"...if anyone makes the assistance of grace depend on the humility or obedience of man and does not agree that it is a gift of grace itself that we are obedient and humble, he contradicts the Apostle who says, "What have you that you did not receive?" (1 Cor. 4:7), and, "But by the grace of God I am what I am" (1 Cor. 15:10). (Council of Orange: Canon 6)


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    Psalm Eighteen: He Shows Steadfast Love to His Anointed, to David and His Seed Forever

    Images of the Savior from the Psalms
    Psalm Eighteen: He Shows Steadfast Love to His Anointed, to David and His Seed Forever

    He is either blind or a fool who can look upon a powerful thunderstorm without reflecting in trembling awe upon the might and majesty of the Lord. Immense reserves of strength beyond imagination break forth in the winds and hail and lightnings that sweep so suddenly over the resting world, and the stentorian voice of the thunder testifies to the solemn import of the display – and all this is but the breath of the nostrils of him who rides on the wings of the wind, as David here observes. What utter lunacy could permit a man to see so fearful a nostril-blast without ever trembling at the power of the God who so breathes, and pouring his whole being into answering the question of whether that perfect puissance will prove to be for him or against him?

    This is a question to which David knew the answer full well. The mighty arm of the thundering God was wholly for him, and it cast all his enemies beneath his feet, so that he might run up against a whole troop of them and never stumble. There was already a king in the land, even Saul, whom the Lord had rejected, and who raged against the anointing of David with all his legions of warriors. They surrounded him and gnashed their teeth against him, and almost overwhelmed him – but then his God thundered, and drew him out of many waters, and made his steps firm like the feet of a hind. This David was anointed to be God's king, and all the power of God would ever work for him, to give him triumph over his enemies and salvation to his people.

    But what a glimpse do we have, in the very last verse of this majestic psalm, of a greater salvation for a greater Anointed King! God gives great triumph to his King, and shows steadfast love to his Anointed (that is, to his Messiah), which is who? David, yes – and likewise his Seed after him, even forever! The triumph of the first anointed king was an earnest and pledge of the eternal triumph of the second Anointed King, who would be the Seed of David according to prophecy.

    When this Messianic King came, there was at that time, too, already a king in the land, who opposed the anointing of Jesus and raged against him with all his minions. Finally, after years of fierce opposition, he had him all surrounded, and his legions were gnashing upon him with their teeth, they even lifted him up on a Roman cross, a curse and an object of scorn to the whole world!

    But then, his God thundered. Lightnings flashed forth, hail came crashing down, thunders roared in the heavens – and the graves of all the godly dead were opened, and they walked forth again! The power of God, of which he gave the merest hint at the breath of his nostrils, was a resurrection power. It was a power that utterly destroyed Satan, and put him to an open shame, and forever saved his people to an eternal, resurrection life.

    When you next see a thunderstorm, O reader, think of this resurrection power of God, and ask yourself, does the roar of the thunder testify to the wrath of God which will one day destroy you, along with all the enemies of the Anointed King – or does it testify to the power of God in your behalf, through which your steps will be made firm, and you will be enabled to leap over a wall and enter your eternal reward? “He is a Shield for all who take refuge in him” (vs. 30).

    Posted by Nathan on September 6, 2010 11:53 AM

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