Psalm 130 CALLING UP
AN evident sign that the pilgrim is now making good progress on his upward journey is his concern about sin and his appreciation of forgiveness. Only the soul made sensitive by divine grace can appreciate the abysmal depths from which he has been rescued.
IT was not that he had descended into those depths but that he had now discovered that it was to the depths that he naturally belonged. His cry to the Lord from those profound regions of helplessness would have been useless if there had not been attentive ears in heaven. The Lord is both a Watcher and a Listener; often it is He who has to wait patiently until we voice our genuine appeals for help which come up to Him from the depths.
THE pilgrim could never have been on his feet at all if God’s righteous love had not offered him hope of forgiveness. Mercifully there is forgiveness with Him. No son of Adam could have any standing before a holy God if the black marks of sin had not been cleansed away by the blood of Jesus. The psalmist knew that his feet would still have been embedded in the mire apart from redemption. He could never had stood upright, let alone walked or climbed up to Zion.
IT is wonderful how God enables the sinner to appeal for grace, and then discloses that this is what is already fully provided by redemption. Here is another of those great Scriptural “buts” — “But there is forgiveness with thee, that thou mayest be feared”. As I have said, a deep appreciation of the sweetness of forgiveness is a sure sign of growing maturity.
WHAT is the effect of forgiveness? The psalmist tells us that it produces a humble devotion in those concerned, a filial fear. He then elaborates this by twice alluding to the eager longing expectation in the heart of the forgiven one, who yearns for the Lord’s presence more than those who have spent long hours in a dark night longing for the morning.
I know a little of this waiting for the dawn. When I travelled in a dugout canoe in the Amazon region, we sometimes had to set out on our journey while it was still dark. We knew that the day could not be far away but at times it seemed a long, long time in coming. On such occasions the one absorbing concern in my mind was as to whether the dawn would ever break. How I longed for it! Of course eventually it always came. There is nothing more certain in this uncertain world than that day will surely follow night. We find it hard to wait but we are fully justified in doing so, for His Coming is more certain than the dawn.
THE wonder is that we can fearlessly await that Coming. “With the Lord there is mercy, and with him is abundant redemption”. I am told that the relevant word means “multiplied” redemption. Our trials are added; His grace is multiplied. Every time we cry to Him from some new depths, we find that He has fresh resources of grace to provide amply for us.
WE must encourage one another to hope in Him. He will surely carry through our redemption to its fullest realisation. Our Saviour has been exalted to great heights but we can always call up to Him — even from the most profound depths.