AUDIO – Testify Service
1 If it had not been the LORD who was on our side— let Israel now say—
2 if it had not been the LORD who was on our side when people rose up against us,
3 then they would have swallowed us up alive, when their anger was kindled against us;
4 then the flood would have swept us away, the torrent would have gone over us;
5 then over us would have gone the raging waters.
6 Blessed be the LORD, who has not given us as prey to their teeth!
7 We have escaped like a bird from the snare of the fowlers; the snare is broken, and we have escaped!
8 Our help is in the name of the LORD, who made heaven and earth.
My girls like to play and make up their own dramatic games. These games are not competition based but are more like plays or stories. They will create contexts and characters as far as their imagination will take them. They’ll get other neighborhood kids to play along. And sometimes they will repeat the same “game” over multiple days. It’s quite amazing to let them give a report of their activity or to simply overhear from an outdoor hammock or through an open house window. I’ve noticed their key phrase is… “Let’s pretend ___.”
Today we look at Psalm 124 and together we will share testimonies together. The opening of this Psalm is like saying, “Let’s pretend God did not enter my life.”
In fact, some of us are attacked by anxiety and our minds are flooded with negative “What if’s…?” Psalm 124 has a lot of what if’s…
- Devouring from They 124:2 the people who rose up against us and swallowed us alive
- What if they disagree? What if they dislike? What if they destroy?
- Drowning from Trials 124:4 then the flood would have swept us away.
- What if the worst-case scenario happens?
- Detainment from That one enemy 124:6-7 we escaped the prey like a bird from the snare.
- What if that one rival wins? What if my friends take the side of my foe?
Our testimony must promote the Lord’s presence and protection (Psalm 124:1-7).
The Psalmist teaches us how to address “If Anxiety” by affirming God’s presence and protection. Life has many burdens and becoming a Christian doesn’t make us exempt from the battle. We may be in difficult or depressed circumstances. We may have an unsaved loved one, facing debt from financial/employment burdens, experiencing grief in life’s losses, or whatever other heartache this cursed world offers and there seems to be no escape. But God is on our side (John 15:5; Rom 8:31-32).
God’s way is not to remove trials or suffering but to see us through them.
- Gen 6 flood occurs on earth but God protects.
- Ex 7-12 plague occurs on Egypt but God protects Israelites.
- Ps 91 no terror or evil shall overwhelm you bc God is your refuge
- John 16:33 “In this world you will have trouble, but take heart, I have overcome the world.”
- Revelation 3:10-11 “I will keep you in the hour of trial that is coming on the whole world, to try those who dwell on the earth. I am coming soon. Hold fast what you have, so that no one may seize your crown.”
- The language of “keeping” is actually protection in/from, and not removal from harm (cf Jn 17:15; 2Pet 2:9). Further, the context reveals the believers are protected from God’s wrath and to persevere under evil attacks.
So… now is an opportunity to overcome “If Anxiety” and defeat the devil by giving testimony of God’s Work In Your Life.
- Psalm 124:1 “let Israel [plural] now say…”
- Psalm 107:2 “Let the redeemed of the Lord say so…”
- Revelation 12:11 “they conquered satan by the blood of the Lamb and by the word of their testimony”
- Open Mic Testimonies of God’s Work In Our Life
If God were not in my life, I would be…
- Testimonies of God’s presence/protection
- Testimonies of confession / even lament!
- Open Mic Testimonies of God’s Witness Through Our Life
Our testimony must promote the character and capability of God (Psalm 124:8).
“Our help is in the name of the Lord who made heaven and earth.”
The source and solution to our anxieties and issues are the Lord. Specifically, the Psalmist references the name of the Lord. God had many names to reflect His character and capability. Further, the Psalmist references God made heaven and earth. The very truth of God as Creator should be affirming to us. The God who speaks life into existence also loves us eternally. He left heaven to enter earth to live and die for us. Even more amazing than creating seas, soil, and sweet desserts is the astounding news that God the Son died for our sins; and yes, even more awesome is God defeating death by rising from the grave!
- What are the names of God’s character and capability?
- I AM
- Abba: “Father”
- Elohim / El ___ “strong one”
- El Elyon: God Most High
- El Gibhor: Mighty God
- El Emeth: God of Truth
- El Mishpat: God of Justice
- El Neqama: God of Vengence
- El Qanna: God of Jealousy
- El Qarob OR El Roi or El Shama: God who is near OR God who sees OR God who hears
- Yahweh Jireh: The Lord Provides
- Yahweh Oz: The Lord is my strength
- Yahweh Rapha: The Lord who heals
- Yahweh Rum Rosh: The Lord who lifts my head
- Yahweh Shalom: The Lord of peace
- Yahweh Elohim Yeshua: The Lord, God of salvation
- Yahweh Zimrat: The Lord is my song
- Yahweh Hawyaw: The Lord on my side or has come (Immanuel: God with us)
The Lord is on our side, who can be against us? #Psalm124 #Romans8:31-32. Let the people sing…