TODAY’S READING: PSALMS 69-72
“For he delivers the needy when he calls, the poor and him who has no helper. He has pity on the weak and the needy, and saves the lives of the needy. From oppression and violence he redeems their life, and precious is their blood in his sight.” – Psalm 72:12-14
In 1 Timothy 2:4, Paul said of Jesus, “God our Savior, who desires all people to be saved and to come to the knowledge of the truth.” Jesus delivers, and he desires to deliver all men.
But, in this psalm we see that something must happen in order for Jesus to be able to deliver. We must call.
Why must we call?
Because God is love. And, God’s love does not force anything. As Paul says in 1 Corinthians 13, love does not seek its own, including Jesus’ desire that all people will be saved. But, his love is patient and longsuffering, bearing all things. And, I believe it will be so until all men have called.
What do we call on?
Genesis 4:26 says, “At that time people began to call upon the name of the Lord.” We are to call upon the name of the Lord. We are to call upon God’s character, God’s nature. This means we are to call on God who is light and not darkness, love and not fear, life and not death.
If we call on some other name, some other god, then we have not called on Jesus and the Father. And, if we have not called upon Jesus and the Father, then they cannot deliver.
The one who calls on the name of the Lord has recognized he is needy. The needy knows that he is poor and has no helper. This doesn’t mean that he has no money, as if Jesus only answers those who have no money. Notice that the verse also says the needy has no helper. This is talking about the Spirit.
The needy knows that he is poor in spirit. Of course, this calls to mind Jesus’ first words in the sermon on the mount, “Blessed are the poor in spirit, for theirs is the kingdom of heaven.” The very first step in truly calling on the name of the Lord for deliverance is recognizing that we are poor in spirit.
We truly know we are calling on the name of the Lord when we acknowledge that we are weak. If we are trying to overcome through power or seeking power, then we have not reached the place of true need to call on the name of the Lord and receive deliverance. In 2 Corinthians 12:10, Paul said, “For the sake of Christ, then, I am content with weaknesses, insults, hardships, persecutions, and calamities. For when I am weak, then I am strong.”
It’s from oppression and violence that the needy are saved. Obviously, the needy are saved from being on the receiving end of oppression and violence. But, when we call on the name of the Lord, recognizing we are poor in spirit and weak, we are also delivered from doing oppression and violence. We are only ready to be delivered from doing oppression and violence when we see we are poor in spirit and weak, for until then we believe we are rich and with power, having it all together as it were.
Precious is the blood in the eyes of Jesus of the one who calls on his name. The life is in the blood. So, the life of the one who calls on the name of the Lord is precious in the eyes of Jesus.
Those that truly know they are needy, truly know they are weak, those that truly call on the name of the Lord, have reached the place of losing their life. Having lost their, Jesus can save it.
In Mark 8:34-35, Jesus said, “If anyone would come after me, let him deny himself and take up his cross and follow me. For whoever would save his life will lose it, but whoever loses his life for my sake and the gospel’s will save it.”