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August 25

Pastor’s Note

I pray that today’s psalms of hope, trust, and confidence are an encouragement to you. Let us rejoice in a God who cares, though he often makes us wait for relief. In 1 Corinthians 7 we see the God-breathed wisdom of the Lord through the pen of the Apostle Paul. It is practical and timeless as it regards God’s high-value on the sacred covenant of marriage. May we shape our convictions by God’s revealed word and not by the culture in which we live.

— Pastor Mike

Psalms 124-127

Our Help Is in the Name of the Lord

A Song of Ascents. Of David.

124:1 If it had not been the Lord who was on our side—
 let Israel now say—
if it had not been the Lord who was on our side
 when people rose up against us,
then they would have swallowed us up alive,
 when their anger was kindled against us;
then the flood would have swept us away,
 the torrent would have gone over us;
then over us would have gone
 the raging waters.

Blessed be the Lord,
 who has not given us
 as prey to their teeth!
We have escaped like a bird
 from the snare of the fowlers;
the snare is broken,
 and we have escaped!

Our help is in the name of the Lord,
 who made heaven and earth.

The Lord Surrounds His People

A Song of Ascents.

125:1 Those who trust in the Lord are like Mount Zion,
 which cannot be moved, but abides forever.
As the mountains surround Jerusalem,
 so the Lord surrounds his people,
 from this time forth and forevermore.
For the scepter of wickedness shall not rest
 on the land allotted to the righteous,
lest the righteous stretch out
 their hands to do wrong.
Do good, O Lord, to those who are good,
 and to those who are upright in their hearts!
But those who turn aside to their crooked ways
 the Lord will lead away with evildoers!
 Peace be upon Israel!

Restore Our Fortunes, O Lord

A Song of Ascents.

126:1 When the Lord restored the fortunes of Zion,
 we were like those who dream.
Then our mouth was filled with laughter,
 and our tongue with shouts of joy;
then they said among the nations,
 “The Lord has done great things for them.”
The Lord has done great things for us;
 we are glad.

Restore our fortunes, O Lord,
 like streams in the Negeb!
Those who sow in tears
 shall reap with shouts of joy!
He who goes out weeping,
 bearing the seed for sowing,
shall come home with shouts of joy,
 bringing his sheaves with him.

Unless the Lord Builds the House

A Song of Ascents. Of Solomon.

127:1 Unless the Lord builds the house,
 those who build it labor in vain.
Unless the Lord watches over the city,
 the watchman stays awake in vain.
It is in vain that you rise up early
 and go late to rest,
eating the bread of anxious toil;
 for he gives to his beloved sleep.

Behold, children are a heritage from the Lord,
 the fruit of the womb a reward.
Like arrows in the hand of a warrior
 are the children [1] of one’s youth.
Blessed is the man
 who fills his quiver with them!
He shall not be put to shame
 when he speaks with his enemies in the gate. [2]

1 Corinthians 7:1-24

Principles for Marriage

7:1 Now concerning the matters about which you wrote: “It is good for a man not to have sexual relations with a woman.” But because of the temptation to sexual immorality, each man should have his own wife and each woman her own husband. The husband should give to his wife her conjugal rights, and likewise the wife to her husband. For the wife does not have authority over her own body, but the husband does. Likewise the husband does not have authority over his own body, but the wife does. Do not deprive one another, except perhaps by agreement for a limited time, that you may devote yourselves to prayer; but then come together again, so that Satan may not tempt you because of your lack of self-control.

Now as a concession, not a command, I say this. [3] I wish that all were as I myself am. But each has his own gift from God, one of one kind and one of another.

To the unmarried and the widows I say that it is good for them to remain single as I am. But if they cannot exercise self-control, they should marry. For it is better to marry than to burn with passion.

10 To the married I give this charge (not I, but the Lord): the wife should not separate from her husband 11 (but if she does, she should remain unmarried or else be reconciled to her husband), and the husband should not divorce his wife.

12 To the rest I say (I, not the Lord) that if any brother has a wife who is an unbeliever, and she consents to live with him, he should not divorce her. 13 If any woman has a husband who is an unbeliever, and he consents to live with her, she should not divorce him. 14 For the unbelieving husband is made holy because of his wife, and the unbelieving wife is made holy because of her husband. Otherwise your children would be unclean, but as it is, they are holy. 15 But if the unbelieving partner separates, let it be so. In such cases the brother or sister is not enslaved. God has called you [4] to peace. 16 For how do you know, wife, whether you will save your husband? Or how do you know, husband, whether you will save your wife?

Live as You Are Called

17 Only let each person lead the life that the Lord has assigned to him, and to which God has called him. This is my rule in all the churches. 18 Was anyone at the time of his call already circumcised? Let him not seek to remove the marks of circumcision. Was anyone at the time of his call uncircumcised? Let him not seek circumcision. 19 For neither circumcision counts for anything nor uncircumcision, but keeping the commandments of God. 20 Each one should remain in the condition in which he was called. 21 Were you a slave [5] when called? Do not be concerned about it. (But if you can gain your freedom, avail yourself of the opportunity.) 22 For he who was called in the Lord as a slave is a freedman of the Lord. Likewise he who was free when called is a slave of Christ. 23 You were bought with a price; do not become slaves of men. 24 So, brothers, [6] in whatever condition each was called, there let him remain with God.

Footnotes

[1] 127:4 Or sons
[2] 127:5 Or They shall not be put to shame when they speak with their enemies in the gate
[3] 7:6 Or I say this:
[4] 7:15 Some manuscripts us
[5] 7:21 Greek bondservant; also twice in verse 22 and once in verse 23 (plural)
[6] 7:24 Or brothers and sisters; also verse 29

  • Sam Funk

    Psalm 124:8 Our help is in the name of the Lord,
    who made heaven and earth.

    How fortunate we are to be able to get help from the ultimate source of power, mercy and forgiveness.

    Psalm125:1 Those who trust in the Lord are like Mount Zion,
    which cannot be moved, but abides forever.

    To move something so large that is being constantly watched by the One who made it, it’s impossible!

    Psalm 126:5 Those who sow in tears
    shall reap with shouts of joy

    This basically repeated in the next verse which tells me it’s important to remember. When we struggle to do what the Lord commands, even if it’s difficult or heart-wrenching, God will bless us and reward us.

    Psalm 127:1a Unless the Lord builds the house,
    those who build it labor in vain.

    If it’s not the Lord’s will to do something, you can save yourself some agony and frustration – try something else!

    1 Cor 7:23 You were bought with a price; do not become slaves of men.

    I can be a worker, a countryman and a helper to others. I am a servant of the Lord Jesus.