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Trust in the LORD with all thine heart

Proverbs 3:1-35 This is many people’s favourite Scripture.  In fact, it was the verse written by my mother into my confirmation bible: “Trust in the LORD with all thine heart; and lean not unto thine own understanding.  In all thy ways acknowledge him, and he shall direct thy paths. (Proverbs 3:4-5) What’s your approach to […]

Words of the wise

Proverbs 1:1-33 We’ve looked at Job and the Psalms.  Now we turn to Proverbs, the next book in the category of “wisdom literature.” Here we have a long and colourful fireside chat.  It’s the words of a father to his son.  Verse 1 introduces us to the father: “The proverbs of Solomon son of David, king of […]

Praise the LORD

Psalm 150 The book of Psalms concludes as all things will – with noisy, joyful praise.  Psalm 150: “Praise ye the LORD. Praise God in his sanctuary: praise him in the firmament of his power.  Praise him for his mighty acts: praise him according to his excellent greatness.  Praise him with the sound of the […]

They that shall sow in tears shall reap in joy

Psalm 126 From slavery to freedom, from the wilderness to ‘the land of milk and honey’, from darkness to light, from the cross to the resurrection – the Christian life is an experience of redemption.  The LORD is always defined as One who “brings up” His people – from Egypt to Canaan, from exile to […]

At their wits’ end

Psalm 107 There’s a saying: “Most people only look up when they’re flat on their backs.”  It’s proved in the bible time and again.  And this phrase “at their wits’ end” is a perfect description for where people find Jesus.  Or rather, where He finds them. “Wits’ end” is quite a creative translation from the […]

As a flower of the field, so he flourisheth

Psalm 103 Psalm 103 gives us a sobering contrast between the life of man and the love of God.  One is fragile and short-lived, the other is eternal and unchanging: “As for man, his days are as grass: as a flower of the field, so he flourisheth.  For the wind passeth over it, and it […]

Threescore years and ten

Psalm 90 Your days are numbered. That is a sobering thought.  You have a finite number of heart-beats left.  When you’ve reached your allotted tally there will be no more. To put it starkly, we are in the queue for the crematorium.  It may be a long queue, but it’s getting shorter all the time. […]

Strength to strength

Psalm 84 The way we think about it, careers, businesses and sports teams go from “strength to strength.”  And usually they go from “strength to strength” because of hard work and perseverance. But in Psalm 84 both those assumptions are challenged. First of all, it is God’s people who go from “strength to strength.”  (Psalm 84:7)  […]

Bite the dust

Psalm 72:9-20 It’s a euphemism for death, but these days we rarely talk of people “biting the dust” – not in a final sense anyway. We might say that a plan or project has bitten the dust.  But describing a person’s death as biting the dust seems the preserve of tough-talking cowboys. The exact wording – bite […]

To the ends of the earth

Psalm 72:1-8 The Hebrew language abounds in double entendres.  We have already considered the multiple shades of meaning to the word “Adam“.  It refers to the historical person of Adam, to a man and to man (meaning humanity).  The way the Bible thinks of things, what happens to the man Adam happens to all man. Or consider the […]