Sermon Follow Up - Week 26, 2022
"To the choirmaster: with stringed instruments. A Psalm of David.
Answer me when I call, O God of my righteousness!You have given me relief when I was in distress. Be gracious to me and hear my prayer! O men, how long shall my honor be turned into shame? How long will you love vain words and seek after lies? But know that the LORD has set apart the godly for himself; the LORD hears when I call to him. Be angry, and do not sin; ponder in your own hearts on your beds, and be silent. Offer right sacrifices, and put your trust in the LORD. There are many who say, “Who will show us some good? Lift up the light of your face upon us, O LORD!” You have put more joy in my heart than they have when their grain and wine abound. In peace I will both lie down and sleep; for you alone, O LORD, make me dwell in safety." (Psalm 4:1-8 ESV)
You have this promise wherever you go: God hears and answers the cries of his people.
A theme in the Psalms: God Hears and Answers Our Cries
Psalm 3:4— “I cried aloud to the LORD and he answered me from his holy hill.”
Psalm 4:1— “Answer me when I call… Be gracious to me and hear my prayer!”
Psalm 5:1— “Give ear to my words, O LORD…Give attention to the sound of my cry…O LORD in the morning hear my voice…"
Psalm 6:9— “Depart from me, all you workers of evil, for the LORD has heard the sound of my weeping.The LORD has heard my plea; the LORD accepts my prayer.
Psalm 18:6— “In my distress I called upon the LORD; to my God I cried for help. From his temple he heard my voice and my cry to him reached his ears.”
Psalm 56:8— “You have kept count of my tossings; put my tears in your bottle. Are they not in your book? My enemies will turn back in the day when I call. This I know, that God is for me.”
Psalm 116:1—“I love the Lord because he has heard my voice and my pleas for mercy. Because he inclined his ear to me, therefore I will call on him as long as I live.”
God My Righteousness
“Behold, the days are coming, declares the LORD, when I will raise up for David a righteous Branch, and he shall reign as king and deal wisely, and shall execute justice and righteousness in the land. In his days Judah will be saved, and Israel will dwell securely. And this is the name by which he will be called: ‘The LORD is our righteousness.’" (Jeremiah 23:5-6).
“And because of him you are in Christ Jesus, who became to us wisdom from God, righteousness and sanctification and redemption, so that, as it is written, “‘Let the one who boasts, boast in the Lord.’” (1 Cor. 1:30-31).
Jesus is our protection against spiritual and personal false accusation. He has cleared our name before him and he is the one we look to for final vindication one day.
The Lord answers, but How?
God has all authority and power to be able to change our difficult circumstances and to do it immediately. However, we should ask ourselves whether we believe an immediate relief or an immediate change of circumstances are the only way God can answer us.
Psalm 40:1 “I waited patiently for the LORD; he inclined to me and heard my cry.”
Jesus is the assurance that God will answer us
1. Jesus answered a cry that we never made.
The Son of God took on the form of a child at a moment when we were most helpless and opposed to God.
2. Jesus is continually praying for us.
Can the one "who ever lives to make intercession for us" be deaf to our cries and be cold-hearted in answering us?
3. Jesus will answer all of your cries with final deliverance.
Every desperate cry is a version of the one cry "deliver us!" which will be decisively answered when Jesus returns for his bride.
1. What would it mean to you that God would answer that one cry you’ve cried a dozen times? (or How would it change future desperate cries if you had the confidence that God, in some way, would answer you?)
2. Is there a lack of repentance that is hindering your prayers and God's openness to your cries? (see Isaiah 1 and Psalm 66:18) Husbands, are you making a concerted effort to live with your wives in an understanding way? (1 Peter 3:7).