Sunday, July 3, 2022

When God Casts You Down and Weakens Your Strength

 Temple Baptist Church - 7-3-2022

Psalm 102




A.  In Psalm 102, we find the Psalmist (unnamed with no history of the “why” of the Psalm) reflecting on the hard time that he is in.  His reflection is honest in his view and his conclusion is the spiritual wealth that he gains.


Verses 1-2 – The Psalmist’s Plea – He does the right thing!  If you don’t ask the question, the answer is automatically “NO!”


Verses 3-11 – The Psalmist’s Perception – My days are consumed, my heart is stricken,            like a pelican without water, a sparrow unprotected, at the mercy of my enemies, ashes to eat, and withered like grass!


Verses 12-28 – The Psalmist’s Praise – “Just praise God anyway!”  This was what we often said while in Bible College and times were tough.  Praise ye the Lord!


Verses 10, 23 – The Psalmist’s Predicament – Something that God does or allows to be done. 


1 Corinthians 10:13  There hath no temptation taken you but such as is common to man: but God is faithful, who will not suffer you to be tempted above that ye are able; but will with the temptation also make a way to escape, that ye may be able to bear it.


B.  As humans, we think that these verses are the opposite of what they should be in hard times.


1.  It should have been: “Thou as lifted me up” instead of “thou hast … cast me down.” 


2.  It should have been: “He strengthened my weakness” instead of “He weakened my strength in the way.”


3.  The Holy Ghost said just the opposite of what we think and want.  God sometimes allows hard times to weaken our strength. 


Isaiah 55:8-9  For my thoughts are not your thoughts, neither are your ways my ways, saith the LORD.  (9)  For as the heavens are higher than the earth, so are my ways higher than your ways, and my thoughts than your thoughts


(We neither know God’s way nor wisdom in His allowing things to transpire that He could correct or make go away.)


Jeremiah 33:3  Call unto me, and I will answer thee, and shew thee great and mighty things, which thou knowest not.


Ephesians 1:8-9  Wherein he hath abounded toward us in all wisdom and prudence;  (9)  Having made known unto us the mystery of his will, according to his good pleasure which he hath purposed in himself:


C.  Why?


1.  Weakness humbles the saint.  It brings us to the reality that we are not in control.


Romans 12:3  For I say, through the grace given unto me, to every man that is among you, not to think of himself more highly than he ought to think; but to think soberly, according as God hath dealt to every man the measure of faith.


2 Corinthians 12:7-10  And lest I should be exalted above measure through the abundance of the revelations, there was given to me a thorn in the flesh, the messenger of Satan to buffet me, lest I should be exalted above measure. 


2.  Weakness centers the saint.  It keeps our eyes upon the Lord instead of the circumstances. 


Psalms 56:3  What time I am afraid, I will trust in thee.


Isaiah 12:2  Behold, God is my salvation; I will trust, and not be afraid: for the LORD JEHOVAH is my strength and my song; he also is become my salvation.


Proverbs 3:5-6  Trust in the LORD with all thine heart; and lean not unto thine own understanding.  (6)  In all thy ways acknowledge him, and he shall direct thy paths.


3.  Weakness reminds the saint.  That we are but flesh, and therefore subject to the “powers that be.”  Sin, Satan, sickness, etc.


Psalms 73:25-26  Whom have I in heaven but thee? and there is none upon earth that I desire beside thee.  (26)  My flesh and my heart faileth: but God is the strength of my heart, and my portion for ever.


Matthew 26:41  Watch and pray, that ye enter not into temptation: the spirit indeed is willing, but the flesh is weak.


4.  Weakness introduces the saint.  To the strength of God that is only found at the end of ours.


2 Corinthians 12:8-10  For this thing I besought the Lord thrice, that it might depart from me.  (9)  And he said unto me, My grace is sufficient for thee: for my strength is made perfect in weakness. Most gladly therefore will I rather glory in my infirmities, that the power of Christ may rest upon me.  (10)  Therefore I take pleasure in infirmities, in reproaches, in necessities, in persecutions, in distresses for Christ's sake: for when I am weak, then am I strong. 

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