Rise and Stand Upright

Psalms 20:1-3 ESV

“May the Lord answer you in the day of trouble!
May the name of the God of Jacob protect you!
May he send you help from the sanctuary
and give you support from Zion!
May he remember all your offerings
and regard with favor your burnt sacrifices! Selah”

We will have troubles in this life. We will have heartaches and disappointments, and people will hurt us, some deliberately, and some repeatedly. And some will betray us and turn against us and do evil against us because they hate us because of our walks of faith in Jesus Christ. And some may accuse us falsely of things we did not do in hopes of silencing us and to get us to stop speaking in the name of Jesus.

But we are not to fear what other humans may be able to do to us or what they might say about us or the lies they may tell about us. We have no control over what others do, anyway. All we can do is be faithful to our Lord in doing what he has called us to do, and in saying what he gives us to say, and then we just have to rest in the Lord and trust him to work it all out for his glory and for his purposes.

So, when Satan tries to instill fear in our hearts and minds, we have to resist him, and we have to put on the armor of God and fight off his lies with the truth. And it isn’t that others can’t do us harm. They can. And the Lord will allow us to be mistreated and persecuted for righteousness’ sake, so it isn’t like he is going to protect us from everything coming against us. But he will carry us through it all and he will give us the strength to endure.

The other thing we have to keep in mind here is that God is absolutely sovereign over every aspect of our lives. He is totally in control. Satan can do nothing to us but what God allows it and God will accomplish good through it in our lives in making us holy and more like Jesus and in teaching us humility and total reliance on him in all things. So, although bad things will happen to us, God can bring good out of them.

Psalms 20:4-5 ESV

“May he grant you your heart’s desire
and fulfill all your plans!
May we shout for joy over your salvation,
and in the name of our God set up our banners!
May the Lord fulfill all your petitions!”

If God is going to grant us our heart’s desire and fulfill all our plans, then our heart’s desire must be in agreement with his heart’s desire and our plans must be in line with his plans for our lives. And if the Lord is going to fulfill all our prayer requests to him then we must be praying according to the will of God with his heart in mind and with his purposes being our focus. And we must not be praying selfish prayers, thinking only of our own comfort.

For our salvation from sin is not all about us and what we can get out of God for our own selfish thoughts and purposes. He didn’t die that horrible death for us on that cross just so we could have a free ride to heaven while we ignore and insult him, and refuse to obey him and to submit to him, while we still live on this earth. He died so we would deny self and die with him to sin and live to him and to his righteousness not so we’d keep on sinning.

The purpose of our salvation from sin is to free us from our slavery to sin so we would now become slaves of God and of his righteousness. It is so we will walk in holiness and righteousness in the power of God’s Spirit, and so we will leave our lives of sin behind us to follow Jesus in obedience and in surrender to his will for our lives. And it is so we will tell others about his saving grace and of their need to die with him to sin and live for him.

Psalms 20:6-8 ESV

“Now I know that the Lord saves his anointed;
he will answer him from his holy heaven
with the saving might of his right hand.
Some trust in chariots and some in horses,
but we trust in the name of the Lord our God.
They collapse and fall,
but we rise and stand upright.”

If we want to have this kind of relationship with Jesus Christ then our hearts must be surrendered to our Lord to do his will. We can’t have one foot in the world and one foot in heaven and live lives which are pleasing to God. We can’t just profess and confess him as Lord and Savior while we deny him as Lord and Savior by our actions, and while we continue in deliberate, habitual, and often premeditated sin against him and against other humans.

We must no longer live like we lived when we did not know Jesus. We must walk in obedience to our Lord in doing what he says to do. Our old lives of living in sin and for self must be put to death with him by faith in him so that we can be reborn of the Spirit of God and have new lives in Christ, created to be like God in true righteousness and holiness, and for the glory and praise and honor of our Lord and not for selfish gain.

If we want the Lord to answer our prayers we must believe him, and we must not doubt him, and we must not be double-minded teeter-tottering back and forth between the true gospel, which puts sin to death, and the cheap grace gospel, which permits sin to live and to thrive and to be excused away under the guise of God’s grace covering it all. We must walk in holiness and not in sin if we want to inherit eternal life with God.

Our faith must be totally in the Lord and not in humans, and not in humanistic philosophy and a mixture of lies and truth, and not in a mixture of Christianity and paganism. We must not put our faith and reliance in the flesh of man but in the sovereignty and power of God. If our faith is in the flesh of man it will fail, but if our faith is in God alone, it will survive, and we will be victorious over sin and Satan and all opposition against us.

[Lu 9:23-26; Jn 6:35-58; Jn 15:1-11; Rom 6:1-23; Rom 8:1-17; Eph 4:17-24; 1 Pet 2:24; 1 Co 6:9-10, 19-20; 2 Co 5:10, 15; Tit 2:11-14; Jas 1:22-25; Gal 5:16-21; Eph 5:3-6; Gal 6:7-8; Rom 2:6-8; Matt 7:21-23; Heb 10:26-27; 1 Jn 1:5-9; 1 Jn 2:3-6; 1 Jn 3:4-10; Rom 12:1-2; Eph 2:8-10]

Just a Closer Walk with Thee

Hymn lyrics by Anonymous/Unknown
Music by American Melody

“For indeed He was crucified because of weakness, yet He lives because of the power of God. For we also are weak in Him, yet we will live with Him because of the power of God directed toward you” (2 Co. 13:4 NASB).

I am weak, but Thou art strong;
Jesus, keep me from all wrong;
I’ll be satisfied as long
As I walk, let me walk close to Thee.

Through this world of toil and snares,
If I falter, Lord, who cares?
Who with me my burden shares?
None but Thee, dear Lord, none but Thee.

When my feeble life is o’er,
Time for me will be no more;
Guide me gently, safely o’er
To Thy kingdom shore, to Thy shore.

Just a closer walk with Thee,
Grant it, Jesus, is my plea,
Daily walking close to Thee,
Let it be, dear Lord, let it be.

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