3. Our Anguish Towards Unbelief Psalm 56:5-9

Text:  “Unto the pure all things are pure: but unto them that are defiled and unbelieving is nothing pure; but even their mind and conscience is defiled.”

Titus 1:15.  

Good morning, Christian, victorious in faith!  Amidst the constant daily Spiritual Battles you and I are called, and privileged to fight in Christ’s service, we are very conscious of the pain, the mental torment, and the Spiritual anguish of our very souls because of unbelief.

We have anguish when we are contending with other professing Christians on what we believe from Scriptures; we have anguish when we see the profound depths of twisted ‘theology’ that is being bandied about in the church international today in 2022; we have anguish and deep sorrow when our sincere, open, and honest Bible teachings are ridiculed as ‘out of date’, and ‘inappropriate for today’s modern Christian church’!  Indeed, we can fully relate to the Psalmist’s words, ‘Every day they wrest my words...’

The Ungodly:

Verse 5.  “Every day they wrest my words.  This is a common mode of warfare among the ungodly.  They put our language on the rack; they extort meanings from it which it cannot be made fairly to contain.  Thus our Saviour’s prophecy concerning the temple of His body, and countless accusations against His servants, were founded on wilful perversions.  They who do this every day become great adepts in the art.  A wolf can always find in a lamb’s discourse a reason for eating him.  Prayers are blasphemies if you choose to read them the wrong way upwards.”  (C.H. Spurgeon, Treasury of David, page 254)

Those Professing to be ‘Godly’:

Verse 5.  “Every day they wrest my words.  Not only among the ungodly does this concept flourish, but oppositions from other professing Christians can follow the very same trend!

So often have I sincerely sought to share, in written Bible Lessons over the past 40 years, truths from God’s Word, Chapter and Verse authenticated, to other believers some of whom throw the clarity of God’s revelations back in my face, and offer me ridicule as a reciprocation.

The full Sovereignty of God in a sinner’s Salvation is under merciless attack by modernists and liberalists, Arminians, and legalists all throughout the professing ‘Church’ worldwide.  In their minds, God is not permitted to be in full control of His own originally Created souls! Fallen mankind must be in control of his/her own Salvation!

Humanism, seems to be a major factor in this attack on God’s Sovereignty – humanistic belief that mankind, and the mind of mankind, is paramount; rejecting, or opposing belief in a Lord God Who is in full control of every aspect of the life He originally CREATED for His glory.  Humanists within the ‘Christian’ church, will favour and rely on DECISIONS made by sinners to be saved; and the legalistic actions/’good deeds’; church meeting attendance; of those making such decisions to KEEP themselves ‘in a state of continued grace’.  What nonsense!  What error!

Such professing Christians propagating these gross errors, continue on and increase their unbelief in clear Bible teachings, by declaring heresies such as ‘God is such a God of love that He would NEVER elect to send anyone to a terrible place such as Hell!’  Such a ‘loving God’ would never create a Hell for human souls!  So, Hell is taken out of their Christian beliefs, and reinterpreted out of their ‘more modern’ Bibles.  Praise God for the translators of the King James Version Bible (1611)!  Hell is a very real place!

Verse 5. “...All their thoughts are against me for evil.  No mixture of good will tone down their malice.  Whether they viewed him as a king, a Psalmist, a man, a father, a warrior, a sufferer, it was all the same – they saw through coloured glass and could not think a generous thought towards him.  Even those actions of his which were an undoubted blessing to the commonwealth they endeavoured to undervalue.  O, foul spring, from which never a drop of pure water can come!”  (C.H. Spurgeon, Treasury of David, pages 254-255)

Verse 6.  “They gather themselves together.  Those that just can’t seem to grasp the depth of God’s Word concerning the Sovereignty of God in man’s Eternal Salvation (i.e. God chooses and saves only those whom HE, in His Sovereign will, chooses to save!) tend to gather themselves into a group, or groups, that then tend to concentrate on attacking the Scriptural beliefs of those who DO believe in the full Sovereignty of God in Salvation!

Verse 6.  “...They hide themselves. Men of malice are men of cowardice.”  (C.H. Spurgeon, Treasury of David, page 255)

Today, in this 2022 increasingly apostate, humanistic professing church worldwide, the numbers of those who detest and oppose Bible teachings on the full Sovereignty of God in mankind’s Eternal Salvation have grown so big that such humanists no longer ‘hide themselves’, they organise their oppositions to Scriptural truth, and attack, ruthlessly, all those of us who remain faithful in Bible belief on this vital subject.  God is not pleased.

Verse 7. “Shall they escape by iniquity?  In Thine anger cast down the people O God.  A God of pure truth cannot bless the propagation of doctrinal error!  It is like asking our Holy Lord God to bless sin and unrighteousness!  Heretics and those in blatant doctrinal error beware!  God is not mocked.  (Galatians 6:7-8)

“But he/she that doeth wrong shall receive for the wrong which he/she hath done: and there is no respect of persons.”  (Colossians 3:25)

“And in those days (of open apostasy and unbelief) there was no king in Israel, but every man did what was right in his own eyes.  (Judges 17:6)

“And shall not God avenge 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, shall He find faith on the earth?  (Luke 18:7-8)

Verse 8. “Put Thou my tears in Thy bottle.  ...such floods of tears had David wept that a leathern bottle would scarcely hold them.”  (C.H. Spurgeon, Treasury of David, page 255)

“It is a witty observation by one that God is said in Scriptures to have a bag and a bottle: a bag for our sins and a bottle or our tears; and that we should help to fill this (bottle) , as we have filled that (bag).”  (John Trapp 1601-1699)

Verse 9.  “When I cry.  The cry of faith and prayer to God is more dreadful to our Spiritual foes than the war-whoop of the (Native-American) Indian is to his surprised brother savage.”  (Adam Clarke 1760-1832)

Thought:  Faith in God’s Sovereignty, makes us cry for brethren who just will not believe in its Scriptural, God-breathed, TRUTH.  (Romans 9:11-24)

2. The Remedy for Our Fear Psalm 56:3-4

Text: “What time I am afraid, I will trust in Thee.  In God I will praise His Word, in God I have put my trust; I will not fear what flesh can do unto me.”

Psalm 56:3-4.

Good morning, fully insured servant of God!  No credible Insurance Company in this old world would, or could, fully insure a serving Christian against the oppositions, oppressions, and hindrances encountered in our day to day service to King Jesus Christ.  Such worldly Insurance Companies cannot see, nor understand, the depth of opposition, etc. serving Christians encounter daily as we serve the Lord Jesus; and what the world cannot see, it just will not, and cannot, believe.  We serving Christians must seek our insurance elsewhere.

“Now we have received, not the spirit of the world, but the Spirit which is of God; that we might know the things that are freely given to us of God...But the natural man (non-Christian) receiveth not the things of the Spirit of God: for they are foolishness unto him/her; neither indeed can he/she know them, because they are Spiritually discerned.” (1 Corinthians 2:12-14)

Verse 3.  “What time I am afraid, I will trust in Thee. David was no braggart; he does not claim never to be afraid; he was no brutish Stoic free from fear because of the lack of tenderness.  David’s intelligence deprived him of the stupid needlessness of ignorance; he saw the imminence of his peril and was afraid.  We are men, and therefore liable to overthrow; we are feeble, and therefore unable to prevent it; we are sinful men, and therefore deserving it, and for all these reasons we are afraid.”  (C.H. Spurgeon, Treasury of David, page 253)

I once believed that to be really courageous, I must hold to the philosophy that, ‘The only thing I can fear, is ever showing fear!’  I believed that showing fear was a sign of great weakness, and therefore I must never appear to be afraid.  In this I was being dishonest.

I now believe that hiding my fear during Spiritual oppression is a most stupid and unnecessary thing to do; for the Lord God already KNOWS my fear, and is constantly listening out for my cry for deliverance from it.  Why should Christian believers deprive ourselves of God’s help and deliverance in our times of great fear?  This is a great folly.  The Lord God knows we are in need of His Omnipotent help, and like any loving earthly father, merely waits for us, His children, to cry out unto Him for His Almighty help.

The Psalmist, David, was filled with fear – but fear was not the only thing that filled his soul!  He was filled with God-given faith, and that faith enabled him to cry out in full belief for the Lord’s Heavenly help.  Praise God for His gift of faith!  (Ephesians 2:8)

Verse 3. “What time I am afraid, I will trust in Thee. ...The condition of the Psalmist’s mind was complex – he feared, but that fear did not fill the whole area of his mind, for he adds, I will trust in Thee.  It is possible then, for fear and faith to occupy the mind at the same moment.  We are strange beings, and our experience in the Divine life is stranger still.  We are often in a twilight, where light and darkness are both present, and it is hard to tell which predominates.  It is a blessed fear which drives us to trust.  Unregenerate fear drives from God; gracious fear drives to Him.  If I fear man, I have only to trust God, and I have the best antidote.”  (C.H. Spurgeon, Treasury of David, page 253)

God-given faith is the only antidote for the Christian servant’s times of fear and dread.  Faith is a strange Spiritual substance indeed, and is clearly defined – as far as our puny and too carnal minds can grasp it – in Hebrews chapter Eleven.

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

Where then, in times of great fear and dread especially, do we Christians obtain this extra faith necessary to sustain us during deep Satanic oppressions and Godly testings?  One place only: “So then faith cometh by hearing (reading?), and hearing by the Word of God.”  (Romans 10:17)

We gain strength of faith from opening our Bibles and reading (hearing) the Word of God afresh every morning.  Our faith is renewed, our Spiritual insurance policies revisited; our eyes are directed once more unto the Author and Finisher of our faith – Jesus Christ, the risen Son of the Living Lord God – and we can better continue to place our full trust in Him to meet all our needs.

Bunyan says: “There is nothing like faith to help at a pinch; faith dissolves doubts as the sun drives away the mists...Your time for believing is ALWAYS.  There are times when some graces may be out of use, but there is no time wherein faith can be said to be so.  Wherefore, faith must be always in exercise.

“Faith is the eye, is the mouth, is the hand, and one of these is of use all the day long.  Faith is to see, to receive, to work, or to eat; and a Christian should be seeing or receiving, or working, or feeding all day long.  Let it rain, let it blow, let it thunder, let it lighten, a Christian must still believe.  ‘At what time,’ said the good man, ‘I am afraid, I will trust in Thee.’”  (John Bunyan 1628-1688)

Trusting the Lord God when all seems to be going well, should be nothing for any Christian to boast about.  It is when the Satanic enemies of the Christian’s very soul seem to be banging on the front doors of our hearts and minds – tormenting us with doubt, dread, fear and crippling anxieties – that we desperately need to gird up the loins of our faith, and put all our deepest trust in our Lord God and Saviour, Jesus Christ.  ‘Lord, help us to do so!’

Verse 4.  “In God will I praise His Word.  Faith brings forth praises.  He who can trust will soon sing.”  (C.H. Spurgeon, Treasury of David, page 254)

When God sends us, ‘His people’, His Divine relief and renewed assurances – we can actually FEEL the great weights of doubt, fear and dread, lift off us like a heavy wet blanket being removed from off our backs.   Our minds are suddenly freed from fearful dread, and feel like they have been immediately delivered from some deadly mist of gloom.  What else can we do but uplift our hearts and voices in praise and worship to Him?  Hallelujah!

Verse 4.  “I will not fear what flesh can do unto me.  Again, thou oughtest not to fear flesh.  Our Saviour (Matthew 10:) thrice in the compass of six verses, commands us not to fear man: if thy heart quail at him, how wilt thou behave thyself in the list against Satan, whose little finger is heavier than man’s loins?...If thou canst not bear a bruise in thy flesh from man’s cudgel and blunt weapons, what wilt thou do when thou shalt have Satan’s sword in thy side?  God counts Himself reproached when His children fear a sorry man; therefore we are bid sanctify the Lord, not to fear their faces.” (William Gurnall 1617-1679)

Thought:  Faith in God, through Christ Jesus, is our remedy for all times of fear.

Psalm 56: The Song of God’s Servant 1. The Reason for His Song Psalm 56:1-2

Text: “Be merciful unto me, O God: for man would swallow me up; he fighting daily oppresseth me.  Mine enemies would daily swallow me up: for they be many that fight against me, O Thou most High.”

Psalm 56:1-2.

Good morning, Christian servant of God!  Not for you the mundane going-through-the motions Christianity – you know the sin that you have been delivered from and saved in, and knowing the gravity of the cost – the cruel Crucifixion of God the Son upon a Cross – you now desire to actively serve the risen Christ, and seek, in His power, to extend His Kingdom.  You do well, serving Christian!  Keep up that level of service, no matter what oppressions man, or Devil, can throw against you!  The Lord is in full control!  Hallelujah!

“Yea, and all that live godly in Christ Jesus shall suffer persecution.  But evil men and seducers shall wax worse and worse, deceiving and being deceived.”  (2 Timothy 3:12-13)

 “Cast thy burden upon the Lord, and He shall sustain thee. He shall never suffer (allow) the righteous to be moved.”  (Psalm 55:22) 

“We have here the song of God’s servant, who rejoices once more to return from banishment and to leave those dangerous places where he was compelled to hold his peace even from good.  There is such deep, Spiritual knowledge in this Psalm that we might say of it, ‘Blessed art thou David Bar-jonas, for flesh and blood hath not revealed this unto thee.’”  (C.H. Spurgeon, Treasury of David, page 253)

The ‘song’ that David is singing to the Lord here, in these two opening verses of Psalm 56, is a song of one sorely oppressed, and feeling the extreme pressures of being a genuine servant of God. 

This song is being increasingly pulled from the very souls of genuine, Bible-believing Christians right now, in this godless 21st Century British society, where we see the very courts of British legislation abdicating high moral authority, in favour of increased godlessness and vile immorality. 

Sodomy, the murder of babies in the womb; and all manner of anti-Christian filth published and portrayed throughout the British media outlets – all these are signs of the times prophesied in God’s Word. 

The author is convinced that we are currently, in this year of 2022, nearing the very end of ‘the last days’, before King Jesus Christ returns to put an end to all reprobation, and all who would oppose the Authority of Almighty Lord God Jehovah.

“And as He (Christ Jesus) sat upon the mount of Olives, the disciples came unto Him privately, saying, Tell us, when shall these things be?  And what shall be the sign of Thy coming, and of the end of the world?  And Jesus answered and said:”  (Read Matthew Chapter 24)

“Now learn a parable of the fig tree; when his branch is yet tender, and putteth forth leaves, ye know that summer is nigh: So likewise ye, when ye shall SEE all these things, know that it is near, even at the doors.  Verily I say unto you, This generation shall not pass, till all these things be fulfilled.”  (Matthew 24:32-34)

“He which testifieth these things saith, Surely I come quickly.  Amen.  Even so, come Lord Jesus.”  (Revelation 22:20)

Verse 1.  “Be merciful unto me, O God.  This is to me the one source of all my expectations, the one fountain of all promises: Miserere mei, Deus, miserere mei.”  Bernard (1091-1153)

Verse 1. “...For man would swallow me up.  He is but Thy creature, a mere man, yet like a monster he is eager for blood; he pants, he gapes for me; he would not merely wound me, or feed on my substance, but he would fain swallow me altogether, and so make an end of me.  The open mouths of sinners when they rage against us should open our mouths in prayer.”  (C.H. Spurgeon, Treasury of David, page 253)

Verse 1.  “...Scoop me up.  (As the Hebrew word soundeth); make but one draught of me, or suck me in as a whirlpool; swallow me up as a ravenous wild beast.”  (John Trapp (1601-1699)

The reason for David, the Psalmist’s, song to God is open and obvious to all readers: he feels overwhelmed and completely outnumbered by Spiritual and physical oppression, hindrance, and the enemies of his God-fearing service to Jehovah Lord God. 

Like a mangle presses hard upon garments put through its wringer rollers, relentlessly squeezing out water from the garment’s inner fibres – David, God’s servant, feels like he is being completely wrung out of all his life’s essence!  He is in such obvious Spiritual anguish that he is compelled to cry out this serious song for God’s prompt help.  His very soul is crying out to the Lord God.  “Be merciful unto me, O God!!

Verse 2.  “Mine enemies would DAILY swallow me up.  The servant of God’s plight is compounded here in verse two, as the Psalmist reveals the frequency of oppositions, hindrances, and oppressions he endures – these oppressions are a DAILY experience to every Christian who would seek to militantly serve the risen Lord Jesus!  Expect them!

Verse 2.  “Mine enemies would daily swallow me up. Their appetite for blood never fails them.  With them there is no truce or armistice.  There are many, but one mind animates them.  Nothing I can do can make them relent.  Unless they can quite devour me, they will never be content.  The ogres of nursery tales exist in reality in the enemies of the church, who would crush the bones of the godly and make a mouthful of them if they could.”  (C.H. Spurgeon, Treasury of David, page 253)

From personal experience, I find that the serving Christian - who seeks to be forthright in teaching sound doctrine; reminding all hearers of our sin; Christ’s righteousness; and the judgment that will surely come – can more easily cope with Satanically inspired oppositions and worldly oppressions when they come at us in ones and twos.  However, there are also times of affliction wherein the oppositions and oppressions come at us from a varied and numerous aspect of our daily lives – and that is when we feel that the Lord our God has hidden His Holy face from us, and we are just about to be ‘...swallowed up...’ by evil enemies.

Verse 2. “...For there be many that fight against me.  Sinners are gregarious creatures.  Persecutors hunt in packs.  These wolves of the church seldom come down upon us singly.” (C.H. Spurgeon, Treasury of David, page 253)

Thought:  Only serving Christians can sing the song of Psalm 56:  - can you and I?