Through the Bible with Les Feldick
Lesson 3 * PART 3 * BOOK 79
PART 5 of the MESSIANIC PROPHECIES – PART 3
Psalms 68, 69, and 72
Okay, once again it’s good to have you all back from break. For those of you out in television, remember we’re producing four programs in a row, and we always take a coffee break in between. So this is the beginning of program number three for the afternoon. For those of you who have been listening, we again want to thank you for your prayer support, your financial support, and for your mail. Oh, how we enjoy our letters. Rarely, rarely, do we get a letter that we’d just as soon never have seen. It does happen but not very often.
We’re going to continue now in our study in the Psalms. We are finishing up with our book number 79. We still have our Question and Answer Book available. And for those of you who have heard about it but have never got one, it’s still available if you just call or write the ministry. We send them out postage paid and everything for just eleven bucks. I’ve said I’m not going to put prices on the air, because then if something happens and these programs come out three or four years from now, I’ll wish I wouldn’t have said anything. But we’ve had them now for several years at $11, and we hope we can continue to do that. Many say it’s most helpful in answering questions you may have about the Bible.
We’re a Bible study, and we’re going to go right back at that. We’re going to move into the next Messianic Psalm, and that is 69. The next one after 69 is 72. And remember what I said earlier—a Messianic Psalm is where the writer of the Psalm (usually David) prophecies and so much of it is tied to our New Testament and Christ’s earthly ministry and so forth.
Now this particular Psalm 69 is definitely going back to His pre-crucifixion suffering. How He suffered at the hands of His covenant people Israel. So the language, again, is as if—like we had in earlier Psalms—as though the Lord Himself is saying it, but it’s through the pen of David by inspiration.
So when it says in the first verse, “Save me, O God;” it’s coming from the lips of the Lord Jesus. It’s in His pre-crucifixion suffering and anxiety.
“Save me, O God; for the waters are come in unto my soul. 2. I sink in deep mire,…” Now you’ve got to constantly remember His agony in the Garden and leading up to His suffering of the cross itself. All these are references to that whole event.
“I sink in deep mire, where there is no standing: I am come into deep waters, where the floods overflow me.” In other words, all of the ramifications of that work of the cross are just flowing over Him.
“I am weary of my crying: my throat is dried: mine eyes fail while I wait for my God. (Now that’s all evident again from His suffering on the cross itself.) 4. They that hate me without a cause (There’s no reason for them to hate Him so. But they did.) are more than the hairs of mine head: (That is in number.) they that would destroy me,…” Now remember, what did they cry out? Crucify Him. Away with Him.
Let’s go back and look at John chapter 15, which is exactly a quote from this very Psalm. John chapter 15 verse 25 and, again, I’m doing this to show the meticulousness and the intricacy of Scripture.
Now I’m just reminded. Somebody sent us in the mail the other day a special publication by one of our major news magazines. I won’t name it. I don’t want to get in trouble But it was garbage from cover-to-cover. And it was supposedly showing people how to read their Bible. Why, I wrote back to the lady. I said, “How in the world could you even spend five minutes reading garbage? It’s written by atheists, or at least people who have absolutely no respect for the Word of God.” I mean they just chewed it up and spit it out. The Apostle Paul was worse than an infidel. He was worse than the worst of criminals. And that’s the impression that they put on people who read that stuff.
Well, I want to confront that kind of thing with the perfectness of our Bible. It is not something to be chewed up and spit out! It is not something to be ridiculed and scorned and laughed at as though it was written by a bunch of rogues! This is the inspired Word of God, and here it proves it. What David wrote back in the Psalms came from the lips of the Lord Jesus Himself. Now, John’s Gospel chapter 15 verse 25, and it’s in red if you’ve got a red-letter edition.
“But this cometh to pass, that the word might be fulfilled that is written in their law, They hated me without a cause.” Now remember, the Psalms are all part of the Old Testament record, so it is part of the Law. This is the exact wording from the Psalms. So here again, what I’ve got to constantly point out, is that the Scripture is so intricately put together. Now back to Psalms 69. Keep your hand up there in John. We’re coming back to Corinthians in just a minute.
“They that hate me without a cause are more than the hairs of mine head: they that would destroy me, being mine enemies wrongfully, (Israel had no reason to hate Him so. He hadn’t done them anything wrong except oppose their wickedness and sinfulness.) are mighty: then I restored that which I took not away.”
“O God, (In other words, God the Son is crying out to the Father.) thou knowest my foolishness; and my sins are not hid from thee.” Now be a Bible student. Be a Berean. What’s He talking about? His own sin? No! He had none. So whose sins are we talking about? The sins of the world.
Now come up to the New Testament for the answer. That would be in II Corinthians chapter 5. I don’t know what number it is, but I know it’s the last verse in the chapter. II Corinthians chapter 5 verse 21. This is what He’s talking about. I’ll wait until you find it. II Corinthians chapter 5 verse 21. Well, we’d better read verse 20.
II Corinthians 5:20-21
“Now then we are ambassadors for Christ, (Paul writes) as though God did beseech you by us: we pray you (we beg you) in Christ’s stead, be ye reconciled to God. 21. For (And that’s why I had to read that verse.) For he (God) hath made him (God the Son. Jesus of Nazareth. God hath made Jesus–) to be sin for us, who knew no sin; that we might be made the righteousness of God in him.”
So what sin is He talking about in the Psalms? The sin of the world that was laid on Him. Don’t ever lose that. All our sin from Adam to the end was laid on Him. That’s why the movie that Gibson produced didn’t even scratch the surface. All that showed was some of His human suffering. But where was the majority of His suffering? In His Spirit as a Member of the Godhead who took upon Himself all the sin of every human who ever lived. We can’t comprehend that. That’s why it took a person of the Godhead to do the work of salvation. No human being can take on the sins of mankind. And that’s why I confronted a little Muslim girl one time. I said, “Does the Koran give you a Savior who could take upon Himself your sin?” Well, I don’t think she even knew what I was talking about. But see, the whole concept of Scripture is that one of the Members of the Godhead, the Creator Himself, became the epitome of sin. That’s why God had to turn His head from Him. That’s why He could not look on Him, because He was covered with the sins of mankind.
Now back to Psalms 69. I hope I can make that clear, that when He speaks of my sins, it wasn’t His personal sin. He had none. But He became sin on our behalf that we might have His righteousness imputed to us. Verse 6:
“Let not them that wait on thee, O Lord GOD of hosts, be ashamed for my sake: let not those that seek thee be confounded for my sake, O God of Israel. 7. Because for thy sake I have borne reproach;…” And why did He bear the reproach to become the Savior? By becoming the Savior, lost humanity could be given the opportunity to get right with God the Father? It all fits if we just understand how it all shakes out. So verse 7 again.
“Because for thy sake…” Remember, what did He pray in the Garden? “Not My will, but Thine be done.” And what was the will of the Father? That this plan of salvation could be completed, so that lost mankind could be brought back into a relationship with God the Father. Now verse 8:
“I am become a stranger unto my brethren, (His fellow Jews) and an alien unto my mother’s children.” Now there’s one group of people that don’t like that verse. And who are they?
Well, the Roman Catholics are just exercised by the thought that Jesus had physical brothers. Yes, Mary and Joseph had sons beyond Christ. She was just a human mother. She wasn’t the mother of God. She was the mother of human beings. So here is a good verse to show these people. That He is “an alien unto my mother’s (Mary’s) children.”
Now stop and think. When did the family of Joseph and Mary recognize and believe who Jesus was? Not until after, I think, His crucifixion. Hey, they detested Him just as much as anybody else in Nazareth for the longest time. But I think they finally came to believe that He was who He said He was. So it’s evident that Joseph and Mary had other children after Christ was born (Matthew 13:55-56). All right, read it again.
“I am become a stranger unto my brethren, (His fellow Jews. His family) and an alien (He was a castoff.) unto my mother’s children. (Who would have been His physical brothers. Half brothers!) 9. For the zeal of thine house hath eaten me up; and the reproaches of them that reproached thee are fallen upon me.” In other words, all the anger of Israel in rebellion against the Grace of God—they heaped on Him with their scorn and their ridicule and their demand in that He be crucified.
“When I wept, and chastened my soul with fasting, that was to my reproach. 11. I made sackcloth also my garment; and I became a proverb to them.” Now what’s He referring to? Did He walk up and down the streets and highways of Israel in the apparel of the kings and queens? NO! But what? As almost one who had nothing.
And I think He put it best when He said that birds have nests and animals have dens but He does not have a place to lay His head. See, He was absolutely the poorest of the poor from the physical aspect, so that no one could use that as an excuse for rejecting Him. He was right on their level, and yet, they hated Him. Verse 11 again:
“I made sackcloth also my garment; (He dressed and He walked and He lived like the lowest of the low.) and I became a proverb to them.” Now, a proverb in Scripture is a word of scorn. And not only that, but you come down a little further and He was the subject of the drunkards’ singing.
Well, I’ve never been around drunkards. Thank goodness. Even in service, I was spared that. I’ve had very little contact with drunks. But I can about imagine that if you get a bunch of them together, they start singing their ribald type songs and all of the filth associated with it. And you see, that’s what He’s saying, that even the drunks of Israel—and don’t think there weren’t any—the drunks of Israel even used His name as part of their drunken singing.
“They that sit in the gate speak against me;…” Now in Old Testament language, what did that refer to? To the city fathers. To the Magistrates. They were the ones who were referred to as sitting in the gates.
“…and I was the song of the drunkards. (as I’ve already mentioned.) 13. But as for me, my prayer is unto thee, O LORD, in an acceptable time: O God, in the multitude of thy mercy hear me, in the truth of thy salvation. 14. Deliver me out of the mire,…” In other words, out of this place of reproach and out of this position of being so hated.
“…let me be delivered from them that hate me, and out of the deep waters. (That is the waters of emotional despair.) 15. Let not the waterflood overflow me, neither let the deep swallow me up, and let not the pit shut her mouth upon me.”
In other words, what He’s pleading with the Father is that He will be able to sustain life until He can fulfill the work of the cross. Because that’s what He set His mind as flint, remember, to fulfill. He had to fulfill the work of the cross.
“Hear me, O LORD; for thy lovingkindness is good: turn unto me according to the multitude of thy tender mercies. 17. And hide not thy face from thy servant; (But did He? Yes. God turned from Him. He couldn’t look on all that sin.) for I am in trouble: hear me speedily (or instantly). 18. Draw nigh unto my soul, and redeem it: deliver me because of mine enemies.”
Now I’m curious. As I’m teaching these for the last several programs, I haven’t heard too much except good. But even for you in the studio, have any of you ever read these Psalms with this concept? No. I’m sure most of you haven’t. But this is what the whole idea is. That David was being inspired to write the very things that would be fulfilled in the life of Christ. And that’s the beauty of the Psalms in this light.
“Draw nigh unto my soul, and redeem it: deliver me because of mine enemies. (Who were attempting and preparing to crucify Him.) 19. Thou hast known my reproach, and my shame, and my dishonor: mine adversaries are all before thee.” Now again, was it His personal reproach? No. It was the reproach that was poured on Him because of who He was taking the place of.
Now that wasn’t very good grammar, was it? But here we have this whole concept. He became my what? Substitute! He took my place. But not just mine, but every one of you in this room and not just us in Oklahoma—but for every human being around the planet, He became their substitute.
But again, as I’ve always mentioned, how much good is it until you appropriate it by faith. We have to appropriate it by faith. For our salvation in this Age of Grace we must believe in our heart that Jesus died for our sins, was buried, and rose again—as we are taught in I Corinthians 15:1-4. And that’s what most of the world doesn’t want to have anything to do with. They want nothing to do with these things. Okay, reading on, verse 20.
“Reproach hath broken my heart; (And we know His heart was smitten because of His love for the human race—for Israel first, yes, but also for the whole human race.) and I am full of heaviness: I looked for some to take pity, but there was none; and for comforters, but I found none.”
Where were the Twelve? What’s the expression I usually use, especially for us in Oklahoma? They were scattered like a covey of quail. Pfffft. They weren’t there commiserating there with Him. Now verse 21, you jump right up to the cross.
“They gave me also gall for my meat; and in my thirst they gave me vinegar to drink.” I don’t think I have to reference that, do I? That’s back in Matthew as plain as day. Matthew 27, for those of you who aren’t acquainted with it.
“Let their table…” Whose table? Israel’s. How did the Psalmist put it in Psalms 23? “Thou preparest” what? “A table before me.”
Now, I’ve had people call or write and ask—what’s He writing about? Well, just use some common sense. When Israel was in that Covenant relationship with the God of Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob, they were in that favored place. Now granted, they didn’t sit down to a banquet table in some great hall in one of the great capital cities of the world. But spiritually speaking, where could a Jew feast any day of the week? At God’s table. And I think it’s the same for you and me as believers. We have the option. We can feast at God’s table 24/7, can’t we? And what is it? The Word of God!
And so it was with Israel. They had the Word. They had the Old Testament. So when it speaks of feasting at God’s table, I feel it is that they had the wherewithal to feast on things of God’s Word. Now verse 22, here we have a quote used by the Apostle Paul.
“Let their table become a snare before them: and that which should have been for their welfare, let it become a trap. 23. Let their eyes be darkened, that they see not; and make their loins continually to shake.”
Now let’s move up and see how Paul uses that in Romans chapter 11. We’ll probably almost finish our five minutes back here. Romans chapter 11 verse 1, but the verse I want to really take out of the Psalm, of course, is clear up here at verses 9 and 10. But we can’t skip all these good introductory words.
“I say then, (Paul says) Hath God cast away his people?…” Well, you see, there’s a multitude of people today that would say yes. They’re trying to tell us that God’s all through with Israel, and that they disappeared and so forth. Don’t you believe it. The Word of God says He will never cast them away.
“I say then, Hath God cast away his people? God forbid. (Just don’t even think such a thought. Why?) For I also am an Israelite, of the seed of Abraham, of the tribe of Benjamin. 2. God hath not cast away his people which he foreknew. (He knew everything that they were going to say, think, and do.) Know ye not what the scripture saith of Elijah? how he maketh intercession to God against Israel, saying, 3. Lord, they have killed thy prophets, and digged down thine altars; and I am left alone, and they seek my life.”
“But what saith the answer of God unto him? I have reserved to myself seven thousand men, (a remnant) who have not bowed the knee to the image of Baal. 5. Even so then (Paul says) at this present time also there is a remnant…” A small percentage of those Jews of Jesus’ day who had recognized and believed that He was the Promised Messiah. But the vast majority? No.
“And if by grace, then it is no more works: otherwise grace is no more grace. But if it be of works, then it is no more grace:…” Now, that almost sounds like double-talk. But he’s saying flat out, you can’t mix grace and works. You cannot do it, because then you get a conglomerated mess. Now verse 7, here we come.
“What then? (Now if Israel has never had more than a small remnant of true believers, is it any different today?) Israel hath not obtained that which he seeketh for;…” Now stop right there. What has Israel been on the surface looking for? This glorious King and Kingdom. Oh, they wanted that. They wanted those Gentiles off the streets of Jerusalem.
My, I’ll never forget. The first time we stopped at Caesarea, the guide pointed out at the gates to the city, stone pillars. There were grooves where the Roman stirrups were constantly hitting those gateposts. Grooves into the stone. Well, that just told you that it was a constant riding back and forth of those Roman legions into their city. And the Jews hated them. Well, we would too. You know, we’re so blessed. We’ve never been under the heavy boot of an adversary. But Israel was. So here it is. They wanted that king. They wanted their kingdom. But to get it God’s way? No way.
“…but the election hath obtained it, and the rest were blinded. (Now this is the thing that I have a hard time comprehending. And yet it’s a fact of Scripture that Israel has been blinded when they should have been able to comprehend.) Israel hath not obtained that which he seeketh for; but the election (that little remnant) hath obtained it, and the rest were blinded.” Oh my, now I’ve got to hurry.
“(According as it is written, God hath given them the spirit of slumber, (That is Spiritual.) eyes that they should not see, and ears that they should not hear;) unto this day. (Now here Paul goes back to Psalms 69.) 9. And David saith, Let their table be made a snare, and a trap, (In other words, they were proud of their relationship as the Sons of Abraham.) and a stumbling block, and a recompence unto them: 10. Let their eyes be darkened, that they may not see, and bow down their back always.” Now Paul continues on.
“I say then, (Now here’s what we have to take to heart.) Have they stumbled (the Nation of Israel) that they should fall? (And be completely out of God’s program, and what’s his answer?) God forbid:(Don’t think such a thought.) but rather through their fall salvation has come to the Gentiles, for to provoke them to jealousy.”
“Now if the fall of them be the riches of the world, (That is the work of the cross becoming the Plan of Salvation—Gospel of Grace for the Gentile world.) and the diminishing of them the riches of the Gentiles: how much more their (What?) fullness.”
Oh, their day of Glory is still ahead of them. Yes, they’ve had a rough 2,000 years. We know that. But God hasn’t given up on the Jew. God hasn’t given up on Israel. The best is yet to come. That’s why we admonish to—what? Pray for the peace of Jerusalem.