# 75 A journey through the Psalms. Truths to help us to “…live a life worthy of the calling [we] have received.” (Ephesians 4:1). # Twenty One: Psalm 13 God has been good to me.

“Thank God for the honesty of the psalmists. The presence of so many passionate, no-nonsense prayer-songs in the Bible gives us licence, as it were, to be completely honest with God. God wants us to articulate our deepest anxieties, and even our doubts. It’s not that he would be otherwise unaware of what inhabits the deepest recesses of our hearts and minds. Far from it, but including them in our conversations with God helps us to be honest with ourselves, and gives the Spirit opportunity to nurture faith and hope within us. This is the experience of the psalmist.”  (SU notes)

The comment above was written concerning Psalm 12 but applies just as well to many of the Psalms including Psalm 13.

How long, Lord? Will you forget me forever?
How long will you hide your face from me?
How long must I wrestle with my thoughts
and day after day have sorrow in my heart?
How long will my enemy triumph over me?

Look on me and answer, Lord my God.
Give light to my eyes, or I will sleep in death,
and my enemy will say, “I have overcome him,”
and my foes will rejoice when I fall.

But I trust in your unfailing love;
my heart rejoices in your salvation.
I will sing the Lord’s praise,
for he has been good to me.

Maybe as you read yet another lament psalm, you wonder just why so many of the 150 psalms deal with pain and suffering of some kind. Well, let me suggest that in reality, that is the condition of a majority of the world’s peoples most of the time.

But there is hope!

I read recently what has sometimes been referred to as Jesus’ Mission Statement. It is found in Luke 4:18-19 but is actually quoted by Jesus from the writings of the prophet Isaiah chapter 61 verses 1-2.

Luke records, “Jesus…went to Nazareth…and on the Sabbath day he went into the synagogue…he stood up to read. The scroll of the prophet Isaiah was handed to him. Unrolling it, he found the place where it is written:

‘The Spirit of the Lord is upon me, because he has anointed me to preach good news to the poor. He has sent me to proclaim freedom for the prisoners and recovery of sight for the blind, to release the oppressed, to proclaim the year of the Lord’s favour.’

Then he rolled up the scroll…and sat down. The eyes of everyone …were fastened on him, and he [said]…’Today this scripture is fulfilled in your hearing.’”

Quite a mission statement for the Son of God! Just consider for a moment the recipients of Jesus ministry on earth:

  • the poor
  • the prisoners
  • the blind
  • the oppressed

It seems, considering it superficially, that there is no mention of most of us!

Until God opens our eyes to our true spiritual state without Christ.

Paul, writings to the believers in Ephesus explains it like this:

“As for you, you were dead in your transgressions and sins, in which you used to live when you followed the ways of the world and the ruler of the kingdom of the air [i.e. Satan], the spirit who is now at work in those who are disobedient. All of us who lived among them at one time, gratifying the cravings of our sinful nature and following its desires and thoughts. Like the rest, we were by nature objects of wrath.” (Ephesians 2:1-3)

The reality is that each one of us has been (or maybe still is) poor, a prisoner, blind and oppressed when it comes to our spiritual conditions. Thank God that Jesus came to deliver us from all this. Listen to the action words he uses concerning these distressing situations:

  • to preach good news to the poor.
  • to proclaim freedom for the prisoners
  • recovery of sight for the blind
  • release the oppressed

Paul continues to the Ephesians:

“But because of his great love for us, God, who is rich in mercy, made us alive with Christ even when we were dead in transgressions – it is by grace that you have been saved.” (Ephesians 2:4-5)

Praise God, if Psalm 13 has been our prayer to God, in Christ we have the answer to our prayer and can respond:

But I trust in your unfailing love;
my heart rejoices in your salvation.
I will sing the Lord’s praise,
for he has been good to me.

Thankyou Father for sending your Son, the Lord Jesus Christ and that the heart of the incarnation was to show grace to us, so undeserving and so rebellious. Amen.

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