Psalm 42

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A Few Ministerial Announcements
LIFE Group starting first week of November
We know the power of healthy marriages and families, etc – Date Night Nov 3
Next Sunday – Spread the Word
Wednesdays – Build relationships and community, take part in those things you have been called to for one another
Most of the Psalms were likely sung, this one Definitely was – the sons of Korah were like a choir, were song leaders
Psalms help us to FEEL in response to our THINKING
Let us look at a Psalm this morning that I want you to have as an arrow in your quiver, perhaps you need it this morning, if not you will need it soon. – Really think it will be helpful if you have your Bible in front of you
Psalm 42
He is being oppressed, taunted, persecuted – something has gone wrong, so much so that people are saying “Where is your God now?
He is in turmoil and downcast, on the brink of tears all the time – ever been there?
He is fighting for hope – he cant praise, he wants to praise again, but right now he just cant – ever been there?
So many of you are so far ahead of me on this because you have suffered so much more. . . I praise God for you.
2 Truths we Find here in this Psalm
2 Points of Application for us
The Righteous are not Spared Suffering
Psalm 42:3–4 (ESV)
My tears have been my food day and night, while they say to me all the day long, “Where is your God?” These things I remember, as I pour out my soul: how I would go with the throng and lead them in procession to the house of God with glad shouts and songs of praise
Rhetorical – How could a person like me being enduring things like this – How could a person who has always worshipped, and wants to still, be allowed to go through this?
The tears ask – Where is your God? - It is ok to call out to God that way, it is all through the scriptures, God can take it
I did this and this, I LED THE PROCESSION . . . God you owe me a good life . . .
One of the things we remind ourselves of constantly is that God has promised you Good – but it is Good as a RESULT, and not good at every moment.
If that is how you feel – God owes me a good life – then you don’t need Christ to save you, you have done it yourself, you have lived so well that God is now in your debt. God doesn’t owe you another breath, and yet here you are still breathing, by His sheer grace.
It was not God’s intent to spare you from suffering, it is God’s intent to bring you home, whatever it takes – it is Gods intent to make you strong, in Him.
Writing about the Christian life, one 19th century Christian writes about one of the soldiers at the battle at Waterloo, one of the British lieutenants, in the early part of the day, had his left forearm broken by a shot. He could not, therefore, hold the reins in his hand, but he seized them with his mouth and fought on until another shot split the upper part of the arm to splinters, and it had to be amputated. But within two days there he was, with his arm still bleeding and the wound raw, riding at the head of his division. O the bravery and the courage!
Life as a Christian may start as riding with shiny armor and smiling faces, but it is not shiny for long, but it will end in your victory. You are called to be brave and courageous, and in fact those attributes cannot exist in a world with no pain
Lamenting Suffering is the Appropriate Response
Psalm 34:18 ESV
The Lord is near to the brokenhearted and saves the crushed in spirit.
John 11:33–35 ESV
When Jesus saw her weeping, and the Jews who had come with her also weeping, he was deeply moved in his spirit and greatly troubled. And he said, “Where have you laid him?” They said to him, “Lord, come and see.” Jesus wept.
Matthew 5:4 ESV
“Blessed are those who mourn, for they shall be comforted.
One of the primary categories of content that we get in the Bible is the Lament – mourning, wailing in suffering, lamenting current circumstances
The Psalms are divided into 7 categories by Genre, by a significant amount, the largest Genre is Lament – 59 of the Psalms.
Lament – Loud Cry
I speak a lot about suffering and needing to see it as a gift, and as something God will use for your good and His glory; however, the last thing that I would want is to portray the idea that your suffering isn’t Real, isn’t awful, isn’t Bad itself, isn’t worthy of mourning, weeping, lamenting, crying out to God and asking why, even worthy of righteous anger. The Bible encourages and even leads us in all of these things.
“Pour out my soul” Psalm 42:4
Psalm 42:4 (ESV)
These things I remember, as I pour out my soul: how I would go with the throng and lead them in procession to the house of God with glad shouts and songs of praise, a multitude keeping festival.
Not stoicism – where you suppress your emotions and pretend you don’t feel pain or injustice – we would call this getting in touch with your feelings
“Drowning” – Psalm 42:6-7
Psalm 42:6–7 (ESV)
My soul is cast down within me; therefore I remember you from the land of Jordan and of Hermon, from Mount Mizar. Deep calls to deep at the roar of your waterfalls; all your breakers and your waves have gone over me.
– Jonah quotes this Psalm about his own drowning
where the river Jordan, not far from its source on the slopes of Hermon, rushes among boulders and over falls.
Here is the picture of all that is overwhelming: his footing gone, and wave after wave submerging him – ever felt that?
“Forgotten”Abandoned – Psalm 42:8-9 – He knows God hasn’t forgotten him, he says so v8 – but it feels like he has been abandoned
Psalm 42:8–9 (ESV)
By day the Lord commands his steadfast love, and at night his song is with me, a prayer to the God of my life. I say to God, my rock: “Why have you forgotten me? Why do I go mourning because of the oppression of the enemy?”
At night his Song is with me, he is singing – not in praise, not in rejoicing, but singing in mourning of God’s love – ever done that? It is well - When sorrows like sea billoughs roll – I need thee every hour
Remembering Psalm 42:4
Psalm 42:4 (ESV)
These things I remember, as I pour out my soul: how I would go with the throng and lead them in procession to the house of God with glad shouts and songs of praise, a multitude keeping festival.
What does he remember? Worship with the people of God.
Many of us grew up in churches with very shallow views of the significance of what is happening right this moment. The meaning of corporate worship, what is going on these Sunday mornings. What is this? Is is just a small thing? Just a human thing? For this Psalmist, the memories of meeting with the people of God were MASSIVE.
If nothing more were happening here than my adding some information to your brain, nothing more in singing than you being entertained, the Psalmist wouldn’t look to this to remember when he was drowning. When youre drowning, nostalgia is empty. O we had so much fun, whats that got to do with anything? Who cares about that right now?
The only reason he goes back to that, in this moment, is that God was real there, and that helps. This is supernatural. I hope you don’t come to these services thinking this is just a religious tradition. God is here. People pass from death to life in this room. Saints are made strong and able to weather the devil’s assaults in this room. God is receiving praise in this room. Brother is lifting brother in this room. Sister is admonishing sister in this room. THIS is at work in you every step after you leave and until you come again next Sunday morning.
Elevate your view of what is happening here.
We have grown so scared of the legalism that once enthralled us, that demanded that we be here every Sunday, that we have lost the weight and massiveness of what happens here every Sunday, have lost the desire to prioritize this over all else, and the call for you to be here and to stand in the part that God has given you in it.
2 Applications
Talk to Yourself, Don’t Listen to Yourself
Psalm 42:5 (ESV)
Why are you cast down, O my soul, and why are you in turmoil within me? Hope in God; for I shall again praise him, my salvation
He’s not praying to God here, he isn’t speaking to readers, he is speaking to himself. This is the essence of how you yourself can handle anything.
D Martin Lloyd Jones – “We must talk to ourselves instead of allowing our selves to talk to us. Take those thoughts that come to you the moment you wake up in the morning, you have not originated them, but there they are, talking to you, bringing back the problems of yesterday, somebody’s talking, whose talking, your self is talking to you, telling you of todays anxieties, yesterdays problems, telling you how unfair it is you have to wake up. In spiritual depression especially we allow ourselves to talk to us instead of talking to ourself. Have you realized that so much of your unhappiness is due to the fact that you are listening to yourself instead of talking? This Psalmist stands up and says, “Self, listen for a moment,” then you must go on and remind yourself of who God is what God is and What God has done and What God has pledged himself to do. Then, on this great note, defy yourself and other people and the devil and the whole world and say with the man, I SHALL yet praise Him, for He is my God.”
When Self says This, you say NO, that is not true, THIS IS TRUE
God Loves Me Steadfastly, God is MY God, God is MY Salvation, God is Sovereign (Your waves and your breakers – I know you could command them to stop)
Talk to Yourself
Self, If God is for you, who can be against you
Self, He who did not spare his own son , but gave him up for you self, how will he not also with him graciously give us all things
Self, who shall bring any charge against you, God’s elect, it is God who justified you self, who can condemn?
It is Jesus who died and who was raised and He, THAT JESUS, is interceding for you self
Self, what shall separate you from the love of God?
Notice the Bible isn’t simplistic, it isn’t as simple as MOURN, remember God, MOURN NO MORE. . .
Utter Despair and longing for God to intervene and remove the pain, and then hope in remembering the truths you believe and who He is and his salvation, and then despair and lament again – Dialogue – you must talk to yourself
Hope in God – You Shall Again Praise Him
What Faith! In misery! Unable to praise! Unable to find happiness! And yet he CLINGS TO HOPE IN GOD!
God is your Rock amidst the waterfalls and tides. – Psalm 42:9
Psalm 42:9 (ESV)
I say to God, my rock: “Why have you forgotten me? Why do I go mourning because of the oppression of the enemy?”
By day commands steadfast love, night song with me – He never leaves – 8
Psalm 42:8 (ESV)
By day the Lord commands his steadfast love, and at night his song is with me, a prayer to the God of my life.
“God is too wise to be mistaken. God is too good to be unkind. So whenever you don’t understand, whenever you can’t trace his hand, you can trust his heart.”
Hope IN GOD.
Revelation 21:4 - God is here with you now, and God is coming to save you once and for all from every tear.
Revelation 21:4 ESV
He will wipe away every tear from their eyes, and death shall be no more, neither shall there be mourning, nor crying, nor pain anymore, for the former things have passed away.”
A 7.0 magnitude earthquake that struck the island of Haiti in January 2010 destroyed buildings and killed or maimed tens of thousands of people. As hope for victims began to fade, the discovery of a survivor in the wreckage of a hotel grocery store renewed the resolve of many. Rescuers pulled Wismond Exantus from the rubble 11 days after the earthquake. Exantus told reporters from his hospital bed that the first thing he wanted to do was find a church to give thanks. He said he spent the time praying, reciting psalms, and sleeping. He summed up his experience saying, “I wasn’t afraid because I knew they were searching and would come for me.” Imagine him lying there, underneath the rubble . . . when he hears the faint sound of debris being cleared, and then thinks he can make out a few voices calling. . . my salvation has come
John 12:27 – Jesus too lamented, felt grief, called out for help, but it is because he did not receive it . . .
John 12:27 ESV
“Now is my soul troubled. And what shall I say? ‘Father, save me from this hour’? But for this purpose I have come to this hour.
Because Jesus went to the cross to pay the price for your sins, you do not have to pay that price yourself through eternal suffering
Because Jesus went to the cross to pay the price for your sins, you can know that all suffering you endure here is will eventually be undone, and will cease to threaten you ever again
Because Jesus went to the cross to pay the price for your sins, you can know that even the suffering you endure now is but another way that God is preparing you for glory, that even that suffering is controlled by the hand of God.
Almighty and everlasting God, the comfort of the sad, the strength of sufferers, we pray that all may rejoice to find that your mercy is present with them in their afflictions, through Christ our Lord. Endue our souls with patience in affliction, and with resignation to your blessed will. Comfort us with a sense of your goodness and compassion; and grant that, loosened from earthly ties, we may cling the more closely to you, who brings life out of death, and who can turn our grief into eternal joy, through Jesus Christ our Lord. Amen
Ps 63:1, 84:2, Jonah 2:3 -- OUTLINE
Psalm 42 City Alight
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