(All Scripture is from the New King James Version unless otherwise indicated)
Here are verses 1 through 7 of Psalm 37. It is within these verses I have found the secret of how to get your prayers answered! But I warn you, it is not a quick and easy answer!
Do not fret because of evildoers, nor be envious of the workers of iniquity. For they shall soon be cut down like the grass, and wither as the green herb. Trust in the LORD, and do good; dwell in the land, and feed on His faithful- ness. Delight yourself also in the LORD, and He shall give you the desires of your heart. Commit your way to the LORD, trust also in Him, and He shall bring it to pass. He shall bring forth your righteousness as the light, and your jus- tice as the noonday. Rest in the LORD, and wait patiently for Him....
In the last Gem we covered the first three verses of Psalm 37. You would think logically that we’d study verse 4 next. But no! I believe verse 4 is the summary of how to get your prayers answered! So let’s go on to verses 5 through 7, and then we’ll bring it all together with verse 4.
Verse 5 – “Commit your way to the LORD, trust also in Him, and He shall bring it to pass.”
- “Commit your way to the LORD….” The Hebrew word for Commit is גּלל, pronouced gaw-lal’, and meaning “to roll” (Strong’s Hebrew Dictionary). The word is used in:
✡ Genesis 29:2 and 3 (would roll) – When Jacob first arrived in Padan Aram, his mother Rebekah’s home town (about 400 miles northeast of Beersheba where Isaac and family were staying), he “...saw a well in the field; and...there were three flocks of sheep lying by it; for out of that well they watered the flocks. A large stone was on the well's mouth. Now all the flocks would be gathered there; and they would roll the stone from the well's mouth, [and] water the sheep....” ✡ Joshua 5:9 (rolled away) – Circumcision was the covenant sign carried by the Hebrew male that the people of Israel belonged to God. But during the forty years of wandering in the wilderness, no one was circumcised. Now Israel had just arrived in the Promised Land of Canaan. So God com- manded Joshua to circumcise all the males, which was done at Gilgal. “Then the Lord said to Joshua, ‘This day I have rolled away the reproach of Egypt from you.’” ✡ Amos 5:24 (run down) – Amos prophesied to the northern kingdom of Israel around 750 BC. He was concerned about the sinfulness of the people in light of God’s holiness. Through His prophet God told the sinful Israelites, “But let justice run down like water, And righteousness like a mighty stream.”
Applied to believers, the following convey what it means to Commit!
✡ Roll the heavy burden of your way away, and roll His way into every area of your life! ✡ Allow everything that does not please the LORD to be cut away! And your reproach will be rolled away! ✡ As water, unimpeded, runs down as a mighty stream, cleans- ing and carrying the dirt away, so committing to let God’s way flow in your life will result in a mighty stream of justice and righteousness!
- “…trust also in Him….” In Hebrew, ‘trust’ is בָּטַח, pronounced baw-takh’. According to Strongs Hebrew Dictionary, it means what you are to do, do it quickly! In Brown-Driver-Briggs Hebrew Definitions it means, “to trust, be confident in, be bold, be secure.” There are 107 instances in the Old Testament that translate baw-takh’ as ‘trust’. I have chosen two:
✡ Ruth 2:12 (Modern King James Version) (trust) – Ruth, a Moabite widow accompanied her mother-in-law Naomi from Moab back to Israel. To provide food, Ruth gleaned barley in the field owned by Boaz, a wealthy relative of Naomi. He told her he had heard about Ruth leaving her home county to be with her mother-in-law in Israel. He said, “May Jehovah repay your work, and may a full reward be given you from Jehovah, the God of Israel, under whose wings you have come to trust.” ✡ Psalm 2:12 (trust) – A psalm written as a warning to the Gentile nations: “Kiss the Son, lest He be angry, And you perish in the way, When His wrath is kindled but a little. Blessed are all those who put their trust in Him.”
As Ruth traveled to Israel trusting Israel’s God to take care of her; as the leaders (and their peoples) of the nations of the world are admonished to make peace with God – to be blessed as they put their trust in Him; so are believers to continually “…trust also in Him….”
- “…and He shall bring it to pass.”
✡ What will God bring to pass? The way your life is going! The plans and decisions you are making as you go! ✡ But...it is based on the first two parts of the verse: “Commit your way to the Lord, trust also in Him...” Commit your way totally to God! Trust also in Him totally! Then “...He shall bring it to pass.”!
Verse 6 – “He shall bring forth your righteousness as the light, and your justice as the noonday.” These clear manifestations of your righteousness and justice are the result of your total commitment to God and your total trust in Him.
- “He shall bring forth your righteousness as the light….”
✞ Paul tells us in Romans 3:10 (referencing Psalm 14:1-3; 53:1-3; and Ecclesiates 20), “There is none righteous, no, not one.” ✡ Isaiah explains it this way in Isaiah 64:6, “But we are all like an unclean thing, and all our righteousnesses are like filthy rags; we all fade as a leaf, and our iniquities, like the wind, have taken us away.”
We have no righteousness in our selves before God! So how do we get it?
✞ There is no verse that explains it better than II Corin- thians 5:21: “For He [God, the Father] made Him [Jesus, the Son] who knew no sin to be sin for us, that we might become the righteousness of God in Him.”
It is like changing clothes. Jesus removed our filthy rags of sin, and clothed us with His own robe of righteousness! (see Zechariah 3:1-5). That is the only righteousness that holds any value before God! And it is given only when we accept Jesus as our Savior!
- “…and your justice as the noonday.” Justice is the outworking of righteousness within! When you are given in total to the Lord Jesus Christ, what you do will be a reflection of who you are! Maybe we should say, …Whose you are!
Verse 7 – “Rest in the LORD, and wait patiently for Him….”
- “Rest in the LORD….”
✞ Jesus gives this invitation in Matthew 11:28 through 30: Come to Me, all you who labor and are heavy laden, and I will give you rest. Take My yoke upon you and learn from Me, for I am gentle and lowly in heart, and you will find rest for your souls. For My yoke is easy and My burden is light.
We all need rest – physical, mental, emotional, and spiritual. And we need to rest regularly!
✡ That’s why God set the ‘1 in 7' standard. In Exodus 23:12 He summarized this standard (see the full com- mandment, the fourth of the Ten Commandments in Exodus 20:8-11): Six days you shall do your work, and on the seventh day you shall rest, that your ox and your donkey may rest, and the son of your female servant and the stranger may be re- freshed.
- “….and wait patiently for Him….”
✡ As Jeremiah wrote in Lamentations 3:26, “It is good that one should hope and wait quietly for the salvation of the LORD.” And this was in the middle of seeing the complete destruction of Jerusalem and the holy temple at the hands of the Babylonians! ✞ God’s timing is not ours! Sometimes we just have to wait for His perfect will to be manifest. But the LORD gives the gift of patience, as one of the gifts of the Spirit! (see Galatians 5:22, 23 – Some translations use long-suf- fering for patience).
In the next Gem we will look closely at Psalm 37:4, what I consider to be the key verse for How To Get Your Prayers Answered!