Psalm 116 (Part 2)By Pastor Boffey on Sunday, May 5, 2013.
Psalm 116 I. This is a psalm of thanksgiving to God for answers to prayers for help and deliverance. II. This psalm does not bear the subheading, “A Psalm of David” seen in many other psalms. A. Not all of David's psalms have that subheading. PSA 2:1 c/w ACT 4:25; HEB 4:7 c/w PSA 95:7. B. The psalmist here describes himself to God as “...the son of thine handmaid...” (v. 16), a term which only refers to David's mother in the psalms. PSA 86:16. C. This psalm well fits David's experience. III. At the very least, this Psalm is instructive for our hope. ROM 15:4. vs. 1-4. A. Compare v. 1 with PSA 18:1-3. 1. Answered prayers are a very good reason to love God. 2. Mind that the LORD heard his voice; this was not a secret internal prayer. 3. Mind also that this is a reciprocal love that the psalmist has for God (v. 1); he loves God BECAUSE God heard his pleas. c/w 1JO 4:19. a. Men may know of God from observation and deduction. ROM 1:20-21. b. But men can only love God because of a revelation of His love for them and His Fatherly care of them. 1JO 4:9-10. B. He had obviously been in great distress. v. 3. 1. The sorrows of death and the pains of hell were his experience. c/w PSA 18:4-5. 2. Hell being a place of darkness, torment and separation from God, it can be experienced in the soul without actually going there. At such time, pray! JON 2:2. 3. Thus, Jesus Christ suffered hell in His soul BEFORE He died; His death was the end of His soul's sufferings. ACT 2:27; LUK 23:43. C. He thus called upon the name of the LORD to deliver his soul. v. 4. 1. A wise choice: there is salvation in no other name. ACT 4:12. 2. Whosoever shall call upon the name of the Lord shall be saved. ROM 10:13. 3. In answer, God had delivered his soul from the lowest hell. c/w PSA 86:13. D. The boon granted, he resolves to call upon God as long as he lives (v. 2). Answered prayers should encourage us to continued prayers. COL 4:2. vs. 5-6. A. The LORD is a righteous God, a righteous Judge (2TI 4:8). How ever could we serve Him or stand before Him were it not that He was also gracious and merciful?! PSA 103:8-14. B. simple: Free from duplicity, dissimulation, or guile, innocent and harmless; undesigning, honest, open, straightforward. 2. Free from pride,...humble. 1. God gives grace to such. JAM 4:6. 2. The psalmist “...was brought low.” This can happen from oppressive circumstances or by a work of God to save us from self-exaltation. PSA 107:39 c/w 2CO 12:7. 3. In his lowness, he slipped into dark assumptions about everyone. v. 11. a. Depression can easily breed evil surmising, blanket condemnation, paranoia and false accusation. b. Let not the dark deeds of some color our view of all. c. Let us embrace the order of JAM 1:19. Psalm 116 4-28-13 Page 1 C. The psalmist was brought low and God helped him. He is a “...very present help in trouble” (PSA 46:1). c/w HEB 4:16. D. The psalmist is here praising God for His help, an appropriate response in consideration of all that God has done to help, visibly and invisibly. PSA 28:7; 1SAM 7:12. vs. 7-8. A. The psalmist here converses with his own soul, commanding it to return to its rest. c/w PSA 42:5. 1. Rational faith which knows God, His promises and His doings must order the soul accordingly. PSA 42:11; 43:5. 2. Has not God dealt bountifully with our soul? Then command the soul to remember the same. PSA 103:2. 3. Those who come to Christ to bear His yoke and learn of Him find the greatest bounty and rest for their souls. MAT 11:28-30; 2CO 1:4-5. B. The bountiful dealings which should reorient his soul are God's manifold deliverances. v. 8. 1. This verse answers the plea of PSA 56:13. 2. Salvation is not limited to that of the soul from death, but also from grief and falling. c/w PSA 44:4; 94:18. 3. Christ's gospel is especially for the deliverance of the brokenhearted. ISA 61:1-3. a. There is comfort for the mourning soul. MAT 5:4. b. He promises fountains of living water where God wipes away tears. REV 7:17. 4. He is able to keep the believer from falling (JUDE 1:24): a. from the truth about salvation by grace and from falling back into old errors. GAL 5:4; 4:8-9. b. into the condemnation, reproach and snare of the devil. 1TI 3:6-7. c. into temptation and a snare. 1TI 6:9. d. after bad examples of unbelief. HEB 4:11. e. from stedfastness. 2PE 3:17. f. because He “...is able to do exceeding abundantly above all that we ask or think, according to the power that worketh in us” (EPH 3:20). vs. 9-11. A. Having stabilized his soul with the knowledge of past deliverances, David expects to experience further deliverance. 1. This land of the living stands in contrast to “...the land of darkness and the shadow of death...” (JOB 10:21-22). 2. Faith remembers what God has already shown Himself able to do on behalf of His people and thus makes its soul rest in hope. ct/w PSA 78:42. 3. By this, we are weaned from reliance upon self. 2CO 1:8-10. 4. The lack of such faith will make us faint (lose heart or courage, be afraid, become depressed, give way, flag). PSA 27:13-14. B. Mind that the Psalmist not only claims a promise of life, but also resolves to walk before the LORD. c/w GEN 17:1; COL 1:10. 1. God's deliverances are not to facilitate the exploiting of the flesh! ROM 6:1-2; GAL 5:13. 2. We are specifically warned about the judgments of God against such. JUDE 1:5. C. Jesus Christ was “...cut off out of the land of the living...” (ISA 53:8). 1. David's claim of faith was that he should not see death. 2. Christ's claim of faith was that He should see death yet live again. JOH 2:19-21. D. Mind that there is a land of the living for the believer after death. HEB 12:22. Psalm 116 4-28-13 Page 2 1. That land is more real than this one! HEB 9:24. 2. Paul claims the spirit of faith of PSA 116:10 and applies it to the heavenly land of the living as a hope in the face of the troubles of this world. 2CO 4:13-5:4. E. Two seasons of speech are here juxtaposed. 1. In v. 10, David spoke according to faith. 2. Before he ordered his soul according to faith, he spoke in haste. v. 11. 3. It is for the lack of faith that we jump to hasty, doleful conclusions about the troubles and perils we face. PSA 31:22-24. 4. This same haste makes us conclude evil about everyone else, which tends to make others distance themselves from us, which leads to unnecessary isolation and lack of peace and joy. a. Mind that a believer's joy cannot be taken from him (JOH 16:22); it must be surrendered! b. Being without true joy is being without true strength. NEH 8:10. c. Faith expects tribulation in this world but doesn't let it destroy oneself. JOH 16:33 c/w 1JO 5:4. Psalm 116 4-28-13 Page 3
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