THE CALL | Matthew 5:10–12 [ESV]
“Blessed are those who are persecuted for righteousness’ sake, for theirs is the kingdom of heaven.
“Blessed are you when others revile you and persecute you and utter all kinds of evil against you falsely on my account. Rejoice and be glad, for your reward is great in heaven, for so they persecuted the prophets who were before you.
The way that leads to life is narrow and hard, but we love the easy road. We wander from your presence and we seek the crooked paths of the wicked. Turn our eyes to you and to your kingdom; let us see you as our ultimate good and teach us to bear the reproach of others. Plant our feet in your presence, where we will abide forever. Amen.
ASSURANCE | Isaiah 54:10 [ESV]
For the mountains may depart and the hills be removed,
but my steadfast love shall not depart from you,
and my covenant of peace shall not be removed,”
says the LORD, who has compassion on you.
SING | Doxology [sheet music]
Praise God, from Whom all blessings flow;
Praise Him, all creatures here below;
Praise Him above, ye heavenly host;
Praise Father, Son, and Holy Ghost. Amen
Read Psalm 52
2nd Reading: Psalm 54
(Psalm 52:1) “Why do you boast of evil, O mighty man? The steadfast love of God endures all the day.”
Here’s the setting: David is on the run from King Saul who is acting wickedly and trying to kill David. He was warned by his good friend, Jonathan, and has just started out on his journey. He first goes to Nob to see Ahimelech the priest. There, he is given food, a sword, and the Priest inquires of the Lord on David’s behalf. In the same room, seeing all this happen is Doeg the Edomite. Doeg then betrays David and tells Saul that he had been there. Saul questions Ahimelech who protects and defends David’s innocence. Now, here’s the tragic turn. Saul orders his guard to kill Ahimelech and the rest of the priests and the guard refuses. Who takes up the sword to kill the priests? Doeg the Edomite. He killed eighty-five priests that day. Let that sink in as you read this psalm.
This psalm juxtaposes the love of God and the love of the “mighty man”. But this mighty man isn’t a hero, he is one who loves evil, lying, and all words that devour (vss 3-4). Contrast this against God, whose steadfast love endures all the day (verse 1). This wicked, mighty man, does not prevail. God will break him down FOREVER (verse 5). I cannot help but think about God’s eternal judgment for the wicked.”He will uproot you from the land of the living” (verse 5). The enemies of God will be punished for their sins for all eternity in Hell. The evil man who “trusted in the abundance of his riches” (vs 7) will not prosper, he has laid out and “sought refuge in his own destruction” (vs 7).
We must strive to be like David in this psalm. He was on the run, his life threatened by Saul, who loved evil so much that he was willing to slay eighty-five God ordained priests just because they wouldn’t tell him where David went. But David didn’t trust in his own strength, cunning, or even righteousness. He trusted in the steadfast love of God, so much so, that he views his deliverance as sure. “I will thank you forever, because you have done it.” (Verse 8, emphasis added) He was on the run and nowhere near safe from Saul, but he trusted God so much that he just had to wait to see God’s already planned salvation. This was true not just for his physical salvation from Saul, but more importantly his spiritual salvation from sin and the punishment it deserves. We also should trust God for salvation from the spiritual and physical foes that threaten our lives and “trust in the steadfast love of God” (vs 9). We can see that Jesus has given us spiritual salvation from our sin, so let us trust God to also provide our physical salvation when his enemies surround us. (David Bacon)
- Psalm 125 [recording] [sheet music]
FRIDAY-MEMORIZE | Psalm 125
- Spend time memorizing the words of the Psalm as best you can -
Our Father in heaven, hallowed be your Name,
your kingdom come, your will be done, on earth as it is in heaven.
Give us today our daily bread. And forgive us our debts, as we also have forgiven our debtors
And lead us not into temptation, but deliver us from evil.
For yours is the kingdom and the power and the glory forever, Amen.
Then the angel showed me the river of the water of life, bright as crystal, flowing from the throne of God and of the Lamb through the middle of the street of the city; also, on either side of the river, the tree of life with its twelve kinds of fruit, yielding its fruit each month. The leaves of the tree were for the healing of the nations. No longer will there be anything accursed, but the throne of God and of the Lamb will be in it, and his servants will worship him.
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City Reformed Presbyterian Church
The 90 Days project is a collaborative effort of many church leaders. Matt Koerber and Daniel Snoke have taken lead roles, with others helping to write daily devotionals.