From the Pastor’s Pen

Final thoughts on Psalm 34:19-22

Many are the afflictions of the righteous, But the Lord delivers him out of them all. He guards all his bones; Not one of them is broken. Evil shall slay the wicked, And those who hate the righteous shall be condemned. The Lord redeems the soul of His servants, And none of those who trust in Him shall be condemned.           NKJV

David summarizes Psalm 34 in a few simple words: The Lord redeems the soul of His servants. As Christians, we face afflictions but we are not undone by them. Even in the direst circumstances, we are comforted by the hope we have in our Lord Jesus Christ. Even if our afflictions end in the death of our physical bodies, the Lord delivers us.

Jesus said in John 5:24, “he who hears My word and believes in Him who sent Me has (present tense) everlasting life, and shall not come into judgment, but has passed from death into life. For the Christian there is really no such thing as death, and even that which we call death (the separation of our souls from our bodies) is really only a stepping stone into a better life. Our greatest delivery comes when God takes us out of this world and brings us into His presence in Heaven, where afflictions will be banished forever. 

Understanding this great truth, his helps us to put our priorities in order; our goal in this life is not to heap all of the fame or material gain upon ourselves that we are able to heap in the time we have. Our goal is to glorify the Lord Jesus Christ, and to diligently serve Him every day, all the days of our lives.

In contrast, the Psalm 34:21 declares, “Evil shall slay the wicked: and they that hate the righteous shall be desolate.” Whether or not the wicked understand their true state in this life, they will understand it when they stand before God and face the ultimate desolation: an eternity of torment in Hell. The very God they despise is the only One who truly grants them any blessings during their time on this earth.

God has placed upon His children the duty to warn the wicked of their true state, that they may turn to Christ while they can. In doing so, we pray that they will truly understand the final words of Psalm 34. The Lord redeems! Go in that confidence, and by God’s grace, pray that your testimony will be a light in the darkness to the lost who live all around you.     Linda Croft

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