Psalm 45 – The Call and the Response
Psalm 45 – The Call and the Response
The variety and wonder of the Book of Psalms offer to all humanity the “breadth, and length, and depth, and height” of the Love of God that surpasses knowledge. Regardless of our circumstances, there is a Psalm in which we can all find comfort, strength, and provision.
In understanding this, we become more sensitive to His Spirit. In treading through the Word, we discover new mysteries of Him. We touch the wonder of His presence that conveys far beyond mere words the living truth of Himself.
Until truth becomes personal, a power expressed to us for our own walk, the scriptures will hold little more than information about our God. Written words alone will fail to penetrate our hearts. Only when it becomes alive and personal does it bring repentance and restoration, along with the wonder and joy of Him. One of my favorite scriptures concerning this truth is found in the Book of Ezekiel:
“The word of the Lord came
expressly unto Ezekiel…”
There are no words to describe the power of such an experience. Expressly! He was called and set aside for the express purpose of the Almighty God. That same truth was spoken to Jeremiah:
“Then the word of the Lord came unto me, saying, Before I formed thee in the belly I knew thee, and before thou camest forth out of the womb I sanctified thee, and I ordained thee a prophet unto the nations.”
While some may argue over the doctrines associated with predestination, Ezekiel or Jeremiah would find no cause to discuss such things on a merely intellectual level. The weight of the Call carried the need for a personal submission to Him. There is a fearful accountability wrapped up in the Call. No individual with a true understanding of the Call of God would waste time discussing the doctrinal reasonings behind such things.
The New Testament application of this same truth is vividly portrayed in the self-righteous Saul’s sudden encounter with Jesus on his way to persecute the people of God.
“And as he journeyed, he came near Damascus: and suddenly there shined round about him a light from heaven: And he fell to the earth and heard a voice saying unto him, Saul, Saul, why persecutest thou me? And he said, Who art thou, Lord? And the Lord said, I am Jesus whom thou persecutest… And the men which journeyed with him stood speechless, hearing a voice, but seeing no man.”
Paul years after his initial encounter with God declared:
“But when it pleased God, who separated me from my mother’s womb and called me by His grace, To reveal his Son in me…”* (see note below)
It is important to note that though there were others with Saul who heard “a voice”, they did not see the light nor understood the words of the voice. It was God’s Call to Saul personally.
Just as with Peter in the storm, there are times when God calls, and we must step out into that “express” invitation so that those truths may become our own personal experience. The true nature of faith brings us into an intimate walk with God. Jesus brings Peter back into the boat (fellowship with his brothers) but it is not the same Peter as the one who stepped out of the boat!
The Call of God always requires response and obedience. Sadly, as in the Parable of the Wedding Feast and others, we see God’s invitation brushed aside and disregarded by those who at one time walked with Him. Though “called” they had ceased to respond, and God turned to the “highways and byways” to bring others to partake of His glorious feast.
“The reign of the heavens was likened to a man, a king, who made marriage-feasts for his son, and he sent forth his servants to call those having been called to the marriage-feasts, and they were not willing to come.”
Matthew 22:2-3 (YLT)
*Note: Paul’s response to his salvation experience being initiated in the God who “separated me from my mother’s womb and called me by His grace…” was summed up in his response to the wondrous Call of God:
“But I discipline my body and keep it under control,
lest after preaching to others I myself should be disqualified”
1 Corinthians 9:27
(To Be Continued)