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Psalm 22 is an amazing Psalm! This Psalm is the most quoted Psalm in the New Testament. Re-read this Psalm again and see if you see parallels to Jesus' crucifixion? There are a lot in this Psalm. I'll list a few - Psalm 22:1a was quoted by Jesus on the cross - "My God, my God! Why have you forsaken me?" As we see in Matthew 27:46 - "About the ninth hour Jesus cried out in a loud voice, “Eloi, Eloi, lama sabachthani?”–which means, “My God, my God, why have you forsaken me?”
Psalm 22 Verse 8: ""Is this the one who relies on the LORD? Then let the LORD save him! If the LORD loves him so much, let the LORD rescue him!"" We see in similar fashion in Matthew 27:42-43: "“He saved others,” they said, “but he can't save himself! He's the King of Israel! Let him come down now from the cross, and we will believe in him. He trusts in God. Let God rescue him now if he wants him, for he said, ‘I am the Son of God.’ ”
Psalm 22 verses 16 & 17 make me want to cry... "They have pierced my hands and feet. I can count every bone in my body." The piercing of the hands and feet of Jesus are apparent with how the crucifixion took place. And these Psalm 22 verses are similar to John 19:33-37: "But when they came to Jesus and found that he was already dead, they did not break his legs. Instead, one of the soldiers pierced Jesus' side with a spear, bringing a sudden flow of blood and water. The man who saw it has given testimony, and his testimony is true. He knows that he tells the truth, and he testifies so that you also may believe. These things happened so that the scripture would be fulfilled: “Not one of his bones will be broken,” and, as another scripture says, “They will look on the one they have pierced.”"
And Psalm 22 verse 18: "They divide my clothes among themselves and throw dice for my garments." Compare to John 19:23-24 - "When the soldiers crucified Jesus, they took his clothes, dividing them into four shares, one for each of them, with the undergarment remaining. This garment was seamless, woven in one piece from top to bottom. “Let's not tear it,” they said to one another. “Let's decide by lot who will get it.”"
What's one good reason to go to church at all? Check out Psalm 22 verse 22: "Then I will declare the wonder of your name to my brothers and sisters. I will praise you among all your people." Praising God with other brothers and sisters through worship, tithing, learning, serving and being in community in church is a great reason to go to church! To declare the wonder of God's name! To praise God among all his people. Wow... yes... this is church!
Psalm 23! What a Psalm!! This is the first Psalm for sure that I ever really read and was comforted by without a doubt. Psalm 23 is a profession of joyful trust in God as the good Shepherd-King by David. I like The Message's take on Psalm 23 at this link. Bible.org has a wonderful commentary on Psalm 23 titled "A Psalm that calms the soul" at this link.
Psalm 24 is a beautiful Psalm! Check out this brief snippet of commentary on this Psalm from bible.org: "The Israelites have returned from a battle with the Canaanites. They are proceeding up to the sanctuary on the holy mount to give praise to Yahweh for the great and mighty victory in battle, carrying with them the Ark of the Covenant, the symbol of Yahweh’s presence with them. As they approach the gate, they are met by the Levites who function as gatekeepers. It is their part to ask who may enter the sanctuary of the Lord; and it is the priests’ part to answer with the stipulations from the Law. Whoever meets these qualifications may enter and fellowship with Yahweh... The psalm then concludes with the worshipers calling to the gates to make way for Yahweh to come in to His sanctuary, for why should the King of Glory stoop to go under a doorway? ". (also, any Chris Tomlin fans out there will definitely recognize this Psalm - on his CD "Arriving" I think the 2nd or 3rd to last song is called "King of Glory" based on this Psalm - it's the best song on this overall fantastic CD in my humble opinion! :)
Psalm 25 has some amazing verses today! I think I could write some reflections and questions on each of the verses today... Maybe a good thing for each of us to do is to re-read this Psalm today and really reflect on what the verses are saying to our hearts. David wrote this Psalm as a prayer for God's mercies when he was suffering affliction for his sins and when enemies were seizing this occasion to attack him. It's a very penitential Psalm. One that we might need to pray to God from time to time as David did. I do like verse 5 a lot and I believe it will speak to each of you going through the Bible this year - "Lead me by your truth and teach me, for you are the God who saves me. All day long I put my hope in you." Do you believe that reading God's Word each day is allowing you to be led by God's truth? Are you being taught each day? Then - that last sentence in verse 5 is amazing. I cannot honestly say that all day long I put my hope in God. I pray that I do... but I think sometimes I drift away from putting my hope in God and I put my hope in myself - or maybe even sometimes I lose hope! I get discouraged about a situation. I get stressed. I worry. If we put our hope all day long in God, do you think we would get discouraged, stressed, or worried? I don't think we would...
Psalm 25 verse 15 really stood out to me today - "My eyes are always looking to the LORD for help, for he alone can rescue me from the traps of my enemies." I have come to realize more and more lately that the Enemy is indeed constantly setting traps for us. I don't mean to scare anyone here - but I think this is something very important for us to realize. It has been said that the greatest trick the Devil can play on us is to make us think that he does not exist. If we don't think the Devil exists, then we logically won't think that he's setting any traps for us. Let me assure you - this is clearly Biblical - the Devil exists. Evil exists in this world. Temptation exists. And evil does not rest. However - the good news - God is so much bigger and stronger and brighter (and this list can go on) than the Devil - the Enemy. David says in this Psalm that his eyes are ALWAYS looking to the Lord for help. Why? Because God, Jesus, and the Holy Spirit alone can rescue us from the traps of the Enemy. Again, the traps are out there for us in this modern world. The temptations and dark alleys and wrong turns call to us unceasingly. But - again, great news here - we can be saved from all of that nonsense; all of that darkness; indeed all of that death, through a relationship with Jesus. Jesus saves. Jesus saves us from ourselves. From our sin. And from the Enemy that sets traps for us. Like David in this Psalm, are your eyes always looking to the Lord for help? Please don't ever take your eyes off God and His mercies, power, and strength.
Psalm 25 verse 22 really stood out to me today: "O God, ransom Israel from all its troubles." As I read this, the Christmas carol, "O Come O Come Emmanuel, and ransom captive Israel" comes to my mind. Indeed, God would answer this prayer of King David's and send his Son to ransom Israel!
Today in Psalm 26 verse 2 we read: "Put me on trial, LORD, and cross-examine me. Test my motives and affections." What a powerful reflection from David - God, test my motives and affections. What are your motives? Why do you do what you do in life? Whom are you doing it all for? What are your affections? Who do you pledge your loyalties to? Who do you give your heart to? Where are you investing your time, treasure and talents? Have you ever asked God to test your motives and affections?
Verse 8 of this Psalm reminds me of my church and I pray it reminds you of your church as well: "I love your sanctuary, LORD, the place where your glory shines." Wow... the place where God's glory shines! Yes, I do believe this happens in our churches - even if we maybe don't notice it sometimes. When we come together as the body of Christ each week, God's glory shines! Will you take a moment to really pay attention to God’s glory shining in your church as you attend a service this upcoming weekend?
Worship Video: Have you seen the video yet of a young princess (see her T-shirt :) reciting Psalm 23?? This is a must see. I pray this inspires you to memorize and meditate upon Scripture!
Is the Lord your shepherd? Click here to meet your shepherd!
Please join me in memorizing and meditating on six verses of Scripture today: "The LORD is my shepherd, I shall not be in want. He makes me lie down in green pastures, he leads me beside quiet waters, he restores my soul. He guides me in paths of righteousness for his name's sake. Even though I walk through the valley of the shadow of death, I will fear no evil, for you are with me; your rod and your staff, they comfort me. You prepare a table before me in the presence of my enemies. You anoint my head with oil; my cup overflows. Surely goodness and love will follow me all the days of my life, and I will dwell in the house of the LORD forever." Psalm 23:1-6 NIV
Prayer Point: Pray that you would memorize Psalm 23 today. And pray that you would believe and live out Psalm 23 all the days of your life.
Comments from You: What verses or insights stand out to you in today's readings? Please post up by clicking on the "Comments" link below!
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