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January 21, 2020

Please read today’s Scriptures and use the comment section on this page to share your insights from today’s reading. You can also just mention a verse that impacted you or post a question!

Read (and Hear) the Bible in One Year
New American Standard Bible for 2020

Text: Exodus 10-12
Audio: Exodus 10-12

Psalm 41 (ESV)

To the choirmaster. A Psalm of David.

41 Blessed is the one who considers the poor!
    In the day of trouble the Lord delivers him;
the Lord protects him and keeps him alive;
    he is called blessed in the land;
    you do not give him up to the will of his enemies.
The Lord sustains him on his sickbed;
    in his illness you restore him to full health.

As for me, I said, “O Lord, be gracious to me;
    heal me, for I have sinned against you!”
My enemies say of me in malice,
    “When will he die, and his name perish?”
And when one comes to see me, he utters empty words,
    while his heart gathers iniquity;
    when he goes out, he tells it abroad.
All who hate me whisper together about me;
    they imagine the worst for me.

They say, “A deadly thing is poured out on him;
    he will not rise again from where he lies.”
Even my close friend in whom I trusted,
    who ate my bread, has lifted his heel against me.
10 But you, O Lord, be gracious to me,
    and raise me up, that I may repay them!

11 By this I know that you delight in me:
    my enemy will not shout in triumph over me.
12 But you have upheld me because of my integrity,
    and set me in your presence forever.

13 Blessed be the Lord, the God of Israel,
    from everlasting to everlasting!
Amen and Amen.

English Standard Version (ESV)
The Holy Bible, English Standard Version. ESV® Text Edition: 2016. Copyright © 2001 by Crossway Bibles, a publishing ministry of Good News Publishers.

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Next: Psalm 42

Back: Psalm 40

This Post Has 4 Comments
  1. Isn't the Lord Wonderful?

    Today's psalm marks the end of "Book 1" of the Psalter. I wrote the following as part of my comments from Psalm 1:

    While many people view the Psalms as separate, random chapters put together, most scholars agree that the Book of Psalms is actually five separate books put together. And just like Romans 5 is before Romans 6 and Romans 7 is after Romans 6, each chapter in the Psalms is placed exactly where it should be (not randomly). 

    These sections are:

    Book 1: Psalm 1-41
    Book 2: Psalm 42-72
    Book 3: Psalm 73-89
    Book 4: Psalm 90-106
    Book 5: Psalm 107-150

    David finds himself at a low point as he pens the lyrics to this psalm. The theme is mercy. The opening verse says:

    Blessed is the one who considers the poor!
        In the day of trouble the Lord delivers him (Psalm 41:1).

    The word poor here actually means weak and David is certainly that. He is physically and mentally weak from sickness, slander, fake friends and sin. 

    In his commentary on this psalm, James Montgomery Boice writes:

    "A summary of Psalm 41 is in the Sermon on the Mount: 'Blessed are the merciful, for they will be shown mercy' (Matt. 5:7). Its exposition is in the Olivet Discourse: 'Come, you who are blessed by my Father; take your inheritance, the kingdom prepared for you since the creation of the world. For I was hungry and you gave me something to eat, I was thirsty and you gave me something to drink, I was a stranger and you invited me in, I needed clothes and you clothed me, I was sick and you looked after me, I was in prison and you came to visit me' (Matt. 25:34–36)."

    As believers we should have (and show) compassion for people weakened by the troubles of life. Often times this weakness leads to an open door to not only share Christ with people but also help them in tangible ways. 

    Because there are many people weakened by troubles, we have to be discerning how best to help, what kind of help they need and if God would have us help them. Even those who make bad choices that have caused them to be weak need our compassion. In these situations it's extremely important for us not to enable them to continue on the path they are on while showing compassion and praying for them. 

    In this psalm, there are seven things David mentions the Lord will do for the one who shows mercy:

    1. The Lord will "deliver him in times of trouble"
    2. The Lord will "protect him"
    3. The Lord will "preserve his life"
    4. The Lord will "bless him in the land"
    5. The Lord will "not surrender him to the desire of his foes
    6. The Lord will "sustain him on his sickbed
    7. The Lord will "restore him" to health. 

    Isn't the Lord wonderful for providing us comfort when we are sick and weak?

    Isn't the Lord wonderful for lifting us up when we are discouraged?

    Isn't the Lord wonderful for guiding us to make wise decisions?

    Isn't the Lord wonderful for caring for us so personally and specifically in our lives?

    Isn't the Lord wonderful?

    ~ Puritan Prayer ~

    "No One Speaks Like Jesus" by Robert Hawker

    "Precious Lord Jesus, how will I express my soul’s sense of your love and grace, your mercy and favor?

    Your words are sweet and perfect for my weary soul, and my sense of nothingness makes your fullness even more precious.

    When I hear you say 'My grace is sufficient for you, for my power is made perfect in weakness' (2 Corinthians 12:9), I feel a power that makes all my enemies seem as nothing.

    Like your servant, I then truly 'boast all the more gladly of my weaknesses, so that the power of Christ may rest upon me.'

    Be all I need, dearest Lord. Let me hear your voice and see your countenance. Because both in life and in death, in time and to all eternity, the voice of my Lord Jesus will be my everlasting comfort.

    No one speaks like you! Amen."

    (Excerpt taken from Piercing Heaven: Prayers of the Puritans)

  2. Beautiful! 

    The Lord IS  wonderful! I am so grateful to Him for every blessing and provision, and I thank Him everyday. 

    Without God, I would be dead or in jail. The ways He has worked in my life and in my heart and mind, it's beyond words. 

    I don't know why God would want to save a wretch like me, but I am so grateful that he did. ❤

  3. "And when one comes to see me, he utters empty words,
        while his heart gathers iniquity;
        when he goes out, he tells it abroad.
    All who hate me whisper together about me;
        they imagine the worst for me.

    "They say, 'A deadly thing is poured out on him;
        he will not rise again from where he lies.'
    Even my close friend in whom I trusted,
        who ate my bread, has lifted his heel against me."

    When I read this psalm this morning, the first thing I did was recognize how blessed I was to have so many friends praying for and encouraging me when I was going through chemotherapy last year. It surprised me, honestly. I didn't realize just how very blessed I am, and it took cancer to open my eyes to see what God has given me.

    So I can't imagine how terrible it would be to have what David had here when he is suffering and sick. It's one thing to have your enemies hoping you die, but even his close friend was against him!  

    But then I thought of Jesus.

    Rejected by His family. Rejected by His community. Rejected by His friends. Rejected by those who walked away after hearing His message or receiving what they came for. Rejected today by those He gave His life to save and redeem. Rejected by those who once professed faith in Him and have now left Him. Rejected by those who profess faith in Him and claim to love Him but love themselves and the world more. 

    Yet still He loved — and still He loves — them all. Wow. 

    Do I have my Savior's heart? It's easy to love and be kind to those who love and are kind to me. The test of my own love for Jesus, I believe,  and His Spirit alive in me, is whether I love those who reject me just as they rejected and reject Him.

    “If you love those who love you, what benefit is that to you? For even sinners love those who love them. And if you do good to those who do good to you, what benefit is that to you? For even sinners do the same. And if you lend to those from whom you expect to receive, what credit is that to you? Even sinners lend to sinners, to get back the same amount. But love your enemies, and do good, and lend, expecting nothing in return, and your reward will be great, and you will be sons of the Most High, for he is kind to the ungrateful and the evil. Be merciful, even as your Father is merciful." Luke 6:32-36

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