Number Your Days

In our youth we tend to anticipate the future with a sense of certainty that only the naive can possess. As we mature into adulthood, we embrace the challenges before us with fresh eyes and ready energy, but with no experience and little understanding of what lies ahead. Mid-life comes faster upon us than we could ever have expected. The constant drone of responsibility and necessity drown out the earlier thrill of ambition and replace it with the burden of history and reality. As age advances, difficulties of daily living create new challenges, so that as experience, knowledge, and time combine to create wisdom, perspective toward life grows ever more reflective and spiritual. Such we notice in the words of Moses in the prayer recorded for our benefit as Psalm 90.

Perspective about life begins with the realization of just how much man needs God. He provides the place of safety most needed by every soul for all time (Psa. 90:1). While man remains limited, frail, and bound by time, God transcends all of these to provide everything man requires (Psa. 90:2). Indeed, man only gains perspective by contemplating his ultimate demise (Psa. 90:3), all the while remembering that while men pass through life, God’s existence stands above life itself (Psa. 90:4). Generations rise and fall, but God is there through them all (Psa. 90:5-6). Therefore, the perspective man most needs lies in his recognition that God, standing outside of time and above mankind, will also judge every man (Psa. 90:7) for all our sins, whether hidden or advertised (Psa. 90:8). Despite all man’s bluster, everything we do will be judged by God; therefore, we have nothing to boast of in this life but should humbly live realizing what awaits us in the end (Psa. 90:9). This changes how we see life immensely. Whatever time we have upon the earth, it is short and filled with responsibility (Psa. 90:10) because all that we do will be judged by God. Indeed, death itself should be a constant reminder of that reality (Psa. 90:11). This is why we should spend our days focusing on pleasing God and building that perspective in preparation for eternity (Psa. 90:12). However, along with this, God offers yet another layer to the perspective man should have toward life. God cares for man and wants to help (Psa. 90:13). What a comfort this should be for all of life! He will indeed judge us, but He offers His mercy in the meanwhile to give life joy and meaning (Psa. 90:14). In the difficulties we face upon this earth, which He allows, He also promises to be with us and aid us (Psa. 90:15-16). This final promise, this reality built upon God’s character, offers hope in life and beyond, for God loves to bless and longs to help. He will provide what we need to overcome adversity in life, address the challenges of the world, and prepare for the judgment as we enter eternity (Psa. 90:17).

This is a great God, and serving Him, we can also have a great life. When placed in the context of Moses’ own life and service, finally learning to serve at the age of eighty and getting to view Canaan, his life’s work, shortly before his death, the prayer he offers here can surely motivate us to build a future with God, share our heartaches with God, and thus prepare for an eternity with God.

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What Do We Really Need?

All of us are poor and needy at heart, whether we realize it and admit it or not. Indeed, often a stubborn heart and rebellious spirit keeps us from enjoying full access to the depth of God’s care because we refuse to acknowledge our needs, our weaknesses, and our true situation, choosing instead to try to do everything ourselves, including much that is impossible for us to do. Is it then any wonder that anxiety holds sway when we fail to turn to the One available and able to come to our aid? David, despite fighting as a soldier and reigning as king, had a heart for God so tender that he turned regularly to Him in great humility to ask and even plead for the needs of his soul, as Psalm 86 provides more than adequate evidence.

In the first seven verses David calls on God to preserve him, to save him, to show him mercy, and to give him a reason to rejoice by answering his prayer in the affirmative. However, the basis for his request shows how his mindset  differed from how we often see ourselves and therefore approach God. David came to God specifically because he saw himself as “poor and needy” (Psa. 86:1) and because God is so much more: holy, trustworthy, good, ready to forgive, and abundant in mercy. Indeed, David had confidence in coming to God because of how positively God contrasts with man—a concept quite opposite from the 21st century desire to lower God to man’s level. But the LORD’s nature especially qualifies Him to help us because His uniqueness makes Him capable of doing what no one else can do (Psa. 86:8). He alone deserves recognition as truly great and therefore worthy of worship (Psa. 86:9), and He has proven such by the power displayed in miraculous and wondrous works performed in times past. Truly, He alone is God (Psa. 86:10). For this reason, we can have complete confidence in His instruction and guidance (Psa. 86:11). Because of this, we can have confidence in His deliverance (Psa. 86:12-14). But more than that, we can have confidence in all these things because of His character. “But You, O Lord, are a God full of compassion, and gracious, Longsuffering and abundant in mercy and truth” (Psa. 86:15). Surely we have every reason to turn to our God and do His will, because His will is in our best interest, and He cares for us (1 Pet. 5:7).

Only Jehovah God can provide all that we need. And we need Him desperately. Therefore, let us humble our hearts and acknowledge our need, let us realize the great power and mercy of the one true God and reach out to Him with confidence that He will do what is best for us. As long as we live upon this earth, we will face struggles without and struggles within, but through it all, we have a God on whom we can always rely. This is why, regardless of our problems and regardless of our situation, the faithful can lift their voices to heaven and cry, “Oh, turn to me, and have mercy on me! Give Your strength to Your servant, And save the son of Your maidservant. Show me a sign for good, That those who hate me may see it and be ashamed, Because You, LORD, have helped me and comforted me” (Psa. 86:16-17).

Revive Us Again

Israel knew the pain of sin and rebellion. They had lived through the self-inflicted torture of captivity and poverty. They had experienced the consequences of their own bad decisions and come to recognize God’s justice in the process. Therefore, when the sons of Korah penned Psalm 85, they had come to grips with their responsibility and acknowledged both their sin and their need. As they reflected on the grace of God that gave them Canaan and brought them out of Egyptian bondage (Psa. 85:1), they remembered His forbearance and forgiveness when the people sinned time and time again (Psa. 85:2). Thus, the recognition that God had let His anger subside (Psa. 85:3) gave them hope for their future as well, causing them to call out to Him with a passionate and urgent plea for a renewed relationship. This is similar to where each of us finds ourselves at some point in life—previously safe in the arms of Jesus but then, through our own lust, trapped in the despair of our own sin. Consequently, the plea of the psalm provides a pattern for a personal petition of renewal even today.

Restoration of the soul’s relationship with God depends first on the grace and mercy of God. Without His patience, without His longsuffering, without His willingness to provide unearned opportunity, there could be no hope. And yet this is precisely what we require and what He offers (Psa. 85:4-5). Our cry for salvation does not fall on deaf ears, but the LORD extends His hand from His own mercy rather than our innate goodness, and the new opportunity granted serves a greater purpose than mere selfish survival. “Will You not revive us again, That Your people may rejoice in You? Show us Your mercy, LORD, And grant us Your salvation” (Psa. 85:6-7). He has indeed answered in glorious fashion; however, the gracious opportunity made possible by the love of God (1 John 4:7-11) comes with high expectations and conditions. God requires His people to listen and learn how to act as His people rather than turned to their own heart of foolishness (Psa. 85:8). His people should revere Him in love for the deliverance He makes possible and acknowledge the necessity of His hand in enjoying blessings in life (Psa. 85:9). Therefore, new life has new responsibilities, and God’s people must live accordingly (Rom. 6:3-4). In God’s redemptive scheme, He has found a way for His mercy and His standard of truth to meet so that there can be peace with God despite our spiritual failures (Psa. 85:10-11). God alone has made this possible because He truly is the Author of all that is good (Psa. 85:12; Jas. 1:17). He wants what is best for us, and that is the reason why we should always follow Him wherever He leads (Psa. 85:13; John 14:6).

You may come to a point in life where you realize sin owns you (Rom. 6:16-18), but this is why we can rejoice that Jesus has paid the price for us (1 Pet. 1:18-19). Yet, just like with Israel, we must respond in line with God’s character, listening to His Word and submitting to His will—not in some vain assumption we impose on Him of our own desires, but in the humble recognition of what His Word requires (Jas. 4:10; John 17:17). Only the scheme of redemption planned in the mind of God and expressed in Holy Scripture can bring mercy and truth together in complete harmony. Only the love and light of God Himself could make righteousness and peace kiss. Let us then embrace their beauty and submit to their wisdom.

The Doorkeeper’s Privilege

Have you ever felt that combination of frustration and longing when you desperately wanted to be somewhere, surrounded by friends and family, but instead found yourself elsewhere by forces outside of your control, practically alone, and daydreaming about all that you were missing? It might have been a family reunion, a concert, or just a group of friends from school getting together to talk about old times. Whatever the occasion, missing it creates a loneliness that gnaws at you deep within. But what if you are missing out on a spiritual reunion, a gathering to worship, and an opportunity of fellowship? If these things truly matter to you, missing them will hurt deeply, because you find yourself separated from the community and the joy that means the most. Faithful Christians who are shut-in and unable to gather with the saints to worship, study, and work—except perhaps occasionally—can appreciate this feeling, knowing how much the simple visit of one brother or sister means in soothing the soul. However, the sons of Korah who penned Psalm 84 understood this as well, and these inspired words capture the essence of longing and the hope of renewal that can provide spiritual solace for those in a similar situation today.

While the exact date of the psalm eludes us, the internal clues provided by the content suggest the words of those swept away in Babylonian captivity, but likely before the destruction of the temple. Thus, one who had ministered in the temple and anticipated journeying to Jerusalem for the annual feasts found himself unable to return but only able to remember and imagine. O how he loved coming before the LORD where He dwelled (Psa. 84:1), and now this had been taken from him; the loss compelled him to cry out (Psa. 84:2). Even birds could take shelter on the temple grounds, while he was left only with his memories (Psa. 84:3). He envisions the journey through the barrenness of the Valley of Baca, but he sees it as an opportunity rather than a burden (Psa. 84:6). Therefore, unable to make the journey, he longs for God to accept his prayer offered in isolation (Psa. 84:8), a prayer asking for protection in difficult circumstances, including for the deposed king led away in shame (Psa. 84:9).

While the background of the psalm has a tinge of sadness, the message centers on spiritual joy. For despite his own situation, he sees what so many forget. (1) Worshiping God, bowing before His presence, and praising His name is a privilege we should not take for granted (Psa. 84:4). (2) When you find your strength in God, the more time you spend with Him and serving Him, the stronger you become (Psa. 84:5, 7). (3) The stronger our faith in God, the more happiness and joy we can allow into our lives, because we will see all that God makes possible (Psa. 84:11-12). He so wanted to experience this once more that he concludes standing on the threshold looking in from the outside to glimpse for just a moment the blessings that come from God are vastly superior to living in comfort in a wicked land: “For a day in Your courts is better than a thousand. I would rather be a doorkeeper in the house of my God Than dwell in the tents of wickedness” (Psa. 84:10). We are not in captivity—not yet. But let us learn from the psalmist and appreciate our blessings today and not wait until they are taken from us.

You Are Gods

The psalmist’s declaration in Psalm 82:6, “You are gods,” has created confusion among Bible students, commentators, and preachers for generations, even with Jesus’ own comment on the passage. The word itself is exactly the same as the word translated “God” throughout the remainder of the psalm, and yet the context clearly dictates that it refers to others. But to whom? That has been the real question. The nature of the word elohim is fairly broad. It is plural and refers either to “mighty ones” or to the “One who is mighty” (though with the plural still present, indicating His majesty, the trinity, or perhaps even both). Some have maintained that the word here refers to angels as does happen on occasion; however, the nature of the responsibilities cited in verses two through four in particular indicate men. But, if so, why did he call them “gods”?

The setting of the psalm provides insight into the structure, the emphasis, and the specific meaning given by Jesus. In the opening verse Asaph presents an ancient courtroom scene with God presiding over all those with some kind of authority, exercising judgment over those mighty ones (Psa. 82:1) similar to how God told Moses that he would be “as God” to Pharaoh (Ex. 4:15-16) and similar in responsibility to those judges Moses appointed at his father-in-law’s recommendation (Ex. 18:25-26). He then presents the accusation as God calls the people in power to account for their failures to judge fairly, essentially charging them with partiality in letting the guilty go free while failing to protect those in need for whose protection the law was given (Psa. 82:2-4). As He brings His argument to a close, He maintains that these people who have been given great authority do not appreciate it or understand the role they have been given, using it selfishly and creating instability in society as a result of their decisions (Psa. 82:5). Thus, in the next two verses He contrasts the greatness of the responsibility with which they were charged with the death sentence against them because of how miserably they have failed to conduct themselves appropriate to the authority given them (Psa. 82:6-7). Therefore, when God told them, “You are gods, And all of you are children of the Most High” (Psa. 82:6), He was emphasizing the responsibility of the authority they had taken on and that they themselves remained under the authority of the Most High God. Therefore, because they had abused that authority, they would suffer the consequences and lose all the authority they had treated as if they had by right instead of by responsibility. However, all judgment depends on the One who judges the earth. The nations are his, and all judgment should reflect the same (Psa. 82:8).

This stinging rebuke of leaders treating themselves as the authority rather than God has many applications. It certainly applies to governmental leaders at every level, as Nebuchadnezzar discovered the hard way (Dan. 4:32). But the emphasis within the psalm goes much deeper because of Israel’s relationship to Yahweh—a name not mentioned in this psalm. Jesus defended Himself and the authority with which He taught and worked using this passage. “Jesus answered them, ‘Is it not written in your law, “I said, ‘You are gods’”? If He called them gods, to whom the word of God came (and the Scripture cannot be broken), do you say of Him whom the Father sanctified and sent into the world, “You are blaspheming,” because I said, “I am the Son of God”?’” (Jn. 10:34-36). The Jews were upset that Jesus called Himself “the Son of God” because of its implications of displaying divine character, which happened by submission. However, Jesus pointed out that He had been given far more authority by God Himself than those judges of old whom God had called “gods.” Therefore, their emphasis on the terminology failed the test of scripture and revealed their lack of substance. But even more than that, Jesus here emphasized the responsibility of fulfilling the role given completely and unselfishly by submitting to God’s will rather than treating it as an earned honor. Leaders should never forget that they exist to serve. No matter how high the office or important the role, in the end all answer to God according to faithfulness in fulfilling His will (Jas. 3:1).

Open Mouths, Open Hearts

When Yahweh gave the Israelites the Law of Moses, besides the civil and moral codes, the religious rites, and the health regulations, He also included instructions for the new nation to gather yearly at appointed times to participate in various feasts (Lev. 23:1). These festivals served an important function in the LORD’s plan for Israel, though they rarely appreciated and kept them throughout much of their history until their return from captivity when they took on greater meaning, as the Pharisees’ attitude toward the Sabbath implies (Lev. 23:3). Most people are familiar with the Passover and its roots in Israel’s deliverance from Egypt (Ex. 12-13; Lev. 23:4-14), and Christians are usually aware of Pentecost due to its significance in Acts 2, even if the particulars of the feast remain a mystery (Lev. 23:15-22). However, the later feast, sometimes called The Feast of Trumpets due to the action that called the holy convocation on the first of the month, which paved the way for the Day of Atonement (Lev. 23:23-32) is sometimes forgotten. Therefore, it is no surprise that people also remain unaware of the Feast of Tabernacles that followed shortly after this holy day (Lev. 23:33-34). Besides the sacrifices and feasting (Lev. 23:35-41), the Jews were to set aside the week and dwell in booths to commemorate their time traveling from Egypt to Canaan (Lev. 23:42-43)—a time that was extended to forty years due to their obstinacy. This background is essential to appreciate the message found in Psalm 81.

When the Jews would travel to Jerusalem for the feast, they would sing as they prepared their minds and hearts for the assembly and festival (Psa. 81:1-2). Thus, the reflections offered in this psalm call to mind their worship while journeying to Jerusalem and their preparation for the final major gathering of the people in the year. The references to the trumpet, the times, the Law, and the land of Egypt leave no doubt as to the purpose of the song (Psa. 81:3-5), but the further commentary of remembrances demonstrates lessons learned the hard way. God had led them out of slavery in Egypt when they cried out to him but quickly forgot his provision in complaining of their thirst (Psa. 81:6-7). The psalm alludes to the covenant relationship Yahweh had with Israel, pleading with the Jews to appreciate Yawheh’s words: “Open your mouth wide, and I will fill it” (Psa. 81:8-10). This bold offer called to mind the sending of manna and quail, the provision of water in a dry land, but also the very word of God by which they could truly live (Deut. 8:3). Sadly, they would not listen and refused to learn (Psa. 81:11-12), and this also was their Jewish heritage. But God still cared and wanted them desperately to return and listen, for then he could bless them over and over again (Psa. 81:13-16).

What hope this might offer a people removed from the original events by hundreds of years! But how much more should it mean to God’s people today, for we have seen His faithfulness not only toward Israel but in sending Jesus and the gospel. However, the principles of faithfulness still apply (Rev. 2:10). Therefore, my friends, open your mouth wide! Listen to what God has said and obey, for in fulfilling this there are multitudes of blessings awaiting from a God who can care for our every need.

But We Asked Nicely!

The northern tribes of Israel had set themselves in rebellion against God from the days of Jeroboam. The introduction of the golden calves in Dan and Bethel had paved the way for full-fledged idolatry. Thus, the introduction of Baal to Israel by Ahab, and ultimately participation in the rituals of Molech, doomed the northern kingdom to the destruction God accomplished through the hand of Assyria. This divinely appointed desolation against the capital of Samaria in Ephraim and all the people throughout the kingdom led those in the southern kingdom of Judah to feel pity for their brethren, despite their long-held division. Therefore, as the psalmists in the family of Asaph reflected on this sadness, they penned a heartfelt expression of their grief in a cry to God as the Shepherd of Israel to return in His glory and power to aid His people (Psa. 80:1-2).

Three times in this psalm they employed the wording of the Aaronic call for blessing requesting restoration, fellowship, and salvation. In the first they pled, “Restore us, O God; Cause Your face to shine, And we shall be saved” (Psa. 80:3). In the devastation of the northern tribes’ captivity they found themselves pondering why God would not listen and restore them as before (Psa. 80:4-6). They assumed this surely could not be permanent. In the second instance, they cried out the same plea but appealed to the “God of hosts” (Psa. 80:7). This reference to God’s headship of a great army implies their desire to see Him use yet another nation to reverse what Assyria had done. Using the imagery of a vine, they appealed to their beginning in Egypt and the Lord’s care in establishing them in Canaan (Psa. 80:8). They looked back through their history to note how long God had blessed them, cared for them, and protected them (Psa. 80:9-11). Thus, with this background of extensive interest, they could not fathom why God would invite a heathen nation in to trample the vineyard He Himself had planted (Psa. 80:12-13), calling for Him to defend His own once more, reverse course, and withdraw His hand of rebuke (Psa. 80:14-16). Therefore, in leading up to the final cry, they requested that He strengthen them again with the promise that they would not leave Him again (Psa. 80:17-18). Ending with the final plea, “Restore us, O LORD God of hosts; Cause Your face to shine, And we shall be saved!” (Psa. 80:19), they added one final element to their petition: the covenant name of Yahweh. In this they were asking Him to remember His covenant, because they finally did too. But it was too late for Israel, and Judah had to face up to that fact.

So many people seem to believe that they will always get one more chance to repent, one more chance to get things right, one more chance to obey their Lord. Like Israel, they assume that the longsuffering of the Lord knows no bounds, and sadly, they will only learn better when it is too late. They mistakenly look back to better times, assuming that they deserved them then and deserve the same now, misunderstanding the goodness and grace of God as if it is an eternal pool of blessings for them to dip into as they wish. Then, when they become desperate, they finally realize the importance of the covenant. Unfortunately, they often think of it in terms of God’s promises but not their own responsibilities. How sad that so many people have the opportunity of salvation and yet cast it aside until they need God to pull them out of the consequences of their own failures. They assume He always will. They are wrong (Rom. 2:1-11; 2 Cor. 5:9-11). Salvation and blessings are not a right; they are a privilege, and should be treated accordingly.

Higher Aspirations

My oldest daughter recently graduated from high school. Reaching that milestone required overcoming a number of health challenges along the way, but we persevered and never lost faith that she would not only achieve this but much more. And that confidence has only increased over the years. Her mother and I set goals for her and expected excellence, and she did the work necessary to make that happen. While my own grade point average was high, the courses listed on my high school transcript were not necessarily the most academically challenging (something preaching school, college, and graduate school later corrected). And I insisted that my children have a more extensive education than I—something their mother has made possible through years of hard work. In this, I doubt that I am that different from many other fathers. However, even parents who push their children academically in school often fail to point their children to high aspirations spiritually. Instead, they accept a level of participation, education, and effort that they would never accept in general education. And yet, if anything, the opposite should be true. The words of Asaph in Psalm 78 reflect this principle well.

Parents should take seriously the responsibility to take what they have learned by hard experience and pass on to the next generation (Psa. 78:1-3). Truly, failing to do so spiritually is a disservice to our children, amounting to spiritual abuse. They need to know what God has done for us and for them, and they need to appreciate their parents commitment to Him (Psa. 78:4). In an allusion to Deuteronomy 6:4-9, the psalmist emphasizes the importance of teaching our children spiritually (Psa. 78:5-6)—not just facts and information, but faith and hope and love (Psa. 78:7).   The last thing we should want is for our children to repeat our mistakes, accept our ignorance, or reject their God (Psa. 78:8), but the history of Israel shows just how easily this can happen despite their parents’ personal faithfulness  (Psa. 78:9-64). Therefore, individual faithfulness is not enough to guide your children. You must do what it takes to instill in them a faith that they themselves claim as their own. The challenges the children of Israel faced were of their own making, and each generation was accountable to God for its own decisions. But the responsibility for each was the same—following God’s guidance faithfully (Psa. 78:65-72).

We should want the best for our children spiritually, and that means expecting excellence from our children spiritually. The goals we set for our children, then, should not center around their imitating their parents’ knowledge, activity, and involvement in Christianity; our goal, as parents, should be for them one day to surpass us in understanding, in faith, and in righteousness. It is sad how passive, docile, and passé parents can be about preparing their children spiritually. My friends, the core purpose of parenting does not revolve around preparing your children for life; it is all about preparing your children for eternity. And our parenting should reflect this.

Waiting for Relief

Waiting—just waiting—can prove painfully difficult, especially when the anxieties of life pressure and surround us. Many can appreciate the stress of waiting for a doctor’s call following a test. Is it cancer? My heart? Or nothing that big at all? In the midst of a struggle, after bad news has come in wave after wave, a feeling of helplessness sets in, weighing heavily on the heart and encouraging doubt, so that the acceptance of dire circumstances begins to cause hope to waver. Such weariness had taken hold when Psalm 74 was penned, beginning with the cry, “O God, why have You cast us off forever? Why does Your anger smoke against the sheep of Your pasture?” (Psa. 74:1).

The nature of the circumstances described within this psalm speaks of no event during the lifetime of David and Asaph. Even the cry itself looks back in time (Psa. 74:2). But more than this, the situation speaks of “perpetual desolations” and damage to “the sanctuary” (Psa. 74:3) caused by enemies who raised their flag in Israel’s capital (Psa. 74:3-4), destroying the beauty of the temple (Psa. 74:5-7) and attempting to obliterate Israel’s memory of God altogether (Psa. 74:8). The ascribed authorship therefore must refer to the singers who followed Asaph, perhaps descended from him, and called themselves by his name, writing following the destruction of Jerusalem by Nebuchadnezzar and the Babylonians. As such, they had turned against all that God had said and no longer enjoyed His guidance and protection (Psa. 74:9). Is it then any wonder that they cried out in pain, “O God, how long will the adversary reproach? Will the enemy blaspheme Your name forever?” (Psa. 74:10). They finally realized that God had withdrawn from them, and realized just how much they needed Him (Psa. 74:11).

But here the psalm turns, growing more personal and reflective. Finally, after losing the kingdom, the psalmist realizes that God is his rightful King, and has been all along (Psa. 74:12). He proved it when He accomplished His salvation in parting the Red Sea, accomplishing in fact what other gods only claimed (Psa. 74:13-15). He proved it by His power over nature (Psa. 74:16-17). Thus, the psalmist recalls the great deliverance of the LORD and longs for a return of such feats (Psa. 74:18-19). However, rather than assume their right to His care, rather than presume their special character as His people, the psalmist appeals to the covenant the LORD made with them (Psa. 74:20), to their promise of returning their allegiance and love to Him and Him alone (Psa. 74:21), and to the cause of justice against an ungodly people (Psa. 74:22-23).

The exact circumstances of this psalm may seem remote to most people today; however, this is because we see this situation only from a physical rather than a spiritual standpoint. We identify too much with our country and not enough with our God. Therefore, we should re-read the psalm with a spiritual heart and consider the ramifications of spiritual captivity, living in a world that is openly hostile to Christ’s kingdom. When we see Satan on the march in the decisions made in government, when we see the destruction of morality in the direction of society, and when we see the cornerstones of spiritual freedom mocked, torn down, and burned one after another by a people declaring their moral, ethical, and sometimes even religious superiority, surely we can identify with the plea of the psalmist! How long must we wait until God is once more respected and acknowledged? How long must we wait to restore respect for God’s Word as truth? How long must we wait while enduring the scorn of the ungodly? How long indeed! The psalmist did not know the answer, and neither do we. But the enduring answer remains the same. We must come to our senses as a people, give ourselves wholly to our God, and let Him handle the timing while we devote ourselves to faithfulness. This was the answer for the Jews in Babylonian captivity, and it is the answer for God’s people today.

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