Today you should read: Psalm 80
We see in Psalm 80 a cry for God to rescue and restore three tribes that represent the nation of Israel. The tribe of Ephraim, Benjamin, and Manasseh desperately desire God to “stir up His strength” and come to their rescue. (v.1-3)
William Macdonald states it this way regarding verses 4-7, “terrible distance has come in between Israel and the Lord God of Hosts. He is angry not only with their sins but even with their prayers. For food He has given them a diet of weeping, and for drink a torrent of tears. He has made them a cause of strife and contention to their Gentile neighbors, and they are the butt of cruel jokes among their enemies. There is only one solution—that is for the God of hosts to look down in grace and salvation upon them.”
Now, my question that I wish to pose is this, have you ever had a season in life where you feel like this? Are you currently in a season like this? You wrestle and battle with your sin and the sinful tendencies of your personality only to realize that your prayers are self-focused and not pleasing to God? Well, I want you to know today there is hope, but before we discuss this hope let’s take a look at the rest of the psalm.
In verses 12 and 13 we see that God lowers His protective wall and the surrounding nations pick away at the “vine” (Israel). The “Boar” and “Other Wild Animals” are in reference to Egypt, Assyria, and Babylonia and in the later years Persia, Greece, Rome and the damage that would come upon these tribes from these nations. From this we see how hope is not something that comes naturally, especially since this is over the course of years.
The question I pose to you is how an individual can, and in this case a nation of tribes, continue to go on without hope? The answer? Without faith and hope it is impossible to press on as we see in verses 14 and 15. Once more, we see the people implore God to return to them in blessing. In verse 16 it says, “the vine is burned and cut down by the frown of the Lord.”
So where will their hope come from? How will they continue to persevere in the face of their enemies and this season where God has removed His blessing?
“Let Your hand be upon the man of Your right hand, upon the son of man whom You made strong for Yourself.” The man at God’s Right hand is none other than the Lord Jesus Christ! Full and complete blessing will only come upon Israel when Christ is given His proper place. Then Israel will NEVER backslide again—Revived by the Lord they will call upon the name of the Lord (Bible Believers Commentary).
So you see the “vine” or “flock” as God’s chosen people constantly believing and backsliding in a season of life where backsliding is most present, but the hope He gives them is the future Messiah. The Messiah, Jesus Christ, will be the One who delivers to them grace and salvation. In verse 19 we see an urge for the Chief Shepherd to deliver or restore His flock. Their deepest desire was for God to shine down on them again and be their restoration.
This is the key – “Their deepest desire was God.” If you are in a season like this my hope is that you would take the principle of desiring God to heart and allow it to lead you to repent and return knowing that life with the Shepherd is so sweet. This is the hope you can have by faith in the “One at the Right Hand of God” – Jesus Christ!
Desire God and find that your satisfaction will be complete in Him.
Worship God – Enjoy God – Be useful to His Kingdom
Posted by: Zach Monroe