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SUMMER IN THE PSALM 2021  •  Sermon  •  Submitted   •  Presented   •  45:53
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The late Supreme Court Justice, Louis Brandeis, said to his frustrated, impatient daughter, “My dear, if you would only recognize that life is hard, things would be so much easier for you.”
Jesus told the disciples to expect trials. He begins John 16 by stating
John 16:1–2 ESV
“I have said all these things to you to keep you from falling away. They will put you out of the synagogues. Indeed, the hour is coming when whoever kills you will think he is offering service to God.
He ends that chapter in a similar vein
John 16:33 ESV
I have said these things to you, that in me you may have peace. In the world you will have tribulation. But take heart; I have overcome the world.”
Peter builds on Jesus words in John’s Gospel when he says
1 Peter 4:12 ESV
Beloved, do not be surprised at the fiery trial when it comes upon you to test you, as though something strange were happening to you.
Yet in spite of these words many followers struggle with their trials. A key to persevering well is to know that pits are not probable but inevitable. Psalm 40 gives us the reason and response to the inevitable.
Psalm 40 is a song about the pits.
What is a pit? Anything that causes a sense of helplessness, desperation, and threatens to ruin or take away our life.
We are not called to pray for pits only to pray in them. Pits have a purpose. Joseph was thrown in a pit so that he could be prepared to live in the palace. Jonah described the belly of a great fish as a pit. His pit prepared him to preach. Pits are not places of punishment for the disciple it a place of preparation.
In the pit the Lord is working in us patience - trust in the presence of absence - and He is working out of us praise. The Lord never works in us just for us. He works in us for us and for others. He will not only give us a song to sing - He will make of us a substance to see so that others will fear and put their trust in the Lord.
A placid life does not make people say “GREAT IS THE LORD”. A charmed life does not make people say “GREAT IS THE LORD”. Pits - the universal experience of all humans - makes people say “GREAT IS THE LORD”.
Pits make our faith real. They make us real and make God real.
“What is REAL?” asked the Rabbit one day, when they were lying side by side near the nursery fender, before Nana came to tidy the room. “Does it mean having things that buzz inside you and a stick-out handle?” “Real isn’t how you are made,” said the Skin Horse. “It’s a thing that happens to you. When a child loves you for a long, long time, not just to play with, but REALLY loves you, then you become Real.”
“Does it hurt?” asked the Rabbit. “Sometimes,” said the Skin Horse, for he was always truthful. “When you are Real you don’t mind being hurt.”
“Does it happen all at once, like being wound up,” he asked, “or bit by bit?” “It doesn’t happen all at once,” said the Skin Horse. “You become. It takes a long time. That’s why it doesn’t happen often to people who break easily, or have sharp edges, or who have to be carefully kept. Generally, by the time you are Real, most of your hair has been loved off, and your eyes drop out and you get loose in the joints and very shabby. But these things don’t matter at all, because once you are Real you can’t be ugly, except to people who don’t understand.”
In the pit we become - we take shape and form - in the pit God is producing - He is the potter forming the clay - He is shaping us - He is making us real - and many will see His handiwork and trust in Him because GREAT IS THE LORD!
Our text teaches us how David arrived at this conclusion.



Psalm 40:1 ESV
I waited patiently for the Lord; he inclined to me and heard my cry.
Waiting I waited. Waiting is not idleness - it is divine activity of expecting God to work. Notice that David does not try to climb out of the pit - he cries out from the pit because he know the LORD is listening. The pit reminds him that he is powerless to climb out but not to cry out.
Waiting is an exercise of trust. David could wait because he knew the Lord was listening. How did David have the assurance that the LORD was listening - covenant. Remember in a covenant relationship promises are kept irregardless of the other persons action. In a covenant we say “I will do what I have promised no matter what.” We are not sure what landed David in the pit - what we are sure of is the LORD listens to His people when they are in the pit.
You can wait patiently when the LORD has attached His reputation to your life.
Philippians 1:6 ESV
And I am sure of this, that he who began a good work in you will bring it to completion at the day of Jesus Christ.
Notice the LORD does not come until David cries out. He turned to David because David turned towards Him. The Lord heard because David tuned His life to the Lord’s frequency.


Psalm 40:2 ESV
He drew me up from the pit of destruction, out of the miry bog, and set my feet upon a rock, making my steps secure.



Psalm 40:2 ESV
He drew me up from the pit of destruction, out of the miry bog, and set my feet upon a rock, making my steps secure.
He went from sinking to standing. David went from stuck to secure. Pits strip us of our false security and help us to find our true stability and security.


Psalm 40:3 ESV
He put a new song in my mouth, a song of praise to our God. Many will see and fear, and put their trust in the Lord.
Saved people sing. Rescued people rejoice. Those who have been pulled out pour out praise. Those who have been lifted up can’t shut up. Rescue is incomplete without rejoicing.
Everyone who has been rescued gets a salvation song. Salvation songs don’t need rhythm only a rescuer. Salvation songs need a perfect person not perfect pitch. Salvation songs don’t need rhyming lyrics just redemptive ones. If you have been saved you have a song. A song not for yourself but a song for others.



Psalm 40:3 ESV
He put a new song in my mouth, a song of praise to our God. Many will see and fear, and put their trust in the Lord.
Daniel 3:24–30 ESV
Then King Nebuchadnezzar was astonished and rose up in haste. He declared to his counselors, “Did we not cast three men bound into the fire?” They answered and said to the king, “True, O king.” He answered and said, “But I see four men unbound, walking in the midst of the fire, and they are not hurt; and the appearance of the fourth is like a son of the gods.” Then Nebuchadnezzar came near to the door of the burning fiery furnace; he declared, “Shadrach, Meshach, and Abednego, servants of the Most High God, come out, and come here!” Then Shadrach, Meshach, and Abednego came out from the fire. And the satraps, the prefects, the governors, and the king’s counselors gathered together and saw that the fire had not had any power over the bodies of those men. The hair of their heads was not singed, their cloaks were not harmed, and no smell of fire had come upon them. Nebuchadnezzar answered and said, “Blessed be the God of Shadrach, Meshach, and Abednego, who has sent his angel and delivered his servants, who trusted in him, and set aside the king’s command, and yielded up their bodies rather than serve and worship any god except their own God. Therefore I make a decree: Any people, nation, or language that speaks anything against the God of Shadrach, Meshach, and Abednego shall be torn limb from limb, and their houses laid in ruins, for there is no other god who is able to rescue in this way.” Then the king promoted Shadrach, Meshach, and Abednego in the province of Babylon.
Daniel 6:19–27 ESV
Then, at break of day, the king arose and went in haste to the den of lions. As he came near to the den where Daniel was, he cried out in a tone of anguish. The king declared to Daniel, “O Daniel, servant of the living God, has your God, whom you serve continually, been able to deliver you from the lions?” Then Daniel said to the king, “O king, live forever! My God sent his angel and shut the lions’ mouths, and they have not harmed me, because I was found blameless before him; and also before you, O king, I have done no harm.” Then the king was exceedingly glad, and commanded that Daniel be taken up out of the den. So Daniel was taken up out of the den, and no kind of harm was found on him, because he had trusted in his God. And the king commanded, and those men who had maliciously accused Daniel were brought and cast into the den of lions—they, their children, and their wives. And before they reached the bottom of the den, the lions overpowered them and broke all their bones in pieces. Then King Darius wrote to all the peoples, nations, and languages that dwell in all the earth: “Peace be multiplied to you. I make a decree, that in all my royal dominion people are to tremble and fear before the God of Daniel, for he is the living God, enduring forever; his kingdom shall never be destroyed, and his dominion shall be to the end. He delivers and rescues; he works signs and wonders in heaven and on earth, he who has saved Daniel from the power of the lions.”


Psalm 40:3 ESV
He put a new song in my mouth, a song of praise to our God. Many will see and fear, and put their trust in the Lord.
It’s not our singing that will save but our song. Not the tune but the truth.
Acts 16:25–34 ESV
About midnight Paul and Silas were praying and singing hymns to God, and the prisoners were listening to them, and suddenly there was a great earthquake, so that the foundations of the prison were shaken. And immediately all the doors were opened, and everyone’s bonds were unfastened. When the jailer woke and saw that the prison doors were open, he drew his sword and was about to kill himself, supposing that the prisoners had escaped. But Paul cried with a loud voice, “Do not harm yourself, for we are all here.” And the jailer called for lights and rushed in, and trembling with fear he fell down before Paul and Silas. Then he brought them out and said, “Sirs, what must I do to be saved?” And they said, “Believe in the Lord Jesus, and you will be saved, you and your household.” And they spoke the word of the Lord to him and to all who were in his house. And he took them the same hour of the night and washed their wounds; and he was baptized at once, he and all his family. Then he brought them up into his house and set food before them. And he rejoiced along with his entire household that he had believed in God.
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