Saturday, August 20, 2016

The Lord Hears, Delivers and is Near

Psalm ‭34:17-18‬ ‭- The righteous cry out, and the LORD hears, and delivers them out of all their troubles. The LORD is near to those who have a broken heart, and saves such as have a contrite spirit.

Do you hear this? The LORD hears, delivers and is those who are righteous, having broken hearts and contrite spirits. Righteous means to be right, cleansed. Contrite means broken, crushed. We cannot come to God with vanity and pride. It just won't happen. 

Jesus' whole message to us was to come to Him, the only true Way. He begins by pricking our hearts and spirits that we may recognize our need for Him, but then we make a decision to go to Him. We recognize Him as greater than we, we fall before Him and ask for His forgiveness for our sins. We humble ourselves and repent of them. 

We cannot think or believe that our goodness in this life is what Jesus will honor. The Bible tells us this. If we do, we are boasting in ourselves and our abilities. We humble ourselves before the Lord. We come to Him with broken hearts and contrite spirits. For by grace you have been saved through faith, and that not of yourselves; it is the gift of God, not of works, lest anyone should boast. (‭‭Ephesians‬ ‭2:8-9‬)'s a free gift! He requires only our humility and submission to Him. Do you see how wonderful this is? Nothing we can do, but all that He has done on the cross. He shed His blood that we might be cleansed and made righteous by the blood of the Lamb...when we come humbly to Him...asking for forgiveness. 

Then...He will hear, deliver and be near us. But...Proverbs 15:29 says The LORD is far from the wicked, but He hears the prayer of the righteous. Sounds pretty harsh. We are all considered wicked until we become righteous by the saving grace of Jesus.

There's that word righteous again...being right (with God) and cleansed (by the blood of Jesus). Coming humbly before Him, asking forgiveness, turning from sin, following Christ. Sharing Christ with others.

When you spread out your hands, I will hide My eyes from you; even though you make many prayers, I will not hear. Your hands are full of blood. Wash yourselves, make yourselves clean; put away the evil of your doings from before My eyes. Cease to do evil... To what purpose is the multitude of your sacrifices to Me? says the LORD. I have had enough of burnt offerings of rams and the fat of fed cattle. I do not delight in the blood of bulls, or of lambs or goats. Bring no more futile sacrifices; incense is an abomination to Me... Come now, and let us reason together, says the LORD, Though your sins are like scarlet, they shall be as white as snow; though they are red like crimson, they shall be as wool.  (Isaiah‬ ‭1)

Only one sacrifice, that of Jesus, can wash us clean. When we believe this, submit to this truth, come humbly to Him, will we be righteous and cleansed. Before we understand this we try to do it on our own. Our offerings or sacrifices--our self-prescribed goodness--is not what He desires. He wants us! In relationship with Him. 

This is relationship:
For I desire mercy and not sacrifice, and the knowledge of God more than burnt offerings. (Hosea‬ ‭6:6‬)  Knowing God vs. sacrifices.
I am the vine, you are the branches. He who abides in Me, and I in him, bears much fruit; for without Me you can do nothing. (‭‭John‬ ‭15:5‬) Abiding together.
But as many as received Him, to them He gave the right to become children of God, to those who believe in His name... (John‬ ‭1:12‬)  Relationship

There's a lot of scripture here. His Word is truth and it will never return void (be useless or vain). There's a word here for someone, including me! He will hear if you humble yourself and turn to Him. Ask for forgiveness of your sins. Maybe you haven't done any major crimes or physical murders. Maybe you don't know what your sins might be. That's okay. He will show you. 

I asked initially for help. In absolute weakness I humbly responded to Him for His help. All the rest of my knowledge came because of my initial humility. He changed me rather than the trial. He brought life to me when I was so low. Just where He wants us. Low. Humble. Unable to do in our own strength. Needing help, needing a Savior. So in my heart, in my weakness, I cried out and He heard, delivered and became near to me. He will do the same for anyone.

Psalm ‭145:18-19‬ ‭- The LORD is near to all who call upon Him, to all who call upon Him in truth. He will fulfill the desire of those who fear Him; He also will hear their cry and save them.

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