Psalms 40:9-10 ESV
“I have told the glad news of deliverance
in the great congregation;
behold, I have not restrained my lips,
as you know, O Lord.
I have not hidden your deliverance within my heart;
I have spoken of your faithfulness and your salvation;
I have not concealed your steadfast love and your faithfulness
from the great congregation.”
The Glad News of Deliverance
Can you identify with this? I can. Most of my life I have been teaching the Scriptures, first to children, then to women, then to youth, then some to college age adults, though mostly there I was in a supportive role. Some of this was done in my home. Some of it was done in other people’s homes. And some of it was done in institutional churches. For the past 18 years it has been done primarily on the internet, so in the great congregation.
Yet, I don’t want this to be about me. So, as I am sharing my experiences please consider how this may apply to your lives, as well, and then apply the truths taught here in this passage of Scripture to your own lives, and to your own experiences. My experiences serve only as one example of how this might be applied to our lives and in our world today, and so I share this with you for your encouragement.
The glad news of deliverance is the good news of the gospel, that Jesus Christ (God the Son; the Son of God) gave his life up for us on a cross one day close to 2000 years ago. He who knew no sin became sin for us on that cross that we might become the righteousness of God. Jesus Christ died for us in order that we might die with him to sin and live to him and to his righteousness. And he died that we might no longer live for ourselves, but for him, and that we might now honor God with our bodies (with our lives).
Therefore, by God-given faith in Jesus Christ we are crucified with Christ in death to sin, and we are raised with Christ to walk in newness of life in him, created to be like God in true righteousness and holiness. Jesus died on that cross so that we might be delivered from our slavery (bondage, addiction) to sin so that we might now walk in holiness and in righteousness in obedience to our Lord and to his commands. This is the glad news of deliverance!!
And this is what I have been teaching as far back as I recall, only with a much greater understanding of the Scriptures and with much more maturity and seriousness of purpose in the past 18 years than in any years prior to this, although I have always taken God’s word to heart. And I have not held back from teaching the truth despite all opposition and rejection, but I have remained steadfast in the power of God in proclaiming the true gospel.
[2 Co 5:15,21; 1 Pet 2:24; 1 Co 6:19-20; Rom 6:1-23; Rom 8:1-14; Eph 4:17-24; Tit 2:11-14; Rom 12:1-2; Lu 9:23-26; 1 Jn 2:3-6; 1 Jn 3:4-10]
Psalms 40:13-15 ESV
“Be pleased, O Lord, to deliver me!
O Lord, make haste to help me!
Let those be put to shame and disappointed altogether
who seek to snatch away my life;
let those be turned back and brought to dishonor
who delight in my hurt!
Let those be appalled because of their shame
who say to me, ‘Aha, Aha!’”
In the previous verses (1-12) we read that the Lord had rescued the psalmist from the pit of destruction, that the Lord had set his feet on a rock, making his steps secure. The Lord had put a new song in his mouth, and as a result of this many would see the changes God wrought in the psalmist’s life and they would fear God and they would put their trust in the Lord.
The psalmist stated that blessed is the person who makes the Lord his trust, who does not turn to the proud, to those who go astray after a lie! And then this next part was partially quoted by Jesus as is recorded for us in Hebrews 10:5-7. So, part of this psalm, perhaps, can be seen as a prophecy about Jesus Christ. But this isn’t just to represent Christ but to represent all who follow Jesus Christ with their lives:
“In sacrifice and offering you have not delighted,
but you have given me an open ear.
Burnt offering and sin offering
you have not required.
Then I said, ‘Behold, I have come;
in the scroll of the book it is written of me:
I delight to do your will, O my God;
your law is within my heart.’” Psalms 40:6-8 ESV
When we get to verse 13 here, the psalmist is praying for deliverance and for help from God. The person praying this prayer is one who has been delivered from slavery to sin, who has been given a new life in God (in Christ), and as a result of God’s working in his life many would see and fear God and put their faith in the Lord. He is a person whose trust is in the Lord and who does not go astray after a lie, but whose life is committed to doing the will of God. So he is clearly not anyone who is walking in sin.
So, when in verse 12 (not quoted) it speaks of evils encompassing him beyond number and his iniquities overtaking him, it is impossible, in this context, to assume that he had now reverted back to walking in sin and was needing to be delivered from slavery to sin. So we must see these evils as trials of faith or as, again, another prophecy of Jesus Christ and of him taking upon himself our sins so that we might be delivered.
And this would then fit with vs. 14 where he speaks of people coming against him, who have tried to snatch away his life, who delight in his hurt. And it would fit with this entire context of this psalm. For when we are truly committed to following Jesus Christ with our lives, and we are making the Lord our trust, and we are not going after lies, but we are proclaiming the truth of the gospel in “the great assembly,” we will be persecuted.
Psalms 40:16-17 ESV
“But may all who seek you
rejoice and be glad in you;
may those who love your salvation
say continually, ‘Great is the Lord!’
As for me, I am poor and needy,
but the Lord takes thought for me.
You are my help and my deliverer;
do not delay, O my God!”
It appears, at least here in America, that not many people are seeking the Lord with their whole being. Not many truly are loving the Lord’s salvation, but many are loving a false salvation that is of man, and not of God. For it is telling them that they can remain in their sins and that they do not have to obey the Lord but that they can be saved from the punishment of their sins and have the guarantee of heaven and of eternal life with God.
Thus, if we are among those who are truly sharing the glad news of deliverance from slavery (addiction) to sin in the great congregation, and of faithfulness to our Lord, and if we are refuting the lies which are leading many people astray, we are going to have many people opposing us. For if we are teaching holy living and walks of obedience to the Lord we will be attacked, and we will be accused falsely of teaching works salvation.
But we know the truth, and we know that the truth is the only thing that is going to set people free from their slavery to sin and that is going to give them new lives in Christ Jesus to be lived for his glory and praise. So we continue to tell the “glad news of deliverance” in the great congregation, because we know that is the only message that will set them free and that will result in eternal life with God if they adhere to what it teaches.
And the message is basically this. Because of what Jesus did for us on that cross, we are to be crucified with him in death to sin so that we can now be delivered from our slavery (addiction) to sin so that we can now walk in his holiness and righteousness in obedience to our Lord. But if we continue in deliberate and habitual sin, and if we do not walk in obedience to our Lord, and if sin is what we practice, and if righteousness is not our practice, then we will not inherit eternal life with God, and heaven is not our destiny.
[Lu 9:23-26; Gal 5:16-21; Gal 6:7-8; Rom 1:18-32; Rom 2:6-8; 1 Co 6:9-10; 2 Co 5:10; Eph 5:3-6; Col 1:21-23; Col 3:5-11; Rom 6:1-23; Rom 8:1-14; 1 Jn 1:5-9; 1 Jn 2:3-6; 1 Jn 3:4-10; Heb 10:26-31; 1 Pet 1:17-21; Jn 15:1-11; Matt 7:21-23; Rev 21:8,27; Rev 22:14-15]
Rejoice in the Lord
By Ron Hamilton
God never moves without purpose or plan
When trying His servant and molding a man.
Give thanks to the LORD though your testing seems long;
In darkness He giveth a song.
I could not see through the shadows ahead;
So I looked at the cross of my Savior instead.
I bowed to the will of the Master that day;
Then peace came and tears fled away.
Now I can see testing comes from above;
God strengthens His children and purges in love.
My Father knows best, and I trust in His care;
Through purging more fruit I will bear.
O Rejoice in the LORD
He makes no mistake,
He knoweth the end of each path that I take,
For when I am tried and purified,
I shall come forth as gold.
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