where the photo was taken, click HERE.

 

Key Verse: Psalm 78:4, 41

We will not hide them from their children,

Telling to the generation to come the praises of the Lord,

And His strength and His wonderful works that He has done…

Yes, again and again they tempted God,

And limited the Holy One of Israel.

 

Asaph, The senior worship leader of Israel, composed this beautiful poetry and put it to music. Our reading for today puts emphasis on the responsibility we must carry in making sure that the children, the next generation, know the stories of God’s faithfulness. We must not neglect to also point out the people’s unfaithfulness. This teaching method has often inspired the next generation to rise above the older generation’s level of knowledge to experience God in new and powerful ways. Words put to music often have a greater impact on our lives than words alone.

PRAYER FOR TODAY:

Lord God, You work within human free will because You made us in Your image and likeness. I pray that I may not limit You by my failure to communicate Your stories I read in Your Word. May I also teach the next generation by recounting, in an effective manner, the experiences of my life. In the Name of the One who, at 12 years of age, listened to the teachers and asked them questions, Jesus of Nazareth. Amen!!!

100 PERSONAL WORDS:

I committed to publishing dozens of magazines back in the 70’s and early 80’s encouraging the reading of the Bible over two years. Ron has taken us down memory lane by inserting below an old “New Direction” magazine cover picture of my former co-host, Bob MacDougal (on our team from 1977 to 1992) and some of the commentaries (a bit yellow with age) from the Psalms, including today’s reading. My brother in Christ, Bob, shared often his marvellous conversion story, and he is with Jesus now. Between these “New Direction” magazines and the beginning of this blog, we’ve published ten books with the same purpose. Unfortunately, they are out of print and unavailable. All the commentaries were fresh bread, and were not copied from the many previous trips through the Scriptures. Now, 100words.ca is prepared just for you, my blog buddies!

Thanks for joining me faithfully,

David

October 12, 2015-extra

 

Wednesday, October 11, 2017

YOU AND I

Today’s Reading: Psalm 77

Click scripture link to read online or HERE to listen online (then click the symbol of the audio speaker above the scripture portion).

 

Caesarea Maritima is a national park on the Israeli coastline, near the modern city of Caesarea. The ancient Caesarea Maritima city and harbor was built by Herod the Great about 25-13 BC. The city was populated through the late Roman and Byzantine eras. A good place to start meditating on God’s work, as our key verse suggests, is by observing nature. This sea scape proclaims the greatness of our Creator God!

GOOGLE MAPS – To see where the photo was taken, click HERE.

Key Verse: Psalms 77:12-13

I will also meditate on all Your work, and talk of Your deeds. Your way, O God, is in the sanctuary; Who is so great as our God?

 

Dr. John Hull, the former global CEO for Crossroads, earned his doctorate from one of the most highly respected theological colleges in the world, Gordon Conwell Seminary of South Hamilton, Massachusetts. John shares his insights with us on Psalm 77 here on today’s blog…

God is not embarrassed by the transparency of our prayers. In Psalm 77, the writer is transparent and authentic in his desperate need for God — and in his own inability to live godly apart from holy God. The writer’s humanity asks the same kind of questions we often ask: Will the Lord accept me or reject me? Will I ever expect His favor again when things seem so hard? Is He withholding His compassion because He’s angry at me? Amazing isn’t it? The transparent thoughts of ancient and modern man seem to have little variance.The Psalmist presses on though, beyond the questions, the doubts and the insecurities, toward peace and victory! His process? He doesn’t focus on life’s challenges nor upon his own fallen state. Instead, he finds peace and comfort by focusing on the very character of God. He recharges his spirit by focusing on God as holy, powerful, and purposeful. The take-away of Psalm 77 is when one is overwhelmed by life and/or fear, focus on the perfection of God, the wisdom of God and the inability of God to ever do wrong. It’s within the character of God that we find peace within the character of our lives. – John

PRAYER FOR TODAY:

Lord, I thank You for the privilege of praying daily with all who share prayer needs in response to this blog. I ask for blessings and “Yes” or “No” or “Wait” answers to prayer for each person. In Jesus’ Name I come before Your throne of mercy. Amen!!!

100 PERSONAL WORDS:

I want to make an observation about yesterday’s reading. In Psalm 76 Asaph focuses on God and repeats the word “You” (God) several times. Then Asaph switches to the word, “I,” and repeats it a dozen times in the first 12 verses of Psalm 77. No wonder he is discouraged! He is focusing on himself. But he finally gets it right! Our key verse is the turning point. Eleven times in the last 10 verses of Asaph’s hymn he focuses back on God with the words “You” or “Your.” No wonder he is optimistic about life once again!

Yours with thankfulness, meditating on God, and joining our prayers together,

David

Tuesday, October 10, 2017

THE CUP

Today’s Reading: Psalms 74-76

Click scripture link to read online or HERE to listen online (then click the symbol of the audio speaker above the scripture portion).

 

Jacob’s Well lies in the crypt of a modern Greek Orthodox church at Nablus in the West Bank. It is located at the entrance to a mountain pass between Mount Gerizim and Mount Ebal (referred to in Joshua 8). It is often considered the most authentic site in the Holy Land, since no one can move a well that was originally dug more than 40 metres deep into solid rock. Jacob’s well is where Jesus asked a Samaritan woman for a drink and offered her “living water” (John 4:5-42)…from a much different “cup” than what the psalmist refers to in today’s reading.

GOOGLE MAPS – To see where the photo was taken, click HERE.

 

Key Verse: Psalm 75:8

For in the hand of the Lord there is a cup,

And the wine is red;

It is fully mixed, and He pours it out;

Surely its dregs shall all the wicked of the earth

Drain and drink down.

 

We should always remember to let the Bible interpret the Bible, comparing Scripture with Scripture. Concerning the CUP in the hand of the Lord, we may consider the words of Jesus in His prayer of agony just before His arrest. “O My Father, if it is possible, let this CUP pass from Me; nevertheless, not as I will, but as You will” (Matthew 26:39b). The contents of the CUP are spoken of in Revelation 16:19, “The CUP of the wine of the fierceness of His [God’s] wrath.” God’s anger against sin, dammed up since the sin of our first parents, is in the CUP which our Saviour drank. “We implore you on Christ’s behalf, be reconciled to God. For He made Him who knew no sin to be sin for us, that we might become the righteousness of God in Him” (2 Corinthians 5:20b & 21). For a New Testament reading check out 2 Corinthians 5:9-21. The Apostle Paul urges us to have an aim to live our lives well pleasing to God (2 Corinthians 5:9).

In Psalm 74:10-11a there are three questions asked by David’s worship leader, Asaph. Asaph has found the answer and records in Psalm 75:2, “When I [God] choose the proper time, I will judge uprightly.” God will put the final period to the last history book of our time on earth. We can trust God to fulfill His complete purpose for us. We are His creation and the object of His love. Amen!!!

PRAYER FOR TODAY:

Lord God, the first verse of Psalm 75 speaks to me and for me…”We give thanks to You, O God, we give thanks! For Your wondrous works declare that Your Name is near.” May I show my thankfulness by living a life which is pleasing to You. Amen!!!

100 PERSONAL WORDS:

Dr. John Hull, former Global CEO of Crossroads, comments on today’s reading…

Many in our media culture are growing increasingly accustomed to defaming and mocking the One we love. And while we must love them and pray for their hearts to soften to the things of God, the writer of the 76th Psalm makes very clear just who God is — and the fear and respect He deserves and demands. In this Psalm, God is described as a mighty Warrior who breaks down the weapons of human warfare (verses1-3). God is depicted as “resplendent with light” and “more majestic than mountains rich with wild game” (verse 4). As the most valiant of men and warriors may try to position themselves as superior, by comparison, not one of them can even begin to lift their strong hands to an even stronger God (verse 5). A healthy view of the very character of God includes not only His love and mercy, but His justice and majesty. When attacks on God persist all around you, never forget that God, in His wisdom and grace, is in control, and in all of eternity He will have the final say…and humankind will listen and tremble. – John

Yours with thankfulness to God,

David

 

Monday, October 9, 2017

DRAW NEAR TO GOD

Today’s Reading: Psalm 73

Click scripture link to read online or HERE to listen online (then click the symbol of the audio speaker above the scripture portion).

 

Mount Olympus is the highest mountain in Greece, located in the Olympus Range on the border between Thessaly and Macedonia, about 80 km southwest from Thessaloniki, Greece’s second largest city. Mount Olympus has 52 peaks. In Greek mythology Olympus was the home of the twelve Olympian gods of the ancient Greek world.

GOOGLE MAPS – To see where the photo was taken, click HERE.

 

Key Verse: Psalm 73:24-25

You will guide me with Your counsel,

And afterward receive me to glory.

Whom have I in heaven but You?

And there is none upon earth that I desire besides You.

 

Psalm 73 was composed by Asaph, one of David’s choir leaders. It appears that doubt had crept into Asaph’s mind about his own relationship with God. Was it worthwhile? Did it make any difference? While he had these questions, he knew that his responsibility to his generation as a leader must take first priority. We may want to read a second time Psalm 73:15-17. He refused to be “untrue to the generation of Your children.” His thinking turned around when “he went into the sanctuary of God.” Faithfully attending the House of God, worshipping God in His sanctuary, and hearing the preaching of the Word of God will adjust our thinking in a most positive direction. Asaph concludes, in the final statement of the Psalm, that “It is good for me to draw near to God; I have put my trust in the Lord God, that I may declare all Your works!”

This Hymn continued to be sung for hundreds of years (read 2 Chronicles 29:27-31).

PRAYER FOR TODAY:

Lord God, my desire is to draw closer to You every day without missing even one day. I thank You for giving me grace to be faithful in praising You for Who You are and for giving me discipline in my daily reading of Your Word! May I learn from Asaph how vitally important it is that I represent You to others, particularly the children, in a consistent and true way. I pray this in the Name of the One who is always faithful, the Lord Jesus Christ. Amen!!!

100 PERSONAL WORDS:

I’ve struggled with the same concerns that Asaph puts into words. Asaph writes, “But as for me, my feet almost stumbled; my steps had nearly slipped” (73:2). But as with Asaph, I did not stumble or slip. The grace of God was given to me, and I determined to concentrate on the Scriptures, on prayer, and on the Person and work of Jesus Christ! The second to last book of the Bible, Jude, has serious warnings about those who may have served God faithfully at one time, but at some point in their lives they stumbled and fell away from living like Jesus lived. Some in ministry have brought shame upon the reputation of the Lord, the Pastor/Teacher and the Evangelist. In Jude I find words such as “licentiousness” and “sexual immorality.” They “reject authority” and practice “greed.” Jude, the brother of James, is hard on those who claim to be teachers and who live, “according to their own lusts, mouth great swelling words, and gain advantage by flattering people.” Jude says that there are those who are “sensual persons, who cause divisions” (click here to read Jude). I’m thrilled to read the concluding words of Jude, “Now to Him who is able to keep you from stumbling, and to present you faultless before the presence of His glory with exceeding joy, to God our Saviour, who alone is wise, be glory and majesty, dominion and power, both now and forever. Amen!”

Yours as a sinner saved by grace alone,

David

Sunday, October 8, 2017

A MARE USQUE AD MARE (from sea to sea)

Today’s Reading: Psalms 72

Click scripture link to read online or HERE to listen online (then click the symbol of the audio speaker above the scripture portion).

 

A young Roman believer in Jesus offered to drive my son Reynold on his photographic trip around Rome. He held Reynold’s Bible, the eternal Word of God with its message of the forever-Kingdom of God (God’s Dominion), as a contrast to the temporal Empire of Rome exemplified by the ruins of the Roman Colosseum.

GOOGLE MAPS – To see where the photo was taken, click HERE.

 

Key Verse: Psalm 72:8

He shall have dominion also from sea to sea,

And from the River to the ends of the earth.

 

This is one of two Psalms of David’s son, Solomon (the other is Psalm 127). According to the Rabbis, today’s reading could only apply to the coming Messiah. No earthly king could ever fulfill all the magnificent words spoken here. However, we are told that this Psalm was meant to be sung at the coronation of a descendant of King David. Perhaps this happened when Solomon was crowned. We remember that Solomon had prayed for wisdom to rule well.

Of course this is Canada’s Psalm. Our country’s motto is our key verse. What a platform or goal this would make for any person who aspires to leadership. (1) Righteousness and Justice, (2) Abundance of Peace, (3) Deliverance for the poor and needy, (4) Prosperity (abundance of grain sounds like the Canadian prairies – 72:16). We are truly a blessed people, but when it comes to God having dominion over our land, we’ve got a long way to go!

PRAYER FOR TODAY:

Lord God, I pray fervently for You to have dominion from sea to sea here in Canada and all over the world. I know that the word “dominion” comes to us from the latin “Dominus,” meaning “Lord.” I ask You to put Your grace upon our Queen, our head of state, upon the leaders of our governments at various levels, and upon me too, that I may be a part of moving Canada and the world in the direction of these magnificent principles, which I’m reading about in Your Holy Word today. In the Name of the only One who, as Messiah, could and will do it all, the Lord Jesus Christ, I pray! Amen!!!

100 PERSONAL WORDS:

In 1981 Crossroads commissioned the publishing of the book, Canada, Sharing Our Christian Heritage. Sir Samuel Leonard Tilly, Premier of New Brunswick at the time of confederation (1867), put the words of our key verse into Canada’s founding document. Here’s a quote from Tilley’s son, which we included in this book about our beloved Canada:

“I have heard my Father state how he came to suggest it at the conference….there had been considerable discussion the day before as to what the new United Canada should be called, and no conclusion had been reached. The next morning, as was Sir Leonard’s custom, he read from the Bible, and that particular morning he read Psalm 72:8, ‘He shall have dominion from sea to sea.’ The thought occurred to him that this would be a splendid name to give the newly united colonies of Great Britain, ‘The Dominion of Canada.’ When he went back that morning to the conference, he suggested this name, and it was unanimously accepted.”

The words of that verse became Canada’s official declaration, and Psalm 72:8 is inscribed in stone over the main entrance to our Parliament buildings. Tilley’s biographer wrote that “The secret of his life was that he loved his God and his country.”

I spent some time at Tilley’s grave site meditating on his life and the words on his memorial stone. Engraved for all to read are the words, “HIS TRUST WAS IN JESUS.” Tilley explained, with his fading breath, that he wanted passersby to know that his faith in Jesus Christ had been the true source of any success he had known and the power that had most influenced his life.

Yours for moving our country and our world in the direction of the high goals of Psalm 72 by making Jesus the Lord of our individual lives,

David

P.S. Ron has placed below the Canadian Coat of Arms with the quote from Psalm 72:8 in the Latin language, (english translation, “From sea to sea”) and a picture of Sir Leonard Tilley from one of the books Crossroads has published, Canada, Sharing Our Christian Heritage.

Canada’s Coat of Arms includes the words “A MARE USQUE AD MARE”…”From Sea to Sea.”

Sir Leonard Tilley (1818-1896), Premier of New Brunswick, Father of Confederation and MAN of GOD!