Oh That Men Would Praise The LORD

“O give thanks unto the LORD, for He is good: for His mercy endureth for ever.
Let the redeemed of the LORD say so, whom He hath redeemed from the hand of the enemy; and gathered them out of the lands, from the east, and from the west, from the north, and from the south.
They wandered in the wilderness in a solitary way; they found no city to dwell in. Hungry and thirsty, their soul fainted in them.
Then they cried unto the LORD in their trouble, and He delivered them out of their distresses. And He led them forth by the right way, that they might go to a city of habitation.
Oh that men would praise the LORD for His goodness, and for His wonderful works to the children of men!”  Psalm 107:1-8  (KJB)

The Confidence of the Ends of the Earth

“Praise waiteth for Thee, O God, in Sion: and unto Thee shall the vow be performed.
O Thou that hearest prayer, unto Thee shall all flesh come.
Iniquities prevail against me: as for our transgressions, thou shalt purge them away.
Blessed is the man whom Thou choosest, and causest to approach unto Thee, that he may dwell in Thy courts: we shall be satisfied with the goodness of Thy house, even of Thy holy temple.
By terrible things in righteousness wilt Thou answer us, O God of our salvation; who art the confidence of all the ends of the earth, and of them that are afar off upon the sea: which by His strength setteth fast the mountains; being girded with power: which stilleth the noise of the seas, the noise of their waves, and the tumult of the people.”  Psalm 65:1-7  (KJB)

The Superior Goodness of God

“Ask, and it shall be given you; seek, and ye shall find; knock, and it shall be opened unto you: for every one that asketh receiveth; and he that seeketh findeth; and to him that knocketh it shall be opened.  Or what man is there of you, whom if his son ask bread, will he give him a stone?  Or if he ask a fish, will he give him a serpent?
If ye then, being evil, know how to give good gifts unto your children, how much more shall your Father which is in heaven give good things to them that ask Him.”
  Matthew 7:7-11 (KJB)

Some will note that I changed the question mark to a period.  Why?  I believe it to be a statement from Jesus and not a question, though I know His questions often make very loud statements.  I noticed too that the New King James, as do other translations use an exclamation mark; which might be even better.

My thoughts today are on verse 11 solely.  No father of earth would be so mean, ugly, and hateful as to give their child a serpent rather than a fish, or if they were hungry give them a stone rather than bread.  I am speaking of Dad’s who care for their children; not the deserters, who care for no one but themselves.

Even though we are evil, we are still kind to our children, and sometimes to others.  The goodness we see of people around us doing “good things” should be a reminder to us of the superior goodness of our heavenly Father.

He loves us even when we are unlovely, unloving, and downright hateful (John 3:16).  He loved us so much that even though we were His enemies He sent His Son to die for us (Romans 5:8).

O my; how the goodness of God is so far superior than any goodness we have.

“If ye then, being evil, know how to give good gifts unto your children, how much more shall your Father which is in heaven give good things to them that ask him! — Bad as our fallen nature is, the father in us is not extinguished. What a heart, then, must the Father of all fathers have towards His pleading children! In the corresponding passage in Luke (see on Luk_11:13), instead of “good things,” our Lord asks whether He will not much more give the Holy Spirit to them that ask Him. At this early stage of His ministry, and before such an audience, He seems to avoid such sharp doctrinal teaching as was more accordant with His plan at the riper stage indicated in Luke, and in addressing His own disciples exclusively.” Jamieson, Fausset, and Brown Commentary

Will you call on the name of Jesus today?  Will trust the One who is truly the one who describes Goodness?

Since God Be For Us

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Since God Is For Us

Romans 8:31-39

When you get to thinking about the goodness, grace and mercy of God, and you see things taught us in Scripture as, “But God demonstrates His own love toward us, in that while we were still sinners, Christ died for us” (5:8); and, “For if when we were enemies we were reconciled to God through the death of His Son…” (5:10); would it not be perfectly fitting of God to do even more wondrous things for those who are no longer His enemies.

Things we can see which God has done for us, and gives us, and continues to do in and through us:

1.  Christ was given as our Substitute for sin; to freely give us all things; that is basically forgiveness. That is the most wondrous thing, along with the fellowship which we can have with the Father. We no longer have guilt, excusing us to flee from God’s presence, and we now have the presence of God within us who calls us to the throne of grace to receive forgiveness (vv. 31-32);
2.  There is no charge that can be brought against us. The only Ones who can bring any legitimate charge against us will not, because we have been cleansed and forgiven by them. When you forgive someone a debt owed to you by them; you are the one who paid the debt. That is actually what forgiveness is. Until a debt is paid; it is owed. God could charge us with sin, but instead He has justified us; Jesus could also, but He died for us, rising again, is seated at the right hand of God and intercedes for us (vv. 33-34);
3.  There is absolutely nothing that can separate us from the love of Jesus Christ. Sin has been the source of all our separation from God; now sin has been dealt with in a death blow that is for all eternity; It is the love of Jesus Christ which is being spoke of in verse thirty five – in all these things mentioned they are rather sources of strength building rather than sources of separation and they are building blocks of our faith. We are at our Lord’s mercy, and for His glory (vv. 35-36);
4.  The term, “More than conquerors” is one that is sometimes heard in other places other than church and Christian atmosphere. It is heard on school campuses. It is heard in youth discussions; Come what may, let the devil beware we will stand. We must understand that we cannot overcome, we cannot be “Conquerors” in our strength – it is in the power, Spirit and glory of Jesus Christ that we conquer (v. 37);
5.  There are many things which Paul uses here to show us that there is nothing that can separate us from the “love of God…in Christ Jesus”; Notice if you will the first two – “Death nor life”; now death is separation of life from the body; but what is this doing here – especially ‘Life’? There are times we can let life get between us and God; however, if we are God’s that is not the end; “…angels nor principalities nor powers, nor things present nor things to come, nor height nor depth, nor any other created thing (even yourself), shall be able to separate us from the love of God which is in Christ Jesus our Lord.”

O, what a wonder and glory it is; this thing called grace, this privilege called grace; this merciful eternal act of God. None deserve it. Few receive it. All who receive it will glorify Jesus. “Since God be for us, who can be against us”? No not one.

-Tim A. Blankenship

Ask Life, and GOD Gives It

The king shall joy in Your strength, O LORD; and in Your salvation how greatly shall he rejoice! You have given him his heart’s desire, and have not withheld the request of his lips. Selah. For You meet him with the blessings of goodness: You set a crown of pure gold on his head. He asked life of You, and You gave it him, even length of days for ever and ever. His glory is great in Your salvation: honor and majesty have You laid upon him. For You have made him most blessed for ever: You have made him exceeding glad with Your countenance.”  Psalm 21:1-6 (KJV)

King David was speaking of much more than what he had requested.  He was speaking of the future King of Israel, King of the world who would receive all that He requested because He had died to redeem His bride unto Himself.

On that word “Selah” I want you to remember that I look at that word and pause, think about what was just read, what it says, and reflect on it.  Now thinking on that second verse for a bit: did David get all those things?  Did he get all that his heart desired?  I really do doubt it.  He was joyous in knowing the LORD and resting in Him.  It would seem to me that it is directly related to the coming King, the Messiah of Israel, and Savior of the world.

He asked life and was raised from the dead.  He asked for long life, and will live eternally, even for ever and ever.  He is glorified in the salvation GOD has provided through His death, burial, and resurrection.

This Psalm is a song of David thanking and praising the LORD for His answer to his prayers; that they are exceedingly abundant over what he could ask or think (Ephesians 3:20).

Ask Life, and GOD Gives It.  He gives life through faith in His Son Jesus.  Will you ask?

What Have You Said to the LORD Today?

Preserve me, O God: for in You do I put my trust. O my soul, you have said unto the LORD, You are my Lord: my goodness extendeth not to You; but to the saints that are in the earth, and to the excellent, in whom is all my delight.”  Psalm 16:1-3 (KJV)

Of this sixteenth Psalm and its title – “Michtam of David” the Matthew Henry Commentary states…

“This psalm is entitled Michtam, which some translate a golden psalm, a very precious one, more to be valued by us than gold, yea, than much fine gold, because it speaks so plainly of Christ and his resurrection, who is the true treasure hidden in the field of the Old Testament.”

The Psalms, to me, are all golden and worthy to be called precious, and more valuable than gold.  So, also, the whole of the Bible.

One of the things the Psalmist is stating is that if we has Adamkind have any goodness it is nothing near the goodness of the LORD who is God.  His goodness is worthy of our note.  There is no goodness equal to the goodness of the Almighty.

None of even all the saints of God in the earth is equal to His goodness.  God the Lord Adonay is worthy of worship,  honor, glory, and praise.  It all belongs to Him.

To know God you can come to Him through His Son Jesus who died on the cross, was buried, and He rose from the grave, and because He lives we have eternal life through Him.

The LORD is Good

What do you think of when a roaring, howling, powerful storm comes; with flashes, and bolts of lightening, and sounds of crashing, rolling thunder?  It is a fearful thing when we see these things.  Many people have just recently survived such storms, suffering great loss, and we pray for you, and offer condolences to those who have lost loved ones.

I am a strange sort of man I guess; but storms fascinate me.  Lightening is a wonder to behold.  I have been on the edge of a tornado in my car, and kept driving, even though I could not see much past the hood of the car.  It is a fearful thing.  More fearful is to be on the wrong side of God.  Hear the words of Nahum the prophet to the Assyrians, their capital city Nineveh…

“God is jealous, and the LORD revengeth; the LORD revengeth, and is furious; the LORD will take vengeance on His adversaries, and He reserveth wrath for His enemies. The LORD is slow to anger, and great in power, and will not at all acquit the wicked: the LORD hath His way in the whirlwind and in the storm, and the clouds are the dust of His feet. He rebuketh the sea, and maketh it dry, and drieth up all the rivers: Bashan languisheth, and Carmel, and the flower of Lebanon languisheth. The mountains quake at Him, and the hills melt, and the earth is burned at His presence, yea, the world, and all that dwell therein. Who can stand before His indignation? And who can abide in the fierceness of His anger? His fury is poured out like fire, and the rocks are thrown down by Him. The LORD is good, a strong hold in the day of trouble; and He knoweth them that trust in him. But with an overrunning flood he will make an utter end of the place thereof, and darkness shall pursue His enemies.”  Nahum 1:2-8 (KJV)

It could be said that Nahum’s prophecy is  a continuation of Jonah’s.  When Jonah went to Nineveh and preached of God’s judgment, the people, the whole city repented; yet that repentance was only one generation, and then God sent Nahum to warn them.

Does God, the LORD judge evil?  That is a question that many people ask; even today.  The answer to that is “Yes!”  God does judge evil.  It just is not always according to our allotted time.  Why can a wicked person live for years without illness, or grief, and seemingly be blessed with the world’s riches, and pleasures and never experience God’s justice?  He/She does, or she/he will.

The LORD is Good.  Let us consider this.  It could be that God in His goodness and grace is allowing that individual time to repent and change their way, coming to God through Christ Jesus.

The LORD is mighty, He is Almighty, He holds the storms of this life in His hand.  He knows the beginning and He knows the end.  This life is not about me, or you, or all those who are suffering from sickness, disease, pain, sorrow; from storms or shooters.  This life is about GOD, and His power and glory to Him. He has made a way for sinful humanity to come into His holy presence; and that is through the cross of Jesus Christ who suffered the most horrendous thing any man could ever bear.  Not only did He suffer the physical pain and agony of the cross, but He the holy Son of God was denied the face of His Father as He bled and died for us.  He in fact experienced Hell for us there.

The LORD is Good.

Day Two Nine Three

What do I want for Christmas?

I want each and every one of the people who are coming to Broken Pieces, and reading this post and/or any others to know that I appreciate you, and thank you for coming and reading, and sticking with me this far.

I want you to be blessed by God today, and everyday.  I also thank God for this privilege. God bless you each and all.

Oh that men would praise the LORD for His goodness, and for His wonderful works to the children of men!  And let them sacrifice the sacrifices of thanksgiving, and declare His works with rejoicing. ” Psalm 107:21-22 (KJV)

“I will offer to You the sacrifice of thanksgiving, and will call upon the name of the LORD.” Psalm 116:17

“Continue in prayer, and watch in the same with thanksgiving…” Colossians 4:2

“I exhort therefore, that, first of all, supplications, prayers, intercessions, and giving of thanks, be made for all men…” 1 Timothy 2:1

 

Day Two Nine Four

What do I want for Christmas?

I want to live my life in the fulness and power of the Holy Spirit of God; that others might see the power and work of God, His Word and His Spirit in me.

But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, longsuffering, gentleness, goodness, faith, meekness, temperance: against such there is no law.  And they that are Christ’s have crucified the flesh with the affections and lusts. If we live in the Spirit, let us also walk in the Spirit.  Let us not be desirous of vain glory, provoking one another, envying one another.”  Galations 5:22-26

“Now the Lord is that Spirit: and where the Spirit of the Lord is, there is liberty.”  2 Corinthians 3:17 (KJV)

Day Three Hundred Twenty and Six

What do I want for Christmas?

Today, and every day I want to thank the LORD the Creator of heaven and earth for His bountiful goodness, love, mercy, grace, for the cross of Jesus Christ; and for holding all things together; in my life and in the world.  Will you join me in being thankful to Him today.  Believe, trust the Lord Jesus Christ, and it will begin.

Rejoice always, pray without ceasing, in everything give thanks; for this is the will of God in Christ Jesus for you.” 1 Thessalonians 5:16-18 (NKJV)

“Oh, give thanks to the LORD, for He is good! For His mercy endures forever. Oh, give thanks to the God of gods! For His mercy endures forever. Oh, give thanks to the Lord of lords! For His mercy endures forever…” Psalm 136:1-3

The Goodness of the LORD

“For the word of the LORD is right; and all His works are done in truth. He loveth righteousness and judgment: the earth is full of the goodness of the LORD. By the word of the LORD were the heavens made; and all the host of them by the breath of His mouth.” Psalm 33:4-6 (KJV)

The earth is full of the goodness of the LORD. Maybe you can see it. Maybe you cannot. It makes no difference; except for your salvation.

We have all heard statements similar to this: “If God is so good, then why do good people suffer?” or maybe this: “Where was God when that happened?” Usually those comments or questions are made by people who do not know God; and many who do not want to know Him. I could be wrong about that.

In the first question their is a large assumption that people are good; or that there are good people. My first thought on that is: according to whose judgment?

God is good, and there is no other who is good, but Him. Note: “The word of the LORD is right…” The One who speaks right words, does right, and His works are done in truth.

He also loves righteousness and judgment. He is the righteous Judge in the earth. He is the One who has made all things. It is His declarations that are true. If you doubt Him, and choose your own way; then, you will perish, and spend eternity in flames of liquid fire (Revelation 20:14-15).

This One who has made all things is the Lord Jesus Christ. “All things were made by Him; and without Him was not anything made that was made.” (John 1:3). He also died for your sins was buried and He rose again. He is returning one day to rid the world of all sin and evil for eternity.

Believe Him. Trust Him.

Chastisement, Correction or Testing?

“Behold, happy is the man whom God correcteth: therefore despise not thou the chastening of the Almighty: for He maketh sore, and bindeth up: He woundeth, and His hands make whole.” Job 5:17-18 (KJV)

These words are from the first speech of Eliphaz the Temanite; one of Job’s three friends who had heard of Job’s plight, and came to comfort and encourage him. They had sat with him for seven days in silence, never saying a word. Maybe they should have remained silent; but that was not to be.

The words of the verses above are true. It is a blessed, a happy thing to know that God chastens those He loves (Hebrews 12:7-8). However, Job was not being chastised for any evil, any wrong he had done.

Job, nor his friends knew to the scene that had taken place in heaven. God was placing trust in Job, and his faith.

Remember when you are disciplined by the Lord that He loves you. That is a great encouragement. Let us also remember when it comes to the trials of another that silence is sometimes the best encouragement and comfort that we can give.

We are too prone to the fallacy of thinking that goodness never suffers; and evil always suffers.

We can be encouraged by the fact of knowing that when we err in sin, as one of His children, He chastens us; but all trials, and suffering are not the result of sin.

The answer is that in blessing and in pain rejoice in the LORD, and be a blessing to His name. Praise Him

The Mercy of the LORD Endures Forever

“O give thanks unto the LORD; for He is good: for His mercy endureth for ever.” Psalm 136:1 (KJV)

This Psalm has 26 verses, all of which end with the phrase “His mercy endureth for ever”.  How long does the mercy of the LORD endure?  For ever.

The Psalmist writes “O give thanks unto the LORD; for He is good”, and if that was all there was and is of GOD, He would still be worthy of our thanks.

However, we are told that He is merciful.  It is one of the most wonderful things to know that the GOD who created all things; the GOD whom we have offended with our sins; the GOD who is holy, just and righteous is also merciful.

When is He merciful?  Every moment, every day, every week, every month, and every year.  There is not one second which passes that He is not merciful; and that mercy endures for ever.

He has provided a way for you into His grace, and that is by way of the cross of Jesus Christ; upon Whom He showed no mercy in judging my sins and yours.  The Way is Christ Jesus.

Mercy Endureth Forever

“O give thanks unto the LORD; for He is good: because His mercy endureth for ever.” Psalm 118:1 (KJV)

The LORD is worthy of our thanks.  He is good.  He is great.  He is awesome.  I looked out over the Grand Canyon in Arizona; and said, “That is awesome”, and wept at the spectacle of its beauty.  I then thought of how much greater God is; and wept at His greatness being even greater.

I am thankful that His mercy is forever, and that it endures the trials of life.  It endures my sins, my fears, my failures.  God’s mercy; the LORD’S mercy is forever.

You experienced it this morning.  You may not have thought about it, but you did.  Is your heart still beating?  If it is that is God’s mercy.  Are you still breathing?  That too is God’s mercy.  If you do not know Him He has given you another day, another chance to place your faith and trust in the work of His Son Jesus Christ.

Believe Him, and thank Him for His mercy; and His grace.

For the LORD is Good

“O give thanks unto the LORD, for He is good: for His mercy endureth for ever.” Psalm 107:1 (KJV)

I pray that all who are reading this today is planning, is already on their way, or will be attending worship services in a local Church today.  That is one way Christians show their love and thanks to the LORD who alone is worthy of our worship, praise, and thanksgiving.

The LORD is good.  He is great.  He is merciful.

There is no way the follower of Jesus Christ can ever grow short of thanking the LORD.  You may be overcome by debt, fear of losing all you have.  You may be overcome by an illness or disease and fear losing your life, or the life of a loved one.  When you are in Christ Jesus we can still thank the LORD for His goodness and mercy.  There is always something to be thankful for. So thank Him.

YHWH is always merciful.  His mercy endures forever.  When we realize His great mercy, we can then rest in His grace; which has been demonstrated to us by the death of His only begotten Son Jesus Christ.

O give thanks unto the LORD, for He is good…”

God is Good

“Praise ye the LORD. O give thanks unto the LORD; for He is good: for His mercy endureth for ever. Who can utter the mighty acts of the LORD? Who can shew forth all His praise?” Psalm 106:1-2 (KJV)

There are not enough words to describe the goodness, and worth of God.  I will let you hear the words of Matthew Henry on these verses…

We are here taught,
I. To bless God (Psa_106:1, Psa_106:2): Praise you the Lord, that is, 1. Give him thanks for his goodness, the manifestation of it to us, and the many instances of it. He is good and his mercy endures for ever; let us therefore own our obligations to him and make him a return of our best affections and services. 2. Give him the glory of his greatness, his mighty acts, proofs of his almighty power, wherein he has done great things, and such as would be opposed. Who can utter these? Who is worthy to do it? Who is able to do it? They are so many that they cannot be numbered, so mysterious that they cannot be described; when we have said the most we can of the mighty acts of the Lord, the one half is not told; still there is more to be said; it is a subject that cannot be exhausted. We must show forth his praise; we may show forth some of it, but who can show forth all? Not the angels themselves. This will not excuse us in not doing what we can, but should quicken us to do all we can.
From the MATTHEW HENRY Commentary

W4CL – Fruit

“But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, longsuffering, gentleness, goodness, faith, meekness, temperance: against such there is no law. And they that are Christ’s have crucified the flesh with the affections and lusts. If we live in the Spirit, let us also walk in the Spirit. Let us not be desirous of vain glory, provoking one another, envying one another.”  Galations 5:22-26 (KJV)

Paul gave us examples of the works of the flesh in the verses  preceding the above text.  They are the evidence of ungodliness.  Many of the works of the flesh have been seen in professing Christians; however they are the works of the flesh; and not of Christ.

The works of the flesh come from the heart and mind of unredeemed men and women.  It can be the old left overs of one’s past life, and the Christian must put them to death.  The Christian will produce the Fruit of the Spirit – the Spirit of Jesus Christ.

Notice the fruit –  “Love, joy, peace”  The three go together; you cannot separate peace from love or joy, nor joy from peace and love; nor love from joy and peace.  The peace of God which passes all understanding (Romans 5:1-2; Philippians 4:7).

“Longsuffering” that is basically patience, enduring faith in God, forbearance with others.

“Gentleness” equals moral goodness, integrity.  You are the same in your behavior when you are alone as  you are when you are with people.

“Goodness”  Upright in heart.

“Faith” having a conviction of the truth.

“Meekness”  not too many people desire to be meek; however that is a fruit of the Spirit.  Jesus said of the meek “They shall inherit the earth” (Matthew 5:5).  Jesus is a good example of meekness.  Knowing who He is, did not retaliate against those who hated Him; instead, He said, “Father, forgive them they know not what they do.”  (Luke 23:34).

“Temperance”  means self-control.  This begins with have a clear mind, clean heart, and life.  One cannot have self-control if they have the works of the flesh.  The works of the flesh are in control.

Walking in the Spirit gives the Christian freedom to walk with Jesus; free from condemnation, guilt, and fear.  The fruit of the Spirit is what comes from the Christian who is trusting the Lord.

In Christ Jesus you do bear the fruit of the Spirit.

Going Beyond

We hear much about love.  Love for your wife, or your husband.  Love for your child or children.  Love for a friend.  What is meant by the word “L.O.V.E.”?  Real love goes beyond the ordinary.  That kind of love is more than feeling; it is a decision.  It is not driven by being loved by an individual; it is driven by the love of God, and it is displayed by a decisive act of mercy, grace and goodness; even toward one who has wronged you.  Maybe I could or should say, “…especially toward one who has wronged you”.

Well no one can do that you might say.  God and His Word teaches us to do just that thing.  Hear the Word of the Lord:

“Since you have purified yours souls in obeying the truth through the Spirit in sincere love of the brethren, love one another fervently with a pure heart…”  1 Peter 1:22 (NKJV).

This verse is directed toward loving the brethren, ie., our brothers and sisters in Christ.  This is a “Going Beyond” type of love.  We are to love when we are not loved by others.  We are to love when it may not be convenient to do so.  This is not just a speaking of words but an act of love.

This is the kind of love that responds to a command – the command to love.  It is the kind of love which will take you to a neighbors yard to mow it when they need help, even though this neighbor has caused you many heartaches, and much grief.  All Christians have this “Going Beyond” love.

It comes from a purified soul.  You receive a purified soul by “obeying the truth through the Spirit” of God.  This “Going Beyond” love is only possible through faith in Jesus Christ and His work on the cross, and His bodily resurrection.  This kind of love meets others at their point of need.  This is the love of Jesus Christ.

-T.A.