May 10, 2016

Psalm 35:3 Say to my soul,
“I am your salvation.”

I doubt very much that Psalm 35 is very many people’s favorite Scripture. However, as an article I ran across just yesterday in the Internet said, any time we read the Bible we need to ask, “What does this teach me about God?” If we will do that, even passages like Leviticus and Numbers can be channels of real blessing. This Psalm is a protest to God about treacherous enemies, but this phrase really caught my eye. It shows clearly that David was very aware of God as objective reality; he didn’t think it was his own imagination talking to him, and it wasn’t something he had worked up. Atheists down through the centuries have maintained that all religion was a product of human imagination. I can’t say that imagination hasn’t played a part in some of the forms of religion, even within Christianity, but God Himself is objective reality. I am often amazed at the ignorance of God that I see expressed even by ostensible Christians. Rather than get into the Bible themselves, they have gone entirely by what one preacher or another has said, and the result is often a horrible mess. If we start with the basic premise that God is real and that He has given us the Bible to tell us about Him, then a lot of the junk should fall away. Like David, we need to ask God to speak to us, to assure us that He is our salvation and to show us the way we should go. As John said, the Holy Spirit is available to teach us, if we are open to Him. (1 John 2:27) John was present in the Upper Room when Jesus said, “The Counselor, the Holy Spirit, whom the Father will send in my name, will teach you all things and will remind you of everything I have said to you.” (John 14:26) We need to get into the Word and ask the Holy Spirit to bring it to life in our hearts.

I had the incredible advantage of growing up immersed in the Bible, in a household that loved and served God. That, with a lifelong habit of daily devotions, has given me a familiarity with the Word that too often I take for granted. I find I often say things that seem so obvious to me as to go without saying, and people around me react as though I had said something unusually profound. That still bothers me! I am dismayed at the level of spiritual blindness I encounter. I am not to give up, but remember that I too still have much to learn, and consistently speak the truth in love in all humility. I am to ask God to speak to me, as David did, and I am to ask Him to speak to those to whom I minister, whether it is through me or otherwise. If they will learn to hear from Him, believing that He really does love them enough to speak to them and teach them personally, then my job is done.

Father, thank You for the privilege of speaking Your words. However, I desire even more that each of my hearers would learn to hear You directly. May my words always point them to You and not to me, so that in faith they may enter into the fellowship with You for which You created them, for their infinite blessing and Your glory. Thank You. Hallelujah!


About jgarrott

Born and raised in Japan of missionary parents. Have been here as an adult missionary since 1981.
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