Psalms 129-131

Psalms 129-131

Where do you put your hope? Does God's Word sit on a shelf collecting dust? Or is His Word what you're longing for, daily bringing it out to feed on it, to grow by it, to understand Him?You know what? The world’s going to hurt you. People are going to hurt you. Friends are going to hurt you. But the Lord is righteous, and the Lord’s love will cut you free from the bondage of the pain that comes from there — wherever there is, whatever circumstance you found yourself in that brought the pain, if you’ll trust the Lord, give your life into His hands, His righteousness frees from those bonds. You know what? I don’t have to blame my mom. I don’t have to blame my dad. I don’t have to blame the boss that fired me. I don’t have to blame the hard circumstance I had when I had the auto accident. I don’t have to blame people. The circumstance was there and it was hard, but the Lord was there as well. His righteousness was there as well. It’s a matter of where we’re looking? Where are we placing our eyes? Are we looking to the Lord’s righteousness and the love that He has for our life? He has cut me free from the cords of the wicked. You know, I don’t have to be bound by them. I don’t have to worry about them. When they come after me, when the wickedness of this world tries to surround me, I don’t have to fear. I have been cut free from those bonds because Jesus came into my life…

Sin separates us from God. And you know what? It is oftentimes sin that causes the hardships that we have in our life. I encounter people daily that are in hardship, not because life is rough, but because they’re sinning against God, and they refuse to give up their sin, they refuse to acknowledge their sin, and yet their life is coming to ruin because of their sin. The psalmist recognized there is an issue of sin that needs to be dealt with, but it is only dealt with in the mercy of God…

When was the last time you understood the depth of your sin and the hurt that you’ve brought to the heart of God? That you found yourself alone and had to cry out to God? I think it’s something we all need to do. From time to time we need to find ourselves…crying out to God, because we understand the sin issue in my life. And that sin issue, even though I’m a believer, still sometimes causes there to be a separation. Times that I don’t trust God because I’m trusting in me

And I know He does not keep a record of sin once I’ve confessed it. This is a problem we have so much in the flesh within friendships. We remind each other regularly of the hurt that we’ve done to each other. We use the sin issues in another person’s life to keep them in check. We use it as a battering ram oftentimes. God doesn’t do that. You know, when you’ve sinned against God, and you’ve confessed that sin, it’s gone. He’s dealt with it, and He does not come back to you and say, “Oh, but do you remember the time?” [Laughs] “You know, I don’t know if I’m going to trust you with this particular calling because, you know, you did that back in your life, and I can’t trust you any more.” This is how we respond to each other. This is not how God responds to us. He does not keep a record, but there is forgiveness. He truly does forgive…

Once you’ve been forgiven, and you understand that you are forgiven, then you understand how close you came to being separated from God. When God has filled your life with joy, you begin to understand, “Wow, I almost missed that.” And then we begin to fear — love God deeply — so that we never want to sin against Him again because when we do it causes a void. We don’t want that anymore…

Where is your hope? This is something that has not changed for thousands of years. God has made available to those that love Him His Word, and we have His Word today in abundance in this nation. Where do you put your hope? Does God’s Word sit on a shelf at your home collecting dust with all the trinkets and knick knacks that you also collect? Or is His Word what you’re longing for, daily bringing it out to feed on it, to grow by it, to understand Him? You know what? Without His Word, without knowing His Word, we can not know Him fully. He gives us understanding of Who He is through His Word, and our hope needs to be found there. He has spoken to us. He has spoken His love to us. He has spoken His forgiveness to us… His Word has always been there to give us an understanding of how to be forgiven, to put our trust in Him.

Pastor Dave Elkins

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John 11:38-57