The Testimony of the Redeemed

“The Testimony of the Redeemed”

Psalm 107

 

There is nothing like the power of personal testimony.   It is one of the most convincing ways to witness for the Lord.   Here is a Psalm that pictures four general ways in which God redeems His people from the hand of the enemy. (v. 2) It is part of a trilogy of psalms (105-107) in which God’s people are exhorted to give thanks to the Lord. It has a primary application to the nation of Israel whose history chronologically can be seen in which successive stanza.   It also has a secondary application to those whom among the “children of men” have been rescued from their distresses and have come to join the company of those who know the Lord personally.

 

1.       The Praise of the Redeemed (vv. 1-3)

Believers are exhorted to give thanks for two reasons: God is good and His mercy endures forever.   The redeemed are to say so.   If they don’t, who will?   Like Israel, God’s people have been redeemed from every corner of the globe.   Israel has always had enemies on every side – so did we before we knew the Lord – completely surrounded by the enemy of our souls who took us captive at his will. (2 Tim. 2:26).   This is an answer to the request in Psalm 106:47

 

2.       The pictures of Redemption (vv. 4-32)

Each picture has four components--a problem, prayer, provision, and praise

  • The searching – vv. 4-9

Israel wandered in the wilderness after they came out of Egypt. They found no city and no satisfaction and their soul fainted in them.  They cried out to the Lord who delivered them out of their distresses and led them on the right way. To those who are searching and find no satisfaction in this world and its ways, if they cry out to the Lord will find out like Zaccheus that He too will deliver them out of their soul distress and lead them by the right way.  They too will find a city, one which has foundations whose builder and maker is God (Heb. 11:10) and will come to see that He too satisfies the longing soul. (v. 9)

  • To the stubborn (vv. 10-16)

This redemption story pictures a person sitting in darkness bound in chains because they rebelled against the Lord. Because they despised the counsel of God they were brought down and no one was able to help.  But in their trouble they cried out to the Lord who broke their chains in pieces. (v. 14) This captures the history of the nation of Israel especially during the captivity years.  It also pictures the plight of the person who through their rebellion bring trouble upon themselves.  Whatever crisis they got into, there was none to help. Only the Lord could rescue them and He did bringing them out of darkness into His marvelous light. (1 Peter 2:10)

  • To the sick (vv. 17-22)

The next redemption picture is that of a person on their sickbed.  This person is called a “fool” because of their transgression – they have lost appetite and draw near the gates of death. But as they do, they cry out – their problem is met by God’s provision and they are led into praise as He sends His word and heals them. They become clear testimonies of the Lord’s goodness and mercy. (vv. 20-22)

  • To the storm-tossed (vv. 23-32)

Those described in these verses are not guilty of sin and folly as the previous two pictures. Instead they are going about their regular duties in life – in this case as mariners who acknowledge the works of the Lord and His wonders in the deep (vv. 23-24) Yet in the midst of legitimate work they experience destructive storms that threaten to completely undo them. (vv. 25-27) They too cry out to the Lord who delivers them and brings them to their desired haven resulting in their sacrifice of praise. This storm pictures the storms of life that affect the best of people many of whom are not doing anything wrong and yet are delivered from the difficulties that this life poses.

3.  The Power of the Redeemer (vv. 33-43)
The Power of God’s hand can be seen as He turns situations around in a moment of time from good to bad and bad to good.  He rewards the faithful and judges the wicked in His time.  The righteous see these things by faith and rejoice in the wisdom and work of the Lord.    

Questions – How loud and clear is our redemption story?