1 (A Psalm of David.)
Fret not thyself because of evildoers, neither be thou envious against the workers of iniquity.
It is natural to fret, but only because the whole picture is not kept in mind. It is no part of the necessary sorrows of the righteous to fret about evildoers, or about the multitude of abuses and inequalities evildoers impose upon each other.
The state of the world, local and international, is a matter of interest, but not of concern. Prices, wages, and social injustices are no personal anxiety of the man of God. He has been assured sustenance, and he desires no more.
God's power is not shortened. Who comes out victor in the bitter political and industrial strivings of the potsherds of the earth cannot affect God's tender care for His children.
Bro Growcott - The Psalms
3 Trust in Yahweh, and do good; so shalt thou dwell in the land, and verily thou shalt be fed.
A man can do anything God commands when once he is sure He commands it. This is the secret of the exhortation. Do your part towards Him; never mind the big impracticable that lies before you.
"Trust in Yahweh with all thy heart and lean not unto thine own understanding."
"Do good unto all men as you have opportunity."
This is why we are to do it because He requires it, not because we are going to save the world by it, for that is impossible. It is a good, sound working rule that will keep a man in well-doing all his vain life, and that will glorify his memory in death - for God and man.
It looks well when a man gets through - when we see him in his coffin, cold and quiet and at peace-life's fever past. It wreathes a holy memory round his head when we are able to say, "Well, poor fellow, he had an uphill fight, but he always strove to govern his actions by the will of God. He did a good turn to as many as he could. He loved not in word only, but in deed and truth."
How differently we feel when the dead form of a man who did well for himself, kept his own skin whole, but left his unfortunate neighbour to shift for himself. Take the case one further step forward. Take it to the day when God shall judge the righteous and the wicked. Of the poor and righteous man, the Psalm says,
"His horn shall be exalted with honour"
5 Commit thy way unto Yahweh; trust also in him; and he shall bring it to pass.
Need you trouble how? You cannot understand His way, even in the most familiar things. Know ye what thought is? Know ye what light is? Know ye what life is? Can you conceive to yourself the two most elementary facts of time and space?
If you cannot understand, but only take note of these common phenomena of being, why not take note of the higher authenticated phenomena, though they may elude your understanding!
"Trust in Yahweh with all thine heart and lean not to thine own understanding."
23 The steps of a good man are ordered by Yahweh: and he delighteth in his way.
24 Though he fall, he shall not be utterly cast down: for Yahweh upholdeth him with his hand.
Through faith, many marvellous and terrible things have been successfully encountered. In considering them, we are apt to be distressed-to imagine that, if placed in similar circumstances, we should fall very far short. But if we are sincerely striving to be Christ-like, there is really no ground for such distress.
If we maintain a willing, determined and watchful disposition, we need not fear the tribulation and hardship that may be brought upon us. We do not know what we can do till we try. Paul said,
"I can do all things through Christ who strengtheneth me."
It is written, and the statement is to be dearly prized, that God will not allow His children to be tried above that which they are able to bear (1 Cor. x. 13), or, in other words, He will not permit them to fall to the extent that they will be "utterly cast down," and not rise again (Psalm xxxvii. 23-24; Prov. xxiv. 16).
What our strength is God only knows. Let us beware of presuming upon our inability. To whom much has been given of them much will be expected. No unworthy excuse or subterfuge will shield in the day of reckoning. Our standard is the precepts of the Deity, and come what may, we must strive to obey them.
To go on unto perfection should be our maxim. Christ is the only one who has reached the top of the scale. The Old Testament worthies reached a considerable height. The Scriptures bid us look to these exemplary men, not that we should be distressed, but encouraged and helped.
Our spiritual walk is a matter of faith. Ability to walk arises to a large degree from observation. Therefore, let us not grieve, but rejoice when we contemplate the cloud of faithful witnesses.
Bro AT Jannaway
The Christadelphian, Oct 1887
34 Wait on Yahweh, and keep his way, and he shall exalt thee to inherit the land: when the wicked are cut off, thou shalt see it.
I had no ambitions, and no purposes to serve beyond getting through faithfully in this line. The idea of saving money, or aiming at a competency, or even at getting up or on in my profession, was the furthest from my thoughts. I regarded such a policy as out of reach, and out of question in those seeking to be faithful servants of the Lord in this day of darkness and small things, when we are called upon to lay ourselves upon the altar, in the maintenance of a testimony for the truth, and the assistance of the needy.
My days and my ways Ch 18.
37 Mark the perfect [blameless] man, and behold the upright: for the end of that man is peace.
It is remarkable how the four gospels supplement each other and afford a depth and interest that one continuous narrative could not give. There have been many attempts to fuse the four accounts into one story, but the results are always disappointing.
When a coloured picture is printed, four layers of colour are superimposed upon each other, each supplying its own appropriate tints and details. In singing, four types of voice are combined to give depth and body and completeness to the tone. And to carry the comparison further, the Psalms, like a soft, instrumental accompaniment, supply the theme and undertone, and reveal much that would otherwise be hidden.
So, each contributing its own part, we are given a complete picture of the perfect life-the life of Jesus. Not that the outward circumstances of his life were perfect, that would mean nothing. But, regardless of the circumstances, in spite of the bitterest experiences, his reaction to them all was perfect, and his inner peace, the peace of a complete faith and a righteous conscience, like an impregnable fortress, though constantly assailed, was never broken into.
Bro Growcott - BYT 4.22.
THE TRUTH'S PURPOSE: CHARACTER, NOT CONTENTION
Let us not devote all our time to mere intellectual exertion.
Having attained the Truth, let us realize in the formation of the character that Christ will approve.
One often sees lamentable cases in which interest in the Truth is kept up so long as the excitement of argument is maintained, but disappears when that calm region is reached in which the Truth has to work out the fruits of righteousness and true holiness.
Argument and contention for the Faith are not worth the trouble if they end in the mere establishment of a theory. The object of all work in the Truth is to develope real, loving, warm-hearted, intelligent, and consecrated disciples of Christ.
reprinted in the Berean Christadelphian, Jan 2012