May 16



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Psalms 49-54

We are in the Wisdom Stream today. Dr. Drake is covering for Serena who is out with laryngitis. We are reading from the Common English Bible this week.

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Commentary by Dr. Drake Travis

God we thank you for the strength, courage and we can draw from these Psalms. These are common men you engaged to have them later speak to us. Thank you.  You lived in them. You live in us. Therefore let us be strengthened in the joy of the Lord. Amen

Psalm 49 – opens with a herald of “hear ye, hear ye …”  It’s a memo of all hearts, young/old, rich/poor, wise/fool.  These Sons of Korah (the writers) reverence God and fear nothing in this world. The one thing that always wins on this earth; and has the last say is the grave. All are headed there. So of all the things we are to hope in ultimately is that God will redeem and take us to himself. This hope supersedes all hopes. Riches, wisdom, time – the things that most people spend their lives trying to gain are all destined to pass with us.  So look to God for redemption.
50 – Here is another Psalm that was sung in the Temple. It certainly is regal. God does what He does in all His natural glory and magnificent splendor. God speaks and gathers His own. Amid all He does, God is mindful of us. It’s like in this Psalm, He is stopping in to assure and encourage us to keep living for Him, remaining thankful, and honoring Him – for He delivers us from trouble. As for the wicked: The total opposite awaits them. The are unteachable, they steal, visit whores, lie, cheat, even bash their own families! They better reckon and walk right or God will tear them to pieces —> with no one to rescue.
51 – David’s soul has hit bottom (though he was at the top of his world). There wasn’t an army he couldn’t beat, a territory he couldn’t attain, he was honored over the known world. Then during some “down time”, he stole a man’s wife. When he gets rebuked for it, he confesses and repents. We read this story in the history stream last week; II Sam.11&12 . Of all the great things David did, one wise old preacher said, that this prayer, this confession from Ps. 51 was David’s greatest move. He wants mercy and a renewed relationship with God. David knows about God’s unfailing love and He calls upon that love with all earnestness. David’s broken spirit IS his sacrifice to God. This Psalm that David was transparent enough to utter, has been and still is, an inspiration to billions of Believers throughout all time.
52 – David had learned that an Edomite; Doeg had run and told Saul about David’s whereabouts and thus Saul resumed his heated chase to find and kill David.  Well David has a word for Doeg-the-tattler and we find it here in Psalm 52.  The setting of this writing was in I Sam. 21:7 and 22:9.  Doeg’s presence was incidental but his obvious commitment to Saul over David is found out and is therefore what birthed this harsh word against him. God would ruin Doeg for this, though David would continue to thrive.
53 – Could this Psalm be called “The Tune of The Athiests”?  The Hebrews knew all about this concept that God’s goodness is followed or there is no good found anywhere because man on earth does not manufacture goodness. This phrasing is quoted near verbatim in Psalm 14, Paul says these words 1K/yrs later in Romans 3:10-12.  It’s the other end of the spectrum from modern-day pagans and New Agers who we may find chanting, “visualize smiles and loving worlds…visualize random kindness!” [poof]  The godless turn out to be hollow and fearful and they end up scattered.
54 – This Psalm, as in #52, is written in response to people giving away David’s location to Saul. This time it was the people of Ziph (far SE of Jerusalem). You can brief that at your leisure in I Sam. 26. David’s reaction is to call to God (as he always does) to be saved, defended, and heard in his prayers.  The contrast of the lives and spirit of those who are against God and of those who are for God is so stark. David again ends up victorious in triumph.

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