A Heart Appointment—Psalm 5
It’s very important for you and I to meet God in the morning if we really want to have a good day. Jesus got up very early in the morning to pray, according to Mark 1:35. Here in Psalm 5 we find the psalmist saying, “My voice You shall hear in the morning, O Lord; in the morning I will direct it to You, and I will look up” (v. 3).
I realize that people are on different schedules. When I used to work the night shift, I would be sleeping in the morning. So when I got up in the afternoon, I would meet with the Lord. We are not talking about an appointment on a clock. We are talking about an appointment in your heart. Does God hear your voice in the morning? When God looks on you at the beginning of the day, does He look on you as a priest who has come to offer Him sacrifices of praise? That’s what the word “direct” means in verse 3—“to order my prayer.” It means to arrange the sacrifice on the altar. It’s a beautiful picture. When you wake up in the morning, remind yourself that you are one of God’s priests. How did you become a priest? Through faith in Jesus Christ. “To Him who loved us and washed us from our sins in His own blood, and has made us kings and priests to His God and Father” (Rev. 1:5, 6). You’re one of God’s priests. That means wherever you are is God’s temple because your body is God’s temple.
The first thing we do in the morning is the first thing the high priest us to do every morning. He laid the burnt offering on the altar. The burnt offering is a picture of total dedication to God. If you want to have a good day, start by giving yourself to the Lord as a burnt offering, a living sacrifice, holy and acceptable to God. A good day begins in the morning, and it begins at the altar.
Worse Than Death?—Psalm 6
All of us know what it means to sin and to confess our sin. Psalm 6 is the first of the penitential psalms. There are seven of them in the Book of Psalms. Every once in a while God has to remind us, “It’s time to confess your sins.”
In verses 1-5 David pleaded for God not to rebuke him or to chasten him. God’s chastening is not punishment. It builds us up in Christian character. Hebrews 12 talks about chastening, and the word used means “child training.” It’s the picture of a child learning how to be a good athlete. God chastens us, but He does so in love. David was so afraid that God was going to chasten him in His hot displeasure (Ps. 6:1). But our God is a God of mercy and grace. This doesn’t mean we should ever say, “Well, God is a forgiving God; therefore, I can do whatever I want to do and He will forgive me.” No, David was saying, “Lord, I’ve sinned. I’m weary with my groaning. Forgive me. I have done wrong.” And God does forgive those who confess their sins to Him.
Sin is the worst thing a Christian can experience. It’s far worse than pain or suffering or even death itself. We are weak, and sometimes we fail. But let’s never be afraid to come to our Father with our appeal for forgiveness. The tragedy is that, all around us, enemies are watching us who want us to fall. They want to point at us and say, “See, that Christian failed.” But we can come before the Lord and ask Him for His forgiveness, and He will grant it to us. God will have mercy on us. “Whoever calls on the name of the Lord shall be saved” (Acts 2:21).
Dr. Warren Wiersbe (1929-2019) was an internationally known Bible teacher, author, and conference speaker. He graduated in 1953 from Northern Baptist Theological Seminary in Lombard, Illinois. While attending seminary, he was ordained as pastor of Central Baptist Church in 1951 and served until 1957. From September 1957 to 1961, Wiersbe served as Director of The Literature Division for Youth for Christ International. From 1961 to 1971 he pastored Calvary Baptist Church of Covington, Kentucky south of Cincinnati, Ohio. His sermons were broadcast as the “Calvary Hour” on a local Cincinnati radio station. From 1971 to 1978, He served as the pastor of Moody Church in Chicago 1971 to 1978. While at Moody Church he continued in radio ministry. Between August 1979 and March 1982, he wrote bi-weekly for Christianity Today as “Eutychus X”, taught practical theology classes at Trinity Evangelical Divinity School in Deerfield, Illinois, and wrote the course material and taught a Doctor of Ministry course at Trinity and Dallas Seminary. In 1980 he transitioned to Back to the Bible radio broadcasting network where he worked until 1990. Dr. Wiersbe became Writer in Residence at Cornerstone University in Grand Rapids and Distinguished Professor of Preaching at Grand Rapids Theological Seminary. In his lifetime, Dr. Wiersbe wrote over 170 books—including the popular Be series, which has sold over four million copies. Dr. Wiersbe was awarded the Gold Medallion Lifetime Achievement by the Evangelical Christian Publishers Association (ECPA).