Psalms 74:18-23 – “O God, How Long Shall The Adversary Reproach?”, Part 4

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Psalms 74:18-23 – “O God, how long shall the adversary reproach?”, Part 4

Psa 74:18 Remember this, that the enemy hath reproached, O LORD, and that the foolish people have blasphemed thy name.
Psa 74:19 O deliver not the soul of thy turtledove unto the multitude of the wicked: forget not the congregation of thy poor for ever.
Psa 74:20 Have respect unto the covenant: for the dark places of the earth are full of the habitations of cruelty.
Psa 74:21 O let not the oppressed return ashamed: let the poor and needy praise thy name.
Psa 74:22 Arise, O God, plead thine own cause: remember how the foolish man reproacheth thee daily.
Psa 74:23 Forget not the voice of thine enemies: the tumult of those that rise up against thee increaseth continually.

This last part of our study with Psalm 74 concludes with the psalmist crying out to the Lord to remember the reproach of the enemy and remember the foolish man who reproaches us daily. At first glance it sounds very outside of ourselves to make these pleas with the Lord, and yet, as always, we are reminded that the word of God was written for us and that our greatest enemies lie at the gate of our own hearts. When God’s word is properly applied and experienced we come to understand that all these verses have an inward and an outward application as well.

Gen 4:7 If thou doest well, shalt thou not be accepted? and if thou doest not well, sin lieth at the door. And unto thee shall be his desire, and thou shalt rule over him.

What we’ve been looking at over the last few studies is truly how God is building up His abundant grace through the church who are filling up what is behind of Christ’s affliction (partly through reproaches) so that this abundant grace can be formed within us. We are blessed to be partakers of His suffering in this age and will be able to comfort the world with the comfort that God brings to us because He has granted that we can through Christ be buried into his baptism(s). We die daily and bear each others burdens along the way and learn to discern his plan and purpose for all of humanity, as His grace and faith unfold in each of our lives. Every person and situation that we encounter and that He puts us in is being accomplished to His glory and to the end that His word might “dwell in you richly in all wisdom”.

Col 1:24 Who now rejoice in my sufferings for you, and fill up that which is behind of the afflictions of Christ in my flesh for his body’s sake, which is the church:

Rom 6:4 Therefore we are buried with him by baptism into death: that like as Christ was raised up from the dead by the glory of the Father, even so we also should walk in newness of life.

Col 3:16 Let the word of Christ dwell in you richly in all wisdom; teaching and admonishing one another in psalms and hymns and spiritual songs, singing with grace in your hearts to the Lord.

God is teaching us through all our struggles and much tribulation that we can endure all things through Christ and His peace can rule in our hearts, a peace that is not as the world’s peace, but a peace that is connected to the outcome of grace and faith (Col 3:16). We must experience the unsettling ways of this world’s mountains crumbling around us (reproaches), and the winds of war that always seem so eminent (reproaches), to realize that our peace comes from God alone who alone can still these events so that we can hear the still small voice of our Lord whose grace and faith are given to us through the tribulations and fiery trials of this life.

1Ki 19:11 And he said, Go forth, and stand upon the mount before the LORD. And, behold, the LORD passed by, and a great and strong wind rent the mountains, and brake in pieces the rocks before the LORD; but the LORD was not in the wind: and after the wind an earthquake; but the LORD was not in the earthquake:
1Ki 19:12 And after the earthquake a fire; but the LORD was not in the fire: and after the fire a still small voice.

I hope we are all blessed and encouraged by the conclusion of our study which reminds us that God is our deliverer through every reproach which is given to us as the body of Christ. We are His turtledove, and ‘the congregation of thy poor’, and God is demonstrating to the world through the church that He does have respect to His covenant that is being fulfilled through the kind of first fruits we are. We will know how to deal with all the habitations of cruelty in this earth because of the fear and trembling process we have been blessed to go through and that the spirit of God quickened us to be part of (Joh 6:63). We are going to wipe away every tear eventually; but before that glorious day, we need to fulfill these verses which talk about our deliverance through the tribulation placed upon us in this age.

Jas 1:18 Of his own will begat he us with the word of truth, that we should be a kind of firstfruits of his creatures.

Php 2:12 Wherefore, my beloved, as ye have always obeyed, not as in my presence only, but now much more in my absence, work out your own salvation with fear and trembling.
Php 2:13 For it is God which worketh in you both to will and to do of his good pleasure.

Heb 11:6 But without faith it is impossible to please him: for he that cometh to God must believe that he is, and that he is a rewarder of them that diligently seek him.
Heb 11:7 By faith Noah, being warned of God of things not seen as yet, moved with fear, prepared an ark to the saving of his house; by the which he condemned the world, and became heir of the righteousness which is by faith.

Psa 34:17 The righteous cry, and the LORD heareth, and delivereth them out of all their troubles.
Psa 34:18 The LORD is nigh unto them that are of a broken heart; and saveth such as be of a contrite spirit.
Psa 34:19 Many are the afflictions of the righteous: but the LORD delivereth him out of them all.

Psa 126:3 The LORD hath done great things for us; whereof we are glad.
Psa 126:4 Turn again our captivity, O LORD, as the streams in the south.
Psa 126:5 They that sow in tears shall reap in joy.
Psa 126:6 He that goeth forth and weepeth, bearing precious seed, shall doubtless come again with rejoicing, bringing his sheaves with him.

Psa 74:18 Remember this, that the enemy hath reproached, O LORD, and that the foolish people have blasphemed thy name.

How long has this been going on? Right from the foundation of the world, right when Adam and Eve (type of the church) were created. And so we’re not surprised to see the reproach of Adam and Eve against God as they sinned against him, against Christ and gave the first witness to the foolishness that is in the heart of man that naturally blasphemes “thy name”, “thy word” right from the foundation of the world. What we are being told right from the start of creation is that the true enemy that is going to reproach Our Lord and blaspheme his name is all flesh.

The foundation of the church parallels this foolishness and reproach that comes forth from those who hear the word of God as did Adam of Eve but could not endure the words that we’re being given to them just as no one can today unless the Lord builds those words up and that spiritual house or ark that we are becoming through grace and faith that is the means by which his words are sanctified within His body.

2Ti 4:2 Preach the word; be instant in season, out of season; reprove, rebuke, exhort with all longsuffering and doctrine.
2Ti 4:3 For the time will come when they will not endure sound doctrine; but after their own lusts shall they heap to themselves teachers, having itching ears;

Gal 1:6 I marvel that ye are so soon removed from him that called you into the grace of Christ unto another gospel:

Psa 127:1 A Song of degrees for Solomon. Except the LORD build the house, they labour in vain that build it: except the LORD keep the city, the watchman waketh but in vain.

Eph 2:8 For by grace are ye saved through faith; and that not of yourselves: it is the gift of God:

Joh 17:17 Sanctify them through thy truth: thy word is truth.

Psa 74:19 O deliver not the soul of thy turtledove unto the multitudeH2416 of the wicked: forget not the congregationH2416 of thy poor for ever.

Our Lord went through a myriad of narrow escapes where God was demonstrating to us the certainty of His deliverance in our lives as well. We know that there is nothing that can separate us from His love, and that the angels of God are always there to pick us up less we dash our foot against a stone. These things must happen to us as they did to Christ to demonstrate his ever present help and Sovereignty over every moment of our life. It will be a great comfort to the world one day when they come to see the safe arms that Christ and His body were always in, as we will witness to the fact that our ‘soul’ not necessarily our flesh, will be delivered from the ‘multitude’.

Here are some verses that are parables of how the church today is narrowly delivered through the fleshly trials that we experience just as our Lord has (1Jn 4:17).

Joh 8:59 Then took they up stones to cast at him: but Jesus hid himself, and went out of the temple, going through the midst of them, and so passed by.

Mat 2:13 And when they were departed, behold, the angel of the Lord appeareth to Joseph in a dream, saying, Arise, and take the young child and his mother, and flee into Egypt, and be thou there until I bring thee word: for Herod will seek the young child to destroy him.

Gen 19:15 And when the morning arose, then the angels hastened Lot, saying, Arise, take thy wife, and thy two daughters, which are here; lest thou be consumed in the iniquity of the city.

Luk 22:43 And there appeared an angel unto him from heaven, strengthening him.

Psa 74:20 Have respect unto the covenant: for the dark places of the earth are full of the habitations of cruelty.

God’s covenant as we know has to do with the heart of man being changed from within, and not a physical covenant of physical blessings in the old covenant which were the types and shadows of the abundant life that God would give to those after John (Mat 11:11), specifically to those who the holy spirit was given to. Only then could the promises of the old covenant see their spiritual fulfillment in the new covenant promises that God has “respect” unto.

Eze 16:59 For thus saith the Lord GOD; I will even deal with thee as thou hast done, which hast despised the oath in breaking the covenant.
Eze 16:60 Nevertheless I will remember my covenant with thee in the days of thy youth, and I will establish unto thee an everlasting covenant.
Eze 16:61 Then thou shalt remember thy ways, and be ashamed, when thou shalt receive thy sisters, thine elder and thy younger: and I will give them unto thee for daughters, but not by thy covenant.
Eze 16:62 And I will establish my covenant with thee; and thou shalt know that I am the LORD:

Hos 2:18 And in that day will I make a covenant for them with the beasts of the field, and with the fowls of heaven, and with the creeping things of the ground: and I will break the bow and the sword and the battle out of the earth, and will make them to lie down safely.

1Ki 8:23 And he said, LORD God of Israel, there is no God like thee, in heaven above, or on earth beneath, who keepest covenant and mercy with thy servants that walk before thee with all their heart:

“The dark places of the earth” that are “full of the habitations of cruelty” are within each and every man’s heart to whatever degree lesser or greater that God caused to be witnessed. Having said this, we all are guilty of all the entire spectrum of possibility from Abel to Zacharias (Mat 23:35), and it will take the living sacrifice of Christ and his body to cleanse this temple of every man that is guilty of the death of the prophets all, from “Abel to Zacharias”.

Psa 74:21 O let not the oppressed return ashamed: let the poor and needy praise thy name.

This particular verse reminds us that God knows every part of our walk and calling that are not easy, and not for the faint of heart so to speak. If not for his mercy we would faint and the oppression we experience would be too much for us bear.

Psa 9:9 The LORD also will be a refuge for the oppressed, a refuge in times of trouble.

Eze 16:61 Then thou shalt remember thy ways, and be ashamed, when thou shalt receive thy sisters, thine elder and thy younger: and I will give them unto thee for daughters, but not by thy covenant.

Eze 43:10 Thou son of man, shew the house to the house of Israel, that they may be ashamed of their iniquities: and let them measure the pattern.
Eze 43:11 And if they be ashamed of all that they have done, shew them the form of the house, and the fashion thereof, and the goings out thereof, and the comings in thereof, and all the forms thereof, and all the ordinances thereof, and all the forms thereof, and all the laws thereof: and write it in their sight, that they may keep the whole form thereof, and all the ordinances thereof, and do them.

The reproach or oppression the poor and needy experience will not only build us up but witness to how we are more than conquerors through Christ (Rom 8:37) who gives us the power and rich faith needed (Jas 2:5) to overcome and “praise thy name” even in the midst of the oppression that God allows in perfect measure upon Christ’s body (1Co 10:13).

Jer 20:12 But, O LORD of hosts, that triest the righteous, and seest the reins and the heart, let me see thy vengeance on them: for unto thee have I opened my cause.
Jer 20:13 Sing unto the LORD, praise ye the LORD: for he hath delivered the soul of the poor from the hand of evildoers.

Psa 74:22 Arise, O God, plead thine own cause: remember how the foolish man reproacheth thee daily.

There is a negative and positive use of the word ‘foolish’: we have “the foolish man” who reproaches you daily, and we have “the foolishness of preaching” by which were saved. We start off as unbelieving, slow of heart fools who can’t identify with Christ needing to be reproached and suffer along with his body.

Luk 24:25 Then he said unto them, O fools, and slow of heart to believe all that the prophets have spoken:
Luk 24:26 Ought not Christ to have suffered these things, and to enter into his glory?

God mercifully drags the elect along toward Christ so that we can see that the work we’ve been called unto is one of believing which causes us to enter into his glory (obedience), and that this believing is a gift that is given to very few in this age. We go from being the ones who reproach God and his word until we are the ones who are reproached for his name sake, which is our great and incredible blessing as God’s children, having our names written in heaven.

Joh 6:44 No man can come to me, except the Father which hath sent me draw him: and I will raise him up at the last day.

Joh 6:28 Then said they unto him, What shall we do, that we might work the works of God?
Joh 6:29 Jesus answered and said unto them, This is the work of God, that ye believe on him whom he hath sent.

Php 1:29 For unto you it is given in the behalf of Christ, not only to believe on him, but also to suffer for his sake;

Act 5:41 And they departed from the presence of the council, rejoicing that they were counted worthy to suffer shame for his name.

Mat 5:10 Blessed are they which are persecuted for righteousness’ sake: for theirs is the kingdom of heaven.
Mat 5:11 Blessed are ye, when men shall revile you, and persecute you, and shall say all manner of evil against you falsely, for my sake.

Psa 74:23 Forget not the voice of thine enemies: the tumult of those that rise up against thee increaseth continually.

Evil men wax worse and worse at the end of any age that has God’s spirit working in it (2Ti 3:13), and the reason being is that Satan knows that his time is short (Rev 12:12), and the inevitable is going to unfold, deliverance that comes to us through Christ after we go unto perfection on the third day (Luk 13:32).

Until that day, sin will continue to be at the door of our hearts, but we will hear the voice of the enemy for what it is because we hear the voice of the true Shepherd in contrast (Joh 10:5, Joh 10:16). The tumult of those who rise up against us will be more and more (Act 4:27), but rejoice in that day and lift up your eyes for behold your redemption draws near (Luk 21:28).

At the beginning of this study, in verse 18, we pray “Remember this, that the enemy hath reproached O LORD”, and end with the continual prayer to “Forget not the voice of thine enemies” in verse 23. The “multitude”H2416 and “congregation”H2416 of verse 19 reminds us that we are all beasts and that we are called to “come out of her my people”, and that the only way we do so is by the humbling experiences, fiery trials and judgement that is first upon us for purifying us and not to have us return ashamed (verse 21) but changed by his reproach that He allows to come upon us today as His sons and daughters (Heb 12:6).

Heb 12:6 For whom the Lord loveth he chasteneth, and scourgeth every son whom he receiveth.

In Amos 8:7 we are reassured that “The LORD hath sworn by the excellency of Jacob, Surely I will never forget any of their works [the enemy]”. Judgment will come to pass, the sin offering and burnt offering and atonement (Lev 14:22), Lev 14:30-31, Lev 12:6-8) and the trespass offering (Lev 5:7) will be accepted (symbolism of verse 19 and the turtledove pointing to how and why this dove is sacrificed), and all will be saved.

God willing we are the beasts of Hoseah 2:18 who, by the covenant of the Lord working within us, are made to lie down safely and blessed to be counted to come out of great tribulation and have our robes washed and made white in the blood of the Lamb of Rev 7:11.

Psa 20:5 We will rejoice in thy salvation, and in the name of our God we will set up our banners: the LORD fulfil all thy petitions.

Psa 20:9 Save, LORD: let the king hear us when we call.

Rev 7:17 For the Lamb which is in the midst of the throne shall feed them, and shall lead them unto living fountains of waters: and God shall wipe away all tears from their eyes.

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