May 2, 2014
(All scripture is from the New King James Version unless otherwise indicated.)
Let’s continue to examine Psalm 32. David is reflecting upon his deliverance from sin – the awful sins of adultery and murder being the major ones (see II Samuel 11 and 12) – and his restoration to close fellowship with his God. Here is what he writes in verses 7 through 9:
You are my hiding place; You shall preserve me from trouble; You shall
surround me with songs of deliverance. Selah. I will instruct you and
teach you in the way you should go; I will guide you with My eye. Do not
be like the horse or like the mule, which have no understanding, which
must be harnessed with bit and bridle, else they will not come near you.
Check out the last blog to see what the word Selah means.
The first verse is David speaking to God. The next two are God speaking to David. The king is feeling the safe closeness of God’s care and protection. He had enough of his sins which, he said, “…turned…my vitality…into the drought of summer.” There is not much growth and vitality during times of drought! And for the spiritually vibrant believer – one who regularly has “…songs of deliverance…” in his heart – it is a very troubling time when you find yourself far away from God because of unconfessed sin in your life!
Realizing this, David prayed in Psalm 19:13, “Keep back Your servant also from presumptuous sins; let them not have dominion over me. Then I shall be blameless, and I shall be innocent of great transgression.” Surely, adultery and murder are “…presumptuous sins…and…great transgression…”!
All sins are an affront to God! But there are certainly sins that are more grievous than others – if not so rated before God, surely in their effect upon other people! But if we are held back from the ‘biggies,’ then He can better deal with those more common sins that regularly infest our lives.
As pointed out, in verses 8 and 9, God speaks to David. Consider verse 8: “I will instruct you and teach you in the way you should go; I will guide you with My eye.” This is God’s desire for all His children. He wants to be constantly and actively involved in our daily lives! He wants to instruct, teach and guide us every step of the way! But we have to be willing to let Him! How do we do that?
Proverbs 3:5 and 6 tell us, “Trust in the LORD with all you heart, and lean not on your own understanding. In all your ways acknowledge Him, and He shall direct your paths.” Do not rely on your own mind and heart to lead you. Paul says our natural minds are “…alienated and enemies [of God]…by wicked works…” (Colossians 1:21). Jeremiah wrote, “The heart is deceitful above all things, and desperately wicked; who can know it?” (Jeremiah 17:9). If that is true concerning our minds and hearts – and it is – then “…lean not on your own understanding…”!
So what is the best way to accomplish this? Proverbs 3:6: “In all your ways acknowledge Him, and He shall direct your paths.” Jesus showed us how in the Garden of Gethsemane where in Luke 22:42 He pleaded with the Father to “…remove this cup from Me…” – the cup of intense physical, mental and spiritual suffering leading up to and including the cross. But the Lord continued His plea: “…nevertheless, not My will, but Yours, be done.” “…not My will, but Yours, be done….” This is The Most Important Prayer A Christian Can Pray! (see April 29 blog 2013). If you consistently request this of God in everything you do, He will keep you from sin and “… will instruct you and teach you in the way you should go…”!
God then warns David – and us – in verse 9 of our psalm, “Do not be like the horse or like the mule, which have no understanding, which must be harnessed with bit and bridle, else they will not come near you.” If an animal has its own untrained mind on the matter, it will not come running when you command it to do so! We have two cats, and they are surely independent! So, it seems are horses and mules! And so also are we – according to our natural inclinations! God says, “Do not be like…” those animals! If we are, we just might experience being “…harnessed with bit and bridle…”!
God will do His work in your life, Christian! You can experience it joyfully and productively, or you can be restrained! The latter is not usually pleasant! The choice is yours. And – in the terms of Psalm 32 – it is either “…songs of deliverance…” or God’s “…bit and bridle….”! I choose the songs!