Psalm 53

Psalm 53
Day 53: Be blessed
This is a song referring to the foolish and the arrogant atheists of this generation.
Apart from a couple of differences it is the exact copy of Psalm 14.
One difference is that it is to be sung according to Mahalath.
Mahalath has many understandings: a name found in the Old Testament; sung with majesty; a meditative poem. It also means to be played with a harp, which is an instrument used for solemn songs. That is why the Amplified Bible interprets Mahalath as “in a mournful strain”. In fact the word is related to the Hebrew for “sick” and may have been a song from a sick person.
Are you sick today? Are you brought low?
The enemies that the sick have to face are:
The voices that say “God is not here”, v1.
The voices that say “do not seek God”, v3.
The voices that say “prayer doesn’t work”, v4.
The voices that say “be afraid”, v5.
Sing the Mahalath.
The Psalmist battles as every sick person does today. Battling to that point of painful trust:
“Oh” – more of an expression of deepest desire than a word, a prayer all of its own.
Let the sick person see the foolish, atheistic and arrogant enemies of their life for who they really are. Let them muster enough strength, longing and passion to cry out for the coming of these 3 gifts: salvation, restoration and joy.

Psalm 52

Psalm 52
Day 52: Be blessed
1 Samuel 22 tells the story of an evil man called Doeg who betrayed David and Ahimelech and it ended in the slaughter of many lives.
We all know the feelings that come when someone has set us up to fail. When betrayal has come to us our response is like this song:
Why? Why did you do this?
This is wrong. You are back to front in your value-system.
Surely God cannot bless you!
God will judge you!

However the song takes us beyond these feelings to the place of where we are positioned.
I am like an olive tree!
How important this description is.
Olive trees live and produce fruit in spite of harsh circumstances.
Olive trees are difficult to kill, even when they are axed to the ground they will produce new life and grow again.
Olives from the trees are grown to be crushed in the Bible. There were four pressings each having a different quality and use. The first pressing of the olives were set aside for the temple worship.
The reason why blessing is yours is because even in betrayal you still live in God and God produces amazing things through your life. Even though you have been brought low, you rise again. Even when crushed out of you flows anointing oil that is fit for worship.
I am sure many can testify to this today!

Psalm 51

Psalm 51
Day 51: Be blessed

David was in a whole heap of mess. But God can change the unchangeable. You may have messed up or man may have messed you up. God can bring you back, marry you to your destiny, equip you and send you out once more. He can change your situation. No matter how much you have failed, no matter what shame you feel, miracles can take place in your life.

David knew he was known by God. v1,4,6,9.
He knows it all. That will either convict you or comfort you.
He knows what you have said about that person, he knows how justified you have felt in saying such things.
He knows the pride in your life – a desire to be seen and known, a desire to be vindicated.
He knows your deeds – hot in church, cold outside, your loving Jesus and lusting after the flesh.
David knows that when he was walking on that rooftop desiring Bathsheba God saw him. He knew when David slept with her. He knew when David called for Uriah and tried to get him to sleep with his wife to cover it up. He knew when David hatched a deceitful plot to have Uriah killed. He knows.
He also knows what you may be suffering. He knows what you have gone through. He knows all your unanswered questions, He knows it all. He knows and He still loves you,
v1 ‘unfailing love’ Your love may fail but not his.

David knew he could be renewed by God, v10.
Renew means to make young. To take something that has been broken and build it up again.
Message says God, shape a Genesis week from the chaos of my life, v10.
Within you there may be gifts, callings that have been broken, pressed down or held back. Your dreams and desires may have been crushed. You may have had great plans for your family members, for you. But now maybe through your disobedience – one act or over a period of time you have grieved the Holy Spirit. Maybe you’ve been harmed and stripped of your power in God. The devil has beaten you up. But are you still there? David was and he asked to be renewed.

Known by God, renewed by God and indeed blessed by God!

Psalm 50

Psalm 50
Day50: Be blessed
I love the story that Tim Keller (a Pastor and author from New York) tells of a talk from his Sunday School teacher that changed his life.
The teacher said, “Let’s assume the distance between the earth and the sun (92 million miles) was reduced to the thickness of this sheet of paper. If that is the case, then the distance between the earth and the nearest star would be a stack of papers 70 feet high. And the diameter of the galaxy would be a stack of papers 310 miles high. The galaxy is just a speck of dust in the universe, yet Jesus holds the universe together by the word of his power. Is this the kind of person you ask into your life to be your assistant?”
That talk changed his whole conception of who God is. Keller changed on that day from being someone who uses God to the man used by Him.
Today let’s get some perspective with the help of that story and that of the psalmist.
Three powerful names of God are the opening lyrics. El. Elohim, Jehovah – The Mighty One, God, the Lord. Here He comes, impressive, royal, self-existent, almighty powerful God speaking across the whole world at the same time.
When we have such a revelation of a great king then our prayer changes from “help me” to “use me.”
He does.
He lives in your life and turns it around, from ashes to beauty. Yes, he has made it beautiful and continues to beautify your life simply by His presence within.
He shines forth. People can see this beauty within you.
He moves. He comes. He appears on the scene. He speaks to His people. He had been silent but now He speaks. A fire goes before Him and storms change the landscape of where He appears.
Jesus came.
Jesus will come. He will be revealed from heaven in blazing fire. (1 Thess 2:7)
He calls the earth together. He gathers His people for judgment. The people like you and me who gave our life to Him in a covenant. Not our covenant, but that of the sacrifice. The sacrifice made when he came. We are saved when He comes because He came.
Our God is awesome!
He’s not your waiter. He’s God, your God, now serve Him today and be blessed!

Psalm 49

Psalm 49
Day 49: Be blessed
What is the reason for your life?
Is it to battle the fear of man? v5
Is it to accumulate in order to leave it behind? v10
Is it to have a name that continues on? v11
Is it to simply die? V14
Is it to grow rich? V17
Is it to be praised by man? v18

Author Randy Alcorn recalled a two-month missions trip that he and his family took some years ago that included a visit to Egypt. While in Egypt, Alcorn’s hosts took him to visit an abandoned graveyard located at the end of a garbage-lined alley. The host pointed out one tombstone in particular—that of William Borden (1887-1913), heir to the Borden dairy estate. William was a millionaire by 21, but he renounced his fortune, giving nearly all his wealth to missions. His heart’s desire was to take the gospel to Muslims in China. On his way to China, William stopped in Egypt to study Arabic, but four months later he contracted spinal meningitis and died at the age of 25.
Alcorn writes:
I dusted off the inscription on the headstone of Borden’s grave. After describing his love for Christ and his commitment to and his love for the Muslim people; and his sacrifices for God’s kingdom; the inscription ended with some words I wrote down on the spot—and I have never forgotten them to this day. The inscription ended with, “Apart from faith in Christ there is no explanation for such a life.”
Then Alcorn wrote, “And I thought, Lord, what’s the explanation for my life?”
Randy Alcorn, “Money and the Disciple,” 2004

The reason for your life is Christ’s costly ransom to God for you.
No man could pay the high payment necessary for your eternal state, v7-9.
But Christ has done it.
The reason for your life is to spend it in light of the truth that God will take you to be with Him when you die, v15.
So live life to the full today in light of that fact.

Psalm 48

Psalm 48
Day 48: Be blessed!
Beautiful for situation says the KJV.
You are beautiful and the church where you meditate on His unfailing love and where you praise Him and rejoice in Him is beautiful also (v9-11).
Over the years I have met many who criticise what God calls beautiful, “this church isn’t this, doesn’t have this, cannot do this.” They have forgotten that they criticise what God calls beautiful.
Over the years I have met many who belittle their own life and circumstances of it, “if only things would change I could do this, I could be more, better, I hate my life.” They have forgotten that they attack what God calls beautiful for situation.
Beauty is in the eye of the beholder and God is looking at you and describes you so.
One day, rummaging through a dusty old attic in a small Austrian town, a collector comes across a faded manuscript containing many pages of music. It’s written for the piano. Curious, he takes it to a dealer. The dealer phones a friend who appears a half hour later. When he sees the music, he becomes excited, then puzzled. This looks like the handwriting of Mozart himself. But it isn’t a well-known piece. In fact, he’s never heard it before. More phone calls. More excitement. More consultations. It really does seem to be Mozart. And though some parts seem distantly familiar, it doesn’t correspond to anything already known in his works.

But [the manuscript] seems incomplete. There are gaps in the music. Just where it seems to come to a climax, it seems to stop and then pick up again later. Gradually the truth dawns on the excited little group. What they are looking at is indeed by Mozart. It is, indeed, beautiful, but it’s the piano part that involves another instrument or perhaps other instruments. By itself, it is frustratingly incomplete. It is a signpost to something that once was there and might still turn up one day.

That’s the position we are in when we are confronted by beauty. We stand before a great painting. When you stand before the most amazing sunset or when you see the beauty of a human face, whether it’s a little baby or a lovely wise old person, there is a haunting quality to it, as though it’s not just complete in itself. It’s a signpost to a larger truth that is just around the corner, just out of sight. We can’t grip it, can’t get our hands on it. It’s as though we’re hearing the echo of a voice, and we’d love to hear whose that voice is and what story it’s telling. Part of the joy of beauty is the realization that it is part of a larger whole, most of which appears to be just out of sight. We are drawn forward toward something and left waiting, wondering.
N. T. Wright, quoted in Eric Metaxas, Socrates in the City (Dutton, 2011), pp. 207-208

Beautiful and Blessed!

Psalm 47

Psalm 47
Day 47: Be blessed
Loud noises today!
Clapping hands, shouting to God, cries of joy, shouts of joy, trumpets sounding, singing praises!
In fact singing praises is mentioned 5 times within 2 verses. Why?
This Psalm is no doubt riding on an amazing victory that God’s people have just experienced. The Jews will even now talk about their greatest victory being that of the destruction of Sennacherib in 701 BC. This king of the vast Assyrian army invaded the territory of God’s people to destroy them. On paper the outcome was inevitable, God’s people would die. But through the focused prayer of Hezekiah and the people, God intervened and killed 185,000 Assyria troops in one night. Therefore today when the Jews celebrate that victory they use this Psalm to do so.
However, once again we amazingly find a Psalm that is prophetic, that speaks of Jesus!
God has ascended, v5.
Therefore He must also have first descended. He did.
The Son, Jesus Christ, came down from heaven to earth to accomplish salvation, to rescue, to set free, to destroy the works of the enemy.
Then He ascended.
There is no event past, present or future that will surpass this momentous occasion of the Incarnation and then the Ascension of Christ. It is the foundation of our victorious life.
He reigns. He is in control on His throne. He owns the world. Jesus our Saviour, Jesus our Victory.
He has brought the Gentiles into the Kingdom of God alongside the Jews, v9. Paul stated in Galatians 3 that there is neither Jew nor Greek.
So this is why we are loud!
He has ascended. And because He did:
It was the sign that all He came to do was accomplished.
It was the sign of a new work of Christ, that of an interceding High Priest.
It was the sign that He will come again in exactly the same way as he left, visibly and bodily.
It was the sign that you too will ascend to Heaven.
Sing praises, sing praises, sing praises, sing praises, sing praises! We are blessed!

Psalm 46

Psalm 46
Day 46: Be blessed!

According to alamoth meaning to be sung at the level of soprano, it was a musical term meaning “maidens”. The Psalmist is asking that the women sing this Psalm.

To be truly BLESSED every Church needs women to sing such a song.

The Elim Pentecostal Church in the UK was founded in 1915 by George Jeffreys. Jeffreys and a group of friends, known as the Elim Evangelistic Band, preached, planted churches and witnessed a move of God that was characterised by miraculous healings and an explosion in the number of people becoming Christians. However, within only 4 years Elim began sending missionaries across the world. Who were these people? Single women missionaries with a steely determination and raw passion to take the gospel to those who have never heard. In 1919 Miss Dollie Phillips sent to Mahim, now Mumbai. In 1929 Miss Marion Evans and Miss Marion Point again sent to India and were mightily effective for over 25 years! Today Elim are still sending out inspirational women of God and it is a joy to witness the power of the Spirit in and through their lives.

History speaks so loudly of the powerful inspiring action of women who left everything and gave everything they could because God had called them.
Without doubt everyone of these women will have been empowered by the same Holy Spirit who came upon Mary the young virgin girl who received her calling with the words, “The Lord is with you”.
700 years previously someone wrote this song:
God is an ever-present help in trouble
God is within her, she will not fall
God will help her at break of day
The Lord Almighty is with us
The Lord Almighty is with us

The Church needs women to truly believe these words. Let them be your food today.
Struggling with your workload.
Doubting your place in this life.
Wondering what tomorrow may hold.
GOD is with you!

The Church needs women to sing loudly:
We will not fear, v2
We will not fall, v5
God is in control v8-10

If you are a man reading this then send it to a woman and encourage her to sing the alamoth. Tell her the church needs her more than ever. If you are a woman, will you be this woman?

Psalm 45

Day 45: Be blessed

This is a wedding song, a love song.
It could be between Solomon and a lady. It is definitely prophetic of The Lord and you.
If you have been a Christian for sometime then it is possible you have lost the passionate love between you and the Lord as a wife may do of her husband. It is important to get this back. This Psalm helps.
(V1-9 is the bride speaking to the groom. V 10-15 is the reverse ending with a couple of verses of the bride speaking again).
Today let your love for the Lord increase:-

1. Let your heart be stirred once again as you speak to Him, v1.
The Bible says your heart can become hard, deceitful and sinful. Even after you are saved your heart can become broken, bruised and downcast. There are times like today when we have to stir our hearts towards Him who is passionately in love with us.

2. Begin to use new words as your stir your heart towards Him, v2-4.
Speak of His excellence, His grace, His might, His victory, His truth, His humility and His righteousness.

3. Magnify God within your life. He cannot get bigger but He can within your thinking, v4-9.
Think on His strength, His ability to do great things.
Pray outside of your situation, for God to destroy His enemies, for nations to surrender to Him
Build the picture of Him within your life. What He loves, who He is, a royal picture.

4. Then Listen. Let the words of this Psalm speak to you. Allow the lyrics to form around you and within. Consider not in a light way but chew them over, meditate on them, hold them, turn them over, be affected by them. Don’t be distracted by your situation, v10.
5. Focus on words such as:
The Lord is captivated by you, He thinks you are beautiful, v11.
The Lord is your Lord, v11.
He is arranging gifts to be brought to you as a bride receives on her wedding, v12.
He invites you into the chamber, into the place of intimacy, where you can share happiness with the King, v13-15.
6. Tell others, v17.

Psalm 44

Day 44: Be blessed!

Do things ever go wrong in your life?
Of course they do!
There are times when God seems to be nowhere and everything is going wrong.
This Psalm describes these feelings.
There is no nice ending to this song. “We are brought down to the dust; our bodies cling to the ground. Rise up and help us; rescue us because of your unfailing love”. v25,26.
Why does it end like this? Why doesn’t it end with a brighter hope? Simply because life doesn’t always have happy endings the way we think it should.
So how do we make sense of such bad times when there is no end in sight?
The answer is in v22 “Yet for your sake we face death all day long; we are considered as sheep to be slaughtered”.
This verse Apostle Paul quoted in Romans 8. He writes, “Who shall separate us from the love of Christ? Shall trouble or hardship or persecution or famine or nakedness or danger or sword? As it is written: “For your sake we face death all day long; we are considered as sheep to be slaughtered.” No, in all these things we are more than conquerors through him who loved us”. Romans 8:35-37
Paul’s point is that it doesn’t matter about the outward circumstance so long as the inward is so strong. He refers to the Psalm to show that no matter what goes wrong in our lives, even with no happy endings, within us is the ability to stay strong, because of what the Psalmist describes as “unfailing love”.