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Lowell Brueckner

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August 3 – August 9 Daily Meditations in the Psalms


 August 3

Psalms 72:10-20

10.  The kings of Tarshish and of the isles shall bring presents: the kings of Sheba and Seba shall offer gifts.
11.  Yea, all kings shall fall down before him: all nations shall serve him.
12.  For he shall deliver the needy when he crieth; the poor also, and him that hath no elper.
13.  He shall spare the poor and needy, and shall save the souls of the needy.
14.  He shall redeem their soul from deceit and violence: and precious shall their blood be in his sight.
15.  And he shall live, and to him shall be given of the gold of Sheba: prayer also shall be made for him continually; and daily shall he be praised.
16.  There shall be an handful of corn in the earth upon the top of the mountains; the fruit thereof shall shake like Lebanon: and they of the city shall flourish like grass of the earth.
17.  His name shall endure for ever: his name shall be continued as long as the sun: and men shall be blessed in him: all nations shall call him blessed.
18.  Blessed be the LORD God, the God of Israel, who only doeth wondrous things.
19.  And blessed be his glorious name for ever: and let the whole earth be filled with his glory; Amen, and Amen.
20. The prayers of David the son of Jesse are ended.

     Notice, who are the ones that reap the benefits that God provides. He comes as a helper to the helpless and a supply to the needy. “Those that are whole need not a physician.” Broken, poor and needy souls are saved. The Lord has found a way to defeat the violent and deceitful nature of Adam and redeem the souls of men. So precious was their blood in His sight, that He gave His for theirs. He arose again and not only does He live to intercede for us, but we can now come to the Father’s throne directly in His name.

     God can harvest in the most unlikely places with abundance enough to feed cities. I have believed always that revival starts in the wilderness, in the Galilees of the world, and the Galileans are used to feed the Jerusalems. World missions is God’s ultimate purpose. “God so loved the world that He gave His Son”,  “Men shall be blessed in him: all nations shall call him blessed”. If we long to behold wonders, there is only one place to go. He “only doeth wondrous things.”

     As Melchizedek blessed Abraham’s generation and Solomon his, so today, the Son of David turns the hearts of men to God and one day all nations will literally bow before Him and yield to His sovereign reign over the whole earth. When the whole earth is filled with His glory, all our prayers will be fulfilled!



August 4

Psalms 73:1-9

1.  Truly God is good to Israel, even to such as are of a clean heart.
2.  But as for me, my feet were almost gone; my steps had well nigh slipped.
3.  For I was envious at the foolish, when I saw the prosperity of the wicked.
4.  For there are no bands in their death: but their strength is firm.
5.  They are not in trouble as other men; neither are they plagued like other men.
6.  Therefore pride compasseth them about as a chain; violence covereth them as a
7.  Their eyes stand out with fatness: they have more than heart could wish.
8.  They are corrupt, and speak wickedly concerning oppression: they speak loftily.
9.  They set their mouth against the heavens, and their tongue walketh through the earth.

    The Psalms are not bashful about describing the characteristics of the wicked, expressing hatred towards them, seemingly gloating over their punishment and imploring God to destroy them. This is a fact that must be faced as one reads the Psalms. How can this be justified in the light of the New Testament, when Jesus’ came to save, not destroy, and commands us to love our enemies?

     Perhaps it can be explained in a dispensational light, when under the old covenant, the Israelites killed and eliminated the heathen nations. It can be explained, in part, by spiritualizing, that is, by seeing enemies as incorrigible demonic forces. However, I think there is still something to be said about God’s hatred for human wickedness under the new covenant, into which we, as partakers of the divine nature, enter. This Psalm hints at it. We must be able to see the God-hating, evil-designing state of fallen human nature. It is no better than the character of devils.

     This is a day of grace when the Spirit strives with man. He wills to do men good, bringing sunshine and rain upon him, reaching out through His servants to bless and not curse. Through compassion and fear, their work is to woo the lost away from their corrupt and hateful selves unto God.



August 5

Psalms 73:10-12, 18-20, 27

10.  Therefore his (perhaps their) people return hither: and waters of a full cup are wrung out to them.
11.  And they say, How doth God know? and is there knowledge in the most High?
12.  Behold, these are the ungodly, who prosper in the world; they increase in riches.
18.  Surely thou didst set them in slippery places: thou castedst them down into destruction.
19.  How are they brought into desolation, as in a moment! they are utterly consumed with terrors.
20.  As a dream when one awaketh; so, O Lord, when thou awakest, thou shalt despise their image.
27.  For, lo, they that are far from thee shall perish: thou hast destroyed all them that go a whoring from thee.

     The lost  - that is the term that describes the wicked. They are so far away from God that they cannot find their way back. Miserably alienated from all that is good, hateful rebels, deserving all the wrath and punishment available, fit for destruction, seething germs of sinful plagues, they must be curbed and ultimately dealt capital punishment. No patchwork is possible. The miserable creature is judged in one of two ways. He can be destroyed by the cross of Christ, where he comes as a repentant sinner, recognizing the justice of his death sentence. There, his fallen nature has been dealt a deathblow and he can experience freedom from its power over him. He then arises as a new creation in Christ Jesus. Refusing or ignoring that, the only other alternative for him is the eternal lake of fire, the place where God’s eternal wrath finds expression. The person, who cannot hate the wicked, as the Psalmists’ do, has trouble believing in hell, and tends to side with rebels in their insurrection against God. The fact that grace and justice can walk together is a wonderful paradox. That hatred and compassion are companions is an insurmountable complexity for the human mind, and an attempt to simplify by such expressions as “loving the sinner, but hating the sin” is disgraceful and erroneous.



August 6

Psalms 73:13-17, 21-28

13.  Verily I have cleansed my heart in vain, and washed my hands in innocency.
14.  For all the day long have I been plagued, and chastened every morning.
15.  If I say, I will speak thus; behold, I should offend against the generation of thy children.
16.  When I thought to know this, it was too painful for me;
17.  Until I went into the sanctuary of God; then understood I their end.
21.  Thus my heart was grieved, and I was pricked in my reins.
22.  So foolish was I, and ignorant: I was as a beast before thee.
23.  Nevertheless I am continually with thee: thou hast holden me by my right hand.
24.  Thou shalt guide me with thy counsel, and afterward receive me to glory.
25.  Whom have I in heaven but thee? and there is none upon earth that I desire beside thee.
26.  My flesh and my heart faileth: but God is the strength of my heart, and my portion for ever.
27.  For, lo, they that are far from thee shall perish: thou hast destroyed all them that go a whoring from thee.
 28.  But it is good for me to draw near to God: I have put my trust in the Lord GOD, that I may declare all thy works.
     We must abide in Christ, the sanctuary of God, the greenhouse of God’s protection from worldly influence and fleshly thoughts, the heavenly oxygen imported to human spirits that they might live in godliness and true holiness. Even the righteous, when they turn their face in the slightest from God, begin to slip away into humanistic reasoning and lose eternal perspective. “Until I went into the santuary of God, then understood I their end.”  It is a devastating shock to be awakened there to reality.

     Jesus said, “Abide in Me.”  The righteous is righteous for one reason alone. His only hope and trust is placed in the sustaining strength of His God. “My flesh and my heart faileth: but God is the strength of my heart and my portion forever.” Proximity to God determines goodness and righteousness, as proximity to the sun determines temperature. Outside of Him there is an absolute zero of human comprehension .



August 7

Psalms 74:1-11

1.  O God, why hast thou cast us off for ever? why doth thine anger smoke against the sheep of thy pasture?
2.  Remember thy congregation, which thou hast purchased of old; the rod of thine inheritance, which thou hast redeemed; this mount Zion, wherein thou hast dwelt.
3.  Lift up thy feet unto the perpetual desolations; even all that the enemy hath done wickedly in the sanctuary.
4.  Thine enemies roar in the midst of thy congregations; they set up their ensigns for signs.
5.  A man was famous according as he had lifted up axes upon the thick trees.
6.  But now they break down the carved work thereof at once with axes and hammers.
7.  They have cast fire into thy sanctuary, they have defiled by casting down the dwelling place of thy name to the ground.
8.  They said in their hearts, Let us destroy them together: they have burned up all the synagogues of God in the land.
9.  We see not our signs: there is no more any prophet: neither is there among us any that knoweth how long.
10.  O God, how long shall the adversary reproach? shall the enemy blaspheme thy name for ever?
11.  Why withdrawest thou thy hand, even thy right hand? Pluck it out of thy bosom.

    All that the prophets feared and dreaded had happened. God could no longer endure the backsliding of His people and the enemy came to devastate the land and sanctuary. Recovery and restoration seemed impossible. Priceless works of art had been destroyed and they burned the dwelling place of God’s name to the ground. Mt. Sion no longer was an honor unto the nations, but a place of scorn. The enemies brought ridicule against all manner of godliness.
     God cut off the sustenance of His word and the promises of old no longer seemed relevant to their generation. No prophet comforted or threatened. Israel would have rejoiced to hear a man of God once again thunder forth judgment. Now they had nothing and had lost the light at the end of the tunnel. It was a dark day and Israel had hung up its harps, for the day of song and gladness was over. There was nothing to do, but pray…and the psalmist, Asaph, prays.



August 8

Psalms 74:1-2, 12-23

1.  O God, why hast thou cast us off for ever? why doth thine anger smoke against the sheep of thy pasture?
2.  Remember thy congregation, which thou hast purchased of old; the rod of thine inheritance, which thou hast redeemed; this mount Zion, wherein thou hast dwelt.
12.  For God is my King of old, working salvation in the midst of the earth.
13.  Thou didst divide the sea by thy strength: thou brakest the heads of the dragons in the waters.
14.  Thou brakest the heads of leviathan in pieces, and gavest him to be meat to the people inhabiting the wilderness.
15.  Thou didst cleave the fountain and the flood: thou driedst up mighty rivers.
16.  The day is thine, the night also is thine: thou hast prepared the light and the sun.
17.  Thou hast set all the borders of the earth: thou hast made summer and winter.
18.  Remember this, that the enemy hath reproached, O LORD, and that the foolish people have blasphemed thy name.
19.  O deliver not the soul of thy turtledove unto the multitude of the wicked: forget not the congregation of thy poor for ever.
20.  Have respect unto the covenant: for the dark places of the earth are full of the habitations of cruelty.
21.  O let not the oppressed return ashamed: let the poor and needy praise thy name.
22.  Arise, O God, plead thine own cause: remember how the foolish man reproacheth thee daily.
23.  Forget not the voice of thine enemies: the tumult of those that rise up against thee increaseth continually.

     We see so often in true men of God that their concern is for His honor. What about God in this matter? Some may scheme and foolishly attempt to lure God into action by hypocritically stating the need for Him to vindicate His name, but where is the man, like Paul, who is heart-sick with divine jealousy? It is God’s flock, about which the Psalmist is concerned, His congregation, His purchased possession, His inheritance, His dwelling place and His name.

     The man is full of the Holy Spirit, grief-smitten to the heart. He goes back to Israel’s King of old, who divided the Red Sea, brought his captives out of Egypt’s bondage after 400 years, fed them in an impossible wilderness and parted the Jordan. He is the God of the night, as well as day, and of the winter, as well as summer. The congregation has been brought low. They are poor and needy again, candidates for God’s blessing. Surely God is Master of their situation. All that they need is for Him to pluck His right hand from His bosom and stretch it forth toward His people. Would He do this? Would He plead His cause and stop the mouth of His enemies? He would and history proves that He did.


August 9

Psalms 75

1.  Unto thee, O God, do we give thanks, unto thee do we give thanks: for that thy name is near thy wondrous works declare.
2.  When I shall receive the congregation I will judge uprightly.
3.  The earth and all the inhabitants thereof are dissolved: I bear up the pillars of it. Selah.
4.  I said unto the fools, Deal not foolishly: and to the wicked, Lift not up the horn:
5.  Lift not up your horn on high: speak not with a stiff neck.
6.  For promotion cometh neither from the east, nor from the west, nor from the south.
7.  But God is the judge: he putteth down one, and setteth up another.
8.  For in the hand of the LORD there is a cup, and the wine is red; it is full of mixture; and he poureth out of the same: but the dregs thereof, all the wicked of the earth shall wring them out, and drink them.
9.  But I will declare for ever; I will sing praises to the God of Jacob.
10.  All the horns of the wicked also will I cut off; but the horns of the righteous shall be exalted.

     We give thanks to God for His name. His name is His excellent character, revealed to us through His wonderful works. Look to what he has done and it will speak to you, causing you to see that He is not far off. His works of old speak to us, “In the proper time, I will judge uprightly.” Though there be 400 years in Egypt or 400 years without a prophet, the time will come for deliverance.

     Pride is the most foolish of sins in corruptible man. By it, Lucifer fell. How each of us needs to avoid and turn away from its snare! Man is expendable. Let us humble ourselves under the mighty hand of God. Self-promotion is foolish and fruitless. The story of Saul and David, that of other kings and priests and, especially, the story of the scribes and Pharisees versus the humble fishermen from Galilee prove that God will remove His hand from one and anoint others for divine service.

     His wondrous works speak also of a cup of red wrath and His enemies will drink from it. From Pharaoh to the harlot in Revelation, though they rule with a mighty hand and assume permanence, their proud horns are cut off. God has His own way of promoting that which will praise him forever. Let Him do it.


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