Summary: God allows us to do things for which he holds himself responsible. God trusts us, can you believe that? And he lets us blame him for things that we are responsible for. I wonder if we can be trusted by him, can he be trusted by us? And will we show that t
Let me start today with some words from Christopher Columbus who we attribute with finding North America, but not many of us know that apparently he was quite a theologian too. He said, “It was the Lord who put into my mind the fact that it would be possible to sail from here (Spain) to the Indies. All who heard of my project rejected it with laughter, ridiculing me. There is no question that the inspiration was from the Holy Spirit, because He comforted me with rays of marvellous inspiration from the Holy Scriptures…
No one should fear to undertake any task in the name of our Saviour, if it is just and if the intention is purely for his holy service. The working out of all things has been assigned to each person by our Lord, but it all happens according to His sovereign will… Oh what a gracious Lord, who desires that people should perform for Him those things for which he holds Himself responsible. Day and night, moment by moment, everyone should express their most devoted gratitude to Him.”
That sounds inspired to me. I love that one sentence. God allows us to do things for which he holds himself responsible. God trusts us, can you believe that? And he lets us blame him for things that we are responsible for. I wonder if we can be trusted by him, can he be trusted by us? And will we show that trust?
King David clearly shows that he trusts the Lord. When the world, even those who he thought were friends turned against him, he depended on the Lord to intercede. He knows that justice will be done. He says I will call to God, and very simply, the Lord will save me.
Now think about that. These were ruthless times and from even before David was king he had people, even his own people trying to kill him. And these were professional killers. So does he say, “I’ll get my own group of mercenaries together and we will kill them before they get to me”? No, he calls to God to take care of it, and he knows that:
I. God is never off duty (vv 16-19)
Now isn’t that taking trust a little too far? Should we not act sometimes, take matters into our own hands? But I think this is the key. He took action sometimes as directed by God, but what we need to notice in this situation, is that he doesn’t just float up a one time prayer before lunch. He is in agony calling out to the Lord in the evening, in the morning, and at noon. What part of the day is missing there? Nothing. Shouldn’t he be out getting his armies together, sharpening his sword? But there he is in agonizing prayer at all hours of the day and night crying out to the Lord. That just seems so impractical.
This is a Psalm of perseverance and if you read through the whole thing, you see that as he prays, his faith grows as he remembers who God is and what he has done to intercede for David in the past.
Very often prayer first changes us, increases our faith, even before God intervenes to change the situation. And sometimes we even realize that the situation really doesn’t need to be changed, we do.
We’re going to look at David more this fall, but one of the reasons God calls David a man after his own heart in spite of his mistakes and sins, is that he always desired God to show and glorify himself. Ever since he stood courageously in front of Goliath as a boy. Do you think he really thought he was good enough with a slingshot to kill this giant that all the nation’s soldiers were afraid of? I doubt it, but he knew God was stronger, and he knew that God was on his side, and that he was never off duty.
Now in this Psalm, why does David believe God will humble his enemies? Isn’t that kind of arrogant? Well, for one, he has seen it many times, and it says here it’s because they will not change (in other words repent) and they will not fear (or believe in or follow, or respect) God. He has faith that God is just toward those who follow him and he has proof because he has put his faith to the test.
Let’s jump ahead now to verse 22. “Cast your burden on the Lord”. You got a problem, something you don’t know if you can deal with? Don’t try harder, call on God, he wants to take care of it. What we can know from all of this is that:
II. God is in Control even when you’re suffering (v. 22a)