'The Call' is the theme of this Psalm for Asaph who was David's songleader of old. God "called the earth from the rising of the sun unto the going down thereof" (v.1), "He shall call to the heavens from above, and to the earth, that He may judge His people"(v.4), and then commands His people to "call upon me in the day of trouble and I will deliver thee and thou shalt glorify Me." (v.15)
The vivid prophetic picture being painted here has not yet happened for it depicts the end of the age Day of the Lord judgment of Israel when "Our God shall come, and shall not keep silence: a fire shall devour before Him, and it shall be very tempestuous round about Him. He shall call to the heavens from above, and to the earth, that He may judge His people." (v.3,4)
The fiery judgments of God's Day of the Lord wrath described in Revelation 8-16 during the Trumpet and Bowl judgments which are designed to purify Israel and judge the ungodly are in focus in these verses as "Our God shall come...that He may judge His people...for God is Judge Himself. Selah." (v.3,4,6)
Two messages follow this pronouncement of "God is Judge": The first is declared in (v.7-15) unto the people of God:"‘Hear, O My people, and I will speak; O Israel, and I will testify against thee: I am God, even thy God."
Then (v.8-13) show God's disdain for the sacrificial animals without the hearts of the people giving Him true worship which is found in (v.14,15) "Offer unto God thanksgiving: and pay thy vows unto the Most High: And call upon Me in the day of trouble. I will deliver thee, and thou shalt glorify Me."
Thanksgiving, vows, dependence and glorifying God are the things God wants from the hearts of His people, not just the continual offerings of animal sacrifices which only follow the letter of the Law and not the Spirit which is represented by those heart based actions listed above. These are God's requirements from those who love Him, and trust Him, and worship Him in Spirit and in Truth.
Dependence upon the LORD in time of distress, 'the day of trouble', shows the believers faith in his God to rescue him as He promised. Then, the testimony follows as the one who is brought through the affliction tells all of God's promise and His power to save bringing great glory to Him Who alone is worthy!
In (v.16-23) God brings seven indictments against the wicked:
(v.23) Shows God's initial silence and fully uncovers the thinking of the wicked with God's reproof and justice to follow. His stern warning to the wicked: "Now consider this ye that forget God, lest I tear you in pieces, and there be none to deliver" threatens their destruction unless changes are made in their ways.
And, (v.24) gives the necessary changes: "Whoso offereth praise glorifieth Me: and to him that ordereth his conversation aright will I show the salvation of God." God calls for a complete change in direction evidenced by right conduct which demonstrates the changed heart of the one who obeys!
Change is the key word and is the fruit of a repentant heart fixed upon doing the will of God which is Offering praise and glorifying Him...and the change which only the 'salvation of God' can accomplish. This is God's remedy for the sin-sick soul, the application of His grace through the salvation that comes through receiving His Son, the Lord Jesus Christ as Savior.
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