THE BELIEVER’S STATEMENT OF FAITH (Psalm 116:1-19)
Psalm 116 (NKJV)
Thanksgiving for Deliverance from Death
1 I love the Lord, because He has heard
My voice and my supplications.
2 Because He has inclined His ear to me,
Therefore I will call upon Him as long as I live.
3 The pains of death surrounded me,
And the pangs of Sheol laid hold of me;
I found trouble and sorrow.
4 Then I called upon the name of the Lord:
“O Lord, I implore You, deliver my soul!”
5 Gracious is the Lord, and righteous;
Yes, our God is merciful.
6 The Lord preserves the simple;
I was brought low, and He saved me.
7 Return to your rest, O my soul,
For the Lord has dealt bountifully with you.
8 For You have delivered my soul from death,
My eyes from tears,
And my feet from falling.
9 I will walk before the Lord
In the land of the living.
10 I believed, therefore I spoke,
“I am greatly afflicted.”
11 I said in my haste,
“All men are liars.”
12 What shall I render to the Lord
For all His benefits toward me?
13 I will take up the cup of salvation,
And call upon the name of the Lord.
14 I will pay my vows to the Lord
Now in the presence of all His people.
15 Precious in the sight of the Lord
Is the death of His saints.
16 O Lord, truly I am Your servant;
I am Your servant, the son of Your maidservant;
You have loosed my bonds.
17 I will offer to You the sacrifice of thanksgiving,
And will call upon the name of the Lord.
18 I will pay my vows to the Lord
Now in the presence of all His people,
19 In the courts of the Lord’s house,
In the midst of you, O Jerusalem.
Praise the Lord!
There are all kinds of creeds floating around. Many times, these creeds are used during the services of formal churches. In fact, we have a couple of them printed in our church hymnals. Now, there is nothing wrong with creeds as such, since a creed is defined as “A statement of faith. A formal summary of the principles of the Christian faith.” And, there is nothing wrong with a church quoting a creed as part of their worship service. The problem comes in when people believe that just memorizing and repeating a few words can actually save their souls. Faith in Christ alone saves, not religious rituals or any particular creed in the hymnals!
In this Psalm 116, we are privileged to hear a clear statement of faith that arises out of a genuine believer’s heart. In this song from the pen of the Psalmist, we are allowed to read his creed. His statement of faith! Here, he tells us what he believes, why he believes it and what he going to do with it.
Today, I want us to look into the words of this Psalm. Not only do we see what the Psalmist had in his heart regarding the Lord, we can see what should be in our own hearts today.
Let’s take a few minutes this evening to look at The Believer’s Statement Of Faith.
I. v.1a THE BELIEVER’S REFRAIN
A. This statement, “I love the LORD!”, is a chorus of joy. For a redeemed sinner to be able to make that declaration is a blessed thing.
B. What a precious thing to love God! Man may not return our love, but God loved us first, 1 John 4:19, and He loves us forever, Jer. 31:3; Rom. 8:35-39.
C. Do you love the Lord tonight? Isn’t it great to be able to?
II. v.1b-8 THE BELIEVER’S REASONS
A. v.1b-2 God Has Listened To The Believer – Ill. The blessing of heard and answered prayer. (Ill. The sinner’s prayer and every one there after!) (Ill. Jer. 33:3; Psa. 40:1)
B. v.3-7 God Has Lifted The Believer – Every person goes through times of depression and distress, Job 14:1; Job 5:7. God specializes in lifting the fallen and strengthening the weak – (Ill. Paul. 2 Cor. 12:7-10). Think about the times He has lifted you!
C. v.8 God Has Liberated The Believer –
(Notice what God has done for the believer!)
1. He Has Been Liberated From His Sentence – Salvation and eternal life! Saved from Hell and the power of sin!
2. He Has Been Liberated From His Sorrow – Replaced his sorrow with joy – 1 Pet. 1:8; (Ill. Rev. 21:4) Trials will come, but they will be attended with His help!
3. He Has Been Liberated From Stumbling – Given a firm foundation upon which to stand – Psa. 40:1-2. (Ill. 1 Cor. 10:13)
4. It is good to be free in Jesus tonight – John 8:36. We are liberated – Ill. Lazarus – John 11:44!
III. v.9-19 THE BELIEVER’S RESOLVE
(Ill. v.12 poses a good question! How could we ever begin to repay Him for all He has given to us?))
A. v.9 The I Will Of Practice – The Psalmist promises to live right. (Phil. 1:27). Ill. verse 16!
B. v.13a The I Will Of Persuasion – (Ill. Persuaded to believe!) The Psalmist promises to believe right. (Ill. This requires study – 2 Tim. 1:15) (Ill. Cup metaphor – Jesus had a cup, so do we. Ill. “Cup of wrath” – Psa. 75:8)
C. v.13b The I Will Of Prayer – The Psalmist promises to pray right! (1 Thes. 5:17; Luke 18:1)
D. v.14 The I Will Of Performance – (Ill. v.16) The Psalmist promises to carry out his promises before the Lord. Good intentions will not suffice, we need to follow through! (Ill. Old lady and her aim!) (Ill. “Now!”)
E. v.17 The I Will Of Praise – The Psalmist promises to praise God! We need to be more active in this area – Psa. 47:1; Psa. 135:1-3; Heb. 13:15.
(“A drop of praise is an unsuitable acknowledgment for an ocean of mercy.”–Rev. William Secker)
(Note: Praise is not the quoting of The Doxology! It is a spontaneous response of love from the heart of a worshiper!)
1. V. 15 Because of His Promises
2. V. 16 Because of Our Privileges
3. V. 17 Because of His Power
Do the words of the Psalmist strike a cord in your heart? Does he express the way you feel about the Lord and what He has done in your life? If so, then the best response we can make to Him is to come before Him, renew our commitment to Him, express our love to Him from our hearts and lift our praise unto the One Who has redeemed us from the awful grip of sin.
Praise the Lord! Amen!