Psalms 85:1-3 NIV
“You, Lord, showed favor to your land;
you restored the fortunes of Jacob.
You forgave the iniquity of your people
and covered all their sins.
You set aside all your wrath
and turned from your fierce anger.”
Jesus Christ came into the world to save sinners, but not just to forgive them their sins, but to deliver them from their bondage (slavery, addiction) to sin, and to indwell them, and to empower them to live godly and holy lives, pleasing to God, for the honor and praise of God (Rom 6:1-23).
Psalms 85:4-7 NIV
“Restore us again, God our Savior,
and put away your displeasure toward us.
Will you be angry with us forever?
Will you prolong your anger through all generations?
Will you not revive us again,
that your people may rejoice in you?
Show us your unfailing love, Lord,
and grant us your salvation.”
But even those who have genuinely received Jesus Christ as Savior of their lives can, at some point, drift away from their pure devotion to Christ and need to be brought back (see Rev 2-3).
They can have divided hearts, for a time, to where their loyalties and their faithfulness are divided between serving the Lord wholeheartedly and serving him in addition to serving the flesh. Thus, they need to repent, to turn away from all unfaithfulness and divided hearts, and to turn to the Lord in total commitment to him.
Yet, some people teach that God is pleased with you no matter what you do, even if you are living in gross idolatry and sexual immorality. They say that as long as you “believe” in Jesus that God is pleased with you, and that he smiles on you. But that’s not true.
Those who are in the realm of the flesh cannot please God. So, we need to find out what pleases the Lord, and we need to make it our goal to please him. For, we have been instructed in how to live to please God.
We must live a life worthy of the Lord, to please him in every way, bearing fruit in every good work. We are to keep his commands and do what pleases him. And we are not to try to please people, but God who tests our hearts.
For, whoever sows to please their flesh, from the flesh will reap destruction, but whoever sows to please the Spirit, from the Spirit will reap eternal life.
[Rom. 8:8; 2 Co. 5:9; Gal. 6:7-8; Eph. 5:10; Col. 1:9-11; 1 Thess. 2:4; 1 Thess. 4:1; 2 Tim. 2:4; Heb. 11:6; Heb. 13:6; & 1 Jn. 3:22; Tit 2:11-14]
Psalms 85:8-9 NIV
“I will listen to what God the Lord says;
he promises peace to his people, his faithful servants—
but let them not turn to folly.
Surely his salvation is near those who fear him,
that his glory may dwell in our land.”
Yes, we absolutely must all listen to the Lord and do what he says. Amen! If we don’t, we are “shooting ourselves in our own feet.” We are bringing trouble upon ourselves because of our lack of obedience and discernment.
If we want to live in peace, and if we want to please God in all that we do, and if we don’t want to go astray, and if we don’t want to wander from our pure devotion to our Lord, then we must be faithful to our Lord in all things. And this involves listening to him and obeying him every step of the way.
Also, we must guard our minds and hearts against all that is of the flesh, of sin, and of the world, so that we don’t turn to folly, i.e., to what is foolish (unwise, imprudent, impulsive, and showing lack of good judgment).
And we must walk in the fear of the Lord. That means that we live to honor and to glorify the Lord in all that we do. And we treat God with reverence, honor, and respect, meaning we bow to him in submission to his Lordship, we obey his commands, and we turn away from all that is sinful.
Psalms 85:10-13 NIV
“Love and faithfulness meet together;
righteousness and peace kiss each other.
Faithfulness springs forth from the earth,
and righteousness looks down from heaven.
The Lord will indeed give what is good,
and our land will yield its harvest.
Righteousness goes before him
and prepares the way for his steps.”
I love this first sentence here! “Love and faithfulness meet together.” If we aren’t faithful to God and/or to our spouses, then that isn’t love. If we love God, and if we love our spouses with God-like love, which centers in moral preference, then we will be faithful to them both.
Also, if we are walking in righteousness and holiness, in the power of God’s Spirit, and righteousness and godliness are what we practice, then we will be at peace with God and within ourselves and in our own consciences. But if sin is what we practice, we will not be at peace.
So, if we teach righteousness, which is morality, decency, uprightness, honesty, godliness, and self-control, which results from being made right with God through faith in Jesus Christ, it prepares the way for us to follow in our Lord’s steps, in his ways (Lu 9:23-26; Rom 6:1-23; Tit 2:11-14).
He Lifted Our Burdens
An Original Work / February 15, 2014
Based off Isaiah 9:2-7
People walk in darkness.
They abide in their sin.
It has power o’er them.
True belief escapes them.
Jesus Christ came to save them.
He gave His life up for them;
Crucified; died for our sin,
So we might be forgiven,
And have life up in heaven.
Many come to know Him.
God’s love now o’erflows them.
They rejoice in vict’ry.
Their sin is but hist’ry.
We were once bound in slav’ry.
Jesus lifted our burdens;
Set us now free from Satan,
So we now walk in freedom.
Sin has no more dominion.
Praise be to our Savior!
He showed us His favor.
He took all our burdens;
Cast them all upon Him.
He is our mediator;
The Light which shines in darkness.
Counselor in our troubles;
He gives peace now in our hearts;
Joy which is everlasting.