No, I would prefer to be like David who danced exuberantly even though his wife mocked him for it.
No, I don't care what the unbelievers think about it. I want to sing out with my voice. Why? Because I'm thankful. Because I'm grateful. Because he helped me when I trusted in him. We're so glad you've joined us on the Truth Pulpit with Don Green, founding pastor of Truth Community Church in Cincinnati, Ohio. I'm Bill Wright, and we're continuing Don's message titled, Confident in Crisis, based on Psalm 28. Last time, Don reminded us that God knows who belongs to him and who does not. He showed us how David responded to crisis in his life and how we can learn from his example. Don will bring us the conclusion of the message on today's broadcast.
He'll also provide you with some practical takeaways to store in your heart and mind always. So friend, have your Bible handy, and let's join Don Green now as he continues teaching God's people God's word from the Truth Pulpit. Go back to Psalm 1, verse 6. I want you to see I could do this with almost every Psalm. Because we said many, many times that the subsequent 149 Psalms in some ways are simply an outworking of Psalm 1, verse 6. That says, the Lord knows the way of the righteous, but the way of the wicked will perish. Beloved, if you get worked up over what's happening in the world around you or in your personal life, come back to this verse repeatedly over and over again. Because there in Psalm 1, verse 6, in Psalm 1, verse 6, you find the key to the moral universe.
You see the outcome of everything that will ever happen. For those of us who know God, who trust in Christ, who belong to him, we can rest, and it's enough for us to be able to say, based on the authority of God's inspired, inerrant Word, the Lord knows my way. He knows it all. He knows that I'm trusting in him, and he's the Lord. He is the faithful, covenant-keeping God. He is Yahweh. He is who he is. I am who I am.
That's who he is. He is a God of loyal love. And as a God of loyal love who has set his love on me, it can only come out well for me in the end. There is no other possible alternative ending but that it comes out well for me in the end. I rest in that, you say to yourself.
I trust in that. And someone says, well, don't you know anything about the world, about what's happening around you? Can't you see that the world has changed and that things are shifting? And God is silent. Where's your God now? I don't have to be able to answer that question or to explain all the intricacies of God's providence or how he will ever bring this to pass to reverse those who seem to be strong and powerful now.
I don't need to know. There's one thing that I need to know in order to interpret the wickedness of the world around me, and that is what Psalm 1 says at the end. The way of the wicked will perish. It will end in destruction. It will come to naught.
It will be overturned. And when you have that settled in your mind, you have the twin tracks that the train of your life can run on. On the one track, the Lord knows the way of the righteous. On the other track, the way of the wicked will perish. We go forward in confidence and strength from that.
Period. And, you know, when you remember what the Lord said in places like 1 Samuel 16 verse 7, that God does not see as man sees, for man looks at the outward appearance, but the Lord looks on the heart. Beloved, what you should want is that in your heart, when the Lord looks there, he finds a settled confidence, even in times of crisis, that says, Lord, I'm resting on your promises. I'm confident in your holiness. I'm confident in your power, in your faithfulness, in your goodness, that you'll remember me even as you deal with the wicked.
Lord, that's all I need to know. And not be ashamed of having a simple, by which I mean a unified, wholehearted faith. Even if the world mocks it, I don't care. Do you? Do you care?
I don't care. We can rest on the promises of God like a weaned child rests on his mother's chest, and find our security and confidence in the one who holds us in his hands. Now, with that certainty of God's justice established in his mind, go back to Psalm 28 now, and we'll shift into the second half of the psalm here. You see a new attitude that emerges here, and we said the first half was David in crisis. Here in the second half, you see David in confidence.
And this is going to lead us straight back to our Lord Jesus Christ in the end. David expressed his prayer, and now he has a revived and a renewed demeanor. He blesses God because he anticipates an answer from God. Verse 6 says, blessed be the Lord because he has heard the voice of my supplication.
This shows confidence. God is no longer silent. What David says is that his voice of praise rises up, not from altered circumstances, but from a renewed confidence that God has heard his prayer.
It is enough for David, it is enough for us to know that the omnipotent God of the universe has heard and received our prayer favorably. If God has heard us, and God has promised to respond to us, then we can rest in that even if nothing changes. There is that confidence that says God is not silent. God's character gives me confidence. He has heard my believing prayer. Christ has intervened at the cross for me. And in the language and the argument of the Apostle Paul, if this God is for me, if this Christ is on my side, who can successfully be against me?
It is trusting God alone, and mark it, beloved, it's trusting God alone before we know the outcome of the circumstance. David says, he heard my voice, that makes me want to praise him. Look at verse 7, and notice the joyful exuberance of his response. God's heard my prayer, and all of a sudden, his heart is lifted up as if on the wings of a multiple engine rocket. And his heart soars into space beyond the gravity of his circumstances and moves into an orbit of trust and confidence in Yahweh. He says, verse 7, the Lord is my strength and my shield. My heart trusts in him, and I am helped. Therefore, my heart exalts, and with my song, I shall thank him. You know, it reminds me, it reminds me of one of the prophets that we studied at the very, very beginning of Truth Community in Habakkuk chapter 3, verse 17. You don't have to turn there.
It would take you too long to find it. But in Habakkuk chapter 3, verse 17, Habakkuk the prophet is praying, and he's anticipating a judgment coming from the hands of the Chaldeans that are going to sweep in and bring God's judgment upon his disobedient people. And Habakkuk prays, he says, though the fig tree should not blossom, and there be no fruit on the vine, though the yield of the olive should fail, and the fields produce no food, though the flock should be cut off from the fold, and there be no cattle in the stalls, though there be nothing to sustain my earthly existence, he says, verse 18, yet I will exalt in the Lord.
I will rejoice in the God of my salvation. God alone is enough to give strength and joy to your heart despite whatever you're facing. In fact, beloved, I would encourage you to this extent, and were it not revealed from the clear teaching of Scripture, I would hesitate to say something like this to you, but this is where your spiritual life can and should and must go. When God seems to have withdrawn every earthly joy and comfort from your life, when sorrow is predominating in your life, when there are threats external and internal to your well-being and you don't know where the answer is going to come from, when you don't know where the next mortgage payment is going to be made from, when you don't know any of those things, when your nearest and dearest has been taken from you in death, and everything in life seems to be barren. Beloved, what I would have you see from God's Word here is that God has presented you an opportunity.
I wish someone had been around 25 years ago to tell me this, it would have helped me and saved me a whole lot of trouble. God is presenting to you an opportunity in those barren times for you to enter into a new depth of understanding of His complete and utter sufficiency to satisfy every longing of your soul. He is sufficient to satisfy the longings of your heart to such a point that you can exalt and be joyful in Him even when the circumstances do not change. And what we see in that is we see how great and how lofty and how sufficient our God is, how great and how lofty and how sufficient our Christ is, how He satisfies every longing of the human heart. When our hearts are satisfied in Him in those times, when we exalt and give thanks to Him in those times, then God's glory is put beautifully on display through your broken heart. I don't say it lightly, I say it on the authority of God's Word. He says in verse 8, the Lord is their strength and He is a saving defense to His anointed.
He said there at the end of verse 7, He said, With My song I shall thank Him. With His heart now resting again in God's protection, with His heart satisfied once more in the sufficiency of the God to whom He belongs, He gives exuberant thanks. God has answered Him in His distress. God, my heart is uncertain.
I'm in a crisis here. Don't be silent to me. In verse 6, God has given Him His answer. He's found that inner strength again. What does He do in verse 7? He does that which you and I sadly too often fail to remember to do.
He goes back and He says what? God, thank You. God, I'm grateful that You've answered my prayer. That when I cried out to You from the pit and when my heart tempted me to think that You were silent and turning away from me and I cried out to You, You and Your mercy reached down and You showed faithfulness to me. You renewed my heart. You restored me. You protected me.
You brought me through even through the taunts of those who were delighted to see me fail. God, I remember that. God, You say to yourself, God, I remember those times. I remember those prayers of desperation.
I remember the blackness and silence of which everything seemed to be. And oh God, I remember how You answered me. I remember how You brought me up out of the pit. And oh God, all I can say is thank You. Exuberantly, joyfully, gratefully, Lord, I say thank You for what You have done.
That's appropriate. Isn't that what you should do when God has shown that kind of favor and faithfulness to you? Isn't it appropriate for us to go back and give thanks? To be resolved in heart with my song I shall thank Him?
Interesting, isn't it? He says with my song I shall thank Him. I know sometimes I might sound a little bit like a broken record when we're getting ready to sing and I say sing out, sing like you mean it, that kind of thing.
Well, there's a reason for that. Your exuberant singing, unrestrained lifting of your voice is an appropriate way to return thanks to God. We should not be ashamed to sing out whether you've got a good voice or not. We should not be ashamed to sing out. Our church should be marked and the joy and the exuberance of our singing should simply be a reflection of the deep inward gratitude that we have and song gives voice to the thanks that we have when we sing. So yes, we lift our voice. No, we don't care what people think about us. We don't care if people come in from the street and think, you know, restrain yourself. No, I would prefer to be like David who danced exuberantly even though his wife mocked him for it.
No, I don't care what the unbelievers think about it. I want to sing out with my voice. Why? Because I'm thankful, because you say to yourself, because I'm grateful, because He helped me when I trusted in Him.
And our hearts individually and corporately become such that we can't help ourselves. You're going to give me opportunity to sing, I'm going to raise my voice. Because my heart is exalting and with my song I'll thank Him. And the way that I engage my heart in the song will be an expression of the sincerity and the depth of my thanks. Shouldn't we sing that way? Kevin, don't you think we ought to sing that way? I knew Kevin would say yes.
Now watch what happens here. From this position of personal gratitude, David gradually extends out his thanks. In verse 8 he says, the Lord is their strength and He is a saving defense to His anointed. His anointed here thinking about, I don't believe, not thinking in messianic terms about Christ as the anointed one. That happens in the Psalms. But what happens as you go into verse 9 is you see that he's thinking about the people of God collectively as His anointed. In verse 9 he says, save your people and bless your inheritance.
So where he goes in verse 9 makes us think that he's thinking about a plurality of God's people in mind. And the Lord is their strength. God is a saving defense to His anointed. God can be trusted by His people to deliver them in their distress.
He is a saving defense. He is like a high-walled fortress that you run into and you are safe when you trust in Him. And look at what David does as his mind expands out to the people of God.
Now that he's confident, he's come out of his crisis and he's confident, he expands. He's grown spiritually so that now he is interceding on behalf of the entirety of the people of God. And look at what he prays for them in verse 9. He says, God save your people and bless your inheritance. Be their shepherd also and carry them forever. What a magnificent, magnanimous heart the appointed king and representative of the people of God has just issued on their behalf.
It's not just David who needed God's saving protection. He looks out as their king, as their representative and says, God your whole people need this kind of protection and help that you've just given to me. And so don't just keep it to me Lord, give it to all of your people. Spread the blessing around. Strengthen them in their trials and tribulations because God I want them to have the same confidence with which I pray to you now myself.
I would have, he says, I would have all of the people of God know your sufficiency to this great extent where they just spontaneously burst out with gratitude. Blessed be the name of the Lord. Because He is our strength and shield.
It's interesting. Save your people. God looks on us as His own, as His inheritance, as that which belongs to Him. We, the people of God, are a precious possession to Him. Not for our own sakes, but for the glory of God and for the glory of Christ. God cares about the well-being of His people and guarantees that He will ensure it until the end. And because God is like that, David could say, God draw upon your character and save your people and bless them. And he could pray that with every confidence that God would fulfill His request and be good to them. Be their shepherd, he says. Carry them forever.
Hold on to your hat. How fully did God answer this prayer? How great was the fulfillment? So great and so perfect that only the coming of the Lord Jesus Christ could exhaust the meaning that the Spirit inspired David to pray as he closed out this song. What did Jesus say about Himself? I am the good shepherd. In Christ Jesus our Lord, we see the fulfillment of this. We see God in the person of Christ being the shepherd which laid down His life for the sheep. How fully does God answer the prayer of Psalm 28 verse 9, carry them forever?
Jesus said in that same chapter of John 10 verse 28, He said, no one will pluck them from My hand. So He comes to us as a shepherd, as one who guides us and protects us and provides for us, protecting us from every enemy, providing for our every need and doing so in a way that secures our permanent and eternal blessing. He carries us forever. He carries us through this life and when this life is over, He bears us up and carries Him with Himself into heaven where sin and death and foe and taunts and separation and loneliness will never strike again.
David probably didn't see the fullness of this, but when the Spirit of God prompted him to write these words, God knew how He would fulfill these words. Jesus Christ saved His people at the cross. Jesus Christ is their shepherd through life and Jesus Christ will carry us forever. You see the career of Christ even in Psalm 28 verse 9. And so Christ Jesus our Lord came to save us, came to save you if you belong to Him, not only from physical peril but from spiritual peril as well.
His death and resurrection secured our eternal blessing and until we receive that inheritance in full, He protects and guards us as His sheep with intimate care. Beloved, are you in a time where God seems silent to you? Take heart from this Psalm. David was where you are at now.
Don't give up. God hears your cry. If He delays an answer, it's only so that you can exercise faith and enter into an even more abundant realization of the glory of who He is so that your capacity to praise and give thanks to Him would be expanded and deepened beyond what it would have been if you had not known this trial that you find yourself in. Our God is good always. He is gracious always.
He carries us always. Trust your rock. Trust Him forever. Leave it to Psalms like Psalm 28 to boost your confidence in God's character and goodness.
Refer to them often, even before you face a crisis. Pastor Don Green will have another powerful message from Scripture for you on our next broadcast. Join us then here on the Truth Pulpit. Right now though, Don's back here in studio with some closing thoughts. Well, my friend, it's always meaningful for me to be able to preach God's Word to God's people and to share it with you here on the radio.
Recently, I completed a series that is one of my all-time favorites. It's called The Bible and Roman Catholicism. It was several messages designed to test Catholic teaching by what Scripture says. We'd like to share a copy of that with you, a full complete CD album of 10 messages.
Just go to our website and request it or you'll find the downloads. We just want you to have this material at no cost as our gift and ministry to you. Just visit us at TheTruthPulpit.com and click on Radio Offers to learn more. That's TheTruthPulpit.com. I'm Bill Wright, and we'll see you next time on The Truth Pulpit as Don Green continues teaching God's people God's Word.
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