September 29, 2020
Praying and meditating through Psalms
Blessed are all they that put their trust in him
~Psalm 2:12, KJV ~
Those who do not know the true nature of who God is, and therefore Jesus Christ whom he has sent, rally against individuals who have tasted of the divine fruit of the Tree of Life. Yet, how often have we given ourselves over to the worry and concerns of the waning social and cultural disdain for Christ. What sweet comfort do you find in Christ’s simple words? If the world hate you, ye know that it hated me before it hated you (John 15:18, cf John 15:18-27, KJV). As Christians, we ought not to be surprised of how those who truly do not know God rage against Him.
Psalms 2 is a good reminder for us to reflect and meditate on the powerful nature of God’s divine mercy and grace toward those who are blessed. It is also a powerful consolation of God’s just divine judgment and condemnation upon those who set themselves up as heathens. It is a royal messianic promise to us. It also reminds us that we are not to judge those – this is only reserved for God alone.
Another way of looking at Psalm 2 is from a recovery oriented perspective. Those who truly are not ready for recovery, which includes spiritual healing and restoration, may set themselves up against your efforts. They enable and tempt you to falter and continue in active substance use and continue to live as a broken vessel.
Protesting in Vain
According to the New American Standard (Revised Edition) NABRE Psalm 2:1-6 is read as follows:
Why do the nations protest and the peoples conspire in vain? Kings on earth rise up and princes plot together against the Lord and against his anointed one: “Let us break their shackles and cast off their chains from us!” The one enthroned in heaven laughs; the Lord derides them, Then he speaks to them in his anger, in his wrath he terrifies them: “I myself have installed my king on Zion, my holy mountain.”
When we set ourselves up against God’s declaration of truth – we do so with vain. Meaning, we are fruitless in our efforts to cause any significant change against His divine grace and commandments. Unable to change His divine mercy and forgiveness. Unable to change His divine judgments against sin and unrighteousness. Yet, we and others, consistently kick against the pricks (See, Acts 26:14). Our pride and stubbornness means we kick against something that causes more harm. In the New King James Version translation, prick is changed to goad which is a tool used to evoke a stubborn ox to move:
A prick (or goad, as it’s translated in the NKJV) can be any sharp point that pierces or stings but is generally known as the ox goad, a heavy, sharp piece of iron used to drive oxen. A stubborn and unyielding ox would kick against the goad, driving the instrument in deeper and hurting no one but himself.‘Kicking Against the Pricks’ – Stubbornness vs. Submission
Much of our stubbornness to engage in restoring our faith. Engaging in repentance and seeking God’s divine forgiveness and mercy. Submitting ourselves over to God’s divine will is done with great vain. It is empty. Fruitless. And we continue to walk contrary to His will that ultimately leads to more suffering.
Yet, when we do start moving toward spiritual restoration, submitting ourselves over to Christ, and lean unto God’s divine counsel and wisdom. Many come against us. They appear to conspire and may eventually not want to have anything to do with us (only if we continue to resist their enticing temptations).
Psalm 2:4 continues with the image of God sitting and laughing at those who make vain attempts against His kingdom and saints. It also shares that God’s wrath holds these individuals in derision – or in a manner of mocking. What we may understand from this poetic expression is not a literal supreme being laughing and mocking those who come against Him. It is that because of the vain attempts they make in mocking and laughing at those who come unto Christ for mercy and grace do so in a way that appears our Heavenly Father is engaged in mocking them as well. On the contrary, it is our Heavenly Father holding these people accountable to their own mockery against Him.
It is because of their mockery and vain attempts that God may speak in a way that comes across with anger and judgment. Rightly so. This places the fear of His displeasure against those who mock Him, Jesus Christ, and those who come unto Christ for the redemption and remission of sins. They stand already condemned.
Anointed and Begotten
Christ is the first anointed and begotten of the Father. He is the King of Kings and Lord of Lords. Through Christ, we also are set apart and anointed as Kings and Priests. Christ being the High Priest. This is based on 1 Peter 2:9:
But ye are a chosen generation, a royal priesthood, an holy nation, a peculiar people; that ye should shew forth the praises of him who hath called you out of darkness into his marvellous light;
When we come unto Christ, we are restored to a spiritual relationship with our Heavenly Father. This is because Psalm 2:7-9 is the Messianic Prophesy and Royal Coronation of Christ:
I will proclaim the decree of the Lord, he said to me, “You are my son; today I have begotten you. Ask it of me, and I will give you the nations as your inheritance, and, as your possession, the ends of the earth. With an iron rod you will shepherd them, like a potter’s vessel you will shatter them.”
It is also pointing to our own royal coronation as God’s children. The Apostle Reflects on this in Romans 8:16-18 where he says:
The Spirit itself beareth witness with our spirit, that we are the children of God: And if children, then heirs; heirs of God, and joint-heirs with Christ; if so be that we suffer with him, that we may be also glorified together. For I reckon that the sufferings of this present time are not worthy to be compared with the glory which shall be revealed in us.
Christ himself reflected on this in the Sermon on the Mount and Beatitudes. Charles Haddon Spurgeon teaches us this:
God is their Father, they are therefore God’s heirs! Well, but God hath another Son, one who is the first-born of every creature. Exactly so, therefore if we be heirs, as Christ Jesus is the heir of all things, we are “joint heirs with Christ.” I think you will see that, like links in a chain, these different truths draw each other on — the spirit of adoption proves the fact of adoption; by the act of adoption we are children; if children then heirs; if heirs, heirs of God; but since there is another heir, we must therefore be joint heirs with Christ Jesus. Blessed is the man to whom this reasoning is not abstract, but experimental. Happy is he who can follow the apostle step by step, and say, “Yes, I have this morning the spirit of a son; I know that my heart loves God, and I look to him as my Father, with trust, with confidence, and with love; then I am surely his son, because I have the Spirit of a son; then I am his heir; I am the heir of God; and thus my faith lays hold upon the thrice-precious words of this glorious text— I am ‘joint heir with Christ.’”
We are anointed through Christ. We are spiritually begotten through Christ. We are promised eternal blessings and inheritance through Christ. What sweet comfort this gives us to know that as we walk with Christ, we are moving toward a reward far greater than what this life may offer us. We are essentially anointed and blessed because of our faith, our confidence, and our devotion to our Heavenly Father. We have a divine heritage that surpasses all understanding.
Take Heed and refuge
Psalm 2:10-12 calls us to take heed and refuge in Christ:
And now, kings, give heed; take warning, judges on earth. Serve the Lord with fear; exult with trembling, Accept correction lest he become angry and you perish along the way when his anger suddenly blazes up. Blessed are all who take refuge in him!
There are five things we are called to do:
- Take heed to God’s divine and wise counsel
- Take warning of pride, temptation, and unrighteousness
- Serve with awe and reverence by being mindful and aware
- Exult (Joy) with authentic worship and devotion
- Readily accept correction and wise counsel
These actions will keep us on the path of righteousness and spiritual perfection. When we no longer heed our Heavenly Father’s divine and wise counsel. When we move away from authentic humility and well up with pride. No longer serve our Heavenly Father with mindful devotion. Move away from true worship and devotion. And deny ourselves the readiness to receive correction. We move toward suffering and destruction.
Yet, when we do take heed, be aware and mindful, serve, rejoice in authentic worship, and are ready to accept correction and direction in our lives – then, are we able to receive the blessings and inheritance promised to us. We take refuge in knowing that Christ is our strength. We have confidence and assurance of our faith as we grow spiritually mature.
~ Prayer and Meditation ~
Heavenly Father, bring to my awareness of where I am falling short of your counsel and truth. Assist me in drawing closer to you as I seek refuge in your grace and glory. Create within me the motivation and commitment to continue to serve you. Guide me into all truth and understanding as I continue my journey in this life. Bring to my awareness that through Christ, I am blessed and set apart to lay hold of the promised blessings you have in store for me. In this life and in the life to come. I pray in Christ’s holy name, Amen!
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