Tuesday, January 21, 2014

"In spite of what you see … Jesus IS on the throne!"

Day #25:  Daily Bible Reading - January 22nd

Scripture Reading:  Psalms 9 - 11 …

"The LORD reigns forever!" (9:7).  What comforting words to those who know who "the LORD" is … the God of creation, the great "I AM!"  How important is it to you that there is one true God, that you know Him and that He reigns over all things - for your good and for His glory?  How would your life be different if that weren't true?

We've already seen in the Psalms that David and the other writers of the Psalms express the raw emotion of life in this world.  Yet they continually point to a God who is righteous and just, who is ruling over the affairs of men.  Psalm 9 points out the contrast between those whom the Lord has declared righteous and those who are wicked.  There are two distinct groups of people in the world today, as there have always been:  those who know the true God and who by faith in the Savior believe in forgiveness and eternal life as a gift from God, and those who reject God, who reject the Bible as His Word and who reject Jesus as the Savior.  "You have blotted out their name for ever and ever" (9:5).

How much better to sing God's praises and to rejoice in the Lord, knowing, believing that He reigns.  He is God, and there is no other.  Only when you KNOW that, can you look at every day as an opportunity to serve Him, to endure trials and to overcome by His power, and to testify that HE is God.  There will be times like Psalm 10, when it seems as though the Lord is standing far off - just watching while evil goes from bad to worse.  There will be times when you pray, "Arise, LORD!  Lift up your hand, O God!" (10:12).

Yet, even then, the Psalmist writes, "The LORD is King for ever and ever; the nations will perish from His land.  You hear, O LORD, the desire of the afflicted; You encourage them, and You listen to their cry" (10:16-17).  So, "in the LORD I take refuge" (11:1).  Is that where you are finding refuge?  When the storms come, when faced with trials, when you are feeling overwhelmed, where do you go?  Do you panic?  Do you turn to the distractions of the world and indulge yourself in self-pity or try to "drown your sorrows" in some worthless activity?

David asks, "When the foundations are being destroyed, what can the righteous do?" (11:3).  The answer:  "The LORD is in His holy temple; the LORD is on His heavenly throne" (11:4).  We can declare the truth that in spite of what we see, "Our God reigns!"  God has not forgotten those who trust in Him.  The foundations of our nation are being destroyed today, from outside the church and from within.  But the LORD is still in His holy temple … He dwells with His people.  His Spirit lives within us.  "Greater is He that is in US, than he that is in the world" (I John 4:4).  Judgment WILL come, sooner rather than later, but "upright men will see His face" (11:7).

Those who are "upright" are not those who are perfect, for none of us qualify, but rather, those who seek the LORD, who trust in Him by faith in His Son Jesus Christ, and who desire to love, honor and obey HIM, our God.  For these, for you and me, faith means trusting our God and living for Him no matter what our circumstances.  HE is our Rock, our Fortress, our Shield, our Defender, our Deliverer, our Refuge … and so much more.  REST in Him today and do not allow the wicked to overcome you, to discourage you or to cause you to fear.  When the foundations are being destroyed … JESUS is still on the throne!!

"My Father and my God, help me today to trust in You.  I see evil all around me and I know that without You I would be among the wicked.  I entrust myself to You, confessing my sin, trusting in Your forgiveness and desiring that my life may be a light in the darkness, pointing others to You.  I praise You for revealing Yourself to me and I thank You for Your faithfulness!  In Jesus' name, Amen"

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