4. The Lord God Avenges ‘His People’! Psalm 64:7-9

Text: “And shall not God avenge (margin: protect) His own elect, which cry day and night unto Him, though He bear long with them?  I tell you that He will avenge them speedily.  Nevertheless when the Son of man cometh (Jesus Christ), shall He find faith on earth?”

Luke 18:7-8.

          “Dearly beloved, avenge not yourselves, but rather give place unto wrath: for it is written, Vengeance is Mine; I will repay, saith the Lord.”

Romans 12:19.

Good morning, sorely tested, tried, and persecuted Christian!  Not for you the easy-believer’s walk in attempted secret Christianity.  No!  You have been saved at a great Price to serve the risen Christ Jesus, and as a direct consequence of your faithfulness in diligently serving the Son of God, you are constantly faced with the most gross and fierce hindrances, testing, and trials of your God-given faith. 

If this describes your experience of Bible-believing Christianity, I rejoice to hear it – for it certainly closely describes my own!  Hallelujah!  No persecution? No faithfulness to Christ!  Check it out, Christian!  There can be no secret, comfortable, Christians!

“Yea, and all that will live godly in Christ Jesus shall suffer persecution.  But evil men and seducers shall wax worse and worse, deceiving, and being deceived.  But continue thou in the things which thou hast learned and hast been assured of, knowing of whom thou hast learned them.”       (2 Timothy 3:12-14)

Mankind’s patience is not always to be relied upon – no, not even in the best of Christ’s saints and servants.  Push, prod, hassle and bully the Christian long enough, and with enough viciousness – and WHAM!  His/her patience will crack.  This is a clearly observable fact.

The wonderfully patient, kind and humble person – when redeemed by the Lord God – remains a patient, kind and humble servant of Christ.  However, the impatient, short-tempered, and prone to swift action person – when redeemed by the Lord God – can very often remain just as impatient, short-tempered, and prone to action servant of Christ Jesus.  

Faith in Christ makes us ‘…new creatures in Christ…’ in many vital Spiritual ways, but we remain the same person the Lord seen fit to save, we do not suddenly become another person in our personal nature, that takes a lot of time, and testing, and failings, and persevering before the new born again nature begins to get the advantage of the old carnal man/woman within. 

The loving disciple John remained a loving, humble disciple after being called to follow Christ.  The impulsive and hot-tempered Peter remained so after he too was called to serve his Lord.

This is a practical procedure in what we theologians call Progressive Sanctification; or becoming more and more ‘conformed’ to Christ Jesus; more Christlike.

“I beseech you therefore, brethren, by the mercies of God, that ye present your bodies a living sacrifice, holy, acceptable unto God, which is your reasonable service.  And be not conformed to this world: but be ye transformed (daily) by the renewing of your mind (consistent Bible study?), that ye may prove what is that good and acceptable, and perfect, will of God.”  (Romans 12:1-2)

God’s will is contained within the pages of God’s written Word.  Therefore, we learn God’s will for us, by constant, prayerful fellowship with Him within the pages of our canonical KJV Bibles.  The more we learn of God’s will through God’s Word – the more we can know how we are to live our daily lives as witnesses of the Living Christ Jesus.

“But ye shall receive power, after that the Holy Ghost is come upon you: and ye shall be witnesses unto Me both in Jerusalem, and in all Judae-a, and in Samaria, and unto the uttermost part of the earth.”  (Acts 1:8)

Knowing Christ’s wonderful, loving and humble manners and way of living, both disciples – John and Peter – were duty bound to try to emulate them. However, John seemed to have been a tad more successful in doing so, while impulsive Peter continued to want to immediately ‘walk on water’ with Christ, and chop off the ear of Malchus when they arrived in Gethsemane to arrest the Lord Jesus!  Both were born again, but each were still the same person as before.  Only time with Christ can empower us to become more like Him in all our ways, yet, always imperfectly.

Malchus “Malchus was the servant of the Jewish High Priest Caiaphas who participated in the arrest of Jesus as written in the four gospels. According to the Bible, one of the disciples, Simon Peter, being armed with a sword, cut off the servant's ear in an attempt to prevent the arrest of Jesus.” (Wikipedia)

When impulsive Peter drew his sword and cut off Malchus’ ear, the Lord Jesus immediately intervened: “And Jesus answered and said, Suffer ye thus far.  And He touched his ear (Malchus), and healed him.”                 (Luke 22:49-51)

It was not, nor is it today, God’s will that we Christians avenge ourselves when confronted by persecutors’ slanderers’ gossips, and tormentors – NO – the Lord God has taken that duty upon Himself.   “Dearly beloved, avenge not yourselves, but rather give place unto wrath: for it is written, Vengeance is Mine; I will repay, saith the Lord.”  (Romans 12:19)

Verse 7. “But God shall shoot at them with an arrow; suddenly shall they be wounded.  We are well aware of God’s warnings to the world to ‘…touch not Mine anointed, and do My prophets no harm.” (1 Chronicles 16:21-22) (Psalm 105:13-15)  The Lord God has spoken, He has promised to ‘repay’ all such persecutors with His Holy vengeance.  Fearful indeed.

Verse 8. “So shall they make their own tongue to fall upon themselves.  Gossiping, and especially gossiping maliciously against a Blood-bought child of God, is a most dangerous occupation, and should immediately cease.  So often has Christ’s servants had our character assassinated in secret, by detractors from the Christian faith, and often by media hacks who are paid far too much wages to conjure up written lies in order to smear the witness of God’s people. The Lord God has promised to deal with such detractors/persecutors severely.

“Be not deceived; God is not mocked: for whatsoever a man/woman soweth, that shall he/she also reap.  For he that soweth to his flesh shall of the flesh reap corruption; but he that soweth to the Spirit shall of the Spirit reap life everlasting.”  (Galatians 6:7-8)

Verse 8. “So they shall make their own tongue to fall upon themselves.  Their slander shall recoil.  Their curses shall come home to roost. Their tongue shall cut their throats.”  (C.H. Spurgeon, Treasury of David, page 279)

Thought: The same, unrepentant tongues that currently scream out abuse, persecutions, and rage against Bible-believing Christians today – shall utter a terrible, unheard, cry for God’s mercy as they stand at the Great White Throne of Holy Judgement.  How sad.

3. The Satanic Insurrection Continues! Psalm 64:2-6

Text: “And there was war in Heaven: Michael and his angels fought against the Dragon; and the Dragon fought and his angels, and prevailed not; neither was their place found any more in Heaven.  And the great Dragon was cast out, that old serpent, called the Devil, and Satan, which deceiveth the whole world: he was cast out into the earth, and his angels were cast out with him.  And I heard a voice saying in Heaven, Now is come Salvation, and strength, and the kingdom of our God, and the power of His Christ: for the accuser of our brethren is cast down, which accused them before our God day and night.  And they overcame him (Satan) by the Blood of the Lamb, and by the Word of their testimony; and they loved not their lives unto the death.”

Revelation 12:7-11.

          “Hide me from the secret counsel of the wicked: from the insurrection of the workers of iniquity.”

Psalm 64:2.

Good morning, Christian Resistance soldier!  God the Holy Spirit has enlisted you in the army of the Living Lord Jesus Christ, the risen and only begotten Son of God, to grant you and I the utter privilege of serving as His Spiritual soldiers, in the great Spiritual Battle against the insurrection of Satan and legions of his fallen and cast out angels (demons), here on planet earth.  

Praise God, the Battle is hard and sore, but the Victory has already been won by the Lord Jesus Christ at a place called Calvary!  Hallelujah! All praise to the victorious Lamb!

“And I (John) saw Heaven opened, and behold (look, and fully understand) a white horse; and He that sat upon him was called Faithful and True, and in righteousness He doth judge and make war…And He was clothed with a vesture dipped in Blood: and His Name is called The Word of God.  And the armies which were in Heaven followed Him upon white horses, clothed in fine linen, white and clean…And He hath on His vesture (robe) written, KING OF KINGS, AND LORD OF LORDS.”  (Revelation 19:11-16)  All glory to the Lord Jesus Christ! Amen.

Dictionary Definition: Insurrection (noun) a rising or revolt;…          Revolt – (verb transitive) to renounce allegiance; to rise in opposition; to turn or rise in disgust, loathing or repugnance…(noun) a rebellion; insurrection; secession; revulsion; to rebel… (The Chambers Dictionary, page 834 & 1412)

In this morning’s Bible text for the lesson, from Revelation chapter 12; the war that took place in Heaven is both recorded and the outcome described.  The Devil/ Satan/ Lucifer, and a third of Heaven’s angels all revolted against the Lord God Almighty, and the archangel Michael and the angels of the Lord prevailed against the insurrection - and Satan  and the rebellious angels were all cast out of Heaven as a consequence.  (See also, Isaiah chapter 14:9-20 for more information on the cause of Satan’s rebellion – PRIDE, lusting to be ‘…like the most High.’!)

Satan’s insurrection against the Lord God Almighty was definitively put down in Heaven, but it continues today here on planet earth as a Spiritual battle for the hearts, souls, and minds of mankind, God’s perfect Creation in Adam.

“…Woe to the inhibitors of the earth and of the sea!  For the Devil is come down unto you, having great wrath, because he knoweth that he hath but a short time.  And when the Dragon saw that he was cast unto the earth he persecuted the woman which brought forth the man child…And the Dragon was wroth with the woman, and went to make war with the remnant of her seed (a woman has no seed, this speaks of the immaculate conception of Christ by God the Holy Ghost), which keep the Commandments of God, and have the testimony of Jesus Christ.”  (Revelation 12:12-17) (Luke 1:30-35)

The Devil’s wrath against ‘the seed of the woman’ (Genesis 3:15), continues in his insurrection against the Lord God.  He is a defeated enemy through the Cross of Christ Jesus, but until the Lord sees fit to chain him up completely in the ‘bottomless pit’, or place him and his rebellious angels/demons in the Lake of fire forever – he is at large, testing and trying the Blood-bought saints of Jesus Christ.  The apostle Paul knew well of the Devil’s tormenting wiles.

“Finally, my brethren, be strong in the Lord, and in the power of His might.  Put on the whole armour of God, that ye may be able to stand against the wiles of the Devil.  For we wrestle not against flesh and blood (mere human enemies), but against principalities, against powers, against the rulers of the darkness of this world, against Spiritual wickedness in high places.”  (Ephesians 6:10-12)

Psalm 64:2. “Hide me from the secret counsel of the wicked. The ‘wicked’ I define as all those who are seen to be ‘reprobate’, rejected by God for Salvation, and who are therefore, putty in the hands and will of Satan and his fallen angels/demons.  The Devil urges ‘the wicked’ on to hinder, oppose, and persecute true born again, Bible-believing Christians, and on they go to do his vile bidding, they have no strength of will with which to refuse the Devil’s inspirations.  They fulfil most of their wicked oppositions in secret, they defame, they spread lies, they secretly assassinate the moral character of Christ’s faithful servants, and seek to smear, libel, and slander them in order to ruin individual credibility for Christ’s witnesses.  The Spiritual insurrection continues for us today.  ‘Lord, hide us from all evil!’

Verse 2. “Hide me…from the insurrection of the workers of iniquity.  Note, these reprobate enemies are not merely anti-Christian in their beliefs, live-styles, and behaviour!  No.  They are active ‘workers of iniquity’, they are militant in labouring to spoil Christian witness and testimonies; ruin Christian characters; and bring to nought anyone that seems to be prospering in the preaching of Christ Crucified for the sins of ‘His people’; or teaching sound Bible-doctrine that increases the God-given faith of true Christian believers!  They are pro-active!

Verse 3. “Who whet their tongue like a sword…shoot their arrows…even bitter words. Their actions are Biblically defined; clearly identified, these are the reprobate, enemies of God.

Verse 5. “They encourage themselves in an evil matter…commune of laying snares privily (secretly)…”  One finds it extremely difficult to contend against lies, rumours, gossip, etc. when it is done secretly by anti-Christian ‘workers of iniquity’. They hide their evil doings.

Verse 6. “They search out iniquities; they accomplish a diligent search…the inward thought…and the heart is deep.  Such anti-Christian enemies are not folk who suddenly come across a piece of juicy gossip and begin to spread in about the Pastor, or the Sunday-School Teacher, or the deacons, etc.! No! These are black hearts that ‘search out’ faults; ‘…accomplish a diligent search…’ to find failures, weaknesses, in Christ’s servants, then ruthlessly broadcast to all who will listen what minor/major imperfections they find!

“The heart is deceitful above all things, and desperately wicked…”  (Jeremiah 17:9)

With all the information contained in God’s Word and this lesson concerning the continuance of Satanic insurrection today – should you and I, as God’s servants, not be found praying to Him for His protective covering, as we continue to be more militant in Christ’s service?

Thought: “He/she shall call upon Me, and I will answer him/her: I will be with him/her in trouble; I will deliver him/her, and honour him/her.”  (Psalm 91:15)  Victory is ours!

2. The Purpose of Christian Prayer Psalm 64:2-3

Text: “Hide me from the secret counsel of the wicked; from the insurrection of the workers of iniquity: who whet their tongue like a sword, and bend their bows to shoot their arrows, even bitter words.”

Psalm 64:2-3.

Good morning, God-concealed Christian!  You and I are ‘God-concealed’ from the deeper, more bitter harm of God’s enemies, in answer to our fervent and constant prayers to the Lord God Whom we love and serve, in Christ Jesus.

Were we not God-concealed Christians, we should very soon perish at the hands of both demons of Hell,  and reprobate workers of iniquity here on planet earth.  Praise God for the precious covering of Christ’s sinless Blood upon us, and the armour of God upon our very souls!  Hallelujah!  For we fight a defeated enemy and a perishing, reprobate army; Christ Jesus, the Captain of the Host, has already won the great Battle at Calvary’s Cross!  “It is finished!”  Glory to the Lamb!  Glory to the soon-coming Lion of the tribe of Judah! Amen.

Primary Christian Fellowship:

The purpose of all Christian prayer is primarily one of constant fellowship with the Father Lord God we profess to know and love through and in Christ Jesus, and in the power of God, the indwelling Holy Spirit.  A prayerless ‘Christian’, is not a true Christian at all!  Sober thought!

“That which we (the apostles) have seen and heard declare we unto you, that ye also may have fellowship with us: and truly our fellowship is with the Father, and with His Son Jesus Christ.  And these things I write unto you, that your joy may be full…But if we walk in the light, as He is in the light, we have fellowship one with another, and the Blood of Jesus Christ His Son cleanseth us from all sin.”  (1 John 1:3-7)

Two-Way Christian Fellowship:

Bible-based Christian fellowship – the only genuine Christian fellowship – is at all times a two-way fellowship: born again Christians speak to the Lord God in prayer, and the Lord God answers us and speaks to us through His Word – for me, the KJV Bible.

No One-Way Fellowship:

It is a real fool that thinks for one moment that he/she can be a genuine Christian, made ready to go to a Holy Heaven, to live forever with God – and fails to either speak to the Lord God now in prayer, nor permit Him to speak to him/her via His written Word!  If we do not have a profound desire to talk in fellowship with the Lord God now – how do we ever expect to spend Eternity in actual, face-to-face fellowship with the Lord God in Heaven?  Selah! (Now think, or mediate on this thought)

“For now we see through a glass darkly; but then (in Heaven) face to face: no I know in part; but then (in Heaven) shall I know even as also I am known (i.e. completely, inside-out).”  (1 Corinthians 13:12)

Full Fellowship:

Full and complete fellowship, face-to-face, with the Lord God Almighty is a wonder all Spiritually regenerated Christians have to look forward to, and it will last forever.  Then, and only then, will all the sufferings; all the anxieties; all the Spiritual warfare and persecutions shall be ended; and we shall rejoice in the bliss of God’s Eternal blessings, and talk with Him face-to-face.  Wow!  What a day that will be!  Glory to the Christ Who redeemed our souls and made us fit to go to a Heaven that is Holy, and not to a Hell that is HOT!  Thanks be to God!

“And there shall be no more curse: but The throne of God and of the Lamb shall be in it; and His servants shall serve Him: and they shall see His face; and his Name shall be in their foreheads.  And there shall be no night there; and they need no candle, neither light of the sun; for the Lord God giveth them light: and they shall reign forever and ever.”  (Revelation 22:3-5)

Secondary Fellowship:

Secondary Christian fellowship has a very real purpose, one which we professing Christians need to focus on afresh today IF we are seeking to get real in service to the risen Lord Jesus.

Secondary Christian fellowship is in prayer to the Lord God for His Divine help in order to cope with the whole range of ‘enemies’ we must necessarily encounter  in our fervent service to Christ, day by day.

“Finally, my brethren, be strong in the Lord, and in the power of His might.  Put on the whole armour of God, that ye may be able to stand against the wiles of the Devil.  For we wrestle not against flesh and blood (mere human enemies), but against principalities, against powers, against the rulers of the darkness of this world, against Spiritual wickedness in high places.”  (Ephesians 6:10-12)

The fervency of our desire to serve Christ, will be commensurate to the depth of our evil oppositions – in this paradoxical manner, the more useful we desire to be to our Saviour, Jesus Christ, the more enemies and oppositions we shall engender against us from both the unsaved temporal worldlings all around us, and varying degrees of ‘spiritual wickedness in high places’.  Only those deeply dedicated to serving the Christ of God, shall prevail for any length of time – and only with the constant Divine help sought in consistent and sincere prayer to God.

Verse 2. “Hide me from the secret counsel of the wicked.  If the Lord God did not conceal us, ‘His people’ from the ‘secret counsel of the wicked’, we could never survive the onslaught.  When our enemies come rushing in for the kill, the Lord God inspires us to pray to Him for His ever-given help.  We are fully assured that our Father shall always come to our aid in time.

“The Lord is my light and my Salvation; whom shall I fear?  The Lord is the strength of my life; of whom shall I be afraid.  When the wicked, even mine enemies and my foes, came upon me to eat up my flesh, they stumbled and fell.  Though a host should encamp against me, my heart shall not fear: though WAR should rise up against me, in this will I be confident…Hear, O Lord, when I cry with my voice: have mercy also upon me, and answer me.  When Thou saidst ‘Seek ye My face’; my heart said unto Thee, ‘Thy face, Lord, will I seek.” (Psalm 27:1-11)

Of the Christian’s enemies, Plumer says: “Evil speakers have arrows, sharp, barbed, dipped in poison.  They have ‘swords’, flaming swords, two-edged swords, drawn swords, drawn in anger, with which they cut and wound and kill the good name of their neighbour.  Sins of the tongue are commonly cruel, very cruel.  When slander is secret, as it commonly is, you cannot defend yourself from its assaults.  Its cannons are infernal.  One of them is, ‘If a lie will do better than the truth, tell a lie.’  Another is, ‘Heap on reproach; some of it will stick.’”    (William S.Plumer1802-1880)

Thought:   With such ruthless and merciless Spiritual enemies, the serving Christian must be most careful to remain in constant fellowship with his/her Almighty, protecting Lord – Who is Sovereign in power over all oppositions and powers.  Glory…