May 2019   
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Bible Search
Seeing Jesus in Psalm 50 - A Horrible yet Beautiful Picture

Psalm 50:4-6 - "He calls to the heavens above and to the earth, that he may judge his people:  “Gather to me my faithful ones, who made a covenant with me by sacrifice!   The heavens declare his righteousness, for God himself is judge!"


I just read about a man who was convicted of murder. His killing spree lasted from 1977-1980 and in 1997 he was convicted of numerous counts of murder and given the death sentence.  Today over 16 years later he remains in prison as the state tries to decide how the death penalty should be carried out.  Sometimes judgment is slow in coming.


God's word however reminds us that it will not always be that way.  Judgment will come, judgment is a certainty, not just for mass murderers but for all of us.  God will one day fully judge His people, and unlike human judgment once His judgment falls it will be enacted quickly.


God is a consuming fire and we are reminded of the certinty of facing Him with the words, "it is appointed unto man once to die amd then the judgment."  Those are frightening words, and this is a horrific picture that the psalmist is painting in Psalm 50.  God is coming in judgment.  He is a devouring fore and a mighty tempest who is ready to testify against us and His testimonies are always right and just.  He is the judge, He is fair, He is just and what He says goes.  Revelation 19 reinforces this picture to us as it says He is returning to make war.  War against what? Sin in addition to other things.  The problem with that is that we all are sinners, we all have sin in our lives and in fact we are controlled by our sins (49:14).  We means that God is coming to make war against us.  We are sinners who are guilty in the face of judgment. 


We have no hope because we are guilty and we know it.  Worse yet, God knows it.  We will stand and presumably because of our guilt fall in the judgment.   Unless......unless as the psalmist says we have "made a covenant with Him by sacrifice. "  What sacrifice is he talking about? Not our sacrifice but the glorious and beautiful sacrifice of Jesus on the cross.  It is there that His blood cleanses us and takes our sins away, and it is there where Jesus' righteousness is imputed (credited) to our account.  We are guilty but through the sacrifice of Jesus, if we make that covenant with Him, the covenant written in His own blood then we are declared innocent, and even beyond that we are declared righteous.   No wonder Paul joyously proclaims, "there is now no condemnation for those who are in Christ Jesus."


The psalmist paints for us a horrific picture of the coming judgment.   Yet it is not just horrific, it is also beautiful, as Jesus takes our sins away on that day we will be given a crown of righteousness,  and we will reign with Him forever, not because of what we do but because of what He did.  To God be the glory!