Salvation Belongs to the LORD (Psalm 3)

A few weeks ago I had the honor, privilege, and responsibility of preaching at our main Sunday church gathering. Below are my notes from my message on Psalm 3, and you can also listen on the church website.

Walter


A Psalm of David when he fled from Absalom his son.
LORD, how they have increased who trouble me! Many [are] they who rise up against me. Many [are] they who say of me, "[There is] no help for him in God." Selah But You, O LORD, [are] a shield for me, My glory and the One who lifts up my head. I cried to the LORD with my voice, And He heard me from His holy hill. Selah I lay down and slept; I awoke, for the LORD sustained me. I will not be afraid of ten thousands of people Who have set [themselves] against me all around. Arise, O LORD; Save me, O my God! For You have struck all my enemies on the cheekbone; You have broken the teeth of the ungodly. Salvation [belongs] to the LORD. Your blessing [is] upon Your people. Selah
Psalm 3:1-8

Intro

This psalm is a precious one to me, for it speaks clearly and soul-stirringly of the salvation of God. Enter this psalm, and you will smell the aroma of Christ wafting from every verse. If Psalm 1 shows us Jesus the Word of God, and Psalm 2 reveals Jesus the Annointed King, then Psalm 3 gives us Jesus our Salvation.

The Beauty and Unique-ness of the Psalms

  • Contains hymns, songs, laments, praises, proverbs, etc. Designed to be sung, memorized, repeated, and rehearsed.
  • Most quoted book of the Old Testament by Jesus, and by the New Testament as a whole.
  • Designed to impact the heart and emotions in a way that only poetry can. The psalms are beautiful, startling, raw, tender, compelling, prophetic, and grand - all at the same time.
  • Hermeneutic: They are the expressions of the godly (usually David) to the LORD. They speak of the various experiences of the people of God, and are often prophetic. They point to Jesus in remarkable ways. Each psalm is written in a specific place and time, but they are each timeless.

A Division

  • The Complaint (3:1-2)
  • The Faith-Filled Cry (3:3-4)
  • God's Salvation (3:5-8)

The Complaint

A Psalm of David when he fled from Absalom his son.
LORD, how they have increased who trouble me! Many [are] they who rise up against me. Many [are] they who say of me, "[There is] no help for him in God." Selah.
Psalm 3:1-2

The Worst of Times

What a treat that this psalm tells us when it was written! It was not a rosy time for King David. Indeed, it was arguably one of the darkest points in his life. David is getting on in years. His days of leading the mighty men out in battle are behind him. We know that he's at least in his fifties, and could be pushing sixty. And he's starting to lose touch with his people....

2 Samuel 15-16:14

People who are troubling David:

  • Absalom
  • Ahithaphel
  • Shimei
  • The people who he loves - the same people who unanimously crowned him king over all Israel just couple decades earlier.

Some of the problems were his fault. Some of them weren't.

"Fightin' Words"

yesh·ü'·ä: from the root word, "yä·shah". help, deliverance, salvation.

"There is no salvation for you in God".

How many of you have heard this line - whether from other people, directly from the Enemy, or from your own thoughts? Peg it, mark it, identify it. It is a lie from the pit of hell! Satan has oppressed many souls with this simple, but sinister lie. When you hear them, they should be "fightin words" to you. Your spiritual hackles should go up, your muscles should tense, and your growl should awaken.

But what does it say? "The word is near you, in your mouth and in your heart" (that is, the word of faith which we preach): that if you confess with your mouth the Lord Jesus and believe in your heart that God has raised Him from the dead, you will be saved. For with the heart one believes unto righteousness, and with the mouth confession is made unto salvation. For the Scripture says, "Whoever believes on Him will not be put to shame." For there is no distinction between Jew and Greek, for the same Lord over all is rich to all who call upon Him. For "whoever calls on the name of the LORD shall be saved."
Romans 10:8-13

The Faith-Filled Cry

But You, O LORD, [are] a shield for me, My glory and the One who lifts up my head. I cried to the LORD with my voice, And He heard me from His holy hill. Selah.
Psalm 3:3-4

David expresses total dependence

Faith: Complete trust or confidence in someone or something.

David cries out to the Lord

  • Humility
  • Confession

You must know your need before you will cry out. You will not know the salvation of the Lord if you don't recognize your need of it.

God hears David

Wow! Our God is a god who hears the cry of the humble.

God's Salvation

I lay down and slept; I awoke, for the LORD sustained me. I will not be afraid of ten thousands of people Who have set [themselves] against me all around. Arise, O LORD; Save me, O my God! For You have struck all my enemies on the cheekbone; You have broken the teeth of the ungodly. Salvation belongs to the LORD. Your blessing is upon Your people. Selah
Psalm 3:5-8

Laying down in peace

...even with him possibly worth more dead than alive.

10,000 warriors

That would cause me to tremble a little bit.

Arise, O LORD

It is common to have an idea that God's salvation is like a piece of paper that God "signs off" on. Though it is true that the Christian's name is written in the Lamb's book of life, the salvation of God is described more often as a heroic action!

The LORD has made bare His holy arm In the eyes of all the nations; And all the ends of the earth shall see The salvation of our God.
Isaiah 52:10

Broken teeth and cheekbones

But David said to Saul, "Your servant used to keep his father's sheep, and when a lion or a bear came and took a lamb out of the flock, "I went out after it and struck it, and delivered [the lamb] from its mouth; and when it arose against me, I caught [it] by its beard, and struck and killed it. "Your servant has killed both lion and bear; and this uncircumcised Philistine will be like one of them, seeing he has defied the armies of the living God." Moreover David said, "The LORD, who delivered me from the paw of the lion and from the paw of the bear, He will deliver me from the hand of this Philistine." And Saul said to David, "Go, and the LORD be with you!"
1 Samuel 17:34-37

And I brake the jaws of the wicked, and plucked the spoil out of his teeth.
Job 29:17

God is the one who has done the work. Such is David's faith that he uses the perfect tense to designate an action that has already taken place. It's done! As Eric likes to say, "He has done it! And He will do it! And he will continue to do it!"

Salvation Belongs to the LORD

yeh·hō·shü'·ah: Jehovah is Salvation. Jesus.

Jesus is the salvation of God - that's what his name literally means. Salvation is not found in ourselves, or in anything of man. Our salvation is found in the one who is faithful and true, the Amen, the one who cannot lie, the one who is the same yesterday, today and forever. Because of this we can know that our salvation is sure.

  • Salvation: Jesus making atonement upon the cross to deal with the penalty of our sin.
  • Salvation: Jesus being present with us by the Holy Spirit to lead us into all truth.
  • Salvation: Jesus "ever living to make intercession" for us before the father.
  • Salvation: Jesus returning again to make all things new. God will gather together in one all things in Christ.

How do you access the salvation of Jehovah?

1. Know your need

Do you know that apart from God's salvation, you are a depraved sinner under the wrath of God?

All we like sheep have gone astray; We have turned, every one, to his own way; And the LORD has laid on Him the iniquity of us all.
Isaiah 53:6

For the wrath of God is revealed from heaven against all ungodliness and unrighteousness of men, who suppress the truth in unrighteousness, because what may be known of God is manifest in them, for God has shown [it] to them.
Romans 1:18-19

"He who believes in the Son has everlasting life; and he who does not believe the Son shall not see life, but the wrath of God abides on him."
John 3:36

Do you know that apart from the "keeping" and sanctifying power of God, you cannot live this Christian life?

Blessed [be] the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, who according to His abundant mercy has begotten us again to a living hope through the resurrection of Jesus Christ from the dead, to an inheritance incorruptible and undefiled and that does not fade away, reserved in heaven for you, who are kept by the power of God through faith for salvation ready to be revealed in the last time.
1 Peter 1:3-5

No temptation has overtaken you except such as is common to man; but God [is] faithful, who will not allow you to be tempted beyond what you are able, but with the temptation will also make the way of escape, that you may be able to bear [it].
1 Corinthians 10:13

2. Know God's Heart

"All that the Father gives Me will come to Me, and the one who comes to Me I will by no means cast out.
John 6:37

The Lord is not slack concerning [His] promise, as some count slackness, but is longsuffering toward us, not willing that any should perish but that all should come to repentance.
2 Peter 3:9

3. Believe (cast yourself on Christ)

So they said, "Believe on the Lord Jesus Christ, and you will be saved, you and your household."
Acts 16:31

Some [trust] in chariots, and some in horses; But we will remember the name of the LORD our God.
Psalm 20:7

4. Repent

Wash me thoroughly from my iniquity, And cleanse me from my sin. For I acknowledge my transgressions, And my sin [is] always before me. ... Purge me with hyssop, and I shall be clean; Wash me, and I shall be whiter than snow.
Psalm 51:2-3, 7

"Repent therefore and be converted, that your sins may be blotted out, so that times of refreshing may come from the presence of the Lord,
Acts 3:19

5. Watch what God will do

O taste and see that the LORD [is] good: blessed [is] the man [that] trusteth in him. ... The LORD redeemeth the soul of his servants: and none of them that trust in him shall be desolate.
Psalm 34:8, 22

Questions

  • "Salvation belongs to the LORD". Am I trusting in something else for my salvation?
  • Am I looking to Christ in the moment of temptation for his continued salvation?
  • Am I thanking God for His salvation, and revelling in it?

Jesus Saves!

Hear the heart of heaven beating,
Jesus Saves, Jesus saves
And the hush of mercy breathing,
Jesus Saves, Jesus saves
Hear the host of angels sing,
Glory to the Newborn King
And the sounding joy repeating,
Jesus saves

See the humblest hearts adore Him.
Jesus saves, Jesus saves
And the wisest bow before Him
Jesus saves, Jesus saves
See the sky alive with praise,
melting darkness in its place
There is life forevermore,
Jesus saves, Jesus saves

He will live our sorrow sharing,
Jesus saves, Jesus saves
He will die our burden bearing
Jesus saves, Jesus saves
"It is done!" will shout the cross,
Christ has paid redemption's cost!
While the empty tomb's declaring
Jesus saves

Oh to grace, how great a debtor!
Jesus saves, Jesus saves
All the saints who shout together.
"I know that Jesus saves."
Rising us so vast and strong lifting up salvation's song,
The redeemed will sing forever,
Jesus saves, Jesus saves

Seeing then that we have a great high priest, that is passed into the heavens, Jesus the Son of God, let us hold fast [our] profession. For we have not an high priest which cannot be touched with the feeling of our infirmities; but was in all points tempted like as [we are, yet] without sin. Let us therefore come boldly unto the throne of grace, that we may obtain mercy, and find grace to help in time of need.
Hebrews 4:14-16

Salvation Belongs to the LORD (Psalm 3)
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