Friday, August 26, 2011

Psalm 68

1 Let God arise, let his enemies be scattered: let them also that hate him flee before him.
2 As smoke is driven away, so drive them away: as wax melteth before the fire, so let the wicked perish at the presence of God.
3 But let the righteous be glad; let them rejoice before God: yea, let them exceedingly rejoice.
4 Sing unto God, sing praises to his name: extol him that rideth upon the heavens by his name JAH, and rejoice before him.
5 A father of the fatherless, and a judge of the widows, is God in his holy habitation.
6 God setteth the solitary in families: he bringeth out those which are bound with chains: but the rebellious dwell in a dry land.
7 O God, when thou wentest forth before thy people, when thou didst march through the wilderness; Selah:
8 The earth shook, the heavens also dropped at the presence of God: even Sinai itself was moved at the presence of God, the God of Israel.
9 Thou, O God, didst send a plentiful rain, whereby thou didst confirm thine inheritance, when it was weary.
10 Thy congregation hath dwelt therein: thou, O God, hast prepared of thy goodness for the poor.
11 The Lord gave the word: great was the company of those that published it.
12 Kings of armies did flee apace: and she that tarried at home divided the spoil.
13 Though ye have lien among the pots, yet shall ye be as the wings of a dove covered with silver, and her feathers with yellow gold.
14 When the Almighty scattered kings in it, it was white as snow in Salmon.
15 The hill of God is as the hill of Bashan; an high hill as the hill of Bashan.
16 Why leap ye, ye high hills? this is the hill which God desireth to dwell in; yea, the LORD will dwell in it for ever.
17 The chariots of God are twenty thousand, even thousands of angels: the Lord is among them, as in Sinai, in the holy place.
18 Thou hast ascended on high, thou hast led captivity captive: thou hast received gifts for men; yea, for the rebellious also, that the LORD God might dwell among them.
19 Blessed be the Lord, who daily loadeth us with benefits, even the God of our salvation. Selah.
20 He that is our God is the God of salvation; and unto GOD the Lord belong the issues from death.
21 But God shall wound the head of his enemies, and the hairy scalp of such an one as goeth on still in his trespasses.
22 The Lord said, I will bring again from Bashan, I will bring my people again from the depths of the sea:
23 That thy foot may be dipped in the blood of thine enemies, and the tongue of thy dogs in the same.
24 They have seen thy goings, O God; even the goings of my God, my King, in the sanctuary.
25 The singers went before, the players on instruments followed after; among them were the damsels playing with timbrels.
26 Bless ye God in the congregations, even the Lord, from the fountain of Israel.
27 There is little Benjamin with their ruler, the princes of Judah and their council, the princes of Zebulun, and the princes of Naphtali.
28 Thy God hath commanded thy strength: strengthen, O God, that which thou hast wrought for us.
29 Because of thy temple at Jerusalem shall kings bring presents unto thee.
30 Rebuke the company of spearmen, the multitude of the bulls, with the calves of the people, till every one submit himself with pieces of silver: scatter thou the people that delight in war.
31 Princes shall come out of Egypt; Ethiopia shall soon stretch out her hands unto God.
32 Sing unto God, ye kingdoms of the earth; O sing praises unto the Lord; Selah:
33 To him that rideth upon the heavens of heavens, which were of old; lo, he doth send out his voice, and that a mighty voice.
34 Ascribe ye strength unto God: his excellency is over Israel, and his strength is in the clouds.
35 O God, thou art terrible out of thy holy places: the God of Israel is he that giveth strength and power unto his people. Blessed be God.

Key Verse:
22 The Lord said, I will bring again from Bashan, I will bring my people again from the depths of the sea:

Key Observation:
God promises to rule over Israel; how can He do that except that the Jews be brought back to their land? The memory verse is chosen because it simply tells the results of those who believe God versus those who do not.

Memory Verse:
6 God setteth the solitary in families: he bringeth out those which are bound with chains: but the rebellious dwell in a dry land.


This, a psalm of David celebrates the refrain of Moses in Numbers 10:35. “Whenever the ark set out, Moses said, Rise up, O Lord! May your enemies be scattered; may your foes flee before you.” McGee notes that it is almost repeated in verse 1. He also notes that the “hairy scalp” of verse 21 is the Antichrist.

I have a close friend who knows Christ well, but who also is in the midst of a health crisis—one which he does not really expect to survive. Being nearly 60 years of age, I have lost many Christian friends and family to the old enemy: death. Christ has given us victory over death, and I think this psalm, a psalm of singing, tells us of a God whose promises may linger in their fulfillment, but shall prove true. I do not understand how many can believe in “spiritualizing” so much of the Bible, and avoid the simple truth: God said—I need to believe it. The promises of our God to one day count every one of the Israelites as people He will rule over is precious to me, not because I think the church has spiritually or magically become the inheritors of God’s promises, but rather because I see the God who made those promises saying He intends to keep them. If He is true to his promises to Israel, will He not be true to his promises to us? Truly “His Excellency is over Israel.” How Great is our God!

The splendor of the King, clothed in majesty,
Let all the earth rejoice, all the earth rejoice.
He wraps Himself in light, and darkness tries to hide
And trembles at His voice, trembles at His voice.

How great is our God, sing with me,
How great is our God, all will see
How great, how great is our God.

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