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Singing Psalm 112 you don’t fear anything except the LORD

Singing Psalm 112 you don’t fear the circumstances

don't fear

Ever in a situation where it feels like you are left hanging in the balance?

No matter which way you look at it, the problem seems unsolvable.

You are called to imitate one who learned to wait when you find yourself in these situations:

“Do not let your adorning be external—the braiding of hair and the putting on of gold jewelry, or the clothing you wear—but let your adorning be the hidden person of the heart with the imperishable beauty of a gentle and quiet spirit, which in God’s sight is very precious. For this is how the holy women who hoped in God used to adorn themselves, by submitting to their own husbands, as Sarah obeyed Abraham, calling him lord. And you are her children, if you do good and do not fear anything that is frightening.” ~ 1 Peter 3:3-6

You don’t fear anything that is frightening because as an image bearer, you get to be like the Lord in wonderful ways that go beyond reason. Singing Psalm 112 to learn that you get to be “full of mercy.” You get to be “just and gracious.” His love surpasses knowledge, and he reliably forgives you, adopts you, and accepts you as his own. 

When Jesus longs to gather you as a hen gathers her chicks and you simply come to him in response, nothing else has to make sense to you since it makes perfect sense to the one who created sense to begin with!

The little ducklings in the neighborhood pond gather around the mama duck scurrying on land until they get safely in the water. They surround her ever so closely on every side. When they move to one side creating a little space, they still stick together with the mama duck’s eye on her ducklings the entire time.

don't fear

don't fear

don't fear

The images that might come to mind when you think of passing through deep waters are the Lord with his people going through the Red Sea and the Jordan, and Jesus passing by the disciples in the boat while walking on the water as only God can do. His eye is on his people especially during the storms when they go through deep waters.

When every senseless, evil thing that happens on a human level is used by the triune God to bring about good, you don’t fear anything but him.

When he seeks his glory in all things, but as his glory is showing mercy to ungrateful sinners, you don’t fear giving him glory in all things.

When you are in deep waters, as long as he is with you holding you afloat, you don’t fear anything. He doesn’t stop you like the waves in their approach that can only go so far but rather invites you to approach all the way to his throne of grace with confidence!

Therefore, you fear him only, hanging on his every word in complete trust.

You are secure.

“When you go through deep waters, I will be with you.” ~ Isaiah 43:2

You don’t fear in the darkness when it hits. In it, light arises and overtakes it. In God, there is no darkness.

You don’t fear bad news. You know you are in deep waters when you hear it. You know you can’t make sense of it. But you trust the Lord will use it as a springboard to accomplish much good though it is not in your capacity to discern just what good he will bring from the evil you see.

But it is perfectly in his capacity.

You don’t fear anything except the Lord and not trusting him, the only one who has the capacity to make sense of everything that you cannot.

Joseph in the pit. 

Jesus on the cross. 

Looked pretty senseless at the moment. 

Who could have discerned, besides the Lord of all, the glorious (and by glorious, I mean, merciful) good and salvation that was the direct result of heinous evil?

Check out the disciples’ response to their circumstance: “Then they left the presence of the council, rejoicing that they were counted worthy to suffer dishonor for the name.” ~ Acts 5:41 

Your heart is steadfast, trusting in the Lord. Your heart is firm, you will not live in fear.

Singing Psalm 112, God’s abiding presence makes it so, whispering confidence into your soul. Your meditation on his ways bubbles up through your voice in praise. 

What spills out of your tiny cup is disordered emotions, maybe anger or anxiety, and a variety of sins.

God’s cup would be the size of all the oceans in the world combined. Surely the scale is off but you get the idea. When it tilts, what spills out, is mercy and grace. He goes gentle and low. That is the essence of who God is.

His goodness far exceeds and swallows up your sins as he mercifully wipes away your tears of grief, sorrow, and sadness. He stores them in his keepsake bottle, he so cherishes your crying out to him.

Grasping this to even a small degree, your mind is fixed. You don’t fear. Your heart is firm and steadfast coated and soaked through with Trinity sweetness, come what may.

Singing Psalm 112 you don’t fear the future

“Strength and dignity are her clothing, and she laughs at the time to come.” ~ Proverbs 31:25

You don’t fear what will become of you or your children. You believe that God not only exists but also that he rewards those who seek him. “The joy of the Lord is your strength.” (Nehemiah 8:10)

Those who seek him, he counts as righteous. What a relief that as you hide under Christ’s wings, you are righteous. You are not self-righteous trying to earn your place with him. There is no need for that since he is drawn to you especially when you are most needy of his healing from a sin-sick soul or rather, a sin-dead soul. He takes care of his body like that. He heals it when it is sick. He resurrects it when it is dead.

He is forming Christ in you, making you like him who is gentle and lowly, enabling you to care for the weak, helpless, oppressed, poor, and needy as you rightly see yourself in Christ as having solidarity with them. You don’t fear those who have less than you and won’t allow fear to drive you to keep them down. You see that they were made in God’s image and are of great value. Therefore, you seek ways to pull up alongside, to build them up, to see them become all that God created them to be.

Those who do not seek him, he counts as wicked. All on their own, they become arrogant, overfed, and unconcerned about helping the weak, helpless, oppressed, poor, and needy (Ezekiel 16:49). They don’t see themselves as they are: “wretched, pitiable, poor, blind, and naked.” (Revelation 3:17).

The righteousness of the righteous lasts forever while the wicked vanish. The lust of the wicked will perish. You don’t fear a thing when you consider that evil and those who love it will be seen no more.

At the same time you plead for God to be merciful to them granting them the gift of repentance, making them new creations, swapping out their hearts of stone for hearts of flesh as he does for you.

When you sing Psalm 112 about the wicked vanishing, it is the Lord whose mercy spills over from his heart and puts it on your heart to hope that the reason they vanish is because they are no longer wicked. 

You hope that their lust has perished because God has given them a new heart and made them a new creation. The old has gone; the new has come.

Although we are great sinners, the ocean of Christ’s mercy swallows it all up. He takes away not only the sin but also the guilt and shame that go along with it. He longs to be gracious to you. 

Jesus sets you free from the slavery of thinking you’ve got to go it alone. You acknowledge the truth of your need. He meets you where you are. You depend on him and are free indeed. 

The Holy Spirit prompts you, since you can’t purify your own heart. As he helps you to obey him, God gives you himself, the person of the Holy Spirit to prompt you so that you can prompt others as he gives opportunity, and as he directs, spurring one another on toward love and good deeds.

“And let us consider how to stir up one another to love and good works, not neglecting to meet together, as is the habit of some, but encouraging one another, and all the more as you see the Day drawing near.” ~ Hebrews 10:24-25

The Holy Spirit fills you with courage to speak the truth to those who resist and grieve him. The Holy Spirit fills you with compassion to forgive those who hurt you as Stephen did when his brothers and fathers were in the process of killing him, reminiscent of what his Lord did not long before this time. It gives you chills just thinking of it.

“But he, full of the Holy Spirit, gazed into heaven and saw the glory of God, and Jesus standing at the right hand of God.” ~ Acts 7:55

Stephen’s face appeared as the face of an angel since the Lord made his face to shine on him.

You don’t fear waiting for the other shoe to drop but rather are comforted at the thought of the many sufferings that are prevented from harming you by the mercy of God. His protection is one of the many rewards he has for you as you seek him. Therefore you don’t fear the suffering that might come your way in the future, and like Stephen, you don’t fear death.

You don’t fear the future when the Lord of all who is also your best friend is in charge of it and of you and of all his church. Though you don’t know what the future holds, you know who holds the future and therefore you don’t fear it.

Singing Psalm 112 you don’t fear loss

Have you ever wondered what you would do without a certain person? If you were to lose that person, your world would cave in and crumble, you might think.

There are actually three persons that you cannot do without.

The triune God made people in his image for the express purpose of having a face-to-face relationship with them. Mankind runs on an intimate relationship with God. 

He created marriage to help us understand this intimacy, this union between Christ and his people. He calls his church his body. That’s how intimate we were created to be with him. 

That relationship was broken in the garden and ever since mankind has been enslaved by their own desire for independence, their desire to do whatever is right in their own eyes, their desire to run their own lives. 

You might as well try to run a car on grape jelly instead of gas or electric as to try to run your own life. It doesn’t work because a car wasn’t made to run on grape jelly. And putting more grape jelly in the gas tank doesn’t solve the problem.

Jesus is fulfilling the plan to restore that face-to-face relationship with his people and gave us his Holy Spirit of love as a deposit guaranteeing it. There has never been a friend like him.

How is it that you don’t fear loss of wealth but instead generously help the poor? Like Stephen, you follow your good shepherd, the Lord Jesus. 

You don’t fear loss of relationships or what others think of you. The good you do endures despite opposition. You are full of mercy. You are just and gracious while the wicked see it and rage in anger (Psalm 112:9-10).

They are harassed and helpless, like sheep without a shepherd. You long to see the hold that Satan has on their minds and hearts broken that they would look in triumph on that enemy.

The more you see your need to come to Jesus, the less you need the approval of people. The Lord cares for you and fully satisfies you. You are free to love others when you don’t require anything from them. You get all that you require and more from Jesus who bids you to come to him.

You don’t fear loss of life. “We are all immortal till our work is done!” ~ Isaac Watts

You don’t fear loss of good standing with God knowing that Jesus keeps you from being counted as wicked. You seek the Lord and trust him to know you and to save you. He freely adopted you, after all. He’s not about to let you go now or ever.

You don’t fear losing fellowship with God face-to-face as they did since the Holy Spirit is restoring the face-to-face fellowship you have with Jesus day-by-day. You are no longer hiding from him as Adam and Eve hid in the Garden of Eden.

You don’t fear anything except the Lord and are careful to keep his commandments given to you out of his heart of love and mercy for you clearly seen throughout the pages of scripture. This is the whole duty and pleasure of man and the end of the matter of life.

Jesus did this—this Jesus that continually overcomes the world and death—and you are with him.

“And when he hears disturbing news     He will not be afraid; His heart is fixed; his confidence     Upon the LORD is stayed.” ~ Psalm 112:7

April 14-21, 2023


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