Showing posts with label bible. Show all posts
Showing posts with label bible. Show all posts

Wednesday, January 21, 2015

Psalms, and the LORD as Our Vindicator

Posted by Christine Pack

Psalm 35 is one of my favorite Psalms, one I memorized during a particularly difficult trial, in which God was so faithful to me. He always hears and always answers the prayers of those who belong to Him.....always. He is always faithful to me, even in times when I have been distracted and forgetful, and have been a silly little sheep who wanders off. Because He is a loving Father, He will always go and fetch back the one who wanders, in the same way that an earthly parent will keep a watchful eye over his own children, and go after them when they wander (Luke 15:4).

Psalm 35 reveals that we can pray what might, on the surface, appear to be pretty ruthless prayers.
(Verses 4-6)
Let them be put to shame and dishonor
who seek after my life!
Let them be turned back and disappointed
who devise evil against me!
Let them be like chaff before the wind,
with the angel of the Lord driving them away!
Let their way be dark and slippery,
with the angel of the Lord pursuing them! 
(Verse 8)
Let destruction come upon him when he does not know it!
And let the net that he hid ensnare him;
let him fall into it—to his destruction!
But contrast the prayers for vindication in this psalm to the way the world thinks about vengeance:

The worldly person, the one who is without God, has to take matters into his own hands. He has no God upon whom he can call, no God who will take up his cause.

The Christian, however, can petition the Almighty God, the LORD of the universe, to take vengeance on his behalf, with the implicit understanding that he, the Christian, will not take matters into his own hands. He will trust in the LORD. The Christian can call upon the LORD, whose attributes of protection and deliverance are contained in his name "Yahweh," and can rest in knowing that the LORD, in His infinite wisdom, will make all things right in His own time. From the Got Questions? website:
"Yahweh is present, accessible, near to those who call on Him for deliverance (Psalm 107:13), forgiveness (Psalm 25:11) and guidance (Psalm 31:3)." (What are the names of God, and what do they mean? - Got Questions?)
Also see: Psalm 135:14 "For the LORD (Yahweh) will vindicate his people and have compassion on his servants."

 Additional Resources 

Sons of Korah, A Recommended Resource

The Psalms (sermon by Dr. R.C. Sproul)

Wisdom for Spiritual People – The Message of The Psalms (sermon by Dr. Mark Dever)

Monday, September 9, 2013

Psalm 35, Sons of Korah

Posted by Christine Pack

Psalm 35 by Sons of Korah

Contend, Lord, with those who contend with me, Lord;
Fight against those who fight against me, Lord;
Take up the shield and the buckler, and arise to my aid;
Brandish the spear and the javelin against those who pursue me.

Say to my soul, "I am your salvation,
Say to my soul, "I am your salvation, I am your salvation."
May those who seek my life be disgraced and put to shame;
May those who plot my ruin be turned back in dismay.

May they be like chaff before the wind,
With the Angel of God driving them away;
And may their path be dark and slippery,
With the Angel of God driving them away.

And since they've hid a net for me without cause,
And since they've dug a pit for me without cause,
May ruin overtake them now suddenly;
May the net that they hid there entangle them,
May they fall in the pit that they dug for me,
May they fall.

And then my soul will rejoice in the Lord,
And then my soul will delight in his salvation.
And then my whole being will exclaim,
"Who is like You? Oh Lord, who is like You?"

 Additional Resources 

A Few Thoughts On Christian Music

Son of Korah, A Recommended Resource

Tuesday, January 29, 2013

Seeds Family Worship: A Recommended Resource

Posted by Christine Pack

Fathers and mothers, are you looking for a great resource for teaching Bible verses to your children? Well, here's a no-brainer. Seeds Family Worship is a ministry out of Nashville, Tennessee that has produced eight wonderful CD's with catchy, original songs that are basically straight Scripture. The eight CDs are:
Seeds of Courage 
Seeds of Faith 
Seeds of Praise 
Seeds of Purpose
Power of Encouragement
Seeds of Character
The Character of God
And the best part? The music is really, really good. Anyone who knows me knows that I am slightly obsessed with music. As part of their schoolwork, my children sing little ditties to learn grammar and composition rules. And for some mysterious reason that I don't quite comprehend, the fact that these ditties are set to music somehow makes the rules "stick" better. Why does music act in this way on our brains? I'm sure there have been scientific studies done on this that I'm not aware of, but for myself, I'm just glad to know this fact, and pleased to have a resource that has set Scripture verses to music in such an appealing way. When my children are struggling with discouragement or sadness, or any of the myriad of struggles we humans face in this dark and dying world, I'm happy to know that, alongside Shurley Grammar rules taking up residence inside their brains, there are also many Bible verses. Amen, parents?

To hear a sampling of Seeds Family Worship, you may go to their website here, or you may watch their video (below) of Psalm 55:22, from the Power of Encouragement CD. (Just a note: Seeds Family Worship has produced only a handful of videos, so don't get too attached to the videos. The bulk of their ministry is in their audio CDs.)

Some of my favorites from the Seeds Family CDs (in no particular order) are:
■ Undivided Heart (Psalm 86:11-13, Seeds of Praise)
■ Teach Them (Deut 6:4-7, Seeds of Character)
■ Mighty To Save (Zephaniah 3:17, Seeds of Praise)
■ Walk In His Ways (Psalm 128:1, Seeds of Faith)
■ God Is Unchanging (Hebrews 13:8, The Character of God)
■ Do Not Be Anxious (Phil 4:6-7, Seeds of Courage)
■ He Humbled Himself (Phil 2:3-5, 8, Purity)
■ No Greater Love (Remain in Me) (John 15:13-14, Seeds of Faith)
■ Amen (Rev 7:10, 12, Seeds of Praise)
■ Sing Praise to Him (1 Chron 16:9-10, Seeds of Praise)
■ Listen To Me (Psalm 34:11-14, Seeds of Purpose)
■ Delight (Psalm 1, Seeds of Character)
■ If God Is For Us (Rom 8:28, 31, Seeds of Purpose)
■ God is Everlasting (Psalm 90:1-2, The Character of God)
■ Crushed (Psalm 34:18, Seeds of Courage)
■ Fishers of Men (Matthew 4:18-20, Seeds of Purpose)
■ Out of the Mud (Psalm 40:1-2, Seeds of Courage)
■ Be Still (Psalm 46:10, Seeds of Praise)
■ The Word of the Lord (1 Peter 1:24-25, Seeds of Faith)
■ Cast Your Cares (Psalm 55:22, Power of Encouragement)
■ Soar Like Eagles (Isaiah 40:29-31, Power of Encouragement)
■ Never Be Shaken (Psalm 62:1-2, Seeds of Courage)
■ God is Holy (Isaiah 6:1-3, The Character of God)
■ Delight Yourself In The Lord (Psalm 37:4-6, Seeds of Purpose) 
■ Delight Yourself In The Lord (Psalm 37:4-6, Seeds of Purpose) 
■ Be Joyful Always (1 Thess 5:16-18, Seeds of Purpose)
■ Young (1 Tim 4:12, Seeds of Courage)
■ We Trust (Psalm 20:7, The Character of God) 

 Additional Resources 

Christian Music

Thursday, October 27, 2011

After the Darkness, Light

Posted by Christine Pack (another essay on the Reformation, this one by my younger son)

From the 5th century to the 15th century, a spiritual darkness gripped  the world. This period of time was known as the Dark Ages (sometimes also known as the Middle Ages), and was a time of war, disease, and famine. Centuries before this time, God's own Son, Jesus, the light of the world, had come to offer his life for the sins of mankind.  But now the true Church, the one set up by Jesus, had been persecuted horribly and driven underground. So the greatest problem for the people who lived in this period was not their suffering.  It was Satan's spiritual deception—the Catholic Church which had come to dominate the world, masquerading as Christ's true Church.

The Catholic Church looked in many ways like the true church.  It taught some true things of God: the biblical timeline, the creation, the fall, and the death and resurrection of Jesus. There was, however, one important flaw amongst the teachings of the Catholic Church, one mistake that was sending thousands of people to Hell.  The Catholics believed that Jesus had NOT paid it all.  The way to get to heaven, they taught, was to get there through works.  The Bible says this is wrong.

During the Dark Ages, the Bible was only viewable by priests, and then only the most highly educated ones could even understand it.  But, from about 1400-1550, some brave men started smuggling Bibles into Europe and other countries, and translating the Bible into different languages.  This was called the Reformation.

Martin Luther
Martin Luther was one of the best known characters of the Reformation.  Luther became a monk after he prayed during a frightening thunderstorm, asking for God to protect him.  God brought him through the storm, and Luther kep his promise to God.  While he was a monk, he wrote 95 challenges to the Roman Catholic Church, or theses, as most people tend to call them.  He understood from reading the Bible that the Catholic Church was wrong in what they were teaching the people. What the priests taught the people kept them in spiritual darkness.

John Wycliffe, John Huss, William Tyndale and others also played important parts in the Reformation, but Martin Luther is the one that we know best today, because of the dramatic thunderstorm, the 95 Theses, and his part in God's plan to pierce the spiritual darkness of the Catholic Church, letting the light of God's truth into the world.

 Additional Resources 

The Reformation (a short paper on the Reformation by my older son)

"Luther" - the full length movie available at Amazon

The Reformation: Post Tenebras Lux