Tuesday, October 1, 2013

Making the Trip Home

"How lovely is Your tabernacle, O LORD of hosts!" Psalms 84:1b NKJV

Reading Psalm 84 over and over again. What a Psalm. It is like proverb after proverb strung together. Truth wrapped in praise and longing.

"My soul longs, yes, even faints For the courts of the LORD; My heart and my flesh cry out for the living God.

Even the sparrow has found a home, And the swallow a nest for herself, Where she may lay her young - Even Your altars, O LORD of hosts, My King and my God." Psalms 84:1-3 NKJV

God's house is our home. It is a miracle that there is a place at the table for everyone who comes. It is a place where they are safe to do the most important things in life like giving birth and raising a family

"Blessed are those who dwell in Your house; They will still be praising You. Selah

Blessed is the man whose strength is in You, Whose heart is set on pilgrimage.

As they pass through the Valley of Baca, They make it a spring; The rain also covers it with pools." Psalms 84:4-6 NKJV

Notice the three aspects of interpreting a proverb from (September 17, 2013)

> Synonymous Parallelism (Repetitious) - Repeating to reinforce a truth
> Antithetic Parallelism (Contrastive) - Just as one side or concept is true
> the other opposite concept is also true
> Synthetic Parallelism (Completive) - Expanding a truth with a new or
> reinforcing truth

The Selah is a trigger for this kind of contemplation and thought. These three concepts can be in our mind as we read and worship.

Blessed people who call the tabernacle their home are a thankful people. Those same people find strength in God (linked to living at the tabernacle) so their heart makes journeys to find God even when they are far away. They cry but their tears change the landscape. Their tears are mingled with tears from Heaven to become beautiful drinking places.

"They go from strength to strength; Each one appears before God in Zion.

O LORD God of hosts, hear my prayer; Give ear, O God of Jacob! Selah" Psalms 84:7-8 NKJV

Each one is strengthened. Each one has an audience with God..

'Jacob's God' refers you back to Jacob's life... a liar... a wrestler... a man blessed in spite of himself... fruitful with many children... humble and having power to bless others in the end... If you heard his prayer God hear mine. If grace is the order of the day then I will make claims based on grace.

The Psalmist leverages grace. God must make room and God must hear him because it is the nature of His deity. God's track record demands it.

"O God, behold our shield, And look upon the face of Your anointed." Psalms 84:9 NKJV

Jesus is our shield. In a sense we blind God with the glory of His Son and sneak into His house, sit on His couch and raid His refrigerator as one of the family.

"For a day in Your courts is better than a thousand. I would rather be a doorkeeper in the house of my God Than dwell in the tents of wickedness." Psalms 84:10 NKJV

Now we have an antithetic parallelism after many synonymous and synthetic ones (see above). The worship builds and builds in intimacy then breaks into a comparison. It reinforces truth to block against future temptation that is coming down the road. When the Psalmist is tempted or when he feels like Jacob he goes back in his mind to where he lives... God's house.

"For the LORD God is a sun and shield; The LORD will give grace and glory; No good thing will He withhold From those who walk uprightly.

O LORD of hosts, Blessed is the man who trusts in You!" Psalms 84:11-12 NKJV

Those who live in God's house are not there because of merit. They are guests of the Son and the Father is blinded by His Son's glory. All guests are honored guests. God's house has many mansions. Jesus left long ago to prepare a place for us. We have one now if we want it and make claim to it. Even if we stray it lies waiting for us. It will be beyond what we imagine when we see it with our own eyes.

I can read this Psalm as Jacob but my heart makes a pilgrimage and returns home as Israel. Yes... We worship You God.

"How lovely is Your tabernacle, O LORD of hosts!" Psalms 84:1b NKJV

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