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Hiding in Thee

The Bible Study Hour / James Boice
The Truth Network Radio
November 29, 2021 7:00 am

Hiding in Thee

The Bible Study Hour / James Boice

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November 29, 2021 7:00 am

Where can you run? Where can you hide when things get tough? We're studying Psalm 57, where David is on the run, experiencing dark days inside a cave, hiding from his enemies. Do you think David’s confidence is in the shelter of the cave? Or in the Almighty God who will deliver him?

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Have you ever hiked inside a deep dark cave today on the Bible study hour with Dr. James Boyce will study Psalm 57 where David is on the run, experiencing dark days inside a cave hiding from his enemies. Do you think David's confidences in the shelter of the cave or in the Almighty God, who will deliver him to the Bible study our radio and Internet broadcast with Dr. James Boyce preparing you to think and act biblically our circumstances are frequently like David's, we find ourselves cut off, and sometimes in hiding, and certainly disappointed in life again and again.

But, like David, we can trust that the manifold wisdom of God will be displayed in suffering. If your Bible is close by turn now to Psalm 57, several weeks ago we began to study a section of the Psalms that contain the Psalms of David.

Not only that historical Psalms from the life of David that is pertaining to a particular period in his life and the period in his life thing. Psalms pertain to is that early desperate stage when he was fleeing from the king, King Saul. He wanted to kill them. Many of the Psalms. Most of them in these first two books of the Psalter by David are identified as being Islam is a particular group of them. They began with Psalm 52 and if you can remember back to that Psalm. Let's Psalm it tells how this anime this foreigner to wag the Edomites off David when he was involved when he first ran away from Jerusalem to escape Saul with all alone and priest of Nob. Ahimelech gave him bread to eat and Goliath story that he had in keeping their we know from the story to go and went back to Saul and sometime later, when it served his own advantage reported on that harsh coag appeared as a great friend of the king. No doubt he was promoted as a result of that, Ahimelech and a large number of the priests and the families of the priests and Nob were killed so Psalm 52 is a reflection of that was probably the lowest. In David's life and then skipping a saw me come to Psalm 54 and that tells about David's betrayal by this Nephites.

Now that's a little bit later he had gone to Gath and then he had escaped from guy Anthony gone into a wilderness area very much to the south where these people there's a fight slipped and he was from that area of the country should of been protected by them because of general loyalty tribal loyalty things like that but they didn't. They reported the thing to Psalter so here was no magneto might've reported on him, and now his own kinsman down there and course he had to leave the area hide somewhere else on Psalm 54 and then Psalm 56 last when we were studying we saw that that concerns. Between Bob and his hiding in the wilderness of Zeff when he went to Gath, now Gath was one of the chief cities of the Philistines is where Goliath and come from my pointed out, although I never seen this in any of the commentaries.

I'm surprised no one is mentioned at the very is going into Gath hometown of Goliath. To me, and killed Goliath, the great champion of the Philistines carrying Goliath's sort of a foolhardy thing to do. When I pointed I must been absolutely desperate to do a thing like that. He must've felt he had absolutely nowhere else to turn fact that he would go to an enemy nation to begin with and to Gath city of his great hero he had killed. It must've been a very bad time now. Psalm 57 of a come to now is another Psalm in this series. Here we are told, David is in the cave had on allotments where he finally ended up say he left Jerusalem he went to Nob and retreated to Gath. He went into the wilderness of Zeff. Finally he got into this area.

Same part of the country, but a much wilder wilderness area in which there was this cave may be. During his years as a shepherd boy wandering out taking care of the sheep in the wilderness. He, possibly knew where it was. We don't know that is quite likely any rate, that's where he ends up.

And according to the title of the song. That's where this was written when he had fled from Saul into the cave is a possibility that it could be another cave. There was a cave called in getting that. He also hit him, but I think not. I think that comes later. So here is a bottle of now only Psalms you see come from the same. Why would you say is that there's a change in the tone. When we come to Psalm 57. Here, David is hiding apparently still alone while he was in this cave. These disenfranchised people were abused and people who were his friends and his relatives were also in danger because he was in danger, they began to collect when they heard that David was in the cave about 11 finally had 400 men with Emily began to train them.

It became the core of his army. But there's nothing in the Psalm that indicates that it happened yet is just along here. The cave is hiding and yet, as we read that song we begin to detect a quite different tone and other Psalms. As we saw were uncertain, fearful, at times. David even seems to be desperate in the kind of things he says, but not Psalm 57. Here we find a new note of confidence and the prevailing tone is one of praise, praising God. So I asked the question right at the beginning. What is it that makes the difference. Well, we earlier Psalms we find them hiding from Saul hiding from his enemies and running away the Psalm.

By contrast, what we find him doing is hiding in God that makes all the different sets the tone of the song.

That's the way he's speaking.

I say sometimes when I think of these ancient characters. I don't know what kind of songs they sang in those days they know they had their own David courses writing Psalms. I guess that's what assignment already had a higher Psalm hiding in the probably the song that this particular stage it is like you know how it goes. Oh safe the wrong that is higher than my soul than its conflicts and sorrows would fly so sinful, so weary buying line what ideal blessed rock of ages, I'm hiding in the is what David saw Aaron probably in his own words did saying this cave about 11 only take a moment to talk about the outline lines important are not going to show why the come back to that later ensure why, then, but let me just discuss the outline. It can be divided into three parts and some of the commentators of done this, I point out that verses 1 to 3. Make a unit that would be David's call to God for mercy and then verses 4 to 6 and be a description of the problem that caused David to ask for mercy. It has to do with his enemies and then finally 7-Eleven last half of the Psalm you have a concluding hymn of praise to God. Now that's one way to do it start entirely bad. On the other hand, if you follow the clues which I think is very significant that you have a chorus here are repeated twice, once in verse five and a second time in verse 11, then you should probably divide the Psalm into two parts, each part ending with the chorus you find that in this particular section of the song which is one reason for thinking that the Psalms were written by David following more or less the same formatted more or less the same.

It is like my pointed out the earlier Psalms on 57 is like that. There's a chorus repeated twice. Psalm 59 is like that. There's a chorus repeated twice in Psalm 59 is very much like Psalm 57 we are. Follow that as a clothing we have two parts, and in each of those parts. We have three stanzas in each stanza is followed by a chorus I want to come back to that show why it's important to me just point out for your interests that verses seven through 11 of the Psalm are also repeated in Psalm 108 a begin. Psalm 108 and in the second half of Psalm 108 is borrowed from another song from Psalm 67 we get to Psalm 108 were going to get to parts of the earlier Psalms put together and so you got a repetition already seen a bit about between 14 and 53 very direct repetition also phrases from the Psalm that are borrowed in other places.

It makes one think that the Psalm was very popular.

If it's copy later on.

Probably because it came from his early. In David's life.

I imagine there in the cave that that the Army as it began to develop sang the sentence.

David was writing that was their worship the God into their minds and our hearts and then it begins to show up another something, probably. That's the mechanism of the repetition. But anyway, that's what we have now let's look first of all through this first part and see what it's saying and then we do that I want to look at the second part and see how it reflects the first part and also how it differs and then finally when look at the chorus whatsoever to do it. Let's look at the first part.

David begins by saying that his soul is taking refuge in God. Verse one you my soul takes refuge assets is hiding in the cave. It's very natural to think that it was the fact of the cave that suggested the word to David okay was his refuge.

Refuge is where you go to high and so he had run away. Finally, at last he found refuge in the cave. The interesting thing. However, you have to look at this carefully is a David does not call the cave is refuge say we would understand how we would use the word in that setting, but he doesn't say thank you God for bringing me to this wonderful refuge. What is he do.

He calls hot is refuge say if you want to use the image of the second half of that verse, I will take refuge in the shadow of your wings. Imagine something like this here in the cave that greatly cave limits roof is spread out over him like a shadow walking and then from the side where East safe worries out of you and he says what I really hiding in here is not the cave in the shadow of the rock, I'm really hiding in the shadow of the wings of Almighty God. I suppose this is the point at which it's worth saying that this Psalm has a great many references to God you look through Psalm.

Not all of them. Do you know you look through the Psalm and you count up all the references to God either by name or a pronoun referring to God and it counters like my counter come up with 21 different references to God and in their other words refer to them as well but I didn't even count words like refuge in the shadow of your wings and so on. So throughout the Psalm you have more references to God than you do versus at least an average of two references to God by virtue. See what I'm saying is that all is part of the same picture. David is not hiding from his enemies now is hiding in God because he is hiding in God and is thinking of God, everything is transformed. That's why I say this was the turning point. This particular period of David's life.

Now let's look at some of the things that he refers to about this phrase shadow of your wings as I refer to this, a very beautiful phrase, and the commentators quite naturally thought about that written about it.

Some of them suggest that what David has in mind, here are the wings of the cherubim because there referred to. So often in the Old Testament, you would need to know. I think understand that that early and exit. This is a description of these two golden cherubim that were to be constructed on the ends of the mercy seat. That was the lid of the ark of the covenant within the most holy place of the tabernacle. I talked about that from time to time because that was meant to portray what propitiation is all about the blood which appreciates the wrath of God and I talk about it in those terms. But it also is an object of art in the description is laid out quite a few times in the Old Testament Phyllis description of the earliest is in Exodus 25 versus 17 through 20. But the same description is repeated again in chapter 37 verse nine and a shorter form and then also in first Kings the six chapter verse 27 and there are some additional references to the cherubim's wings first Kings 86 and seven first Chronicles 2818 second Chronicles. 313 Chronicles 5, seven and eight and so on. In Ezekiel that book in which the prophet has great visions of heaven.

There are more than 20 references to the way so the heavenly beings. The cherubim, which apparently were represented in gold on the ark, so the instructions that you have their book of Exodus for building the ark with the cherubim and inside wings stretching out, almost touching over the center of the ark. God is supposed to dwell symbolically, apparently only a pictorial representation on earth. What Ezekiel actually saw in heaven.

You go to the book of Revelation you find much the same sort of thing. There chapter 4 now it's easy to understand because the tabernacle and its furniture work so much a part of the religious life of the Jewish people that one when he said wings would quite naturally think of that so commentators suggest well this is what David has in mind, especially since God is associated with the wings of the cherubim say he was supposed to dwell symbolically. There between the cherubim's wings but is a problem with that interpretation is under the obvious interpretation of what David says here in verse one is I will take refuge in the shadow of your wings lemmings wings of God the wings of the cherubim and appear to take that seriously, then it would seem that we would be more along the right course of interpretation. We think in terms of what Jesus said in Matthew you know he was talking about Jerusalem. He was bemoaning the fact that people of Jerusalem and rejected the prophets and he said how often I have longed to gather your children together as I can gathers her chicks under her wings, but you are not willing, probably you see the reference is along those lines. Now when we shift away from thinking of the wings of the cherubim and we begin the thing actually of the wings of God the first obvious objection is that God doesn't have wings. Someone will say well that's it even inappropriate. God sorted the meeting God speak in those terms. Well, Jesus used the phrase himself. When you begin to think along those lines and you look through the Old Testament you find the God himself speaks of himself in those terms as frequently as you find references to the wings of the cherubim, but frequently enough example again in Exodus Exodus 19 for God said, speaking to the people you yourselves have seen what I did to Egypt how I carried you on Eagles wings and brought you to myself, that's the wings of Eagles say God is describing himself as an Eagle who takes care of his young, that image appears several other places and variations. For example, in the song of Moses, God is compared to I quote an eagle that stirs up its nest hovers over its young that spreads its wings to catch them and carries on its opinion about the phrase shadow of your wings. Well, that occurs not only in Psalm 57 one. Also in Psalm 17 836-7614 63 seven so it's a very common phrase and when you come to Psalm 91 verse one we have had great him resizing that contains that reference there the shadow of your wings actually becomes the shadow of the Almighty.

They can understand only storms work together.

Well, that's what David is talking about here saying I'm really protected by God who was hovering over me like a mother bird that's protecting little checks.

Let's look at another term in the second verse. David refers to God as God most high. That's one of the great names for God of the curse first in the book of Genesis of the story of Abraham meeting up with Melchizedek, where Abraham presents offerings to this otherwise unknown king of Salem was the deck appears out of nowhere the author of Hebrews refers to that uses it symbolically in reference to Christ versus man this King Melchizedek, who appears in Abraham honors them and then kiss it back And we are told in the name of the most high God, the Creator of heaven and earth, who delivered your enemies into your hand. Genesis 14 one of the commentators on this. Derek Kidner thinks that the reason David in this Psalm refers to God as God most high, with a clear reference to the story of Abraham as Abraham was also a homeless man a wanderer say without supporting David is like that, I think, in view of what it actually says in Genesis 14 that the reason is doing it is because there God is described as the one who delivers one's enemies and to our hands and of course that's what David needed. He needed to.

God was going to do that and not only needed to God was going to do that. God didn't do that and he did many times. Back to first Samuel and study a story line for several locations. There were God actually delivered Saul in the hands of David and where he could've killed him if he wanted to and he didn't do it.

He respected him because he was the Lord's anointed.

He left it in God's hands.

But you see, this is exactly what's involved in the term. Well, it's a good one more idea before we move on to stanza to just briefly verse four other idea. I am in the midst of lion's. I may have literally been in the midst Alliance. We know that in the wilderness. In those days there were lions and reason.

We know that is a David killed one and one occasion when he was protecting the sheep over these wild animals out there and here is in the wilderness and literally surrounded by wild animals by lions and bees, what he says but casinos are only symbolic of his human enemies wild animal may be dangerous by the wild animal is not vicious the way human beings are and when David speaks of the beast. Speaking of them as ravenous beasts, whose teeth are spears and arrows whose tongues are sharp swords. I was literally when David was facing when you think of David in the midst of the lions.

You can't help but think of Daniel Penn lions den and who you know, surrounded by the lions. Yet God detected him close the lion's mouth as a way Daniel put John Daniel said her interest that you can almost take these words and put them in David's mouth and see them speaking them to Saul because David said to the king don't answer my God sent his angel and he shut the mouths of the lions that not hurt me because I was found innocent in his sight, nor have I done any wrong before you okay.

The life of David. You have almost an exact picture of what was going to happen later in the case of Daniel so that's the first part. Now let's look at part two. Sometimes when I study the Psalms and I begin to study them.

I say now I just don't know how to handle these things in seems to me repeating one phrase after the other is no particular organization to what I do discover is I work with them that there's far more organization of the Psalms, and you imagine not just a lot of ideas thrown together beautiful as that may be, is actually a careful outline. I want you to see this outline. First thing I want you to see it when you look at the general subject matter, I want you to say that the subject matter in part two is a repetition of the subject matter you have in the first section per section. There is talking about the mercy of God and David begins to talk about himself versus two and three and then finally talking about his enemies. In verse four writing about those who are like lions and surrounded and that when he breaks off and you have the chorus now in the second half. You have all of these themes also busters the interesting thing you have them in reverse order. That's the first thing and then secondly find them heightened that is taken up a notch or two already very optimistic. Saul seen that because he's hiding in God doesn't have the despair of some of the earlier ones, but it becomes even more exalted, more optimistic as it goes on to explain exactly what I mean here the order if I could put it like this is ABC is what you got in the first part is talking about God than himself and his enemies ABC and you get to the second half and you have it like this, you have CBA God himself as enemies chorus and has enemies himself and God. My wonderful structure starts with God because he is praising God. He begins a thing about himself and the situation is and what is wise praising God that he begins to think of his enemies are out there that are causing the problem. Many reflex again on the enemies then he moves back to himself.

And finally, he ends the Psalm by praising God.

Now each time he does that in the second half. He heightens a little bit. Let me explain how that is first of all the stanzas that I've identified to see here that is verse four in the first half.

In verse six in the second half deal with his enemies but notice in the first half of this he's talking about them simply as ravenous beasts who are threatening say anything more than that. I'm in the midst of lion side lie among ravenous beasts disease hiding in God and so many gifts to verse six he realizes that although the danger is out there is quite real.

They spread a net or my feet caused me to bow down in distress.

They dug a pit in my path. But notice the have fallen into it themselves thing that's quite different than what he was saying in part one here is acknowledging that God is already acting to deliver them, then look at this section I have identified Stan's obedience versus two and three in the first part. He's talking about himself, especially in his relationship to God is very confident in that he's praying to God and fulfills his purpose for me sends from heaven and saves me is the way God acts what needs done it in the past is doing it today. But notice when he gets to the second half of this verse seven and eight.

He actually burst out in singing he so confident in God same thing you say, but he raises it or not. She says my heart is steadfast.

I will sing and make music. I will awaken the dog and finally come to the section that I identify a stanza a these of the direct address to God. Notice at the beginning is calling out to God for mercy saying he's going to take refuge in God until the danger is passed by the time you get to the end always doing is praising God is singing praises to him is praising him among the nations, and the reason he's doing that is God's love is great in his faithfulness reaches to the skies. What I mean about the movement of the song is something else. He mentions love and faithfulness of God. At the beginning you have in verse three define the faithfulness and love of God mentioned again at the end of verse 10 in between.

In verse seven, and because of that. David says my heart is steadfast. I would say that's probably the emotional center of the college because of who God is, because he's hiding in God that he is steadfast later trying to hide and anything else.

Well, you're not going to be steadfast because anything else which you can hide is going to pass away. Heaven and earth will pass away is what Jesus said God is not going to pass away God's eternal one severe hidden in him your protected under the shadow of his wings, then you are as secure as government and you can say my heart is steadfast because I'm steadfast in him. We don't have a lot of that today steadfast Christianity and probably we haven't had it for a long long time. I sometimes mention Alexander McLaren. It was one of the great Bible expositors and 50 years ago as a sermon on this text.

My heart is fixed because of the fixed tournament redo just a paragraph or two of what McLaren wrote in order to have a fixed heart. He said I must have a fixed determination and not a mere fluctuating and broken intention. I must have a steadfast affection, not merely a fluttering love that like a butterfly lights now in this now and that flower I need to be straight as a carrier pigeon that is going home and I must have a continuous realization of my dependence upon God and of God's suite sufficient seat going with me all through the dusty day mega's person brother and he says how unlike the broken interrupted divergent lines we draw average Christianity fairly represented by such words as these do they not rather make us burn with shame when we think that a man who lived in the twilight of God's revelation very beginning where didn't have all of the teaching that we have. He didn't have the whole of the Old Testament of the New Testament. Amanda lived in the twilight of God's revelation and was weighed upon by distresses such as running the Psalm out of him that he should report out this resolved. While we live in the sunlight and are flooded with blessings find it hard to echo this with sincerity and truth fixed hearts, he says are rare among the Christians of this day while McLaren died more than 50 years ago when he wrote the sermon must've been more than last things improved in the last half-century very foolish to think, so we have less steadfastness today. Perhaps ever. Certainly less than we had that well after we see what David is saying here were not surprised when we come to verse five in verse 11. Refrain of the chorus defined in praising God be exalted.

Oh God, above the heavens let your glory fill the earth. God is exalted above the heavens and his glory does fill the earth. Other Psalms tell us that heavens reveal the glory of God. The firmament shows forth his handiwork. That's what the Psalm say so. David is not praying that that might happen in that kind of abstract way by the revelation of God in nature. What is he saying here is not saying God has been exalted or is exalted is asking for God to be exalted, and when you ask a question you say well how is God exalted the answer, obviously, is in here that's what he means is the essay by whom and what manner.

How so should God be exalted in the answer is by how I conduct myself here in the cave. A lot of this was not angry. In his life, humanly speaking, is going to become king. Eventually buddies in a long way from actress even when he is making in Hebron some years later, so only in Hebron at seven more years before he becomes king of the United country. What we would call humanly speaking dark days in the case. Yet you say, what is praying here is that God will be exalted in his life by the way he conducts himself while he is in the K, we suggest that's what we are called to do as they wait. We think the way for God to be exalted in our lives is for us to be exalted. If we get a great important position, and where Christians will say, well, God gave me this great important position as a word, exalting God, but that isn't the way it's done.

Where did the Lord Jesus Christ disclaim most of the glory of God. It was on the cross.

That's where we learn about the love and the grace and mercy and the wisdom and the compassion of God Almighty see where we're able. Most glorify God is not when we are sitting on the throne when we are hiding in the cave because it's in that kind of a situation they were able to say is David Dawes I am hiding the makes me think of Ephesians, you know, in Ephesians, where Paul and the third chapters writing about the purpose of God in history gets on to talk about the Angels a decision of the Angels were looking on to see what we do and the reason they're looking on this to see the manifold wisdom of God, made known in the church.

Many says so.

Therefore, don't be discouraged because of my sufferings for you say because is in his sufferings of the manifold wisdom of God is displaying and it's in the cave, the glory of God is revealed and it's in your suffering, your disappointments, your hardships, your aches and pains, whatever they may be.

If you receive Moses from God and take them to God a hike in God and glorify God. The God of even the world to be happy everything goes well where Christian hides God. That is something that even the Angels book on Marvel they say isn't simply wonderful God is able to do in those sinful people. Isn't it wonderful how they will glorify him. Father, we thank you for the Psalm.

Thank you for its teaching. We thank you for the circumstances under which it came. Because our circumstances are frequently like David's, we find ourselves cut off, sometimes even in hiding, and certainly disappointed life again and again to say here's Amanda knew what it is to belong to you and trust you and were encouraged by that and we ask you to take land and apply it to us in such practical ways that we will be able all our lives to look at the Psalm and say what I learn something from actress we were studying at that might and it really does change the way I look at things and because of that I really want to live for Jesus Christ and glorify God in whatever circumstance of life he leads me to so praise him and praise the Lord Jesus Christ our thank you for listening to this message from the Bible study our listener supported ministry of the alliance of confessing Evangelicals. The alliance is a coalition of pastors, scholars and churchmen who hold to the historic creeds and confessions of the reformed faith and who proclaimed biblical doctrine in order to foster a reformed awakening in today's church. To learn more about the alliance visit alliance and while you're there, visit our online store reformed resources. You can find messages and books from Dr. Boyce and other outstanding teachers and theologians, or ask for a free reformed resources catalog by calling 1-800-488-1888. Please take the time to write to us and share how the Bible study our has impacted you. We love to hear from you and pray for you. Our address is 600 Eden Rd., Lancaster, PA 17601. Please consider giving financially to help keep the Bible study our impacting people for decades to come. You can do so that our website alliance over the phone at 1-800-488-1888 or send a check to 600 Eden Rd., Lancaster, PA 176014 Canadian gifts mill those 2237 Rouge Hills Dr., Scarborough, ON M, one scene two line. Thanks for your continued clearance and for listening to Bible study.

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