Share This Episode
The Truth Pulpit Don Green Logo

Seeing Trials Through Seasoned Eyes (Through the Psalms) Psalm 71

The Truth Pulpit / Don Green
The Truth Network Radio
April 23, 2022 8:00 am

Seeing Trials Through Seasoned Eyes (Through the Psalms) Psalm 71

The Truth Pulpit / Don Green

On-Demand Podcasts NEW!

This broadcaster has 247 podcast archives available on-demand.

Broadcaster's Links

Keep up-to-date with this broadcaster on social media and their website.


April 23, 2022 8:00 am

Welcome to Through the Psalms, a weekend ministry of The Truth Pulpit. Over time, we will study all 150 psalms with Pastor Don Green from Truth Community Church in Cincinnati, Ohio. We're glad you're with us. Let's open to the Psalms now as we join our teacher in The Truth Pulpit.--thetruthpulpit.comClick the icon below to listen.

        Related Stories

 

YOU MIGHT ALSO LIKE

Welcome to through the song we give ministry of the truthful teaching God's people. God's word over time will study 150 Psalms with pastor Don Greene from truth Community Church in Cincinnati, Ohio were so glad you're with us. Let's open to the Psalms right now as we join our teacher in the truthful Psalm 71 is were going to start, let me just start by reading the Psalm I have. I deeply fallen in love with this Psalm.

In the past several weeks as I've been preparing to teach it so much so that I'm going to spend two messages on it and very delighted that you're here for what has become one of the most precious Psalms in all of the Psalter to me for reasons that I think will become clear as we study together. Psalm 71 beginning in verse one says in you, oh Lord. I've taken refuge. Let me never be ashamed in your righteousness.

Deliver me and rescue me incline your ear to me and save me be to me a rock of habitation to which I may continually come.

You have given commandment to save me, for you are my rock and my fortress, rescue me.

Oh my God out of the hand of the wicked out of the grasp of the wrongdoer and ruthless man for you are my hope, oh Lord God, you are my confidence from my youth by you. I have been sustained for my birth. You are he who took me from my mother's womb. My praises continually of you I become a marvel to many, for you are my strong refuge.

My mouth is filled with your praise and with your glory all day long.

Do not cast me off in the time of old age.

Do not forsake me when my strength fails for my enemies have spoken against me and those who watch for my life. It consulted together saying God has forsaken him pursue and sees him for there is no one to deliver. Oh God, do not be far from me. Oh my God, hasten to my help. Let those who are adversaries of my soul be ashamed and consumed.

Let them be covered with reproach and dishonor to seek to injure me.

But as for me, I will hope continually and will praise you yet more and more my mouth shall tell of your righteousness, and of your salvation all day long for. I do not know the sum of them. I will come with the mighty deeds of the Lord God, I will make mention of your righteousness.

Yours alone. Oh God. You have taught me from my youth and I still declare your wondrous deeds and even when I am old and gray all God do not forsake me, until I declare your strength to this generation.

Your power to all who are to come for your righteousness. So God reaches to the heavens you who have done great things. So God who is like you. You have shown me many troubles and distresses will revive me again and will bring me up again from the depths of the earth, may you increase my greatness in turn to comfort me. I will also praise you with a harp, even your truth. Oh my God to you.

I will sing praises with the liar old holy one of Israel, my lips will shout for joy when I sing praises to you and my soul which you have redeemed my tongue also will letter your righteousness all day long, for they are ashamed for. They are humiliated who seek my hurt and over the years. One of the things that I've come to just desire and appreciate the most is just the concept of just dealing with things the way they really are dealing with reality rather than a conjured up dream or a desire that things would be different than the way that they are. I like to deal with reality. I like for things to I like to deal with things as they actually exist and not the way that we would necessarily want them to be and this Psalm is a solemn oath that expresses the concerns of old age or older age, you might say. And as I've prepared for this time together in Psalm 71.

It is often occurred to me that those who would sell us retirement products.

For example, are masters at creating a completely false expectation of what the end of life is going to be like in other always setting you up, you've got the ocean breeze going through your hair and you have everything that you need in your strong in life and you know you got some gray hair, but you've got a nice looking spouse beside you and you got everything that you need in life is now on easy street because you hit the retirement years. Well, that's not reality it's a nice way to try to get people to invest and I'm all in favor of investing for your retirement. But that's not reality, it creates a sense of expectation that the end of life will somehow be easy, that somehow there is going to be a smooth Boulevard ahead of you when you reach your latter years in this Psalm Psalm 71 helps correct us with a sense of what the reality of life actually is. It meets life where it actually takes place in what we find in this Psalm is the psalmist who is not identified at all. There is no inscription in this Psalm whatsoever. What we find is is that at an age where this almost might have expected tranquility in his life because he had been living for the Lord. All of this time. Instead he found the trials were his lot look. For example, in Psalm 71 verse nine as I like to do. I like to point out certain highlights to orient you because we go through these things rather quickly, and Psalm 71 verse nine he says do not cast me off in the time of old age. Do not forsake me when my strength fails and then in verse 18 he says, even when I am old and gray.

Oh God, do not forsake me, until I declare your strength to this generation. Your power to all who are to come. What we have here in this Psalm is a is a man writing this Psalm who is been walking with God and serving him for a very extended period of time and he has developed over the course of that a settled sense of trust in the tried and tested faithfulness of God. Look at verse three. For example, he says be to me a rock of habitation to which I may continually come.

You have given commandment to save me, for you are my rock and my fortress, and then in verse six he says the same thing in a different way. He says by you. I have been sustained from my birth.

You are he who took me from my mother's womb. My praises continually of you see that adverb a couple of times continually continually.

This is a man who has an established track record of walking with God and seeing God manifest his faithfulness through different episodes in life through different seasons of life, and he is found through each season that God has proven himself faithful in every one of them. Verse 14 you see it again, he says, but as for me, I will hope continually and will praise you yet more and more one. So what's happening here in Psalm 71 is this with all of this lifetime experience of the Lord's faithful deliverances in all of his sorrows and difficulties throughout life. He is come to yet another difficulty in life that he needs the Lord's help with, and so he turns again to deliverance. He turns to God again for deliverance from those who would seek his harm and would mock him for his faith. The commentator Robert Davidson says this and listen to this closely because it really does frame the Psalm in a very helpful way, in my opinion. He says we are listening to the prayer and praise of a man who nurtured in the faith. From his earliest days. Now in old age reaffirms that faith as he faces a crisis in his life." And just kind of this kind of opening up the door to the Psalm with the recognition here is a man faithful through the years.

Having seen God's proven loyal love. Over time, and time and time again and what's the outcome he's not on easy street. It's not easy for him. Even after that lifetime of walking with God.

To the contrary is facing another difficult crisis. He has another set of enemies that are after his neck and so is turning to God once again and I just think that it is so helpful to view reality from that perspective were going to talk about this this week and also next week if my intentions prove me no proof to come to fruition is that we need to have a mature sense about what life is like don't way. We got some gray hair in here not looking at any of you in particular, but it's not hard to find you.

We have some young people here on the front on the front end of life. Looking forward with a sense of hope and expectation full of dreams and that's as it should be, you know. Looking forward with expectation to what life might hold. Well, that's great. That's the way that it should be. But as we do that we need to have a a realistic set of expectations about what life is going to be like as we get into older age is not realistic to think that that's going to exempt us from trials and those of us that have been parents in you as you watch and your kids become adults in all that you understand what I mean don't you know you have these hopes and expectations for your kids and sometimes it plays out well and sometimes it's hard and it's disappointing it's it's they bring you grief and I'm not speaking from personal experience on that score. Mind you, but just recognizing that this is the nature this is the nature of life and so what we want to do is one asked this question how how can we help what can we learn from the Psalm and if you want to titled write down for this message.

It's it's I've titled it seeing trials through seasoned eyes seeing trials through seasoned eyes. You have a man writing this Psalm who is experienced in the faith who is strong and confident and yet he is still in need. Let's take a look at it together here and will bring these things out as we go along first point for this evening is is worried we see him in his time of need his time of need.

This almost opens up the Psalm with a prayer for help. Look at verses one through four. He says in you, oh Lord, I have taken refuge using that covenant name of God, Yahweh, the name of the covenant keeping God of Israel, the one who keeps his promises.

He's appealing to that covenant keeping name of God as he opens up the Psalm and he says and you will Lord I've taken refuge.

Let me never be ashamed and so he speaking. Here's what I want you to see. There's so much here. This almost is speaking from a a settled principle of life as he is writing the song I have taken refuge in you he is he is making a comprehensive statement that my life has been one of finding my strength, my defense, my comfort my help in you, O God, and now from that perspective. I pour out my prayer to you because he finds himself again in the hand of the wicked.

Look at verses two through four. He says in your righteousness. Deliver me and rescue me incline your ear to me and save me be to me a rock of habitation to which I may continually come. You have given commandment to save me, for you are my rock and my fortress, rescue me. Oh my God out of the hand of the wicked out of the grasp of the wrongdoer and ruthless man for you are my hope that let's take a couple of look at a couple of things here notice the confidence that anchors what he is saying and how he is praying. Here he calls the Lord is refuge is rock his fortress. In other words, he has found security over the course of his life as he turned repeatedly to his God for help in trials.

Now he's writing is an experienced man of the faith. I want to point out something really basic to you, especially for you young Christians starting on the front end of life. Maybe your faith hasn't been tested too much by serious difficult heart wrenching trials. But here's what you have to see, it's like anything else is like being in sports. It's like being in business. It's like is like raising a family.

You have to deal with situations you and you deal with them one by one in the way that you come to this place, beloved, the way that you come to this place of settled trust and confidence in your later years is by trusting God through the difficulties that come one by one. Individually, they may not seem like much, or individually. They may seem overwhelming, but as as trials come into your life.

Your responsibility in the way that you grow in faith is. As each trial comes you turned to God and you trust him you walk with him you humble yourself under the under the weight of the trial and you don't run from it, but rather you patiently persevere taking your refuge. Finding the finding the comfort in the Solis and the strength of your soul in the midst of the person of God and not by trying to change your circumstances. Beloved, you young people over to my right. If you would embrace that as as a principle by which you would live you will find yourself in this place of confidence of the psalmist writes in toward the end of his life. Strong faith is developed by walking through trials not running away from them.

That is the only way that you are going to learn that God is your refuge that God is your strength that God is your fortress and you must stay in the trial, you must you must not run from it, but you must learn to look to God for the satisfaction of your soul. When there is nothing external to prompt that gladness in your heart.

That's how you grow through your trials. That's how you become a strong man or woman of faith.

This is how you maintain a strong testimony for Christ and I ask you, my beloved friends. Isn't that what you want to be. Isn't that what you want more than anything. When you search out the deepest depths of your heart. The redeemed heart and say whatever else happens to me in life. I want to be known as someone who was faithful to my God, I want to be known as someone who was faithful to Christ. I want to be someone whose life is a manifestation that God is faithful through all of the ups and downs that did inevitably come to us in life isn't that what you want is not quite rhetorical, but will treated as rhetorical.

You don't have to answer out loud but I believe that to be true about you. I believe that that's what you want, what we find here in the Psalm is the path to be known for that is your lifelong testimony comes by one by one dealing with those difficult trials as they come and submitting in trust to whatever God brings to you in your life and looking to him and asking him to sustain you and help you through it all. And yes, sometimes it may Christ seem to be crushing that the very breath of life out of you because it is so hard and so grievous and so difficult and you have that sense of pressure on you that sometimes makes it difficult to breathe.

Well beloved. It's in that time were you most turn in trust to your refuge or rock in your fortress. That's what this psalmist has done. His faith was settled. His faith was was not open for discussion, it wasn't open to negotiation and it it is that position of strength in that position. A maturity that puts him in a position in this Psalm to ask for help in his difficulties and what you find in this all what you find from the psalmist is is that he has thought deeply about the nature of God and the nature of life as I will show you in just a moment. This Psalm opens up to us the reality that deep spiritual thinking is the key to having this kind of faith and deep spiritual thinking.

Beloved does not come from, always looking to have the most favorable circumstances that you can possibly have. We recognize that sometimes God brings trials into our life that are going to test us through going to sanctify us are going to purify us that are going to expose sin in our heart even and through that we don't run we don't hide we submit to the trial and we let God do his work. What we find is as we do that what you find on the on the far end of that process will you young people you young adults look this is this is the testimony that you want to aim your life for this is where you want to be 20, 30, 40 years from now.

Being a person who can say something like this we find in verses five and six where the psalmist says look at it there with me. He says, for you are my hope you are my confidence from my youth by you.

I have been sustained from my birth.

You are he who took me from my mother's womb. My praises continually of you look at the perspective that he has on life and the way that he is thinking about life. He is thinking about more than this window of difficulty that he faces at the hands of his enemies he steps back as I often do what I can't do it because I'm stuck to the pulpit mic tonight. He steps back from his problem and he looks at life from the big picture perspective. So much so that he recognizes he recognizes that this God who he is, who is is God today was God over his life when he was born.

He is looking at life as a unit is a complete big picture, and he looks back to his time of birth.

He recognizes that God had sovereignly appointed him to be a man of God, even at birth and he says he says God I look back and I see that even when I was born, you were there orchestrating my life and you were covering me and protecting me before I even knew it. That's the way to think that's a right way for us to think those of you that are Christians here today to look back and recognize that even when you were first born God had his hand on you is not that he suddenly took notice of you when you cried out to be saved. Know God is been sovereign over the whole thing not only to birth but extending back to Calvary and extending back into eternity past where the Scriptures tell us that he chose us in Christ before the foundation of the world and so with some of you would have this conversation in the past where you look back and you recognize it. Even before you were a Christian, God was sovereignly directing and protecting you, protecting you from evil associations, protecting you from sin that would have wrecked your life protecting you from death, even when you were exposed to illness or an accident or a near miss in life. How should we think about those things. How can we think biblically and spiritually about those things will look at it this way and we say all you know what, even before I was in Christ God had his hand on me, to protect me because God had it in his mind that he was going to get work through my youth work through my childhood work through and bring it bring me to a point where I would be his, and I would one day be an established man of faith in Christ, so that so that we don't look back at the past and see it as a series of random events. Rather, we see the guiding hand of God, through it all and recognize the surpassing supremacy of the sovereignty of our Savior, the surpassing greatness of his plan for us.

The surpassing and comprehensive nature of his plan for our lives now.

Stay with me here when you have that perspective you know what it does when you have that perspective that about all of life Weldon that starts to inform you from the perspective that you have of your individual trials when they come up, whether they be lied or whether they be heavy. They say the God who guided me from birth is the God who who has his hand on me here now and and maybe with a broken heart. Maybe with tears streaming down my cheeks, but I'm going to look to him with a sense of confidence that he will be good to me and deliver me and help me, just like he always has done. That's how you develop into a mature person of faith in what he's doing here.

I love this. I told you love the song look at look at verse six with me here. Now let's go to verse five. Again, I know we've read them already. But he says you are my confidence from my youth. He can look back with with spiritual binoculars into the depth of his memory look back at the earliest moments of the earliest memories of his of his young agent says you are my God back then but he doesn't stop with his conscious memory. He looks beyond his conscious memory and says God you are my God from birth, you were always my God and what he means by that is that the Lord was Lord you were keeping me before I was even aware of it. That language reminds us of similar parallel but more familiar passage in Psalm 39 why don't you turn there with me. Psalm 139, beginning in verse 13. Look how deeply the psalmists recognize the hand of God in their lives.

Going back even to their conception and their time and their mother's womb.

Verse 13 of Psalm 139 you formed my inward parts, you wove me in my mother's womb. I will give thanks to you, for I am fearfully and wonderfully made. Wonderful are your works in my soul knows it very well.

My frame was not hidden from you when I was made in secret, and skillfully wrought in the depths of the earth your eyes have seen my unformed substance and in your book were all written the days that were ordained for me, when as yet there was not one of them, God, you have appointed my life God. You formed me in my mother's womb you have. You have appointed the days in which I shall live. God you are over it all and we are to look at that and to see that that we draw from that overall picture. This sovereign care and sovereign love of God that informs our perspective as we go through day by day life and so he has a very rich and robust faith that he is expressing and what he says here verse seven and a going back to Psalm 71. Others have noticed this lifelong display of God's goodness to him. He says in verse seven.

I have become a marvel to many, for you are my strong refuge. My mouth is filled with your praise and with your glory all day long.

He says many have observed this now that could be taken as as a that it's a warning to the wicked. Some see it that way.

Some see it as he's making a statement that that the faithful, the righteous, the ones who love his God also have seen it in whatever the case may be, as to who the audience of which he speaking here is here's the point that God's provision for his life and his ongoing praise to this God have had a wide testimony. There has been an expansive audience to his testimony of God's faithfulness to him and that extraordinary work calls for explanation.

He says there in verse seven, for you have been my strong refuge I become a marvel to many, many of seen it. Why why this testimony because God you have proven to be a strong refuge in my life that sensitive for you directs the attention away from his enemies and upward toward his God. So what's he doing here as he talks about this testimony and expresses his faith in the midst of these difficulties.

One commentator said it this way. He said he is looking to God to see through to a conclusion. The work he began so long ago.

Philippians 16 often quoted off-the-cuff says I'm confident of this very thing, that he who began a good work and you will perfected until the day of Christ Jesus. Beloved, would you have a strong faith.

Would you have a sense of confident trust that would inform the sense in which you walk through trials in this life, would you have that would you want that I do. Well here's the way that you think about it, in part, is that you look back and you say God I recognize that you formed me in my mother's womb.

I recognize that you have sustained me throughout. Even in my pre-conversion days. I recognize that throughout my Christian life had gone through trials.

The waves of covered me up.

I've cried out for help.

I been cold and frustrated and and and and awash in difficulties and wondered if I was ever going to survive and God each time as I look back I see that your hand is brought me through. Again and again and again and again and now God now having the seasoned eyes. Now he looks at his present trial says this is just one more example II hide. I've seen this story before God. We sung this song before. This is not a new cam from the hymnal God. This is simply another instance where I am in difficulty and I have every reason to expect that you will deliver me like you have 100% of the times before. Right.

And so he recognizes the work of God in his life and says God I just I just expect you to complete it to do what you have always done in beloved here right at that point is where you really some of us really need to examine to examine our hearts and think about what were doing. Don't you understand my friends don't you understand that there comes a point where it is just settled and no longer up for discussion in your life no longer up for debate in your heart about whether God is going to be faithful to you are not. Maybe in your early days your earliest days of your Christianity and you struggle and you don't have any experience to draw on, you're not completely familiar with God's word and and you know and you don't know how it's going to come out and you wrestle with that mature faith where we want to go from our weak faith to a strong, robust faith, there comes a point where you say I am now. I am not going to open the question of whether God is faithful.

That is not open for discussion. He is faithful. End of story.

I don't know what's going to happen here, but it's not a question about whether God's faithful to me or not.

I do not allow that discussion to take place in my heart.

Do you have that kind of settled confidence.

Have you come to that point of maturity that says this will no longer be open for discussion. There are some things that are just not that we just don't go back and reopen. We don't go back and reopen whether Jesus is the only Savior of mankind. We don't go back and reopen whether his shed blood and righteousness are sufficient to pay for our sins and to reconcile us to a holy God. We don't we don't we don't debate those things as if there could be any other conclusion because it can't be. And watch out for those teachers who like to ask questions that would cast doubt on settled certainties of the faith and then they say. Although I was only asking a question. While there are times where the question itself is sinful.

If it is being asked in a way that cast doubt on established certainties of the faith will in our hearts as we walk with God. There comes a point where we just say I'm not debating this anymore.

I may be utterly confused. I may not know what's coming next. But I one thing I know one thing I know, great is thy faithfulness and it's not that great, may be your faithfulness.

Great was your faithfulness. Great will be your faithfulness verb tenses matter.

They really do God great is thy faithfulness and my soul knows very well and I'm gonna stand there. Come with me. Well, this is the kind of faith that this seasoned saint is expressing. But despite his age and maturity. He still when needed.

Still a time of difficulty for them and it's always says in verse nine he says do not cast me off in the time of old age. Do not forsake me when my strength fails for my enemies have spoken against me and those who watch for my life have consulted together saying God has forsaken him pursue and sees him for there is no one to deliver. And what's happening here is this notice. Notice that he's in verse nine he sees talking about this time of old age and his strength is starting to fail.

And here's here's the here's the situation for him as he says he's writing this is that that life in a physical way is catching up with him. He does not he does not have the former vigor of his youth, his physical strength has diminished, but he still has enemies, but he still has opposition, but he still has trials. This is why I expressed it like I did at the opening of our of our time together is that here is a season saint approaching the that the latter years.

The sunset years of his life and he sees his life and his strength starting to diminish. And yet the enemies are still there. The trials are still there and so he has there. He's living out the sense of expectation that I was alluding to earlier know it's not always going to be easy. It's not always there difficulties are bound to come. Sorrows and disappointments are bound to come to us in the question is we we can avoid him might postpone him, but that eventually they're going to catch up with this question is is what then what then beloved. What kind of man of God. What kind of woman of God, are you going to be when that time comes for you what Psalm 71 beckons us to what Psalm 71 lays before us is an aspiration of our heart is to find that our trust can still be exercised and vindicated and proven rightly placed in those times.

Look at verse 12 and 13, he says, oh God, do not be far from me. Oh my God, hasten to my help. Let those who are adversaries of my soul be ashamed and consumed, but them be covered with reproach and dishonor to seek to injure me and so we see him in his time of need. He's he's prayed to God and asked for his help. It is done.

So from this perspective. He says God your love has preceded me in this present trial, your love has been a continual factor continual reality and unbroken force for good in my life from the time I was born until now, and that that love precedes this trial and God. This love is going to endure beyond this trial and that puts our problems in perspective. God, you've always you've always loved me you've always been faithful you were working in my life before I even belong to you and you have promise that you are going to continue that work and perfected until one day I stand before you face-to-face made perfect glorified seeing Christ face-to-face. Seeing my resurrected Lord and having been made like him. The early years of my life right early down payment on that.

That is the outcome and got here. I am kind of in between, on the other side of your early dispensations of love still prior to the final consummation of it the Lord. I get the picture.

There is an unbroken cord of loyal love that runs through everything in my life and I cling to that court is that which will sustain me now you should see something here, but you should see is is that your theology and your knowledge of God matters when you know God according to his revealed attributes as they are found in the 66 books of the Bible when you know him like that it makes a difference in the way that you live in makes a difference in your whole disposition toward life when you know something of the love of Christ.

When you have some kind of an appreciation for the fact that he stood at the cross in your place is your substitute bearing wrath so that you might be forgiven and reconciled to a holy God. And that's who Christ is, you can rest in that even in your time of need and when that is true, praise and trust become the controlling dynamic in your heart rather than fear and doubt you know the Lord is good is gracious to us and overweight overlooks what is sometimes are very weak faith. Sometimes our faltering questioning weak faith and he is gracious to to us in that week faith and it does not diminish his faithfulness to us that our faith is weak in those times when that happens, the beloved.

What I would have you to see is this is that while yes, the Lord is gracious to us in our times of week faith the ideas, not for us to just accept that and let week faith become the manner in which we live, but rather to grow in the knowledge of God grow in our confidence grow in our express trust in him, so that your week faith would become strong faith and would become the kind of lasting testimony that this season.

Saint is expressed in Psalm 70 1C it's is not just about getting through life. It's about. It's about setting aspirations about the kind of the kind of spiritual person that you want to become the kind of Christian that you want to be the kind of life that you want to render in response to this great salvation. The Christ is given to you say God I want to faith. It's worthy of the heights of your greatness even while I thank you for the times that you sustained me and been faithful and gracious to me when it seems like doubt was the greater part of my faith. His time of need. Well, let's move into the second section of the Solomon take a quick look at his timeless praise is timeless. Praise Siu has enemies around him. We seen that he's asked God in verse 13 to let them be ashamed and consumed and covered with reproach and dishonor, but now as he pivots in verse 14 he expresses this determination to praise God. Look at verse 14 he says, but as for me, he set up a contrast Lord of talked about them. Now, Lord, I will give to you. The response of my own heart. As for me, I will hope continually, and I will praise you yet more and more my mouth shall tell of your righteousness, and of your salvation all day long for. I do not know the sum of them. I will come with the mighty deeds of the Lord God, I will make mention of your righteousness.

Yours alone. And here he is he is he is is worry is taking off into the into the headwinds of opposition and difficulty and sorrow. But what does what does it become what does that. What does that resistance come except the wind under his wings that raises him up higher to praise God more and more, says God, this is what my enemies are like God. These are the people that are opposing me. I recognize they want my harm. But as for me I will not allow that to define my perspective in the face of their opposition to me personally. God, I will praise you even more.

I will I will acknowledge your greatness even more. I will express my confidence in you all the more. The more that they push against me, Lord, I will push back, not against them. But in appraised hands to praise your name do you see it. Beloved, you see how how wonderful and beautiful. This is do you see the triumph of the redeemed soul responding to God rather than at circumstances and there is a vertical commitment to it in verse 14.

Look at this. I love this. I told you I love this song. He says as for me, I will hope continually and vertically speaking. He says I will praise you yet more and more vertical dimension to it, and yet there's a horizontal commitment that is expressing in this in as well. In verse 15 he says my mouth shall tell of your righteousness, and of your salvation all day long for.

I do not know the sum of them all come with the mighty deeds of the Lord God, I will make mention of your righteousness. Yours alone. Lord, when I am in the presence of men, I will declare your faithfulness to them.

Vertical horizontal God. This opposition comes what it's going to do is not make me collapse in fear and trembling, and escape. Rather, Lord, what this is going to do what the commitment of my heart is is I'm going to acknowledge you all the more to you in praise to my fellow man in testimony's magnificent, isn't it in this lifetime of God's faithfulness to him is now informing his proclamation. God is faithful to keep his promises and to show himself true to his servants.

My brothers and sisters in Christ. That should be the settled disposition of our heart that there is that there is this ever-expanding realm within your thought within your priorities within your perspective that says I belong to this God he is. He is mine.

I am his and he is mine and what does this God do for me. Who is this God to me. I'll tell you who this God is to me. He is the God who is faithful to keep his promises and to show himself true to his servants, I will not serve the Lord my God with my life and have it shown to be vain.

In the end that that was a wasted disposition of life. I will serve him and before it is manifested. I know in advance that he will vindicate and show that he was faithful to me and that is not open for discussion that that there is no doubt about the outcome. About that you say to yourself in week faith grows and becomes stronger faith as its tested trial by trial and disappointment by disappointment and, tier by tier, you look again and again and again and you say this seems overwhelming. I don't understand what's happening but I know this God will show himself faithful to me.

In the end, even if I don't see how I don't have to understand I don't have to see the outcome in order to be able to say that there were times in my early Christian life where I did not have that perspective, it was life was challenging and sad and sorrowful, and in all that and maybe my memory is not good about those times about the people who were the men who were speaking into my life with books and different things like that but part of the reason that I preach like I do at times like this is because I look back on those times of doubt and sorrow and coming within a mouses mustache of apostasy from a human perspective. I look back and I wish so much that someone had spoken to me like I'm preaching to you now to have called me to higher ground. Don't dwell in all of the sorrow don't don't just collapse inside look at who God is. Look at his greatness. Don't try to figure everything out first look to the sovereign majesty and the endless grace and love of Christ, manifested at the cross and put your trust in that even when you don't understand. I needed someone to come to me and speak to me that way because I needed someone to call me to higher ground. Well why do I preach like I do sometimes like this is because for some miserably defeated heart tonight different times in my ministry. I just believe that there are people who need to hear that. Leave behind your doubts and come to the higher ground of the character of God, and you'll find safety and security and peace and comfort there that you won't find any place else. That's why matters to me.

Can't do anything else I can preach any other way. Beloved, you see this is what Scripture calls us to.

This is what is true and I know by personal experience that this is right. It's not true because of my experience, but I know my own in my own experience, it is vindicated. Everything that Scripture has said about the faithfulness and goodness of God. I can't diminish that I can't qualified accounts sounded out less than what it is he is great he is good and he is worthy of your trust. Even now, and what we see as we go on in Psalm 71 is that that expectation is shaping the psalmist life of faith. Look at verse 17 he says, oh God. You have taught me from my youth and I still declare your wondrous DGC. There's a sense of passage of time there. He looks back and says God in my youth I was declaring your faithfulness and I'm still doing it today and you know I can still do it today because you proven your faithfulness all along is approaching his sunset years. He may be in his sunset years. In verse 18. He asked God for the strength to sustain him even then he says in verse 18. Even when I am old and gray. Oh God, do not forsake me, until I declare your strength to this generation. Your power to all who are to come. You know he has that he has a sense of unfinished business.

He says God I'm on the backend of life. I get that. Don't forsake me, give me strength. Give me strength. In this trial.

He's not asking for that from a selfish perspective just because he wants to feel good about stuff he says God I need the strength to be able to. I need you to give me a little bit more platform so that I and in the strength so that I could declare what I know to be true about you. I need to declare that to the next generation. I need to declare to those who are coming up so that they would hear it to an Lord to give my voiceover to that.

That's what he's asking for. I have to be able to tell it to the next generation, the next generation needs to know about your glory. This is a theme in other parts of the Psalter look back in Psalm 22 Psalm 22 verse 30 Psalm 22 verse 30 says says posterity will serve him.

It will be told of the Lord of the coming generation they will come in declare his righteousness to a people who will be born that he is performed. It so you have the psalmist declaring it to that the following generation, the to live at his time and he has in mind that that their time will come. Were there declaring it to yet a future generation that's even yet to be born.

He has the sense of a multi generational passing along of the testimony of the faithfulness of God to his people New Testament times would be thinking and talking about the glory of Christ in his death, burial and resurrection, declaring it to the next generation so that they would be declaring it to the generation to come after them.

See, there is this transcendent perspective that is animating everything that he says looking back decades, to the dark time of his birth. God you were faithful to me then God. I see myself now. I trust you. I need your help. God I need strength so that I can talk to these people are coming up to her 2030 4050 years behind me and they need to be talking to the ones that are ahead of them.

The richness, the depth of this stunning and young people your opportunities to think now on the front end of life that that's what I want to do. I want to grow into the mature season St. that I see writing the Solomon Psalm 71, and I want my life to be given over to the people who were common 3050 years after me are hearing the same great things that were told to me about this Christ and about his word.

Why we why we do what we to and so the greatness of God and the transcendence of all of this commands his continued devotion. Look at verse 19. He's trusting even in the midst of his present depths. He says 19 for your righteousness of God reaches to the heavens you who have done great things.

Oh God, who is like you, you who have shown me many troubles and distresses will revise me again and will bring me up again from the depths of the earth. He says God I've seen so much in my life so many trials and distresses you brought me through a mall I'm in one again. I know how this comes out. This is the same book, different chapter you're going to deliver me again and don't miss that great rhetorical question. There's so much good stuff in the Psalm. Look at verse 19 where he says, oh God, who is like you God there's no one like you and this is a this is a question that was asked repeatedly in the Old Testament in key places in Exodus chapter 15 verse 11. You don't need to turn their oldest read it to you. But after God had delivered the people of Israel through the Red Sea and ground the Egyptian army in Exodus 15 verse 11 in the song of Moses he said, who is like you among the gods, O Lord, who is like you majestic in holiness, awesome, and praises working wonders, says God, what is a God like you as no one answers.

The answers imply there's no one like you. You are alone in your glory. You are alone in your supremacy.

You are alone in your faithfulness to your people. There's no one remotely like you and Micah chapter 7 verse 18 the prophet almost ends his book on that same question Micah chapter 7 verse 18. Give me a moment to turn their Micah 7 verse 18 just after Jonah says who is a God like you who pardons iniquity and passes over the rebellious act of the remnant of his possession. He does not retain his anger forever because he delights in unchanging love God, who is a God like you, but so freely forgives the sin of your people. The passes over them.

The doesn't hold it against them.

Who's a God like you. The delights in the unchanging love that you showed us unworthy sinners. Your unworthy people got his like you know ones like you. So he says, having known this God so well for so long. He asked God for comfort knowing that he will find a favorable year for his request. He found studies expresses in verse 21 of Psalm 71 look at it with me. He says, may you increase my greatness and turn to comfort me.

Seems as though he was a man of influence because he alludes to his greatness God would you increase my position all the more so that I could declare your praise in verse 22. He closes with musical praise. He says in verse 22. I will also praise you with a harp, even your truth all my God to you. I will sing praises with the liar old holy one of Israel, my lips will shout for joy when I sing praises to you and my soul which you have redeemed. He's come full circle. Having started with a cry for help in his distress. He has come full circle remembering the faithfulness of God through generations through his own life and now he comes and ends on the snow to praise in his praise contrasts with the future that awaits his enemies he says in verse 24 says my tongue also will utter your righteousness all day long, for they are ashamed for. They are humiliated who seek my hurt, he speaks about it is so certain as if it already happened. This is what the outcome will be for those who seek the who seek to harm me when I belong to you. So the Psalm comes full circle look at look at verse one with me just for a moment in in verse one. He opens up. He says in you, oh Lord. I've taken refuge.

Let me never be ashamed.

In verse 24 having at begun by asking God to protect him from shame. He says God I know that you will bring shame on his enemies on my enemies. I should say what he saying is this God. I know that you will vindicate my trust in you.

I know that it will be manifest that my trust in you was not in vain. It will be there and evident for all to see Derek Kidner says this he says with his name cleared and his faith confirmed this veteran can set his mind at rest, and his fingers, lips and heart to the praise of God in the telling of the story how great beloved is the faithfulness of this God to his people. Can I remind you of what we taught say almost every single message that we preach. We seen a lot more in the 3000 years since the Psalm was written 2500 years 3000 depending on who the unnamed author was we stand on the side of the cross we look back and we see that this God. This God faithfulness came to earth in the person of Jesus Christ shed his blood is an atonement for sinners just like you and me.

We seen this God go to the grave.

This God be resurrected.

This God ascended into heaven in the person of Christ, and think about it with me. Beloved, I'm almost done here. Think about it from the perspective which we spoke about earlier our Lord Jesus Christ did all of this for you before you were even born. So great was his love so perfect was his intentions toward you that he accomplished everything necessary for your salvation before you were even born. You did not come to know that until the passage of time in your own life, but so great was his love and and compassion and care for you that he provided for everything before you even born and we step back and we say once more with Moses we say with Micah we say with the Psalmist of Christ, who is a God like you spent together in prayer Lord, if you provided in that way for us before we were born we know for certain that you will care for everything that pertains to our lives. Now that we are officially in your family now that we belong to you, who will separate us from the love of Christ shall tribulation, or distress, shall persecution or famine or nakedness, or peril, or sword. They in all of these things we overwhelmingly conqueror through him who loved us. God bring us to that point were regressed fully in your sovereign love in your sovereign care for us in our Helotes echo with the praise of this season saying that we have seen from Psalm 71. In Jesus name we pray. Amen friend. Thank you for joining us on through the Psalms.

If you would like to follow my weekly messages from truth community church go to truth Community Church.org and look for the link titled pulpit podcast again. That's truth Community Church.org God bless you. Thanks Don and Fran through the Psalms is a weekend ministry of the truth sure to join us next week for our study. As Don continues teaching God's people.

God's word and we also invite you to join us on Sunday at 9 AM Eastern for our live screen from truth Community Church in Cincinnati, Ohio.

You can find the link at the truth. Pulpit.com this message is copyrighted by Don Green. All rights reserved


Get The Truth Mobile App and Listen to your Favorite Station Anytime