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Summary: PERSEVERANCE IN WAITING FOR GOD’S WORD IS THE PATHWAY TO A BLAMELESS HEART AND A BLAMELESS TESTIMONY

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BIG IDEA:

PERSEVERANCE IN WAITING FOR GOD’S WORD IS THE PATHWAY

TO A BLAMELESS HEART AND A BLAMELESS TESTIMONY

INTRODUCTION

Perseverance is a lost virtue in our Instant-oriented culture.

Spiritual maturity does not occur overnight.

The Psalmist is experiencing some persisting type of affliction (which he attributes to the hand of God). While he has been promised some great blessing, he as yet has not realized full inner blessing or outward prosperity. Yet he hangs in there and "waits for

God’s word" and for the fulfillment of God’s promises.

He must fight two important battles:

1) the battle with himself -- questioning whether God will really deliver on His promises

2) the battle of others looking at his afflicted condition and questioning his spirituality

The constant threat is that of Disappointment = being let down by God

1) Private shame and embarrassment -- in his own heart

2) Public shame and embarrassment -- in the eyes of others:

- other believers (God-fearers)

- other non-believers (his enemies = the arrogant)

I. 2 CONVICTIONS THAT ENCOURAGE PERSEVERANCE IN WAITING FOR GOD’S WORD

A. My Creator Has a Plan for My Life

"Thy hands made me and fashioned me" (:73a)

God will not leave His work half-done; Therefore, I can’t quit on God.

The One who created me physically will surely equip me mentally and spiritually

"Give me understanding that I may learn Thy commandments" (:73b)

B. My Lord will Do What is Best for Me (:75-77)

The God who is Righteous and Faithful in Afflicting me is also Loving and Compassionate to Comfort and Deliver me.

1. Righteous and Faithful in Afflicting me

"I know, O Lord, that Thy judgments are righteous, And that in faithfulness Thou hast afflicted me."

2. Loving and Compassionate to Comfort and Deliver me

"O may Thy lovingkindness comfort me, According to Thy word to Thy servant."

"May Thy compassion come to me that I may live, For Thy law is my delight."

Paradox: The one who afflicts is the same one who comforts and delivers; and He

remains righteous and faithful throughout

II. THE FLAME OF HOPE IS FUELED BY DELIGHTING IN GOD’S WORD

"Thy law is my delight " (:77b)

"I shall meditate on thy precepts" (:78b)

III. 2 RESULTS OF PERSEVERANCE IN WAITING FOR GOD’S WORD

A. A Blameless Heart -- No Shame

"May my heart be blameless in Thy statutes, That I may not be ashamed" (:80)

B. A Blameless Testimony -- No Shame

1. Encouraging the hearts of the godly

"May those who fear Thee see me and be glad, Because I wait for Thy word." (:74)

2. Renewing intimate fellowship with the godly

"May those who fear Thee turn to me, Even those who know Thy testimonies." (:79)

Contrast: "May the arrogant be ashamed, for they subvert me with a lie" (:78a)

* * * * * * * * * *

DEVOTIONAL QUESTIONS:

1) Do we trust the Potter to complete his work of shaping and molding us through trials and adversity? Does our Creator really know what is best for us?

2) Are other believers encouraged when they see us? Do we have a positive, vibrant testimony? Do we have the type of smile and countenance that reflects our patient


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