Jan 2018, Christ Mountain Top
to Worship, Psalm 111
Psalm 111, read from The Message
evening prayers, 30 days
perfect acrostic psalm, Spurgeon, 5
“Halleluyah” (praise the Lord)
letters of the Heb aleph-bet
are poetry (like songs)
interprets the other
works of his hands are faithful and just;
his precepts are trustworthy.
are established forever and ever,
be performed with faithfulness and uprightness.
sent redemption to his people;
has commanded his covenant forever.
and there was.
(not always for us)
focus, from v 2 and v 10:
works are so great, worth
lifetime of study—endless enjoyment!
are the works of the LORD,
by all who delight in them.
good life begins in the fear of God—
that and you’ll know the blessing of God.
fear of the LORD is the beginning of wisdom;
those who practice it have a good understanding.
– Seek out. The kind of study that involves worship and prayer, our full
devotion to God, our deep trust and personal appeal. Not merely an intellectual
pursuit, but a pursuit by our whole selves, of the word and works of God.
requires “practice” (NRSV for do/make). It requires DOING stuff, not simply
KNOWING stuff. About a life aligned with the word and works of God. In The Message, the translator offers the
expression, “The good life begins in the fear of God” instead of “the fear of
the LORD is the beginning of wisdom.”
delight, when practiced with skill, gives us “good understanding.”
works? All the works of God are great, even if they seem small and
insignificant. The psalm is full of general expressions, “The works of his
hands are faithful and just,” and those general expressions generally point to
God’s work in Creation and Providence. That is, in the way God has made
everything and the way God sustains everything.
all of which refer to the redemption story. “He sent redemption to his people;
has commanded his covenant forever.” That is, God delivered a nation of slaves
from Egypt and made them God’s holy nation, a priestly people. In the
expression “he provides food,” the word food is also translated as the “prey”
of a lion or “spoil” from battle. It appears to be a reference to Israel
plundering the Egyptians as God set them free (Exodus 3.22; Spurgeon, 3).
of smell of a shark or a hound
facets of the eye of a fly
strength of the ant
of a million snowflakes – just counting those in Mountain Top this winter
of each species of orchid, each one matched to a different pollinating species
ability of our DNA to copy itself to create a new cell to replace those that die
so that the whole body can live
loves variety! God delights in it. God loves fit – of orchid and pollinator, of
lover and beloved, of glass and liquid, of garlic and bread. But often, I don’t
embrace variety and change even half as much as God does. And I want people to
be the way I want them to be instead of the unique person God made them to be.
And, sometimes, I don’t even care about God’s creation, to say anything of
caring for it. It is time for me to study, to find wisdom, for my life to be aligned
with the word and work of God.
a nation of slaves and gave them a land
the hungry by despoiling the powerful
truth and justice
promises – covenant
us, not because we are superior but because God wanted to – despite how much of
a mess we are.
loves the poor and oppressed. God loves folks in jail – whether they are
murderers or drug dealers or abusive. God loves slaves. And too often, I’m too
good to associate with folks like that, let alone really love them. It is time for me to study, to find wisdom, for my life
to be aligned with the word and work of God.
Fine, cabinet in the dumpster. “It will be beautiful Mom”
C. H. Spurgeon. The Treasury of David.