1549.) Psalm 33

April 9, 2015

Ps33 new song
Psalm 33 (New International Version)

1 Sing joyfully to the LORD, you righteous;
it is fitting for the upright to praise him.

2 Praise the LORD with the harp;
make music to him on the ten-stringed lyre.

Ancient Greek marble statue of man playing a harp (J. Paul Getty Museum, Los Angeles)

3 Sing to him a new song;
play skillfully, and shout for joy.

_________________________

Music:

HERE  is an easy song to keep in your head all day — “I Could Sing of Your Love Forever”  by Sonicflood.

Over the mountains and the sea
Your river runs with love for me
And I will open up my heart
And let the healer set me free
I’m happy to be in the truth
And I will daily lift my hands
For I will always sing of
When Your love came down

I could sing of Your love forever
I could sing of Your love forever
I could sing of Your love forever
I could sing of Your love forever

Oh, I feel like dancing
It’s foolishness, I know
But when the world has seen the light
They will dance with joy like we’re dancing now

_________________________

4 For the word of the LORD is right and true;
he is faithful in all he does.

5 The LORD loves righteousness and justice;
the earth is full of his unfailing love.

6 By the word of the LORD were the heavens made,
their starry host by the breath of his mouth.

The Orion Nebula is bright and close to the Earth (relatively speaking!). It is estimated to be 24 light years across. Picture from the Hubble Space Telescope.

Genesis 1:3 (New International Version)

And God said, “Let there be light,” and there was light.

7 He gathers the waters of the sea into jars;
he puts the deep into storehouses.

8 Let all the earth fear the LORD;
let all the people of the world revere him.

9 For he spoke, and it came to be;
he commanded, and it stood firm.

10 The LORD foils the plans of the nations;
he thwarts the purposes of the peoples.

11 But the plans of the LORD stand firm forever,
the purposes of his heart through all generations.

Ecclesiastes 3:1 (King James Version)

To every thing there is a season, and a time to every purpose under the heaven.

Romans 8:28 (New Living Translation)

And we know that God causes everything to work together for the good of those who love God and are called according to his purpose for them.

Psalm 138:8 (New International Version)

The LORD will fulfill his purpose for me;
your love, O LORD, endures forever—
(Thank you that you) do not abandon the works of your hands.

12 Blessed is the nation whose God is the LORD,
the people he chose for his inheritance.

13 From heaven the LORD looks down
and sees all mankind;

14 from his dwelling place he watches
all who live on earth-

15 he who forms the hearts of all,
who considers everything they do.

16 No king is saved by the size of his army;
no warrior escapes by his great strength.

17 A horse is a vain hope for deliverance;
despite all its great strength it cannot save.

18 But the eyes of the LORD are on those who fear him,
on those whose hope is in his unfailing love,

Ps33 18

19 to deliver them from death
and keep them alive in famine.

20 We wait in hope for the LORD;
he is our help and our shield.

21 In him our hearts rejoice,
for we trust in his holy name.

22 May your unfailing love rest upon us, O LORD,
even as we put our hope in you.

_________________________

New International Version (NIV) Copyright © 1973, 1978, 1984 by Biblica

Images courtesy of:
new song.    http://media.salemwebnetwork.com/ecards/scripturecards/cc_psalm33_3.jpg
Ancient Greek statue.   https://dwellingintheword.files.wordpress.com/2011/09/6a00d8341c66f153ef0105362f0b3a970c-800wi.jpg
Hubble Telescope image.    http://brotherpeacemaker.files.wordpress.com/2009/09/orion-nebula-hubble.jpg
purpose and cross.    http://philarmsministries.com/_Images/Home-Elements/home_purpose.jpg
Psalm 33:18.    http://wallpaper4god.com/en/wp-content/uploads/2011/09/Psalm-33-18.jpg
Psalm 33:22.    http://www.4catholiceducators.com/graphics/Psalm33_22.jpg

1548.) Psalm 32

April 8, 2015

Ps32 forgiven
Psalm 32 (New International Version)

1 Blessed is he
whose transgressions are forgiven,
whose sins are covered.

2 Blessed is the man
whose sin the LORD does not count against him
and in whose spirit is no deceit.

Ps32 Sin Runes

from This Day with the Master,
by Dennis F. Kinlaw

The Hebrew language is rich in vocabulary for moral realities, and particularly for describing sin. Interestingly, neither English nor Greek contains so many words to talk about the reality of sin. Hebrew has a word for willful transgressions, when a person knows the Law and knows not to break it, yet breaks it anyway. It has another word for a sin when one sees what one is supposed to do and attempts to do it, but fails, or falls short. A third word describes the perverseness of the human heart. We know what is right, but there is something inside of us that wants to do the opposite. Finally, there is a word that is used for deceit, guile, or duplicity — when one wears a face that is not true to who one really is.

The psalmist says the person is blessed who is clean on all of these accounts. If a person reaches the place where trespasses are removed, short-comings covered, perverseness and iniquity cleansed, and duplicity gone, that person is the model for other men and women. That person should be the standard — the one who on all accounts is clean of sin.

Does your understanding of sin include all that the Scripture includes? Is there any rebellion in your heart? Any shortcomings? Any perverseness? Any deceit? If there is, you need to let Christ cleanse your heart.

3 When I kept silent,
my bones wasted away
through my groaning all day long.

4 For day and night
your hand was heavy upon me;
my strength was sapped
as in the heat of summer.
Selah

Ps32 sapped

5 Then I acknowledged my sin to you
and did not cover up my iniquity.
I said, “I will confess
my transgressions to the LORD “—
and you forgave
the guilt of my sin.
Selah

Psalm 119:71

6 Therefore let everyone who is godly pray to you
while you may be found;
surely when the mighty waters rise,
they will not reach him.

7 You are my hiding place;
you will protect me from trouble
and surround me with songs of deliverance.
Selah

_________________________

Book / movie:  The Hiding Place

If you have never read or seen the story of Corrie ten Boom, you owe it to yourself to rectify that!  Corrie and her family, in obedience to Christ, sheltered Jews from the Nazis in the Netherlands, and were sent to concentration camps when it was discovered.  Her true story is told in the book The Hiding Place (1971), which was later made into a movie; see the trailer  HERE.

_________________________

8 I will instruct you and teach you in the way you should go;
I will counsel you and watch over you.

9 Do not be like the horse or the mule,
which have no understanding
but must be controlled by bit and bridle
or they will not come to you.

10 Many are the woes of the wicked,
but the LORD’s unfailing love
surrounds the man who trusts in him.

11 Rejoice in the LORD and be glad, you righteous;
sing, all you who are upright in heart!

“We know by experience that music has a secret and almost incredible power to move hearts.”

John Calvin

_________________________

Music:

HERE  is a treat for you — “The Yearning”  by Craig Courtney.

_________________________

New International Version (NIV) Copyright © 1973, 1978, 1984 by Biblica

Images courtesy of:
“Seven Deadly Sins” runes, by Jeff Carlisle.    https://dwellingintheword.files.wordpress.com/2010/04/32-sinrunes.gif
Stushie — sun with verse 4.    http://farm4.static.flickr.com/3310/3233305626_41fa5d9693.jpg
Psalm 119:71.    http://merc.tv/img/art/DP1Affliction.gif
music notes.    https://dwellingintheword.files.wordpress.com/2010/04/32-music-notes.gif

1547.) Psalm 29

April 7, 2015

Psalm 29 (New International Version)

1 Ascribe to the LORD, O mighty ones,
ascribe to the LORD glory and strength.

2 Ascribe to the LORD the glory due his name;
worship the LORD in the splendor of his  holiness.

3 The voice of the LORD is over the waters;
the God of glory thunders,
the LORD thunders over the mighty waters.

Water is the most abundant compound on Earth's surface, constituting about 70% of the planet's surface.  These still waters are off the coast of Tahiti.

Water is the most abundant compound on Earth’s surface, constituting about 70% of the planet’s surface. These still waters are off the coast of Tahiti.

4 The voice of the LORD is powerful;
the voice of the LORD is majestic.

5 The voice of the LORD breaks the cedars;
the LORD breaks in pieces the cedars of Lebanon.

Cedars from Lebanon were used by King Solomon in the construction of the Temple.

6 He makes Lebanon skip like a calf,
Sirion (Mount Hermon) like a young wild ox.

7 The voice of the LORD strikes
with flashes of lightning.

Lightning rapidly heats the air in its immediate vicinity to about 36,000 degrees Fahrenheit, which is about three times the temperature of the surface of the sun.

8 The voice of the LORD shakes the desert;
the LORD shakes the Desert of Kadesh.

9 The voice of the LORD twists the oaks
and strips the forests bare.
And in his temple all cry, “Glory!”

10 The LORD sits  enthroned over the flood;
the LORD is enthroned as King forever.

11 The LORD gives strength to his people;
the LORD blesses his people with peace.

_________________________

Music:

HERE  is Stephen Paulus’ “Pilgrim’s Hymn,” University of Utah Singers, Dr. Brady R Allred conducting.

Even before we call on Thy name
To ask Thee, O God,
When we seek for the words to glorify Thee,
Thou hear our prayer;
Unceasing love, O unceasing love,
Surpassing all we know.

Glory to the father,
and to the Son,
And to the Holy Spirit.

Even with darkness sealing us in,
We breathe Thy name,
And through all the days that follow so fast,
We trust in Thee;
Endless Thy grace, O endless Thy grace,
Beyond all mortal dream.

Both now and forever,
And unto ages and ages,
Amen

_________________________

New International Version (NIV) Copyright © 1973, 1978, 1984 by Biblica

Images courtesy of:
Psalm 29:2.   https://dwellingintheword.files.wordpress.com/2011/08/ascribetothelordthegloryduehisname.jpg
water of Tahiti.    http://www.orionrestoration.com/Portals/138777/images/Tahiti-Crystal-Clear-Sea-Water-Most-HD-Resolutions-Wallpapers.jpg
cedar of Lebanon.    http://farm1.static.flickr.com/41/100083847_9de945d7d7.jpg
lightning.    http://www.lightningsafety.noaa.gov/images/purple%20lightning.jpg

1524.) Psalm 28

March 5, 2015

A huge rock!  Stone Mountain is “a quartz monzonite dome monadnock” outside of Atlanta, Georgia.  That means! — it is a granite-like solitary outcropping of rock, measuring 5 miles around its base and rising 825 feet above the surrounding area.  I suggest the steep walk to the top for a beautiful view; only wimps take the Skyride!

Psalm 28 (NIV)

1 To you I call, O LORD my Rock;
do not turn a deaf ear to me.
For if you remain silent,
I will be like those who have gone down to the pit.

2 Hear my cry for mercy
as I call to you for help,
as I lift up my hands
toward your Most Holy Place.

_________________________

Music:

The hymn “Rock of Ages” was composed in 1775.  HERE  it is sung by the Antrim Mennonite Choir.

_________________________

3 Do not drag me away with the wicked,
with those who do evil,
who speak cordially with their neighbors
but harbor malice in their hearts.

Do not let me have a heart that harbors malice!

4 Repay them for their deeds
and for their evil work;
repay them for what their hands have done
and bring back upon them what they deserve.

5 Since they show no regard for the works of the LORD
and what his hands have done,
he will tear them down
and never build them up again.

6 Praise be to the LORD,
for he has heard my cry for mercy.

Mark 1:40-42 (New International Version)

A man with leprosy came to him and begged him on his knees, “If you are willing, you can make me clean.”

Filled with compassion, Jesus reached out his hand and touched the man. “I am willing,” he said. “Be clean!” Immediately the leprosy left him and he was cured.

7 The LORD is my strength and my shield;
my heart trusts in him, and I am helped.
My heart leaps for joy
and I will give thanks to him in song.

Rather, give me a heart that trusts and rejoices in You!

8 The LORD is the strength of his people,
a fortress of salvation for his anointed one.

9 Save your people and bless your inheritance;
be their shepherd and carry them forever.

P27 shepherd

Revelation 7:13-17 (New Living Translation)

Then one of the twenty-four elders asked me, “Who are these who are clothed in white? Where did they come from?”

And I said to him, “Sir, you are the one who knows.”

Then he said to me, “These are the ones who died in the great tribulation. They have washed their robes in the blood of the Lamb and made them white.

“That is why they stand in front of God’s throne
and serve him day and night in his Temple.
And he who sits on the throne
will give them shelter.
They will never again be hungry or thirsty;

they will never be scorched by the heat of the sun.
For the Lamb on the throne
will be their Shepherd.

He will lead them to springs of life-giving water.
And God will wipe every tear from their eyes.”

_________________________

New International Version (NIV) Copyright © 1973, 1978, 1984 by Biblica

Images courtesy of:
Stone Mountain, Atlanta, GA.    http://markandmegan.net/images/StoneMountain.jpg
Jesus healing a leper.    http://www.sundayschoollessons.com/sunfolderzh/image3.gif
Psalm 23 shepherd.    http://theeaglesnest.files.wordpress.com/2007/01/shepherd-1662c.jpg

1523.) Psalm 26

March 4, 2015

Ps26 examine
Psalm 26 (New International Version)

Of David.

1 Vindicate me, O LORD,
for I have led a blameless life;
I have trusted in the LORD
without wavering.

2 Test me, O LORD, and try me,
examine my heart and my mind;

3 for your love is ever before me,
and I walk continually in your truth.

4 I do not sit with deceitful men,
nor do I consort with hypocrites;

5 I abhor the assembly of evildoers
and refuse to sit with the wicked.

Psalm 1:1 (New American Standard Bible)

How blessed is the man who does not walk in the counsel of the wicked,
Nor stand in the path of sinners,
Nor sit in the seat of scoffers!

6 I wash my hands in innocence,
and go about your altar, O LORD,

7 proclaiming aloud your praise
and telling of all your wonderful deeds.

Ps26 altar

Take 30 seconds right now and thank God for (as many as you can of) all the good gifts he has given to you in the past week!  Keep that list of thanksgiving going in your mind all day long!

8 I love the house where you live, O LORD,
the place where your glory dwells.

9 Do not take away my soul along with sinners,
my life with bloodthirsty men,

10 in whose hands are wicked schemes,
whose right hands are full of bribes.

11 But I lead a blameless life;
redeem me and be merciful to me.

12 My feet stand on level ground;
in the great assembly I will praise the LORD.

Psalm 143:10 (New International Version)

Teach me to do your will,
for you are my God;
may your good Spirit
lead me on level ground.

_________________________

Music:

HERE  is a hymn that came to mind upon reading the last line of this psalm:  in the great assembly I will praise the LORD.

from Wikipedia:

O for a Thousand Tongues to Sing” is a Christian hymn written by Charles Wesley. Charles Wesley wrote over 6,000 hymns, many of which were subsequently reprinted, frequently with alterations, in hymnals, particularly those of Methodist Churches.

Charles Wesley was suffering a bout of pleurisy in May, 1738, while he and his brother were studying under the Moravian scholar Peter Bohler in London. At the time, Wesley was plagued by extreme doubts about his faith. Taken to bed with the sickness on May 21 Wesley was attended by a group of Christians who offered him testimony and basic care, and he was deeply affected by this. He read from his Bible and found himself deeply affected by the words, and at peace with God. Shortly his strength began to return. He wrote of this experience in his journal and counted it as a renewal of his faith; when his brother John had a similar experience on the 24th, the two men met and sang a hymn Wesley had written in praise of his renewal.

One year from the experience, Wesley was taken with the urge to write another hymn, this one in commemoration of his renewal of faith. This hymn took the form of an 18-stanza poem, beginning with the opening lines ‘Glory to God, and praise, and love,/Be ever, ever given’ and was published in 1740 and entitled ‘For the anniversary day of one’s conversion’. The seventh verse, which begins, ‘O for a thousand tongues to sing’, and which now is invariably the first verse of a shorter hymn, recalls the words of Peter Bohler who said, ‘Had I a thousand tongues I would praise Him with them all.’ The hymn was placed first in John Wesley’s A Collection of Hymns for the People Called Methodists published in 1780. It appeared first in every (Wesleyan) Methodist hymnal from that time until the publication of Hymns and Psalms in 1983.

_________________________

New International Version (NIV) Copyright © 1973, 1978, 1984 by Biblica

Images courtesy of:
Examine.   http://www.dailylifeverse.com/posts/images/2013/06/psalm-26-2.jpg?s=full
26:2 with white lilacs.    http://wonders.wallpaperdave.com/reqw12.jpg
I come to your altar.    https://s-media-cache-ak0.pinimg.com/236x/3e/18/10/3e18107d719570f67fe25f7fd218af8d.jpg
level ground.   https://dwellingintheword.files.wordpress.com/2011/08/level-ground1.jpg

1522.) Psalm 17

March 3, 2015
a prayer for every day

a prayer for every day

Psalm 17

Prayer for Deliverance from Persecutors

1Hear a just cause, O Lord; attend to my cry; give ear to my prayer from lips free of deceit.

2From you let my vindication come; let your eyes see the right.

3If you try my heart, if you visit me by night, if you test me, you will find no wickedness in me; my mouth does not transgress.

4As for what others do, by the word of your lips I have avoided the ways of the violent.

5My steps have held fast to your paths; my feet have not slipped.

6I call upon you, for you will answer me, O God; incline your ear to me, hear my words.

7Wondrously show your steadfast love, O savior of those who seek refuge from their adversaries at your right hand.

Ps17 Remember me

Luke 23:42-43 (New International Version)

Then one of the criminals said, “Jesus, remember me when you come into your kingdom.”

Jesus answered him, “I tell you the truth, today you will be with me in paradise.”

8Guard me as the apple of the eye;

"apple" of my "I" phone

“apple” of my “I” phone

hide me in the shadow of your wings,

17-butterfly wings

9from the wicked who despoil me, my deadly enemies who surround me.

10They close their hearts to pity; with their mouths they speak arrogantly.

11They track me down; now they surround me; they set their eyes to cast me to the ground.

12They are like a lion eager to tear, like a young lion lurking in ambush.

13Rise up, O Lord, confront them, overthrow them! By your sword deliver my life from the wicked,

14from mortals—by your hand, O Lord— from mortals whose portion in life is in this world. May their bellies be filled with what you have stored up for them; may their children have more than enough; may they leave something over to their little ones.

15As for me, I shall behold your face in righteousness; when I awake I shall be satisfied, beholding your likeness.

Luke 2:30-31 (New Living Translation)

I have seen your salvation,
which you have prepared for all people.

"Head of Christ"  by Warner Sallman, 1940

“Head of Christ” by Chicago painter Warner Sallman, 1940.  More than 500 million copies of this portrait have been sold.

_________________________

Music:

HERE  is Hillsong’s “One Desire.”  Nothing better than the Crucified One.

_________________________

The New Revised Standard Version, copyright 1989 by the Division of Christian Education of the National Council of the Churches of Christ in the United States of America. Used by permission. All rights reserved.

Images courtesy of:
unfailing love.    https://aarondarnell.files.wordpress.com/2013/01/aaron-darnell.jpg
three crosses.  http://markdroberts.com/images/Stations-11-remember-7.jpg
I-phone.   http://www.kitguru.net/wp-content/uploads/2014/09/apple_iphone_61.jpg
butterfly.  http://www.mybutterflies.com/images/Bookmarks/Psalm_17-8_copy.jpg
Sallman.  http://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/en/thumb/e/ee/The_Head_of_Christ_by_Warner_Sallman_1941.jpg/220px-The_Head_of_Christ_by_Warner_Sallman_1941.jpg

1479.) Psalm 13 and 14

January 1, 2015

13. sundial

Psalm 13

Prayer for Deliverance from Enemies

1How long, O Lord? Will you forget me forever? How long will you hide your face from me?

2How long must I bear pain in my soul, and have sorrow in my heart all day long? How long shall my enemy be exalted over me?

The green comments on Psalm 13 are from The Message of the Psalms, by Walter Brueggmann: 

(Walter Brueggemann is an American Protestant Old Testament scholar and theologian, widely considered one of the most influential Old Testament scholars of the last several decades.)

This is a psalm of personal lament.  It begins with five rhetorical questions (in Hebrew, four) which describe a situation of disorientation and fix the blame firmly on Yahweh.  The crisis in relationship with Yahweh is at the bottom of the external problem of troubles in the world.  The speech is a barrage of someone in a sore condition.

3Consider and answer me, O Lord my God! Give light to my eyes, or I will sleep the sleep of death,

4and my enemy will say, “I have prevailed”; my foes will rejoice because I am shaken.

Verses 3 and 4 provide a petition and a motivation.  The petition:  “consider, answer, give light.”  The psalmist is clear that there is no way out of the trouble unless Yahweh can act.  The motivations communicate to Yahweh what is at stake:  or “I will sleep the sleep of death . . . and my enemy will say . . . , and my foes will rejoice.”  The psalmist makes his problem into Yahweh’s problem, providing data out of which Yahweh can make a new act.

5But I trusted in your steadfast love; my heart shall rejoice in your salvation.

6I will sing to the Lord, because he has dealt bountifully with me.

We do not know how long the psalmist waited, but now things are changed.  He is on his way to a new orientation:  “I  have trusted . . .  my heart shall rejoice . . . I will sing. . .”  These three personal references are matched by three references to Yahweh:  “your steadfast love . . . your salvation  . . . the Lord.”  The psalmist is clear about the source of help, and breaks loose in doxology.  The sense of disorientation is overcome, released to a new, grateful, trustful communion.  The accused Yahweh has now become the praised Yahweh.

13. Fig+Tree

Habakkuk 3:17-19 (New International Version)

Though the fig tree does not bud
and there are no grapes on the vines,
though the olive crop fails
and the fields produce no food,
though there are no sheep in the pen
and no cattle in the stalls,

yet I will rejoice in the LORD,
I will be joyful in God my Savior.

The Sovereign LORD is my strength;
he makes my feet like the feet of a deer,
he enables me to go on the heights.
For the director of music. On my stringed instruments.

_________________________

Music:

HERE  is “How Can I Keep from Singing?” — the Oakwood University Aeolians.  The mission of Oakwood University (Huntsville, AL), a historically black, Seventh-day Adventist institution, is to transform students through biblically-based education for service to God and humanity.

_________________________

Psalm 14

Denunciation of Godlessness

1Fools say in their hearts, “There is no God.”

13. TIME Is God Dead

“God is dead.”
–Friedrich Nietzsche

“God is dead” — Nietzsche.
“Nietzsche is dead.” — God.
–graffiti

“God is dead.  Nietzsche is dead.  And I’m not feeling so good myself.”
–Woody Allen

They are corrupt, they do abominable deeds; there is no one who does good.

2The Lord looks down from heaven on humankind to see if there are any who are wise, who seek after God.

3They have all gone astray, they are all alike perverse; there is no one who does good, no, not one.

Romans 3:10-18 (New International Version)

As it is written:
“There is no one righteous, not even one;
there is no one who understands,
no one who seeks God.
All have turned away,
they have together become worthless;
there is no one who does good,
not even one.
Their throats are open graves;
their tongues practice deceit.
The poison of vipers is on their lips.
Their mouths are full of cursing and bitterness.
Their feet are swift to shed blood;
ruin and misery mark their ways,
and the way of peace they do not know.
There is no fear of God before their eyes.”

4Have they no knowledge, all the evildoers who eat up my people as they eat bread, and do not call upon the Lord?

5There they shall be in great terror, for God is with the company of the righteous.

6You would confound the plans of the poor, but the Lord is their refuge.

7O that deliverance for Israel would come from Zion! When the Lord restores the fortunes of his people, Jacob will rejoice; Israel will be glad.

_________________________

The New Revised Standard Version, copyright 1989 by the Division of Christian Education of the National Council of the Churches of Christ in the United States of America. Used by permission. All rights reserved.

Images courtesy of:
sundial.  http://farm3.static.flickr.com/2216/2273473796_df9b41a468.jpg
fig tree.  https://dwellingintheword.files.wordpress.com/2015/01/ff111-fig2btree2b00063.jpg
Time magazine cover.   https://dwellingintheword.files.wordpress.com/2015/01/009c4-isgoddead.jpg

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