Friday, April 22, 2011

Psalm 112

The Blessings of Those Who Fear God

Psalm 112 begins with the same "Hallelujah" as Psalm 111.  It reiterates the message of Psalm 111 - of how much it is our wisdom to fear God and do His commandments.  The psalm ends with good and evil set before us, the blessing and the curse. 

The psalmist begins with a call to praise God, and then turns to those who fear and serve the Lord - noting that they are a blessed people owing entirely to the grace of God.  Matthew Henry notes those whom the psalmist pronounces as blessed:
  1. They stand in awe of God and have a constant reverence for His majesty and a deference to His will
  2. They are called the upright, and deal faithfully both with God and man
  3. They are both just and kind in all their dealings
  4. They shall be blessed of God - they shall prosper, and especially their souls shall prosper
  5. They shall have comfort in affliction
  6. They shall have wisdom for the management of all their concerns

Unto the upright there arises light in the darkness.
~ Ps. 112:4
My Bible notes that the righteous man is characterized by his sense of divine guidance, as well as by his generosity.  In addition, it is noted that those who fear the Lord will have their share in the common calamities of human life, but when they 'sit in darkness, the Lord will be a light to them.' (Mic. 7:8)

Regarding verse 3, we obviously know that not all Christians are millionaires.  Many are not financially well-off at all.  So what does it mean, "wealth and riches will be in his house"?  Matthew Henry notes:
They shall be blessed with outward prosperity as far as is good for them.  But, which is much better, is that they shall be blessed with spiritual blessings, which are true riches
Grace is better than gold, for it will outlast it.

He will not be afraid of evil tidings;
His heart is steadfast, trusting in the Lord.
~ Ps. 112:7

Trusting in the Lord is the best and surest way of fixing and establishing the heart. 

The fixedness of the heart is a sovereign remedy against the disquieting fear of bad news. 

  • God is worthy of our praise
  • God is worthy of our trust
  • Committing our lives to God will cause His children to lead lives that are "other" than those of the world:  full of grace, compassion, righteous living, generous spirit, unshakable faith, a steadfast heart
  • I praise the Lord that, through His power, I can be 'different.'  I can be transformed, by His Holy Spirit, into an upright person, gracious and full of compassion & righteousness. 
  • I praise the Lord that because I trust in Him, my heart can be steadfast and established; unafraid
God of creation, You formed us out of the dust of the earth and breathed life into us.  By Your Spirit, breathe new life into us.  Lead us to life eternal by the mighty love of Jesus Christ, who suffered on the cross and was raised from the dead.  You lifted Him to glory, where with outstretched arms, He welcomes the world with His strong embrace of salvation.  In His holy name we pray ~ Amen
 - Presbyterian Church

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