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December 16, 2018

Please use the comment section on this page to share insights from today’s reading OR your own personal Bible reading.

Reading along with us through Psalm 61-70? Here’s today’s reading:

Psalm 66 (ESV)

Shout for joy to God, all the earth;
    sing the glory of his name;
    give to him glorious praise!
Say to God, “How awesome are your deeds!
    So great is your power that your enemies come cringing to you.
All the earth worships you
    and sings praises to you;
    they sing praises to your name.” Selah.
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  1. Psalm 66:13-15 (ESV)
    13  I will come into your house with burnt offerings; I will perform my vows to you, 14  that which my lips uttered and my mouth promised when I was in trouble. 15  I will offer to you burnt offerings of fattened animals, with the smoke of the sacrifice of rams; I will make an offering of bulls and goats. Selah

    In the Old Testament period faith in God is expressed through offerings and sacrifices. However, because of Christ we no longer express our faith in blood offerings and sacrifices (Hebrews 10:12-14). Rather we express our faith through our submission to his will, through obedience to his word (Romans 12:1-2, John 14:23).

    The result of our continued walk with God and faith in him is the firm confidence that He hears us and answers our prayers.
    Psalm 66:16-20 (ESV)
    16  Come and hear, all you who fear God, and I will tell what he has done for my soul. 17  I cried to him with my mouth, and high praise was on my tongue. 18  If I had cherished iniquity in my heart, the Lord would not have listened. 19  But truly God has listened; he has attended to the voice of my prayer. 20  Blessed be God, because he has not rejected my prayer or removed his steadfast love from me!

  2. 8 Bless our God, O peoples;
    let the sound of his praise be heard,
    9 who has kept our soul among the living
    and has not let our feet slip.
    10 For you, O God, have tested us;
    you have tried us as silver is tried.

  3. 16 Come and hear, all you who fear God,
    and I will tell what he has done for my soul.
    17 I cried to him with my mouth,
    and high praise was on my tongue.
    18 If I had cherished iniquity in my heart,
    the Lord would not have listened.
    19 But truly God has listened;
    he has attended to the voice of my prayer.
    20 Blessed be God,
    because he has not rejected my prayer
    or removed his steadfast love from me!

  4. Notice how David moves from praising God for what He has done for all peoples, to praising God for what He has done for Israel, to praising God for what He has done for him. It’s not a bad pattern for our praises to God. Notice also that He praises God for both good things and bad. Yes He had brought them through the fire but He had a refining purpose for it and He did bring them through. I think we can all understand making promises to God in those times…get me through I will do such and such. Well David’s reflection here and by extension, encouragement to us, that if we make them, we should keep them. God is worthy of that.

    It is incredible that God paves a way through Christ for us to approach Him and that His blood cleanses our conscience. But we too need to be aware of cherishing sin in our heart. It is one thing to fall into it, it is quite another to pursue it. Then we not only need to address the sin though confession, but also the pride and willfulness of our hearts and the lack of faith that is inherent in all sin, but particularly ones that we cherish.

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