The Great RescuerJanuary 14, 2013 at 2:56 pm | Posted in Selected Psalms | 2 Comments
Tags: Acts 2, attributes of God, call on Jesus, calling upon the Lord, danger, grace, mercy, Psalm 116, rescued
Psalm 116 is about being thankful to the Lord after we have called on Him in a time of great danger and He has rescued us.
Return unto thy rest, O my soul; for the LORD hath dealt bountifully with thee.
The psalmist had been at rest, but then trouble came.
I said in my haste, All men are liars.
Men he trusted had lied about him.
The sorrows of death compassed me, and the pains of hell gat hold upon me: I found trouble and sorrow. Then called I upon the name of the LORD; O LORD, I beseech thee, deliver my soul.
They almost caused his death, but He called on the Lord, and the Lord rescued him.
I love the LORD, because he hath heard my voice and my supplications. Because he hath inclined his ear unto me, therefore will I call upon him as long as I live.
This Psalm is probably from a testimony given in the Sanctuary. It contains parts of Psalm 56, other Psalms, and parts of Isaiah.
Let’s identify two of four main principles found in Psalm 116:
1. God answers the prayers of His children.
I love the LORD, because he hath heard my voice and my supplications.
Whenever you find yourself in danger, call on the Lord. New, first-time parents will be keenly aware of this principle. Dad is at the far corner of his yard, perhaps on the top of a ladder, pruning a tree. Or mom is carrying a scalding hot pot of boiling water from the stove to the sink. Suddenly their new-born infant lets out a shriek of pain from his crib. Dad leaps from the ladder like a reckless school-boy! Mom instantly drops the pot of water! They race for the baby’s room without any regard for their own safety. Why? Because they love their child, and it sounds like the child is trouble. If wicked, sinful, intrinsically selfish, fallen mortals react this way when their child cries out in distress, how much more will our loving Heavenly Father (Who loves with a perfect love) come to the aid of His children when they – being in real danger – cry out for help?
Have you ever known of a situation where one child called on a parent for help, but the parent didn’t or couldn’t come help because he or she was already busy helping another child? This can’t happen with God. He is never “too busy” to hear or to come to the aid of one of His children. We should trust God in all types of troubles, and there are some troubles that are obviously hopeless unless we are rescued.
The Holy Spirit applied the plea of Psalm 116:3 to the Resurrection of Jesus Christ in Acts 2:24.
The sorrows of death compassed me, and the pains of hell gat hold upon me: I found trouble and sorrow.
Whom God hath raised up, having loosed the pains of death: because it was not possible that he should be holden of it.
2. God’s attributes tend toward rescue.
Gracious is the LORD, and righteous; yea, our God is merciful.
Grace is when God gives us what we do not deserve. Mercy is when God withholds from us what we do deserve. Any time we are in danger, we are experiencing what we deserve. Rescue is what we do not deserve. However, God delights in grace and mercy.
The LORD preserveth the simple: I was brought low, and he helped me.
We have a tendency to respond to God’s grace like spoiled children. First, we are amazed by grace. Then, we start to assume grace. Pretty soon, we are demanding grace. When is the last time you simply and uncritically just believed that God does what He says He will do because He is God?
Next time, we will take a look at two more principles from Psalm 116.