The Lord God Jehovah: Blessed Forever! Psalm 41:13

Text: “Blessed be the Lord God of Israel from everlasting, and to everlasting Amen and Amen.”                                                                                                                                                     Psalm 41:13.

Good morning, God-blessed and God-blessing Christian!  Having been utterly and thoroughly blessed by the Living Lord God Jehovah with His Eternal forgiveness of sin and His Eternal Salvation in Christ Jesus His Son, our dear Lord – you and I can hardly contain ourselves from offering up to Him our most profound, sincere, and heart-felt blessings of worship and praise and reverence.  

Let me hear it, redeemed Christian: ‘Hallelujah!  Praise be unto the Lord God Who has saved my never-dying soul from my sin!  Hallelujah!  Glory to the Father!  Glory to the Son!  Glory to the Holy Ghost!  All three Persons, One Living Lord God Almighty!  All praise and thanks to His Holy Name!  Amen. And forever Amen!’

“Whoso offereth praise glorifieth Me: and to him/her that ordereth his/her conversation (entire lifestyle) aright will I show the Salvation of the Lord.”   (Psalm 50:23) 

I wonder?  As you read these words, did your soul enter into a spirit of everlasting gratitude to God for what He has done for you, or did the words fail to touch you or affect you in any manner?  Sobering thoughts, dear reader, because, if you did not feel any need to give praise and thanks to the Lord – it might well be that you have nothing of Salvation in Christ to thank Him for!  Make the vital adjustment while it is still the day of God’s Sovereign grace.

“Examine yourselves, whether ye be in the faith; prove (test) your own selves.  Know ye not your own selves, how that Jesus Christ is in you, except ye be reprobates (rejected by God)?  But I trust that ye shall know that ye are not reprobates.” (2 Corinthians 13:5-6)

If Christ’s true Salvation is not in our hearts – praise cannot come out of our mouths!  The Holy Spirit bears witness with our spirit that we are – or we are NOT - the children of God!

“The Spirit itself (Himself) beareth (bears and continues to bear) witness with our spirit, that we are the children of God.”                      (Romans 8:16)

If our hearts (our entire essence of our being, not the blood pump in our bodies) cannot raise up and bless God with our mouths – then it is a sure sign that we are NOT ‘…the children of God.’  If our hearts can, without reservation or sense of human embarrassment, give praise and worship and honour unto the Lord God, we KNOW we are secure in Christ Jesus, and are in fact ‘…the children of the most high God.’  We can test ourselves right this moment whether or not we are truly saved!  Hallelujah!  All praise and glory and honour and worship unto the Lord God, Jehovah!

Just as the great model prayer Jesus taught His disciples to pray – The Pater Noster, or The Lord’s Prayer – ends with a doxology, so Book One of the Psalms ends with a doxology.

Dictionary Definition: Doxology – (Christian religion) (noun) a hymn or liturgical formula ascribing glory to God.

“Blessed be the Lord God of Israel from everlasting, and to everlasting. Amen, and Amen.”  (Psalm 41:13)

If our hearts, minds and spirits, inform us that we have indeed been blessed Eternally by the Living Lord God Almighty – through Salvation in His dear Son, Jesus Christ – then it is in the realm of the Supernatural for us to lift up a eulogy, a sincere song of praise and thanksgiving, unto the One Who has blessed us so thoroughly in His Sovereign grace and mercy.  Not to do so, or worse, not able to do so – shows a lack of gratitude that can only come from a heart that is still firmly set in sin and Spiritual darkness.  Praise and thanksgiving comes Supernaturally, when it comes from a heart that has been Supernaturally regenerated, ‘born again’, by God the Spirit.       (John 3:3-8)

Verse 13.  ““Blessed be the Lord God of Israel from everlasting, and to everlasting. The Psalm ends with a doxology, Blessed be the Lord, i.e. let Him be glorified.  The blessing at the beginning from the mouth of God is returned from the mouth of His servant.  We cannot add to the Lord’s blessedness, but we can pour out our grateful wishes, and these He accepts, as we receive little presents of flowers from children who love us.” (C.H. Spurgeon, Treasury of David, page 201) 

Verse 13. “Blessed be the Lord God of Israel from everlasting, and to everlasting.  Amen, and Amen.”  God the Holy Spirit is the Divine Inspirational Author of all 66 Books of canonical written Scripture.  The Scriptures in our King James Bibles are ‘…given by inspiration of God.’  (2 Timothy 3:15-17)  They are ‘inspired’, God-breathed, truth.

The Double-Mention in Scripture:  Note the use of what some of us Bible-believing theologians call, ‘the use of the double-mention’ contained in this last verse of Psalm 41. – ‘everlasting, everlasting; and Amen, and Amen’

It seems that God the Spirit sets this ‘double-mention’ in His Word to make particular emphasis on what He is teaching us as followers of the Lord Jesus Christ.  We are to pay double-attention to such verses in Holy Scripture, and glean a harvest of truth.

Note that the Lord God of Israel is to be blessed by ‘His people’ FROM everlasting TO everlasting; our God is an Eternal Being and has always been blessed, always is blessed, and always shall be blessed by those who know Him and are recipients of His great and Eternal Salvation in Christ Jesus. Bless the Lord, O my soul! Amen. 

Thought:  To this truth we can only say a double ‘Amen’, so be it, Lord God, we love Thee, praise Thee, and Worship Thee always. 

Thus endeth the First Book of the Psalms.    
Important Note:  (Next week I shall, in the will of God, be sending out weekly expositions on this vital subject of The Ten Commandments (Exodus 20:1-17) for the next three months or so!  Please ask all your Christian friends/fellowships to sign up for this free weekly Bible Lesson on  www.ulsterchristians.org; or send me their email addresses to receive the teachings?)

A Plea for Christian Integrity Psalm 41:12

Text: “And as for me, Thou upholdest me in mine integrity, and settest me before Thy face forever.”                                                                                                                                            Psalm 41:12.

Good morning, God-honouring Christian!  You and I are well aware, made aware by God the Holy Spirit, that if we are to name the Name of Christ Jesus as our Saviour, we must also yield to Him as our Lord – and that necessarily demands of us the highest Christ-like integrity.  To be ‘Christian’, one must seek to be like Christ in every area of our lives.  To possess such a high Christian integrity, is to be a sound witness of the grace of God working within our lives daily.  Thus we honour the Lord God.

“Wherefore the Lord God of Israel saith, I said indeed that thy house, and the house of thy father, should walk before Me forever: but now the Lord saith, Be it far from Me; for them that honour Me I will honour, and they that despise Me shall be lightly esteemed.”            (1 Samuel 2:30)

Those of us, God’s elect, that profess the Name of Christ as our Saviour and Lord, must practice the very highest integrity before God and men, otherwise we are found to be hypocrites and bring no honour to the Name of Jesus Christ the Lord.

“Nevertheless the foundation of God standeth sure, having this seal, The Lord knoweth (knows, and continues to know) them that are His.  And let everyone that nameth the Name of Christ depart from iniquity.”  (2 Timothy 2:19)

Only a manifestation of the highest integrity, continuously, should be practiced by Christians.  When we fail, (not IF we fail!) we must confess that failure to the Lord and be immediately renewed in faith and necessary Christian integrity.  We are under the world’s microscope daily!  We must pray continually for God the Holy Spirit to fill us with His Holy motivation, desire to follow Christ; and a strict conscience against all sin.  For, if left to ourselves, we will naturally follow the path of sin and disobedience to the laws of the Lord God. (1 John 1:8-9)

Verse 12.  “And as for me, Thou upholdest me in mine integrity.  We are like those glasses without feet, which can only be upright while they are held in the hand; we fall, and spill, and spoil all, if left to ourselves.  The Lord should be praised every day if we are preserved from gross sin.  When others sin, they show us what we should be, but for grace. ‘He today and I tomorrow,’ was the exclamation of a holy man whenever he saw another failing into sin.”  (C.H. Spurgeon, Treasury of David, page 201)

True and mutually trusting fellowship with others of ‘…like precious faith…’ in Christ, is such a vital concept to practice.  We are all of Adam’s fallen race, his original sin blighted the whole of mankind with a similar penchant to sin and run into disobedience to God.  

Therefore, to have Christian companions whom we can really and totally trust with our personal failings/faults, is to have fellowshipping friends to whom we can come with confidence to confess our faults and to pray with, in repentance, for renewed cleansing from daily sins.  Mutual trust is absolutely necessary in such a successful relation of fellowship in Christ Jesus.  The strictest confidence must be held by both parties if such close fellowship is to be maintained and faith nurtured within the church.

“Confess your faults one to another, and pray one for another, that ye may be healed.  The effectual prayer of a righteous man (made righteous in Christ) availeth much.  Elias (Elijah) was a man of like passions as we are, and he prayed earnestly that it might not rain: and it rained not on the earth by the space of three years and six months.”  (James 5:16-17)

Dictionary Definition: Integrity – (noun) entireness, wholeness; the unimpaired state of anything; uprightness, honesty; purity.  (The Chambers Dictionary, page 835)

“This same integrity is like Noah’s ark, wherein he was preserved when others perished, being without it.  It is like the red thread, which the spies of Joshua gave to Rahab, it was a charter whereby she claimed her life when the rest were destroyed, which had not the like.  So is this integrity of small reckoning, I confess, with the men of this world, which think that there is no other Heaven but earth; but as Rahab’s thread was better to her than all her goods and substance when the sword came, so this is better to God’s children than al the world when death comes.”  (William Burton 1602)

Christian integrity involves the entire man/woman of Christ, in word, thought, deed, and motivation.  It is the proof of genuineness; of the reality of the Son of God actually living within the being of the believer - especially concerning his/her constancy of Christ-likeness in the eyes of the unbelievers all around.

To manifest such a high quality of Christian integrity is to be ‘…the salt of the earth…a light on a hill that cannot be hidden.’  It brings immediate glory to the Christ of God Who has performed such a miracle of Christian regeneration.  (John 3:308) 

Verse 12.  “…And settest me before Thy face forever”.  It is a very real wonder of God’s Sovereign grace that, not only does the Living Lord God elect (choose) a soul for Salvation from ‘…before the foundation of the world…’; but that He grants us the integrity-power of God the Holy Spirit, Who not only ‘quickens’ us from having a dead spirit to be a living spirit in Christ Jesus, but empowers us to walk with genuine Christian integrity day by day! (Acts 1:8)

Furthermore, after having performed and exercised this miracle of quickening and saving grace – the Lord God empowers us to serve Him, with His full promise that we shall be set before His Holy face forever in Heaven!  Hallelujah!  What a Saviour!

Thought: ‘Dear Lord God, please uphold me in Holy integrity day and daily; that I might bring glory to Thy Holy Name and not shame. Amen.’

"Lord, Please Raise Me Up!" Psalm 41:10-11

Text: “But Thou, O Lord, be merciful unto me, and raise me up, that I may requite them.”                                                                                                                                                                         Psalm 41:10.

Good morning, down-trodden Christian!  Today, you and I may feel so very down-trodden.  Down-trodden by illness; down-trodden by family problems; down-trodden as Bible-believing Christians, compelled to live in societies that have no longer any use or time, or respect, for Christian beliefs, morals, and standards of decency.  We so often feel absolutely down-trodden.

However, I have good news for each of us this morning: The Lord Jesus delights to raise up the down-trodden!  Hallelujah!  We have Divine help in the Lord God!

“For I the Lord thy God will hold thy right hand, saying unto thee, Fear not; I will help thee.  Fear not, thou worm of Jacob, and ye men of Israel; I will help thee, saith the Lord, and they redeemer, the Holy One of Israel.” (Isaiah 41:13-14)

Here, in verses 10 and 11 of Psalm 41, we find the Psalmist making further pleas for Divine help: to be raised up from the down-trodden position; and that he might requite his enemies, so that they might not continue to ‘…triumph over…’ him.

Dictionary Definition: Requite – (verb transitive) to repay (an action); to avenge, to repay (a person, for); to retaliate on; to counterbalance…payment in return, recompense, reward, etc. (Chambers Dictionary, page 1403)

Why does the Psalmist want the Lord to ‘…raise him up…’?  He desires to be raised up and enabled of the Lord in order to ‘requite’ his enemies who are presently seeking to ‘…triumph over…’ him!  David needs to be enabled by the Lord in order to successfully ‘contend’ with all his oppressing enemies – Spiritual and physical!

“Beloved, when I gave all diligence to write unto you of the common Salvation, it was needful for me to write unto you, and exhort you that ye should earnestly contend for the faith which was once delivered unto the saints.” (Jude 3)

You and I are engaged in an active Spiritual WAR!  This is no time for timidity!

William Gurnall, writing in the Seventeenth Century, wrote: “The subject of the treatise is solemn: A War between the Saint and Satan.  And it is such a bloody one that the cruelest war ever fought by men will be seen as but sport and child’s play compared to this.  It is a Spiritual war that you shall read of; not a history of what was fought many ages past and is now over, but of a war now going on – the tragedy is present with us.   And it is not taking place at the farthest end of the world; it concerns you and everyone who reads of it. The stage on which this war is fought is every man’s own soul.  There are no neutrals in this war.  The whole world is engaged in the quarrel, either for God against Satan, or for Satan against God.”  (The Christian in Complete Armour, (Volume 1), page 20, by William Gurnall (1616-1679), Banner of Truth Trust)

“And if it seem evil unto you to serve the Lord, CHOOSE you this day whom ye will serve; whether the gods which your fathers served that were on the other side of the flood, or the gods of the Amorites, in whose land ye dwell; but as for me and my house, we will serve the Lord.  And the people answered and said, God forbid that we should forsake the Lord, to serve other gods; for the Lord our God, He it is that brought us up and our fathers out of the land of Egypt (the world), from the house of bondage…”  (Joshua 24:15-17)

Well, down-trodden Christian?  Do YOU believe you are engaged in such a bloody and ruthless Spiritual war?  Do you think for one moment that you and I can just breeze through this Spiritual carnage without contending for the faith once delivered unto the saints?  Do you and I still believe that we are to be mere interested onlookers in this great global and universal Battle?  No!  Let us don ‘the whole armour of God…’ and go forth into the fray.  Onward, Christian soldiers!  Jesus has won the Victory!  Hallelujah!  His Victory is ours!  Glory to His Holy Name!

“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, but against principalities, against powers, against the rulers of the darkness of this world, against Spiritual wickedness in high places.  Wherefore take unto you the whole armour of God, that ye may be able to withstand in the evil day…”  (Ephesians 6:10-20)

The Palmist, here in Psalm 41, is making a plea to the Lord to be lifted up after, perhaps, being knocked down somewhat by a fall, a slip, being thrown by a fault or a failing in his faith.  We all need raised up again in such ongoing situations and circumstances as we persevere in the ‘…faith once delivered unto the saints…’

Verse 11. “By this I know that Thou favourest me, because mine enemy doth not triumph over me.  When God doth deliver us from the hands of our enemies, or any trouble else, we may persuade ourselves thereby, He hath a favour unto us, as David did.

“But then it may be demanded, if God doth love His church, why doth He suffer His church to be troubled and molested with enemies?  The reason is this – because by this means His love may be made more manifest in saving and delivering them.  For as a sure friend is not known but in time of need, so God’s goodness and love is never so well perceived as it is in helping of us when we cannot help ourselves.”  (William Burton 1602)

Thought: “Dear Lord God, I am wounded in the great Battle for souls, please raise me up, strengthen me, help me – that I may  once more engage in the War as your soldier, servant, and friend.  This I pray, in Christ’s Holy Name, Amen.”