Psalm 81 A Psalm by Asaph’s Faily
1 Sing aloud unto God our strength: make a joyful noise unto the God of Jacob.
2 Take a psalm, and bring hither the timbrel, the pleasant harp with the psaltery.
3 Blow up the trumpet in the new moon, in the time appointed, on our solemn feast day.
I love it when a song starts out with praise. This is an example of what we ought to be doing every day when we rise up out of bed. Start with praise, sing aloud to God (as long as you won’t wake up the wife) for he is our strength. We should be making a joyful noise unto the Lord and not saying “Oh Lord, it’s morning” like it’s a chore to get up. So we should take that psalm’s adviice and bring the musical instrument of our choice and give him praise – loud praise.
Look at all the instruments he lists here: the timbrel, the harp, the psaltery and the drums. Back in those days that was a band! Today we have guitars and banjos still have drums and then there’s keyboards. But back in those days a band consisted of the timbrel, the harp, the psaltery and the drums. Did you ever to think about this as a band playing worship? Well it’s true! This tradition goes way back to the days of Asaph’s family, maybe before. Kinda nice to know that isn’t iit ? And they praised the Lord just like our worship bands do today.
4 For this was a statute for Israel, and a law of the God of Jacob.
5 This he ordained in Joseph for a testimony, when he went out through the land of Egypt: where I heard a language that I understood not.
6 I removed his shoulder from the burden: his hands were delivered from the pots.
7 Thou calledst in trouble, and I delivered thee; I answered thee in the secret place of thunder: I proved thee at the waters of Meribah. Selah.
God ordained Israel to be a nation of praise. It was like making a law. I mean after all they were taken down to Egypt where they didn’t even understand the language and for 400 years they served the Egyptians. Then God removed that burden and their hands were delivered. What an awesome Deliverance it was! I haven’t read it in a while and I think I’ll go back and read it. But the Deliverance out of Exodus is a story and I remembered when I was just a little boy. When I got saved that was one of the first things I wanted to find in the Bible – the story of the plagues. It took me awhile but I got there eventually and it still thrills me today how God delivered Israel out of the hand of the Egyptians, because that means He can deliver me out of anything
But it didn’t stop there. He got them through the Red Sea and they still had the wilderness to cross. In the wilderness he provided them the Ten Commandments and manna so they could eat. He provided them quails so they could have meet. He gave them water out of a rock! He gave them victory over every enemy they had. And yet they still Grumble and complained. And because they wouldn’t believe God they had to wander in the desert for 40 years. But He led them all the way by His clouded by His father. God never left them. And He will never leave us. We may grumble and complain. We nay despise our condition. We may even get mad at God. But He loves us so much, He will still lead us to the good thing at the end that He has planned for us.
8 Hear, O my people, and I will testify unto thee: O Israel, if thou wilt hearken unto me;
9 There shall no strange god be in thee; neither shalt thou worship any strange god.
10 I am the Lord thy God, which brought thee out of the land of Egypt: open thy mouth wide, and I will fill it.
Through all of this in the wilderness, God still chose Israel. If they would only have listened to him when they moved into the new land. He was such a loving God to lead them through that wilderness and give them victory over a majority of their enemies when they moved into the Promised Land, and yet they still disobeyed. They still wandered away from God. I don’t know whether it was a case of the fathers not teaching the next generation about all that God had done. I really find that hard to believe. Write a story like that to tell I’d be telling it to everybody I could. Or wait a minute – I do have a story like that! It’s called My Testimony. And I should be sharing it with everybody that I come in contact with. I serve an awesome God. He delivered me out of sin like the Red Sea Deliverance. He provided me living water. He provided me the bread of life. He provided me the light. How is my life any different than the Egyptians and the Israelites coming out of Egypt.
The first two commandants highlights that we shall have no strange god and we shouldn’t worship any other god. And yet when they got into the new land they built high places to worship other gods. Broke the very first two Commandments. God reminds them that He is the Lord their God which brought them up out of Egypt, and if only they would open their mouth to bring forth testimony, He would fill it. He will do the same for us. He will fill our mouths with a testimony when we need it (Luke 12:12)
11 But my people would not hearken to my voice; and Israel would none of me.
12 So I gave them up unto their own hearts’ lust: and they walked in their own counsels.
God says they would not listen to Him, they would have nothing to do with Him. So he gave them up to their own hearts lust and they walked in their own counsels. Isn’t this describe our world today and the culture change that our society is going through right now? Their own hearts lust is taking them every which way, and we have preachers they are happy to itch their ears (2 Tim 4:3). The preachers are preaching a gospel that is molded to the desires ofsociety. They aren’t looking at God’s Council, they are walking in their own counsel
Oh how we need the counsel of God in our society today. The removal of sound Doctrine from our churches is sad. They are taking and using the scripture to their own end. Not demanding repentance. They accept all people, which is okay because Christ accepts all. But once Christ accepts them, He demands repentance from their iniquities. The woman caught in adultery was told to go and sin no more. The man at the cross asked forgiveness of Jesus and He said today he would be with him in Paradise. Zaccheaus climbed down from this tree and repented right before the Lord and said he’d give back to all who he had stolen from. Everybody Jesus came in contact with was changed, they didn’t walk away the same way they came to him. And neither should we allow people to continue in sin with no remorse and no repentance. They are not listening to the voice of the Holy Spirit – they are listening to men walking in their own counsel and not God’s counsel.
13 Oh that my people had hearkened unto me, and Israel had walked in my ways!
14 I should soon have subdued their enemies, and turned my hand against their adversaries.
15 The haters of the Lord should have submitted themselves unto him: but their time should have endured for ever.
16 He should have fed them also with the finest of the wheat: and with honey out of the rock should I have satisfied thee.
The Lord says he wishes that men would have walked in His counsel and in his ways. Then he would have subdued their enemies and turned His hand against the adversaries. The haters of the Lord would have submitted themselves. And God would have turned them to Himself.
As we witness we need to witness to all. Especially our enemies, who need the message so bad. Of course, we can only do so much but we must be planting seeds. We need to be like Johnny Appleseed, who went across the land and just spread his seeds everywhere he went. Now there are apple trees all over the place. I’m sure he threw some on bad ground and some on good ground. And we will do the same, the parable of the sower tells us so. We do not need to be concerned with what kind of ground we are throwing a seed on. We never know which heart is going to be affected. We need to feed them with the finest seed of the gospel we have and allow God to do the work in their heart. That is our mission and that is our task.