Summary: This is a sermon of encouragement in light of the tragedy in Haiti.
Text: Psalm 40:1-3
Title: A Bad Situation
Introduction: “On Jan. 12, 2010, a massive earthquake struck Haiti, reducing much of its capital to rubble. (A bad situation) It was the worst earthquake in the region in more than 200 years, with as many as 50,000 feared dead. (A bad situation) The devastation created serious obstacles to those attempting to deliver promised foreign aid. (A bad situation) United States Secretary of State Hillary Rodham Clinton told NBC's "Today" program that 3 million people - about a third of Haiti's population - had been affected by the quake, and that "there will be tens of thousands of casualties - we don't have any exact numbers." (The New York Times, Jan. 17, 2010)
There are times in our own lives when it seems like an earthquake hits and devastates, and looks like it will destroy our very lives. In some cases, it has destroyed some people’s lives. The purpose of the sermon today is to see what we do in a bad situation.
I. Patience (1a)
• I waited - hope in; hope for, wait for, look for, i.e., look forward with confidence to that which is good and beneficial, often with a focus of anticipation in a future event; note: when the object of hope is the LORD, there is an eager expectation of salvation or deliverance;
• In verse 1 I waited patiently translates “Waiting, I waited”; the Hebrew phrase that follows, “for Yahweh,” means “for Yahweh’s help.”
II. Prayer (1b)
• He inclined is similar to “he inclined his ear” and means “he listened, he paid attention to.” “Turned to me.” “He bent down to hear my cries”
• heard (1) - These relate not so much as to one occasion, as to a continued condition. The kind of progression or imperfection and unfinished condition of the action may consist it its frequent repetition.
III. Power (2)
• Desolate, horrible pit – place of the dead, place of death; pit of death, desolation, and destruction; or took me out of pit where dead people go.
• Muddy clay; miry clay - miry bog, is translated “deadly quicksand” by TEV; NJV “slimy clay”; NAB “the mud of the swamp.” “Quicksand” is not known in some areas; however, a deep bog or place of mud is equally applicable.
• Established – making my steps secure - 42.29 ποιέωe: to produce something new, with the implication of using materials already in existence (in contrast with κτίζω ‘to create,’ 42.35)—‘to make, to fashion.’ (safety, security, stability)
Conclusion: Praise (3)“He put a new song in my mouth - be durable, healthy, i.e., not be easily diseased or uprooted; last a long time, i.e., continue to be in a certain state for a considerable duration. Hymn of praise - 8416 תְּהִלָּה [tâhillah /teh•hil•law/] act of general or public praise. 1C praise-song (as title). 1D praise (demanded by qualities or deeds or attributes of God). 1E renown, fame, glory. 1E1 of Damascus, God. 1E2 object of praise, possessor of renown (fig).