I shouldn’t have to remind my faithful readers that this isn’t a sermon until it is preached (this is to a sermon what a table of contents is to a book, it tells you the sections, but it doesn’t tell you the story).
Text intro: This psalm is actually about offering thanks for deliverance from death (1-2), but when viewed from a NT perspective, it is fitting for any believer when thinking of their salvation.
Proposition/Big Idea: In the face of death, hope in the Lord.
I. Our Lord knows the anguish of pain and death (3-4).
- A. In the OT, death and the grave are aggressive, trying to bring souls down to them.
- B. These verses are prophetic of Christ on the cross.
- C. Christ suffered the pain and anguish of death and also knew the loss of losing someone.
- D. Our only refuge is the name of the Lord (cf. Prov. 18:10).
II. The Lord does what is right and merciful for us (5-7).
- A. The three attributes of the Lord in v. 5 all work together in harmony for our good.
- B. The psalmist identifies with the lowliest and trusts the Lord to take care of him.
- C. Our heart knows rest even here in the face of death because we trust in the Lord.
III. Christ has made the hope of resurrection is a reality (8-11).
- A. The words of v. 8 remind us that the ultimate victory is ours, not the enemy’s.
- B. The words of v. 9 remind us not only of the hope of resurrection (from our NT perspective) but of the importance of living the resurrection life in this world.
- C. Paul quotes v. 10a in 2 Cor.4:13-14 as proof of our resurrection.
- D. Though we, too may feel crushed (v. 10b) and disillusioned (v. 11), we must in that pain and confusion call out to the Lord who gives grace.
Your hope is revealed in:
1. Your praise and the testimony of your obedience (12-14).
- a. The “cup of salvation” was the drink offering and the third cup of the Passover (after which this psalm is read).
- b. It is fitting that we think of the cup of salvation in terms of the Savior’s cup of suffering because his suffering was his obedience unto death so that we might know salvation.
2. Your seeing things from God’s perspective (15).
- a. This means that the death of one of the Lord’s saints is viewed as costly by the Lord.
- b. John 10:28 And I give them eternal life, and they shall never perish; neither shall anyone snatch them out of My hand.
3. Your service to him while you still have life (16-19).
- a. The service of the believer (16) is a living sacrifice unto God rendered in gratitude for his salvation.
- b. The testimony in vv. 18-19 is fitting as we are not called to praise, to serve, or to suffer alone, but in the midst of the congregation.