Five More Studies from the Psalms

Hello Friends;

We are moving to a new house and will be off the internet for a few days. Therefore, I’m sending the next few Bible studies early so hopefully, we will not get behind in our Bible studying.

James

Sep. 23. PSALMIST SPEAKS OF A GLORIOUS KING. Ps. 45:1-17

Israel and Judah had seen corrupt kings during their history as God’s people. The psalmist recognized that there would be a different King in the future. Prophets had spoken of a new kingdom that God would establish in Jerusalem—a throne that would last forever. The writer of Hebrews in the New Testament referred to this psalm as he described the Son of God as being greater than the angels. After the new kingdom would be established, the King’s bride would be the church of Christ, the forever King.

Sep. 24. PRAISES TO GOD. Ps. 46:1-48:14

“Be still and know that I am God…” Whether this psalm was written during the exile is unknown, but the principles included could have applied to that era. God, indeed was their refuge and strength and help in times of trouble. However, since they had rejected Him, He had rejected them at that time. Those living in Babylonian captivity began to realize their need to trust Him for the flowing of His blessings. If they would return to Him, His strength could overpower the raging nations around them. The God of Jacob was their refuge.

With shouts of triumph and songs of praise, the people recognized the power and majesty of the Lord. If this psalm were sung during the exile, the people were looking forward to the great King of the earth subduing the nations and bringing them back to their homeland. The God of Abraham is supreme sitting on His throne and ruling over all nations. In a spiritual sense, Jews and Gentiles of all nations were brought together as one in the church hundreds of years later.

The psalmist continued his praise of the righteous Lord. Mount Zion has been highly significant for many centuries. Great kings saw God’s power and protection of his dwelling place in Jerusalem. In the beginning of the Christian age, the church saw its establishment in that great city. There is eternal guidance, refuge and safety with God.

Sep. 25. DEATH, THE GREAT EQUALIZER. Ps. 49:1-20

Man spends a lifetime through whatever means he can devise to accumulate wealth. The psalmist placed that philosophy into prospective with sobering words of wisdom to all—high, low, rich or poor. There is not enough wealth in the whole world to buy off death. The fool along with the poor and rich, whether they accomplish little or much will all pass from this earth just as the beasts of the field and leave their possessions to others. There is however, hope after death for the righteous. “The upright shall have dominion over them in the morning…But God will redeem my soul from the power of the grave, For He shall receive me.”

Sep. 26. PRAYER FOR GOD’S DELIVERANCE. Ps. 74:1-23

Many times when one is troubled, he will begin to question God. The psalmist began with this question to God. “Why have You cast us off forever?” He enumerated the various offences of the enemy. They had destroyed the temple of God and all of its furnishings. God’s people were captives under a vile and corrupt nation. The writer reminded the Lord of His care and protection during the deliverance from Egypt hundreds of years earlier and the covenant that had been made with Abraham, Isaac and Jacob. He prayed for another deliverance and for the punishment of His enemies.

They had forgotten their history, so they were then reliving it.

Sep. 27. PRAYER OF THE SUFFERING. Ps. 102:1-28

The psalmist lamented his position in life to the Lord. He was writing either in the present tense during Jerusalem’s destruction and Babylonian captivity or as a prophecy of the future devastation of God’s dwelling place. In either case, he described himself as being miserable, lonely, humiliated and suffering separation from the Lord. He stated that his condition was due to God’s wrath. That wrath was the result the disobedience of a sinful people. He was confident in a future in which the Lord in His mercy would restore Zion/Jerusalem back to a prominence among nations.

As a man, the psalmist also acknowledged the brevity of one’s life compared to the eternal existence of God. His creation, whether man, beast or the earth on which man dwells shall grow old, decay and be changed like a garment, but He shall never change.

#chronological-bible-study

Sep. 22. Plea for Deliverance

Ps. 44:1-26

One person and God make a majority. The psalmist recounted the care and deliverance that God had for His people during the times of wilderness wandering and settling into the Promised Land. As had been commanded earlier, the fathers had related those events to their children for their remembrance.

During the current national distress, it seemed that God had given them up to their captors and turned His back upon His people. They had been scorned and dishonored. The psalmist observed that they still remembered His name and recognized His power. He begged Him to restore them from their affliction.

Sadly, it sometimes takes affliction, persecution or tragedy to cause one to realize the importance of God in his life and well-being. If we continue to look to Him in obedience, He will never forsake us.

#chronological-bible-study

Sep. 21. Various Psalms Lamenting Separation from God

Ps. 42:1-43:5

The psalmist asked himself some very personal questions regarding his soul in a time of deep distress. His sorrow caused him to forget food and to question the presence of God. In his seeming absence from God, he felt an intense feeling of spiritual thirst. He remembered his former relationship with God and wondered why he had allowed himself to become separated from Him. Even his enemies had asked, “Where is your God?” The resolution to all of one’s doubts should be, “Hope in God…The help of my countenance and my God.”

This psalm appears to be a continuation of the supplication of the previous poem. As one looks to an attorney to plead his case before the judge, the psalmist looked to God for relief from his enemy. God is the source of strength, light and truth. If one will allow those to lead him, the soul that has been cast down can be lifted back to its previous heights.

#chronological-bible-study

Sep. 20. Edom to be Punished for Violence Against Israel

Ps. 137:1-9; Ezek. 35:1-15; Obad. 1:1-21

It seems that the psalmist wrote this lament after the fall of Jerusalem. The exiles in Babylon were longing for the “good ole days” back in their homeland. They expressed their love for Jerusalem and their hatred for Edom. The Edomites had helped to plunder their beloved city and had rejoiced at their downfall. Their love for home could not even induce them to sing because of their sadness in a foreign land.

The word of the Lord came to Ezekiel to speak against Mt. Seir/Edom. Hundreds of years earlier, the Israelites had been commanded, “You shall not abhor an Edomite, for he is your brother.” Likewise, having been descendants of Israel’s brother, Esau, they should have mourned at the destruction of Jerusalem and Judah. However, instead of mourning, they had taken part in causing their misery and had rejoiced at their downfall. They even expected to possess lands that had belonged to Israel and Judah. God, through Ezekiel pronounced harsh judgment against the Edomites for their sins. The whole earth would rejoice as they suffered the same consequences as Judah—AND, “They shall know that I am the Lord.”

During that period of upheaval of God’s people, He used many men to deliver His messages. One of the more obscure prophets was Obadiah. The Edomites were a proud people. They esteemed themselves as better than their neighbors and indestructible as well. Obadiah had a vision in which he heard the words of the Lord describing the destruction and desolation that would come against Edom. They were again condemned because of their helping Babylon to destroy Judah and rejoicing at their fate. “As you have done, it shall be done to you…” However, there would be a time when the house of Jacob would return to Zion and consume the house of Esau and also possess other lands.

#chronological-bible-study

Sep. 19. Proclamations Against Sidon and Egypt

Ezek. 28:20-26; 32:1-32

Sidon was an ancient seaport city hundreds of years old about twenty miles north of Tyre. They had been a painful brier pricking Israel for many years. Ezekiel pronounced God’s judgment upon them and as they were dependent upon Tyre, they would also fall as punishment for the evil that they had committed against God’s chosen people. “Then they shall know that I am the Lord God.”

Even as they suffered punishment their own sins, Israel was reassured by God that they would again be gathered back safely to their own land. He would execute judgments upon those who would despise them.

God has portrayed Himself many times as a jealous God. Mankind throughout the ages has ignored Him and worshipped other gods as they had refused to know Him. The central theme of His punishment of the nations is, “Then they shall know that I am the Lord.”

Pharaoh was depicted as a young lion and a monster of the seas running wild. However, God would trap him in His net and all of Egypt would suffer as a consequence of his evil ways. Surviving nations would be troubled by the news of Egypt’s fall. Their carcasses slain by the sword of Babylon would fill the valleys and their blood would water the land. All that had been great in the land would become desolate. Pharaoh and his people would take their places with the other evil nations slain by the sword. Assyria, Elam, Meshech, Tubal, Edom and Sidon were specifically mentioned as being in their graves.

#chronological-bible-study

Sep. 18. Future Destruction of Tyre Lamented

Ezek. 27:1-28:19

The seaport, Tyre was proud and beautiful located in a strategic gate or entrance to the Mediterranean Sea. They had access to a wide array of commercial markets and were living in great luxury. The Lord through Ezekiel stated that they had said, “I am perfect in beauty.” He continued by describing their beauty and commercial importance.

Hezekiah saw Tyre’s future as he likened them to a wind-torn ship, “But the east wind broke you in the midst of the seas.” The destruction that would consume them would cause them to, “Become a horror, and be no more forever.” Pride has caused many great nations and people to fall.

Leaders can make or break a nation, company or organization, including the church. When one proudly places himself upon a pedestal like a god, he is assuring himself of eventual failure even though he may seem to be doing great and successful works.

The prince of Tyre was one of those “successful” leaders who considered himself to be a god. God’s message to him stated that he would be slain by the sword as a man and not a god. Tyre’s prince had begun life as any other person—full of wisdom and beauty. As time passed, he like so many others had allowed inequity to enter into his life and dealings with others. In the end, he had, “Become a horror, And shall be no more forever.” The prince and his city would be destroyed.

#chronological-bible-study

Sep. 17. Proclamations Against Various Empires

Ezek. 25:1-26:21

There have been times during the world’s existence that God’s patience has reached its limit. At one time, He had destroyed man and all animal life except for Noah and his family and two of every kind of animal with a giant flood. Periodically, He had used various nations to punish His chosen people, the Israelites. However those punishing nations had also been evil and had received their punishment as well. During the times of Ezekiel and the other prophets, God sent warnings of impending doom upon the disobedient nations. Several of those people were warned in these proclamations.

Even though God had allowed Babylon to destroy Jerusalem, He was not pleased with those surrounding nations who were rejoicing over their calamity. Some had aided in Judah’s downfall. Ammon, Moab, Edom, Philistia and Tyre were specifically named as nations that would receive His wrath. The people of Ammon, Moab and Edom were relatives of Israel, having descended from Abraham’s nephew, Lot and Jacob’s brother, Esau.

Tyre was a seaport center in Phoenicia which had ambitions of increasing their commercial opportunities after Judah had fallen. God was displeased with their greedy pleasure of seeing His people destroyed. He sent word to them that He would send Nebuchadnezzar against them and that they would be destroyed and never be rebuilt.

#chronological-bible-study