Biblegateway Verse of the Day

Gospel of Jesus Christ Explained: Psalm 139

By Benjamin H. Liles

          Lord, you have searched me, and you know me. You know my sitting down and my rising up. You perceive my thoughts from afar. You search out my path and my lying down, and are acquainted with all my ways. How precious to me are your thoughts, God! How vast is their sum!
          If I would count them, they are more in number than the sand. When I wake up, I am still with you. Search me, God, and know my heart. Try me, and know my thoughts. See if there is any wicked way in me, and lead me in the everlasting way. ~ Psalm 139:1-3, 17-18, 23-24, World English 

          Earlier, I was thinking of the best way to show how much God is for us. I have thought long and hard on the best way to show God's love toward us. Peter, when he wrote his letter to the Church, says, "The Lord is not slow concerning his promise, as some count slowness; but is patient with us, not wishing that any should perish, but that all should come to repentance" (2 Peter 3:9, World English). If His delay in coming back demonstrates His love toward us, to lead us to repentance, then it seems He knows exactly when Hell on Earth is going to break loose. 

          I believe the best way to say it is in this way: the written words of Revelation have yet to start being fulfilled due to the fact God desires to see our faith in Him. That desire to Him can be shown as allowing certain situations, at this moment, in coming crashing down to our knees, not only asking Him to forgive us our sins but in seeking Him and only Him. 

          The flooding we have in Texas, for example, especially in concerns for livestock, farming, and the safety of human lives can drive many people to get on our knees and ask Him to be our protector; that He is our God. So, when Peter says in that letter, "to lead us to repentance," he's saying, "God has this as a promise. He will return. He's not slow in the least bit. He allows for a time so that we change our hearts and minds back to Him." 

          In regards to my walk with Him, which I can at best call sporadic, He woke me up to the fact that I do sin. Every day of my life is hectic, hurried, and in some way, shape or form doesn't always include Him. A proper walk with and in Him puts Him at the forefront. David walked with God. He was called "God's man" as well as "A man after God's heart." 

          Why? Because David took the time every day, regardless the situation he was under, and acknowledged Him showing a thankful heart that he was bought at a price. And those were days way before Jesus actually walked the land of Israel. He believed God at His word. This is the reason, even though David isn't expressly mentioned in Hebrews, it is said, "These all died in faith, not having received the promises, but having seen them and embraced them from afar, and having confessed that they were strangers and pilgrims on the earth. But now they desire a better country, that is, a heavenly one. Therefore God is not ashamed of them, to be called their God, for he has prepared a city for them" (Hebrews 11:13, 16). 

          David, after admitting his sin before Nathan, told his men, "But now he is dead, why should I fast? Can I bring him back again? I will go to him, but he will not return to me" (2 Samuel 12:23). This is the faith God is truly impressed with. Even after David committed the worst of sins, he still knew and believed God would keep His word David was his. 

          That's confidence in God and His ability to keep His word. Do I have that same level of confidence as David has? I would love to be able to tell you while sitting here that I do, but I'd feel I was lying. However, I do believe God's word has always been fulfilled and will come to pass. And that's still a faith I believe God is impressed with. 

          There are two more things I want to share and show. I just said that God's word has been fulfilled and still is unfolding. So, the two things I want to show are the fact that Greece, while not directly mentioned in the Bible, was going to rule the area including the land of Israel all the way to present day Iran. Daniel writes in his letter, spelling it out to king Nebuchadnezzar, "As for this image, its head was of fine gold, its breast and its arms of silver, its belly and its thighs of brass...After you shall arise another kingdom inferior to you; and another third kingdom of brass, which shall bear rule over all the earth" (Daniel 2:32, 39). 

          In another spot of his letter Daniel corresponds the brass part of the body to a swift moving army through animal representation: the leopard. We all know how fast leopards can move, which is up to sixty-five miles per hour (104.59 kilometers an hour). The ferocity and terribleness of Alexander the Great, in conquering territories eastward and south of Greece, was both terrifying and bloody. 

          This is what Daniel writes, "After this I saw, and behold, another, like a leopard, which had on its back four wings of a bird; the animal had also four heads; and dominion was given to it" (Daniel 7:6). Then in Daniel 11, he writes, "Now will I show you the truth. Behold, there shall stand up yet three kings in Persia; and the fourth shall be far richer than they all: and when he has grown strong through his riches, he shall stir up all against the realm of Greece (Grecia in the King James). 

          A mighty king shall stand up, who shall rule with great dominion, and do according to his will. When he shall stand up, his kingdom shall be broken, and shall be divided toward the four winds of the sky, but not to his posterity, nor according to his dominion with which he ruled; for his kingdom shall be plucked up, even for others besides these" (11:2-4). The point is Daniel wrote the words two hundred years before Alexander the Great came to power. 

          The second thing I want to show is that many prophets in the Old Testament testified to the fact that a man would appear and heal those in the lands of Judea and Samaria. Jesus had this to say in response to John the Baptist, "The blind see and the lame walk; the lepers are cleansed and the deaf hear; the dead are raised up and the poor have the gospel preached to them" (Matthew 11:5, New King James). 

          When Jesus said this so that John the Baptist would be comforted, they fulfilled the words of Isaiah, "Then the eyes of the blind shall be opened, and the ears of the deaf shall be unstopped" (Isaiah 35:5, New King James). There are people who will and can claim that these words were inserted, after the fact, into the Bible. If that were true this claim would have to have not preserved the text of what our modern Bibles have in them today. I contest that what's in the Bible is the same today as it was when the Bible was being brought together into the form of that we have today. 

          Since Greece did occupy parts of the Middle East we can say that God's word has been fulfilled. And the same can be said of Jesus Christ. He fulfilled the letter of the law and the prophets by dying on the cross in the stead of our sins. Prior to going to the cross the Son implored God, the Father, saying, "Father, if it is Your will, take this cup away from Me; nevertheless not My will, but Yours, be done" (Luke 22:42, New King James). 

          Even the thieves on either cross beside him mocked him. I'm adding certain things on here to not only show that my belief is the Bible is as accurate today as it was when it was first penned by its various authors to show God's overwhelming love and desire toward us as patient and in bearing with us in our weaknesses. I am just as frail and wrought with sin as any other. 

          It is my hope, my prayer that any who read my words on here to inspire faith that God is who He claims He is. That He indeed will be coming back with thousands upon thousands of angels, bringing peace and a restoration of this planet back under His control. 

          The last of my thoughts on the passage from Psalm 139 is that we can have hope, a lasting faith that God sees, hears and responds to us. He does so in His time. If He gave His response to us immediately I highly doubt that any man, woman or child could or would come to Him. Many people would therefore perish. Sadly, the truth of that statement is those who have passed on now know and believe in God the Father, and Jesus Christ, His Son. 

          It is a fitting testimony, actually. And this is where I wrap it up. Jesus gave this parable of the importance of our faith to others. "There was a certain rich man who was clothed in purple and fine linen and fared sumptuously every day. But there was a certain beggar named Lazarus, full of sores, who was laid at his gate, desiring to be fed with the crumbs which fell[d] from the rich man’s table. Moreover the dogs came and licked his sores. So it was that the beggar died, and was carried by the angels to Abraham’s bosom. The rich man also died and was buried...Then he said, ‘I beg you therefore, father, that you would send him to my father’s house, for I have five brothers, that he may testify to them, lest they also come to this place of torment...But he said to him, ‘If they do not hear Moses and the prophets, neither will they be persuaded though one rise from the dead." (Luke 16:19-31, New King James). 

          Christians, like myself, have for centuries after Jesus Christ ascended the throne have witnessed the power of God in our lives. And the more and more we do, the more and more the world and its prevailing powers, which are not necessarily seen, deny Christ and His powers. The curse with which Sodom and Gomorrah were under is now on this planet. Those who by design follow their own route, who deny Jesus Christ being spoken to them, or in being healed, so that they have everlasting life aren't so much judged by Christians, but by their own words and actions.

           This is how Christ put it: "Don’t take the road leading to other nations, and don’t enter any Samaritan town. Instead, go to the lost sheep of the house of Israel. As you go, announce this: ‘The kingdom of heaven has come near.’ Heal the sick, raise the dead, cleanse those with skin diseases, drive out demons. You have received free of charge; give free of charge. Greet a household when you enter it, and if the household is worthy, let your peace be on it. But if it is unworthy, let your peace return to you. If anyone will not welcome you or listen to your words, shake the dust off your feet when you leave that house or town. I assure you: It will be more tolerable on the day of judgment for the land of Sodom and Gomorrah than for that town" (Matthew 10:5-8, 12-15, Holman Christian Standard).

          Time keeps growing short and the Lord is ever near. His desire is for you, to heal you, to bring you from a land of lack to a land of plenty. He's a gentleman. He's unlike any other this world has ever seen. If His appearing means peace for a war weary and war torn world, then allow him to come ever more. All it takes is acknowledging you are separated from God and His Son. 

           Let Him know how much you desire His forgiveness, His mercy. He did it for you, Christ surrendering Himself on the cross for you. He took the punishment so we would never have to bear it as we cannot bear it. He gives us His righteousness having taken our unrighteousness from us. And that's the best part of this news. We don't have to live under the condemnation and threat of death and hell. We can have life everlasting if we just allow Him into our hearts. Allow Him and His word, through the Bible, to transform us from the inside out so that others can see Him as He truly is. 

          Father, I ask that You show us in Your word how much Your desire is for us. We can never think or hope on our own terms of how to come to You. This is something You have to do on our behalf, for us, in forgiving our sins which are many. It is never a hard thing for You to do: forgiving mankind of sins committed; "With man this is impossible, but with God all things are possible" (Matthew 19:26). Salvation comes from and by You, Lord. As You have said elsewhere in scripture, "He has removed our sins as far from us as the east is from the west" (Psalm 103:12). I understand that my sins, which deserve Your justice, have been pardoned as I have put my faith  in Your Son who died in my place. Thank You. I praise You for all You have done on my behalf. In Jesus' name I pray. Amen.

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