Wednesday, December 1, 2010

Preaching tonight a most magnificent Psalm — Psalm 83. The first verse reads as follows:

Psalm 83:1
O God, do not remain quiet; Do not be silent and, O God, do not be still.

Psalm 83:1
אֱלֹהִ֥ים אַל־דֳּמִי־לָ֑ךְ אַל־תֶּחֱרַ֖שׁ וְאַל־תִּשְׁקֹ֣ט אֵֽל׃

Believers often struggle with the idea of God seeming to be silent. Why is this? In the 17th c. a man named Gualter Cradock gives three helpful reasons why God seems to be silent.

First, The Lord keeps silent to try the faith of the believers. The Lord will not suffer his people to be overwhelmed, that is certain, but he will suffer them to come very near, that the waves cover them, and fear and horror shall cover their souls, and all to try and test their faith.

Second, the Lord keeps silence in the midst of the troubles of his people to try men's uprightness and discover who will stick to God, and his cause, and his people, out of uprightness of heart. Sometimes God leaves his cause, and leaves his people, and his ordinances to the wide world, to see who will plead for it and stick to it.

Third, God keeps silence in the midst of the greatest troubles, so that he may gather the wicked into one bundle so that they may be destroyed together. God may withdraw himself from his people (in seeming absence only) yet he hath a hook within the hearts of His people and he holds them up secretly by His Spirit, that they shall not leave him. Yet the world shall not see but that God hath quite left them, and all their ordinances and his gospel and everything, and then the wicked come together and insult, whereby God may come upon them at once, and destroy them, as we find exemplified in this psalm (=Ps 83).

I think this is good theocentric wisdom.

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