Sunday, October 15, 2017

Come Quickly to Help Me

Today's Reading: 
Exodus 21:22-23:13
Luke 18:18-43
Psalm 22:12-21
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Focus Verses: Psalm 22:17-20 
17 I can count all my bones; people stare and gloat over me. 18 They divide my garments among them and cast lots for my clothing. 19 But you, O LORD, be not far off; O my Strength, come quickly to help me. 20 Deliver my life from the sword, my precious life from the power of the dogs.
Insight: When Jesus cried out, "My God, my God, why have you forsaken me," he was very likely quoting the opening lines of Psalm 22, a psalm of David. He must have known, recited, and pondered over this song many times, especially as he knew the time of his death was drawing near. It seems even more likely that he was thinking of Psalm 22 considering the last words of this Psalm, "he has done it,' are so close to his last words on the cross, "It is finished." The account of the crucifixion in Mark 15 is amazingly interconnected with the words of Psalm 22, though it was written hundreds of years before the time of Christ.

Jesus was not forsaken by God (Psalm 22:24). He didn't think he had been forsaken by God. His quotation of Psalm 22 was actually a way for him to declare his confidence that God would never forsake him. Jesus knew the last verse of Psalm 22 as well as he knew the first verse. While people mocked and treated him as though he had been forsaken by God, Jesus quoted a song that declared his faith and hope that God would vindicate him. He expected to be victorious over death.

Response and Action:
I will trust in God's promises, even in the face of adversity and the threat of death. I believe that God is able to save. When it looks like I have been forsaken, I will, like Jesus, cling to the belief that God will save and restore me. I believe that nothing can separate me from the love of God, which is in Christ Jesus.

O God, thank you for the hope of salvation. Lead me away from temptation. Deliver me from evil. Provide for my needs today. Protect me from discouragement, and encourage me by your Spirit through your word, your people, your promises, and all that is beautiful and true. Amen.

Spiritual Formation Verses: 2 Corinthians 4:16-18
16 Therefore we do not lose heart. Though outwardly we are wasting away, yet inwardly we are being renewed day by day. 17 For our light and momentary troubles are achieving for us an eternal glory that far outweighs them all. 18 So we fix our eyes not on what is seen, but on what is unseen. For what is seen is temporary, but what is unseen is eternal.

Praying the Psalms of Jesus
by James Sire

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