(Psa 119:81-83) "For I am become like a bottle in the smoke..."
Years ago I helped clean out a house that had been burnt in a fire.
The dear lady for whom we were working asked us, that as we went through the rubble, to pull out anything that might be salvageable.
She had a collection of antique or unique bottles that were ruined in the fire, and she looked at each one to see if any could be saved.
She saved only a couple of them, most were destroyed beyond use.
As I read this passage I was reminded of that job and of the many things we pulled out of that fire.
I remember family picture albums and other personal items that were scorched and ruined.
> I remember the sad expression she gave each item before discarding them.
As I read this verse, I remembered pulling out all those unique bottles and bringing them to the woman for examination.
> The Psalmist had evidently seen something similar.
> Some suggest it was a wineskin...
Regardless of what kind of bottle, he saw an item ruined in the smoke.
> He was able to relate to this situation.
> He realized how his own life had become sullied and ruined.
> He had become "like a bottle in the smoke."
I. What Does it Mean to be Like a Bottle in the Smoke?
A. A bottle in the smoke has been through the fire.
1. This has been a very sorrowful 18 months.
2. I am talking about a people who have been through the fire
3. It was easy to tell that these bottles had been through the fire.
> The tell-tale signs were all over those bottles.
> They were black and sooty.
> They were oily to the touch.
> They were ruined beyond use.
> Anyone that looked on them knew instantly, These bottles had been through a fire.
4. You can see the tell-tale signs on God’s people.
> They walk slower.
> They stoop lower.
> They talk softer.
> They cry often.
> They seem to have a deeper perspective on life!
> Anyone that looks on them knows instantly, These people have been through the fire.
5. The Psalmist said: "I am become like a bottle in the smoke..."
> I have all the signs of one that has gone through the fire!
B. A bottle in the smoke becomes fragile.
1. A few of those burnt bottles broke the minute we picked them up.
> They were very brittle.
> Even the unbroken bottles had lost some of their strength.
2. When you have gone through the fire, often you come out very fragile.
> Have you ever consider how fragile life is already.
> Even without the strees of going through the fire, life is already fragile.
Psa 90:9 For all our days are passed away in thy wrath: we spend our years as a tale that is told.
Psa 90:10 The days of our years are threescore years and ten; and if by reason of strength they be fourscore years, yet is their strength labour and sorrow; for it is soon cut off, and we fly away.
Eccl 12:5 Also when they shall be afraid of that which is high, and fears shall be in the way, and the almond tree shall flourish, and the grasshopper shall be a burden, and desire shall fail: because man goeth to his long home, and the mourners go about the streets:
Job 14:1-2 Man that is born of a woman is of few days, and full of trouble. He cometh forth like a flower, and is cut down: he fleeth also as a shadow, and continueth not.