60:1-61:8 – There is so much to hold us back from worshipping and serving the Lord. We could so easily become discouraged. We need the encouragement of God’s Word. This is what we have here: ‘With God we shall gain the victory, and He will trample down our enemies’(12). At times, it may seem like our enemies have the upper hand. When we feel like this, we must remember the Lord – He is ‘a strong tower against the enemy’(61:3). When things seem to be getting out of control, we must fix our eyes on the Lord Jesus Christ – He is ‘enthroned for ever’(61:7). ‘Day after day’, He calls us to worship Him and to live as His servants. He calls us to receive ‘His mercy… new every morning’, to be ‘renewed day by day’(61:8; Lamentations 3:22-23; 2 Corinthians 4:16-18).
62:1-63:11 – The Lord is ‘my Rock and my Salvation’(62:2,6). As you read the Psalmist’s words, let your thoughts turn to the Lord Jesus Christ. He is our ‘Rock’ – the ‘Rock’ of our salvation. Through ‘the blood of Christ’, we receive the greatest ‘blessing’ of all – salvation (1 Corinthians 10:1-4,16). No other blessing can ever compare with the joy of knowing Christ as Saviour: ‘Your steadfast love is better than life’. Through our great Saviour – the Lord Jesus Christ – , we are learning to ‘praise’ God. We are learning to say, with the Psalmist, ‘I will praise You as long as I live’(63:3-4). What a great Saviour we have. He is greater than all our songs of praise. He is ‘too marvellous for words’- ‘Thanks be to God for His indescribable gift!’(Mission Praise, 788; 2 Corinthians 9:15).
64:1-65:13– ‘Let the righteous rejoice in the Lord’(64:10). True joy in the Lord is not just a passing emotion, a feeling which doesn’t last for very long. When our ‘praise’ to the Lord is real, it leads to a changed life: ‘O God’, we will ‘keep our promises to You’(65:1). Jesus shows us the great difference between a passing emotion, a feeling which doesn’t last, and a true conversion which leads to a changed life. He speaks of those who ‘receive the Word with joy,… endure for a while’ and then ‘fall away’. He speaks also of those who ‘hear the Word and accept it and bear fruit’(Mark 4:3-9,16-17,20). How do you worship the Lord? Are you looking for a good feeling – and nothing more than that? God is looking for more. He wants us to live as ‘a new creation’(2 Corinthians 5:17).
66:1-67:7– ‘Come and see what God has done’(66:5). God invites us to look into His Word, to read His Story, the Story of all that He has done for us. ‘Come and hear, all you who fear God, and I will tell you what He has done for me’(66:16). God invites us to listen to the preaching of His Word, to let His Story become our story, to let His salvation become real in our lives. We read God’s Word. We hear His Word. This is our journey of discovery. We discover what the Lord has done for us. We discover how much He wants to bless us. He waits to hear our prayer – ‘May God be gracious to us and bless us…’. He answers our prayer – ‘God has blessed us’(67:1,6-7). He wants us to ‘be glad and sing for joy’. He wants us to call ‘all the ends of the earth’ to ‘worship Him’(67:4,7).