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  • Writer's picturePastor Mike

November 30 2023

Thursday November 30

“Whoever Is Wise Will Observe These Things”

Psalm 107:33-43

33 He turns rivers into a wilderness, And the watersprings into dry ground;

34 A fruitful land into barrenness, For the wickedness of those who dwell in it.

35 He turns a wilderness into pools of water, And dry land into watersprings.

36 There He makes the hungry dwell, That they may establish a city for a dwelling place,

37 And sow fields and plant vineyards, That they may yield a fruitful harvest.

38 He also blesses them, and they multiply greatly; And He does not let their cattle decrease.

39 When they are diminished and brought low Through oppression, affliction and sorrow,

40 He pours contempt on princes, And causes them to wander in the wilderness where there is no way;

41 Yet He sets the poor on high, far from affliction, And makes their families like a flock.

42 The righteous see it and rejoice, And all iniquity stops its mouth.

43 Whoever is wise will observe these things, And they will understand the lovingkindness of the LORD.

Today we are going to finish our comments on Psalm 107 by looking at verses 33-43. Remember the psalmist begins this beautiful chapter with a call to “the redeemed of the LORD” from the “east and from the west, from the north and from the south”, to proclaim the goodness and mercy of the LORD and to give Him thanks!

Then the psalmist gives us four pictures of those the LORD has redeemed and saved out of their trouble and delivered out of their distresses. And in each case, they are encouraged to “give thanks to the LORD for His goodness, and for His wonderful works to the children of men”! They were wandering, sitting in darkness, experiencing affliction, and attempting to do the business of life without God but when they looked up and cried out the God they found salvation and redemption!

Now in verses 33-43, the approach changes and the focus of attention is not on the people in trouble but on the Lord and what He does to get our attention when we turn our back on Him and forget Him. He can turn the well-watered gardens into a desert (v. 33-34). But He can also turn the desert into a garden (v. 35). God promised this in Isaiah 35; 41:18; and Deut. 28:1-5. God can judge the land because of the wickedness of the people who live there (v. 34). You can read about this in Genesis 19:24-28.

God can also heal the land and bless it because of the faith and obedience of the people. This is a part of His covenant relationship with Israel (Deut. 28:15, 22-24, 58-59, 62-63). If necessary, the Lord can summon foreign armies like Babylon to invade the land and use them to chasten the leaders (vv. 39-40).

However, God’s purpose is not to destroy but to cleanse, and He will restore the blessing to the land and the people (vv. 41-42). This closing paragraph (vv. 39-42) reminds us of Mary's song in Luke 1:46-55.

What should we learn from these five pictures that depict God's power and mercy in action? To be wise and heed the Word of God (v. 43; Hos. 14:9). Yes, God shows His love and mercy to the disobedient who repent and call on His name, but our Father would rather share that love with obedient children who would enjoy it more (2 Cor. 6:14-7:1).

Today, we can also be assured that “where sin abound, grace did much more abound” (Romans 5:20). It is our choice to either “be like fools” (v. 17), or to “be wise and observe these things and understand the lovingkindness of the LORD” (v. 43).

God bless!

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