Psalm 45: Heart Love for King Jesus! 1. The Condition of a Believing Heart Psalm 45:1-2

Text: “And Hannah prayed, and said, My heart rejoiceth in the Lord, mine horn shall be exalted in the Lord: my mouth is enlarged over mine enemies; because I rejoice in Thy Salvation. There is none as Holy as the Lord: for there is none beside Thee: neither is there any Rock like our God.”

1 Samuel 2:1-2.

Good morning, Heart-loving Christian!  The Lord God Jehovah, in Christ Jesus, has overwhelmed you and I with His Divine and indescribable love.  He has taken us from the dunghill of our sins, washed us in His own sinless and priceless Blood; set us up in His great Salvation; empowered us to live for Him; and our hearts are flowing over with love for Him.  Hallelujah!  No love like the love of the Living Lord Jesus Christ!  We love you, Lord Jesus!

“Greater love hath no man than this, that a man lay down his life for his friends.” (John 15:13)

Psalm 45: “Special singers are appointed for so Divine a hymn.  King Jesus deserves to be praised not with random, ranting ravings, but with the sweetest and most skilful music of the best trained choristers.

Subject: Some here see Solomon and Pharaoh’s daughter – they are short-sighted; others see both Solomon and Christ – they are cross-eyed; well-focused Spiritual eyes see here Jesus only, or if Solomon be present at all, it must be like those hazy shadows of passers-by which cross the face of the camera and therefore are dimly traceable upon a photographic landscape.  ‘The King,’ the God Whose throne is forever and ever, is no mere mortal, and His everlasting dominion is not bounded by Lebanon and Egypt’s river.  This is no wedding song of earthly nuptials, but an epithalamium for the Heavenly Bridegroom and His elect spouse.”  (C.H. Spurgeon, Treasury of David, page 213)

Blessed are the eyes that see Jesus.  “But we see Jesus, Who was made a little lower than the angels for the suffering of death, crowned with glory and honour; that He by the grace of God should taste death for every man.  For it became Him, for Whom are all things, and by Whom are all things, in bringing many (not ALL!) sons unto glory, to make the captain of their Salvation perfect through sufferings.  For both He that sanctifieth and they who are sanctified are all of one: for which cause He is not ashamed to call them brethren.”  (Hebrews 2:9-11)

A truly believing heart will immediately cry the ‘Amen!’ to these truths from God’s Word.  We do so, because the Lord God has granted us genuine faith to believe and receive His Eternal promises, without doubt, so-called ‘higher criticism’; or blatant unbelief.  Praise God for the ability to be ‘heart-loving Christians’!

“But the Lord said unto Samuel, Look not on his countenance, or on the height of his stature; because I have refused him: for the Lord seeth not as man seeth; for man looketh on the outward appearance, but the Lord looketh on the heart.”  (1 Samuel 16:7)

Let us ask ourselves, dear Christian: ‘What is the true condition of our hearts today?’

Verse 1. “My heart is inditing a good matter.  It is a sad thing when the heart is cold with a good matter, and worse when it is warm with a bad matter, but incomparably well when a warm heart and a good matter meet together.” (C.H. Spurgeon, Treasury of David, page 213)

When our hearts (not the blood-pump organ in our chests, but the very essence of our being!) are made right with our Holy Lord God, by being born again in Christ Jesus, the very mention of the Name of Jesus should cause us to yearn for His nearness, and long for the sweet fellowship of His matchless Presence.  Let us ask ourselves, Christian, is this the condition of our individual hearts today?

“It is reported of Origen (184-253 AD), Saith Erasmus (1466-1536), that he was ever earnest, but most of all when he discoursed of Christ.  Of Johannes Mollias, a Bononian (of Bologna, Italy), it is said, that whenever he spake of Jesus Christ, his eyes dropped, for he was fraught with a mighty fervency of God’s Holy Spirit; and like the Baptist, he was first a burning (boiling or bubbling), and then a shining light.”  (John Trapp 1601-1699)

What was this ‘good matter’ the Psalmist was inditing (composing, setting forth in writing)?

Verse 2. “Thou art fairer than the children of men. In Person, but especially in mind and character, the King of saints is peerless in beauty.  The Hebrew word is doubled, ‘Beautiful, beautiful, art Thou.’  Jesus is so emphatically lovely that words must be doubled, strained, yea, exhausted before He can be described.”  (C.H. Spurgeon, Treasury of David, page 213)

“Thus he begins to set forth His beauty, wherein is the delightfulness of any person; so is it with the soul when God hath made known to man his own filthiness and uncomeliness through sin, and that only by Jesus sin is taken away; oh, how beautiful in this face, the first sight of Him!”  (Richard Coore, in ‘Christ Set Forth’ (1616-1687)

Verse 2. “...Grace is poured into Thy lips. In John’s Gospel, the first chapter, we are clearly taught that God the Father, in Eternity called Christ Jesus, His Eternal Son, ‘the Word’.  He was with God the Father ‘...in the beginning..’; He was God the Son in Eternity; ‘...all things were made by Him...; In Him was life; and the life was the light of men.’  Hallelujah!  Lord, we believe!  Please take away our unbelief!

In verse 14 of the first chapter of John’s Gospel, we are taught that, ‘The Word was made flesh (the incarnation of Christ as Jesus, God in bodily form!); and dwelt among us (the disciples) (and we beheld His glory {with their own human eyes!}, the glory as of the only begotten of the Father,) full of grace and truth.’  Wow!  See how it all comes to unite together in the Word of God?  Thank you, dear Lord God, for revealing Thy Word to us!

“Sanctify them (all who will believe) through Thy truth (Jesus Christ!): Thy Word IS Truth.! (John 17:17)

Verse 2. “Grace is poured into Thy lips.  One word from Himself dissolved the heart of Saul of Tarsus and turned him into an apostle (an eye-witness of the risen Christ!)...oftentimes a sentence from His lips has turned our own midnight into morning, our winter into spring.”  (C.H. Spurgeon, Treasury of David, page 214)

Thought: Reminding ourselves of Christ’s grace, poured into our hearts, should cause worship, and praise, and thanksgiving, to pour out from our lips in Eternal gratitude.

Faith Renewed & Exercised Psalm 44:17-26

Text: “I have heard of Thee by the hearing of the ear: but now (when faith is renewed) mine eye seeth.  Wherefore I abhor myself, and repent in dust and ashes.”

Job 42:5-6.

Good morning, tried and tested Christian!  Your faith in Christ and mine has been sorely tried ‘in the furnace of affliction’, by trials, tribulations, testings, temptations, hard oppositions and, if we are honest, too many personal failures too. 

However, by God’s Sovereign and ever-given grace, you and I have come once again to our Spiritual senses; put off all attempts to break our faith; and ran into the arms of our Saviour, Jesus Christ for the Eternal security that He alone can give.  That’s the victory, dear friend!

The Psalmist, after having listed his experiences with the oppositions of the world, flesh, and Devil (verses 9-16) – and having allowed his human, natural feelings to make him fear the worst – he is drawn compassionately back, by faith, to the Source of all his Divine help.

No matter how far we allow ourselves, the world, or Satanic forces to dread the worst, our faith in Christ and His Divine Victory at Golgotha’s Cross, will always lift us back up and point us in the path of God’s will.  Faith overcomes all obstacles.   Praise God!

“For whatsoever is born of God overcometh the world: and this is the victory that overcometh the world, even our faith.  Who is he/she that overcometh the world, but he/she that believeth (trusts, and continues to trust) that Jesus is the Son of God?”  (1 John 5:4-5)

“Now faith is the substance of things hoped for, the evidence of things not seen.” (Hebrews 11:1)

“But without faith it is impossible to please Him: for he that cometh to God must believe that He is (exists), and that He is a rewarder of them that diligently seek Him.” (Hebrews 11:6)

Where then do we initially get this necessary FAITH?  Faith to believe and receive Salvation in Christ alone; through His Atonement Sacrifice at the Cross alone; by God the Father’s Sovereign grace alone; and according, at all times, to His Sovereign will alone; and for His greater glory alone?  

You and I have many questions, but God’s Word alone has all the vital Eternal answers!  We see all things clearly, when we look with the eyes of true faith!

10.  Faith: the gracious gift of God.  (Ephesians 2:8-9)

Text:  “For by grace are ye saved through faith; and that not of yourselves; it is the gift of God; not of works, lest any man should boast.” (Ephesians 2:7-8)                                 

Definition of the term:  Nothing interprets, or defines, Holy Scripture better than Holy Scripture.  Therefore, we find a profound, yet perfect, definition of the concept of Christian Faith in God’s own Word. 

“Now faith is the substance of things hoped for, the evidence of things not seen.”     (Hebrews 11:1)

Faith, thus, can only be understood as a Supernatural quality, something that God alone gives to those whom He desires to give it.

Being defined as ‘...the substance of things hoped for, the evidence of things not seen.’; we comprehend that it is a Divinely given gift without which we never can, nor ever will be, Eternally saved.

Faith is defined, in the general sense, by theologian Alan Cairns of Faith Free Presbyterian Church, Greenville, South Carolina, as ‘...the assent of the mind to the truth of something of which we do not have an immediate conception, whereas knowledge is the perception of the truth of something of which we have an immediate conception.

Faith, according to Thomas Halyburton, one of Scotland’s greatest theologians: ‘...the grace of faith is basically a hearty approbation of God’s method of saving sinners.  We may define it as the work of the Holy Spirit, His gift to God’s elect, enabling them to believe as true whatever God has revealed in His Word and to accept, receive, and rest upon Christ alone for justification, sanctification, and Eternal life.  It is never alone, being always accompanied by repentance, and producing good works.’  God’s people say a hearty ‘Amen!’ to this truth.

“Even so faith, if it hath not works, is dead, being alone.”  (James 2:17-26)

Faith, the true genuine, God-given article, is ‘...the faith once delivered unto the saints.’  (Jude 3)  It is a true faith that will never depart from God’s Word as the only means of obtaining it; and those genuinely possessing such a Divine gift will never, even upon threat of torture or death, ‘...depart from the faith, giving heed to seducing spirits, and doctrines of devils, speaking lies in hypocrisy; having their conscience seared with a hot iron...’  (1 Timothy 4:1-2)

“So then, Faith cometh by hearing, and hearing by the Word of God.”  (Romans 10:17)

In this sense, we understand more clearly what the great apostle Paul was fearlessly declaring when, not long before he would be martyred for having such faith, he cried: “I have fought a good fight, I have finished my course, I have KEPT the faith...”   (2 Timothy 4:7) 

The Divine Giver of this Supernatural faith has therefore KEPT Paul Eternally ‘...through faith unto Salvation...’.  Praise His Name!  (1 Peter 1:4-5)

Faith is an absolute necessity for Salvation, we cannot be saved without it; and without it, we can never ‘...please...’ God.

“But without faith it is impossible to please Him; for he that cometh to God must believe that He is (i.e. that God actually exists!), and that He is a rewarder of them that diligently seek Him.”  (Hebrews 11:6)  (See the full doctrine of Faith on our website www.ulsterchristians.org)

Thought: “Verses 17-19 Neither the persecuting hand of men nor the chastising hand of God relaxed ancient, singular saints.  Believers resemble the moon, which emerges from her eclipse b keeping her motion, and ceases not to shine because the dogs bark at her.  Shall we cease to be professors because others will not cease to be persecutors?” (William Secker 1660)

 

The Danger of Trusting ‘Feelings’! Psalm 44:9-16

Text: “Trust in the Lord with all thine heart (essence of being); and lean not unto thine own understanding (feelings?)  In all thy ways acknowledge Him, and He shall direct thy paths.”

Proverbs 3:5-6.

Good morning, sensitive Christian!  By God’s grace, and throughout our varied and often chequered experiences in life, you and I have become quite sensitive; quite perceptive; and deeply aware of how we are to assess situations and evaluate the circumstances we encounter.

Praise God that you and I have gained understanding of life by the varied experiences we have had.  However, as sincere and serving Christians, we must beware of not permitting our ‘natural feelings’, or ‘ human perceptions’ to detract from the facts of our God-given faith! 

God’s Word alone is our clear Authority for all things pertaining to Christian faith and the daily practice of that wonderful gift of God.  (Psalm 119:105)

Verses 9 to 16: Throughout verses 9 to 16 of Psalm 44, we find the Psalmist falling into the trap of relying on his feelings; his human perceptions – and by doing so, coming to wrong conclusions which only serve to detract from and undermine his faith in God.  Christian, beware!

God-breathed (inspired) Scriptures clearly teach us that the Lord will never leave us, or cast off ‘His people’.  Yet, leaning on his own understanding, and trusting what he is feeling at the time – the Psalmist makes his erroneous complaints to God:

Verse 9. “But Thou hast cast off, and put us to shame.”  God’s Word teaches us that He will never leave us nor forsake us; that He will in no wise cast us out.  Feeling cast off by God, flies in the face of His own Word on the matter!  Only believe.  We who are saved Christians must fully trust, at all times, in the revealed and inspired Word of God.

“...I will never leave thee; nor forsake thee.  So that we may boldly say, The Lord is my Helper, and I will not fear what man shall do unto me.”  (Hebrews 13:5-6)

“All that the Father giveth Me (Christ Jesus) shall come to Me; and him/her that cometh to me I will in no wise cast out.”  (John 6:37)

Verse 9.  “...And goeth not forth with our armies.  God does not promise to ‘go forth’ with our carnal and puny human armies!   If redeemed by Christ’s Blood, we are called to go forth in His Name, and be an integral part of HIS army, the Church.  The Lord God is not going to wage any war based on fallen, and all too often greedy and selfish human demands.  We are called to go forth as part of His Spiritual army, inspired by His infallible Word; led and directed by His Holy Spirit.  When we do so, we are always fully assured of Victory in Christ.  Hallelujah!  Worthy is the Lamb, Christ Jesus!  In Him we have the Victory!

“These things have I (Christ Jesus) spoken unto you, that in Me ye might have peace. In the world ye shall have tribulation: but be of good cheer; I have overcome the world."  (John 16:33)  

Verse 10. “Thou makest us to turn back from the enemy.  The only time ‘the enemy’ can force you and I as Christians to ‘turn back’ in retreat, is when we go against ‘the enemy’ – the world, the flesh, and the Devil – in our own puny and natural strength!  Flesh will fail us every time!

Verse 11.  “And hast scattered us among the heathen.  Yes, we have been ‘scattered among the heathen’, but in a most Divine and positive manner and for the highest Eternal purpose!  We who are Bible-believing Christians are strewn like ‘salt’ among the nations of the world in order that we might be witnesses for the risen Christ Jesus and reach His ‘elect’ souls with the Gospel message of Salvation through His Sacrifice alone!  Glory to God for His wisdom!

“But ye (regenerate souls) 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 Judaea, and in Samaria, and unto the uttermost part of the earth.”  (Acts 1:8)

“Go ye therefore, and teach all nations, baptizing them in the Name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Ghost: teaching them to observe all things whatsoever I have commanded you: and, lo, I am with you alway, even unto the end of the world. Amen.” (Matthew 28:19-20)”

“And they (Christ’s disciples/apostles), continued daily with one accord in the temple, and breaking bread from house to house, did eat their meat with gladness and singleness of heart, praising God and having favour with the people.  And the Lord added to the church daily such as should be saved.”  (Acts 2:46-47))

Verse 11. “And hast scattered us among the heathen.  All this is ascribed to the Lord, as being allowed by Him, and even appointed by His decrees.  It is well to trace the hand of God in our sorrows, for it is surely there.”  (C.H. Spurgeon, Treasury of David, page 211)

Verse 12. “Thou sellest Thy people for nought. Referring to the siege of Jerusalem by Titus, Eusebius says: ‘Many were sold for a small price; there were many to be sold, but few to buy.”  (C.H. Spurgeon, Treasury of David, page 211)

Verse 13. “A scorn and a derision to them that are round about us. To be a derision to both strong and weak, superiors, equals, and inferiors, is hard to bear.  The tooth of scoffing bites to the bone.

Verse 14. “Thou makest us a byword among the heathen, a shaking of the head among the people.  The world knows not its nobility; it has no eye for true excellence: it found a cross for the Master and cannot be expected to award crowns to His disciples.”  (C.H. Spurgeon, Treasury of David, page 211)

While the Psalmist is experiencing very real sufferings, as here described, yet he is allowing what he sees with his physical eyes to blind him to what he should be seeing with the eyes of his God-given faith!  

The world and the Devil will gang up with our own puny flesh to fool us into seeing only the troubles and oppositions all around us daily, while seeking to blind us to the victory we have in Chris Jesus.  We must always use our Spiritual vision to fight our way through to the foot of the Cross.  There it is that we shall always find relief, and strength anew to go forth in the service of King Jesus Christ.  Praise and all glory to His Victorious Name!

Thought: “Trust in the Lord with all thine heart (essence of being); and lean not unto thine own understanding (feelings?)  In all thy ways acknowledge Him, and He shall direct thy paths.”  Let us lean wholly on the facts of our faith.    (Proverbs 3:5-6)