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Psalm 102:1-11 Jn.19:16-30
Psalms 102:25-27 Heb. 1:10-12
Whether this Psalm was written by David, under a prophetic spirit, concerning future times; or maybe by one in the Babylon captivity, such as Daniel, Nehemiah, Ezra, or another; either at the close of it, or upon their return from it; since it is said that the set time to favour Zion was come (102:1) is not certain. Since Zion was a type of the Gospel church, it may be applied to Gospel times; and too since some Passages in it are cited by the writer in Hebrews (Heb.1:10) as to be understood to be CHRIST (102:25).
One version calls it a prophecy concerning the new people, meaning the Gentiles in the faith. Some call it a prayer of the afflicted or poor; which is understood of CHRIST, who became poor for our sakes (2 Cor.8:9), and was afflicted by GOD and men. Jewish writers interpret it of the Jews suffering affliction in the Babylon captivity; and that it was the opinion of some of their interpreters that this prayer was composed by some wise and understanding man that fell into the hand of his enemies. It could very well be applied to any afflicted person, for all the people of GOD are more or less a poor and afflicted people; outwardly afflicted in body and in their good name and character . . . and inwardly with the corruptions of their own hearts, the temptations of Satan, and divine desertions (Jam.5:13-15). It is their privilege that they have a GOD of grace and mercy to pray to, and a throne of grace to come to at all times, a SPIRIT of grace to assist them, and CHRIST their Advocate and High Priest, to present their petitions for them.
Psalm 102 (MESSIAH’S Creation and Judgment) . . . A. This Psalm is quoted by the writer of Hebrews to further prove the deity of CHRIST JESUS (102:25-27; Heb.1:10-12) . . . B. There are other indirect references to the MESSIAH and His Gospel Kingdom of the New Testament (102:12-22). . . . C. CHRIST JESUS in His divine nature created all things (102:25; Heb.1:2; John 1:1-3; Eph. 3:9) . . . D. The LORD JESUS in His divine nature will restore all things (102:26; Rom 8:18-25; 2 Pet 3:10-14) . . . E. The LORD JESUS in His divine nature NEVER ever changes (102:26-27; Heb.13:8; Re 1:11-18).
Some Psalms are beautiful. Some are majestic. Some we feel very at home with and are so beautiful to hear. Some naturally comfort. Psalm 102 is different. It is pitiful and sad, filled with sorrow, misery, great suffering and passion. It is intense, severe and sad. It is a prayer of the afflicted, when He is faint, and pours out His complaint before the LORD.
Have you ever prayed and felt as if your prayers were bouncing off the ceiling, not being heard? The kind of prayer I am talking about is the one you repeat night after night, day after day, and have no relief. That is the kind of prayer we see in Psalm 102. It is ardent, full of pain, sorrow and suffering, and the earnest appeal of One who has endured the suffering, internal or external, for a long time, and yet stubbornly keeps coming back to GOD.
This penitent Psalm is a prayer of faith and patience, brought about by long suffering. Hear my prayer, O LORD, and let my cry come unto thee. Hide not thy face from me in the day when I am in trouble; incline thine ear unto me: in the day when I call answer me speedily.
There is no eloquent talk here, just the solemn plea of One so familiar with grief. He calls on GOD, but does not demand that GOD take action or listen to Him. He does not try to force GOD do anything, He begs, He pleads, Please hear my prayer, O LORD!
His lengthy misery is specified by His self-description: For my days are consumed like smoke, and my bones are burned as an hearth. My heart is smitten, and withered like grass; so that I forget to eat my bread. His prayer and His troubles were so intense He often forgets to eat. This is deep pain indeed. Because of the voice of my groaning, my bones cleave to my skin.
The temptations to despair are terribly strong because of His troubles. He was like a pelican in the wilderness, or an owl in the desert. Both the pelican and the owl are unclean birds (Lev.11:16, 18). It seems clear that He feels unclean, unacceptable and very alone, like a sparrow alone upon the house top. He is miserable, suffering dreadfully and praying continually for help that does not seem to be coming . . . but He firmly clings to GOD and knows the compassion and goodness of GOD shall finally rescue Him. He is looking beyond His troubles to the cross. He sees GOD reaching down and rescuing those who were doomed to death, because that is what JESUS accomplished on the cross. He set us all free from sin, death and Hell. He knew the Promise of GOD and the salvation which He was preparing and about to pour out in Him.
It is a damnable heresy (2 Pet.2:1) that Christians will not suffer, or will have all their problems wiped away if they claim it or pray for it. Why we must endure the pain and trouble is not clear to us . . . for the LORD chooses to answer some prayers just the way we want Him to, while others He seems to completely ignore. Faith (confidence and trust in GOD) tells us that the LORD is true, and that He is always with us (Jn.14:16-18; Rom.8:9; Heb.13:5) and always hears our prayers and answers each one just as He promised He would . . . but . . . in His own time, not when we want. And sometimes, it will not be the answer we hoped for, but we should trust Him because He wants nothing but the best for us. When we pray, we should always pray Thy will be done, for IF it is not GOD’S will, we do NOT want it.
Psalm 102 reminds us that not everything works out the way we would like it to work. We may not always find peace and joy in our circumstances. The LORD never promises it to be that way. He wants us to have peace and joy in CHRIST, and wants us to see His awesome love for us, as the love He displayed on the cross. He wants us to trust in Him even when things are dark and hostile. We must imitate CHRIST JESUS by looking forward to the goal, and persistently continue to trust in GOD, His FATHER and continue to pray, even when we think it does not seem to work.
Theme: Prayer of trouble and sorrow.
I believe that this is a MESSIANIC Psalm that pictures the Lord JESUS in Gethsemane. The writer of this Psalm is not mentioned. There have been many guesses as to who wrote it, I will guess that it was perhaps David. The inspired inscription of this Psalm is: A Prayer of the afflicted, when he is overwhelmed, and poureth out his complaint before the Lord. It pictures the affliction and humiliation of our precious Lord JESUS in the Garden of Gethsemane.
A Mournful Complaint of
Great Afflictions (102:1-11)
The entire Word of GOD can be used to lead us in prayer; but here, as is often elsewhere, the HOLY SPIRIT can give us words. Here is a prayer put into the Hands of the afflicted ONE, as He then presents it to GOD, His FATHER. Even the best of men can be almost totally overwhelmed with afflictions and troubles in life. When this happens, it is our concern and duty to pray to a loving and merciful GOD, for it is a great comfort to an afflicted spirit to unburden itself, by humbly representing its griefs. Blessed be the Name of the LORD, who both gives and takes away. At this time, the Lord JESUS looked on Himself as a dying man; My days are like a shadow that declineth; and I am withered like grass.
Psalm 102:1 Hear my prayer, O LORD, and let my cry come unto thee. (KJV)
Hear my prayer, O LORD . . . the prayer of a poor, destitute and afflicted one. This was JESUS’ own prayer which came from His own Heart, and in sincerity, and expressed under a feeling of His own needs and troubles; and though dictated and interwoven in His Heart by the SPIRIT of GOD, being lifted up by Him in faith and fervency, and which He earnestly desires might be heard (Ps.4:1;17:1; 18:6).
And let my cry come unto thee . . . He calls His prayer a cry, because it was uttered in distress, and with great passion and persistence. He prays that it might come to GOD’S Ears, and be considered by Him, and not be shut out (Ps.5:2; 18:6; 72:12).
Psalm 102:2 Hide not thy face from me in the day when I am in trouble; incline thine ear unto me: in the day when I call answer me speedily. (KJV)
Hide not thy face from me . . . Thy Shekinah, Thy Presence. Any time GOD hides His Face from His people, it is troubling and very grievous to them, especially when they are faced with other troubles. It is very afflicting, to say the least, when to their outward trouble, GOD seems to hide His Face from them. His prayer is, that GOD would not refuse to look kindly upon Him; that GOD would turn His attention to Him and honor His pleas (Ps.10:1; 13:1; 27:9. Job 34:29).
In the day when I am in trouble . . . when sorrows came upon the CHRIST JESUS, the Man in the garden of Gethsemane (Mat.26:36-50; Mk.14:32-36; Lk.22:39-49; Jn.18:1-2), He desperately needed His FATHER’S gracious help, for He had great agony, distress, grief, misery and heart wrenching suffering.
Incline thine ear unto me . . . (Ps.5:1; 17:1, 6; 55:1; 86:6).
In the day when I call, answer me speedily . . . the LORD believed in an immediate answer to prayer. He often had proof that His prayer was answered at once; His Mind became calm; He had comfort and peace; for He obtained the blessing which He sincerely desired. May I say to you, that GOD always hears sincere, heartfelt prayer with great delight, and He always sends the best and quickest answer to our problem. Far too often we get too impatient as we wait for GOD’S answer . . . instead, we should patiently WAIT on the LORD, but He will always send the correct answer at the RIGHT time. We should not be impatient. To wait on the Lord is always wise! Psalm 27:14 Wait on the LORD: be of good courage, and he shall strengthen thine heart: wait, I say, on the LORD. (KJV)
*****Let us always remember that GOD’S true children are blessed indeed! Isaiah 65:24 And it shall come to pass, that before they call, I will answer; and while they are yet speaking, I will hear. (KJV) . . . There are SO many remarkable Promises in the Word of GOD . . . but this is one that ranks up near the top for me. We all want to have our prayers heard and answered, for we want to have fellowship with GOD, and to have it in our power to draw near to Him with freedom and boldness (Rom.5:1-2). Even though we are surrounded by countless distresses and disasters, we do not have to stay miserable as long as we are at liberty to approach His Throne of grace. In these few marvelous words, the LORD Promises His children that we shall NOT pray in vain. I believe that this refers mainly to the Kingdom of CHRIST, through Whom we are heard and have access to GOD the FATHER (Eph.2:18). There is NO other way in which the FATHER will hear us, except through CHRIST (Jn.10:7, 9; 14:6; Acts 4:12; Rom.5:1-2); but we must consider that the DOOR is narrow and might be said to one day be shut (Gen.6:3; Isa.63:10; Acts 7:51; 1 Thes.5:9), while now it has been opened wide. Thus we are granted admission into Heaven through CHRIST (Heb.4:16).
And while they are yet speaking, I will hear . . . while they are still praying to Him, He hears and answers, and grants their requests, just as He did for Daniel (Dan.9:20-23; 10:12). This reveals the willingness of the LORD to help and assist His people in any time of trouble, or when they may fear an enemy; and it is indeed a great encouragement for us to attend His Throne of grace continually.
Psalm 102:3 For my days are consumed like smoke, and my bones are burned as an hearth. (KJV)
For my days are consumed like smoke . . . smoke rises quickly, is easily dissolved, and quickly disappears; so too are the days of man's life (Jam.4:14). The LORD’S days were spent in great obscurity, in the darkness of affliction, temptation, and in much trouble and suffering. It is as if He had lived in smoke all His time.
And my bones are burned as an hearth . . . the idea is, that in His troubles, His very Bones seemed to be consumed and to waste away (Ps.31:10). When we face sickness and despair, our days pass blindly that we do not care about even our basic needs. In times like these, GOD alone is our comfort and strength. Even when we have no strength to fight, we can lean on Him. It seems when we are admit our weakness that GOD'S great strength comes through for us.
Psalm 102:4 My heart is smitten, and withered like grass; so that I forget to eat my bread. (KJV)
My heart is smitten, and withered like grass . . . My heart is smitten, broken, crushed with grief. And withered like grass . . . like grass smitten with the heat of the sun, which is dried up, and withers away. So too was the Heart of the Man JESUS, so smitten with a sense of loss of support; and having no strength of its own.
So that I forget to eat my bread . . . at times, through grief and trouble, people refuse to eat, which is a voluntary act, and purposely done; but here, there was such a loss of appetite, through sorrow, that He forgot to eat. The Lord JESUS was so absorbed in His trials; He thought of nothing else, not even of the things necessary to the support of life. It is that because of being completely absorbed in His trouble, heart and soul, that He forgot to eat.
Psalm 102:5 By reason of the voice of my groaning my bones cleave to my skin. (KJV)
By reason of the voice of my groaning . . . the suffering of the Man, JESUS, was so great that it caused Him to groan. We too can understand this, for under the burden of sin and pressure of afflictions, we too at times groan (cry, moan, wail).
My bones cleave to my skin . . . the effect described here is that of a wasting away or a leanness of flesh from deep distress, so that the bones became prominent, and had nothing to hide them from view; so that the bones seemed to stick to the flesh itself (Job.19:20).
Psalm 102:6 I am like a pelican of the wilderness: I am like an owl of the desert. (KJV)
I am like a pelican of the wilderness . . . (Lev.11:18; Deut.14:17) a sea bird in the midst of desert becomes a striking image of loneliness and distress. The word pelican is supposed to have been a name given to the pelican from the idea of vomiting, because it vomits the shells and other substances which it has too greedily swallowed. In Isaiah 34:11 and Zep.2:14, itis rendered cormorant or bittern.
I am like an owl of the desert . . . an owl likes to be on old walls, and in ruined houses, and does not care to band with other birds, and it makes a hideous, sorrowful noise. Its appearance and its doleful cry is the very symbol of desolation.
Psalm 102:7 I watch, and am as a sparrow alone upon the house top. (KJV)
I watch . . . night after night, not sleeping, my trouble keeps sleep from my eyes, I am kept awake at night by grief.
And am as a sparrow alone upon the housetop . . . sparrows not only perch on housetops and solitary places, but will make their nests in dwelling houses, and in places of public resort, as temples (Ps.84:3). This may be understood of any solitary bird, for the Jews had flat roofs upon their houses, and birds of solitude would come and sit alone in the night season, to which the LORD seems to liken Himself . . . either being forsaken by His friends and acquaintances, or being in sad, lonely circumstances. The LORD chose to be alone in the garden, mourning over His sorrowful state and condition.
Psalm 102:8 Mine enemies reproach me all the day; and they that are mad against me are sworn against me. (KJV)
Mine enemies reproach me all the day . . . continually, because His beliefs, values and practices were different from theirs; as was His faith and profession of it, and His Holy walk and lifestyle. Good men have their enemies . . . always had, and will continue until JESUS Returns; but then there are those who are also enemies to GOD and His CHRIST, and TRUE religion . . . and these, are not content unless they reproach now and then, persistently throwing out their scoffs and jeers. Dear one, it is wise that the saints should count on being reproached (criticized, laughed at, rebuked, scolded) for the sake of CHRIST. Greater riches shall they have than all the treasures in Egypt! Matthew 5:10-12 Blessed are they which are persecuted for righteousness' sake: for theirs is the kingdom of heaven. 11 Blessed are ye, when men shall revile you, and persecute you, and shall say all manner of evil against you falsely, for my sake. 12 Rejoice, and be exceeding glad: for great is your reward in heaven: for so persecuted they the prophets which were before you. (KJV)
And they that are mad against me . . . as the Jews were against CHRIST, because of His miracles, doctrine and success, and therefore sought to take away His life; as the Apostle Paul did before he was converted (Acts 9), even exceeding angry against the saints, and persecuted them to strange cities (Lk.6:11). So shocking and relentless were His sworn enemies, their anger excited them even to madness.
Are sworn against me . . . they took His Holy Name for a curse . . . as so many do today! Any mischief they could do to Him, they did. They swore to lies, false charges and accusations brought against Him, like those that Jezebel suborned against Naboth (1 Ki.21:13). The meaning is, that they conspired together under an oath to do JESUS harm. It was not the wrath of one individual, but the combined wrath of those who act under the seriousness of an oath (Acts 23:12).
Psalm 102:9 For I have eaten ashes like bread, and mingled my drink with weeping, (KJV)
For I have eaten ashes like bread . . . sitting in ashes and rolling himself in them is what mourners did at that time, and having no other table than the ground to eat His food upon, He might eat ashes along with His bread. It seems that JESUS had seated Himself in the ashes of His grief (Isa.58:5; 61:3; Jonah 3:6; Dan.9:3; Mat.11:21); and ashes had become, as it were, His food. The ashes in which He sat had been mingled with His food.
And mingled my drink with weeping . . . His drink was mingled with tears. As He drank, the tears ran down His Cheeks, and mixed with the liquid in His cup (Ps.80:5). The idea is, that He had shed many tears; and that even when ate food, there was no relief from His grief.
Psalm 102:10 Because of thine indignation and thy wrath: for thou hast lifted me up, and cast me down. (KJV)
Because of thine indignation and thy wrath . . . indignation and wrath are strong terms in the Hebrew language. The LORD endured this. Why? He did it . . . for the joy that was set before him (Heb.12:2). I believe that we may trust in what is here stated concerning CHRIST our Saviour.
It could well be that what gave the Man JESUS the greatest discomfort was not so much the anger and hatred of His enemies, and His other outward afflictions, as much as He sensed the wrath and indignation of GOD.
For thou hast lifted me up, and cast me down . . . maybe the LORD’S thoughts were that GOD had lifted Him up, and now He felt that He might cast Him down with the greater force.
Psalm 30:7-8 LORD, by thy favour thou hast made my mountain to stand strong: thou didst hide thy face, and I was troubled. 8 I cried to thee, O LORD; and unto the LORD I made supplication. (KJV)
*****The Man JESUS, humbly begs GOD to take notice of His affliction and suffering, as He goes to Him in prayer (102:1-2). Dear one, when we pray in our times of troubles, we should rest assured that GOD will graciously hear us and answer (Ps.18:6). BUT . . . if our prayers are not pleasing to Him, they will be to no purpose to ourselves. Let us keep this in mind when we go to Him in prayer. I think it is wise when we go to GOD in prayer, that we ask ourselves: Is this prayer pleasing to GOD? Pleasing God: (Gen.6:8; Ex.29:18, 25; 32:11; 33:12-13. Lev.1:9; 3:5 Num.15:3; 29:2; 1 Chron.29:17; 1 Sam.2:26; 1 Ki.3:10; 10:9; Ezra 6:10; Nehh.5:19; 13:31; Job 33:26; Psalm 5:4; 37:23; 19:14; 51:16-17; 69:30-31; 90:17; 104:34; 147:10-11; 149:4; Pro. 11:20; 12:22; 15:8; 16:7; Isa.1:11-13; Eze.18:23; 33:11; Dan.9:17; Hag.1:7; Mal.2:13-14; Mat.3:17; 7:21; 17:5; Mk. 1:11; k.3:22; Jn.5:30; 8:29; Rom.8:8; 14:17-18; Gal.1:10; Eph. 6:6; Phil.4:18; Col.1:19; 3:20; 1Thes.2:4; 4:1; 1 Tim.2:1-3; 1 Tim.5:4; Heb.11:5; 11:6; 13:16, 20-21; 2 Pet. 1:17; 1 Jn.2:17).
Psalm 102:11 My days are like a shadow that declineth; and I am withered like grass. (KJV)
My days are like a shadow that declineth . . . a shadow that declineth, soon vanishes in the darkness of night.
And I am withered like grass . . . (102:4) which in the morning flourishes, is cut down at noon and withered at evening. This is the case of all flesh, no matter how beautiful and substantial it may look . . . it is weak, frail and mortal and cannot stand up before the force of this life’s afflictions, which quickly consume strength and beauty, often much before the time of death. Psalm 90:5-6 Thou carriest them away as with a flood; they are as a sleep: in the morning they are like grass which groweth up. 6 In the morning it flourisheth, and groweth up; in the evening it is cut down, and withereth. (KJV)
We Are Encouraged to Expect GOD to
Make Good His Promises (102:12-22)
We all are dying creatures, but the awesome Creator GOD is an everlasting GOD, the Protector of His church. Our life is brief (Ps.39:5; 89:47; 90:3-6; 103:L15-16), but GOD is eternal, everlasting (Ps.72:17; 902,4; 102:12,27; 103:17; 112:9). All created things die, but our awesome GOD never dies! Things that threaten us cannot touch the LORD! Our names will come and go, but the Name of GOD shall be shall be known, honored and remembered unto all generations for all eternity!
When we consider our own evil, our darkness and deadness, and the many defects in our prayers, we really do have reason to fear that we will not be received in Heaven . . . but we are here assured of the contrary, for we have an Advocate (1 Jn.2:1) with the FATHER, and belief and trust in CHRIST JESUS puts us are under grace, NOT under the law (Rom.6:14). The subject of redemption is a subject of praise in the Christian church. What the Lord JESUS did for us on the cross, should NEVER be forgotten by TRUE Christians, and we must continue to honor Him with our sacrifices of praise (Heb.13:5) every single day that we live! WHAT sacrifice does GOD want from us? It is the sacrifice of praise. My friend, it is one that you can easily afford! Our lips should confess GOD'S Name in praise and thanksgiving . . . continually! BUT, how many people do you come in contact with, that use GOD'S Name profanely? How many TV shows are there today that do not blaspheme GOD? And among these many people who vilely miss-use GOD’S Name, are a multitude of supposed Christians, people who SAY they are Christians. Dear one, a TRUE Christian will separate themselves from such wickedness (2 Cor.6:17). You do NOT need that filth of TV programming, and you certainly do NOT need friends who blaspheme GOD! . . . . . . . . . . . . http://www.godcannotlie.org/true_children_of_god.htm
We should offer JESUS a continual sacrifice of praise. He certainly is worthy of that! A sacrifice of praise today would include thanking JESUS for His once for all Sacrifice on the cross (Heb.7:27; 9:27-28; 10:10) and telling others about it, which far too few of us do! Acts of kindness and sharing are especially pleasing to GOD, even when they go unnoticed by others. Hebrews 13:15-16 By him therefore let us offer the sacrifice of praise to God continually, that is, the fruit of our lips giving thanks to his name. 16 But to do good and to communicate forget not: for with such sacrifices God is well pleased. (KJV)
Psalm 102:12 But thou, O LORD, shalt endure for ever; and thy remembrance unto all generations. (KJV)
But thou, O LORD, shalt endure for ever . . . in contrast with man's frailty (Ps.90:1-7). It seems that this address is made to CHRIST, as is clear from verse 25. I think the following Passage from the SPIRIT led writer of Hebrews needs to be here. Hebrews 1:8-12 But unto the Son he saith, Thy throne, O God, is for ever and ever: a sceptre of righteousness is the sceptre of thy kingdom. 9 Thou hast loved righteousness, and hated iniquity; therefore God, even thy God, hath anointed thee with the oil of gladness above thy fellows. 10 And, Thou, Lord, in the beginning hast laid the foundation of the earth; and the heavens are the works of thine hands: 11 They shall perish; but thou remainest; and they all shall wax old as doth a garment; 12 And as a vesture shalt thou fold them up, and they shall be changed: but thou art the same, and thy years shall not fail. (KJV) . . . More on this in verses 25-28.
And thy remembrance to all generations . . . Thy remembrance is either, the fame and memory of His wonderful works, or His Holy Name. GOD'S remembrance and/or memorial shall go on unto all generations (Ex.3:15), thus describing the endlessness of GOD'S existence, compared to the frailty and vanity of mankind.
Psalm 102:13 Thou shalt arise, and have mercy upon Zion: for the time to favour her, yea, the set time, is come. (KJV)
Thou shalt arise, and have mercy on Zion . . . have mercy upon Zion, upon Jerusalem, or thy church and people. He shall exert His power, and display the riches of His grace and mercy; not by delivering the Jews from the Babylon captivity, to which some confine it; but by redeeming His church and people by power and price; or rather by raising up and restoring them to great glory and prosperity in the latter day.
For the time to favour her, yea, the set time, is come . . . the set time; some think it means the end of those seventy years which GOD had fixed for the captivity (Jer.25:12; 29:10; Dan.9:2), but others think it could be the seventy weeks of Daniel (Dan.9:25-26), fixed for the MESSIAH'S Coming; or the fulness of time (Gal.4:4) agreed upon between CHRIST and His FATHER, for Him to come and redeem His people. But, it could mean the end of the forty two months (Rev.11:2; 13:5) or the 1260 days, or years fixed for the treading underfoot the holy city, for the witnesses prophesying in sackcloth, and for the reign of Antichrist; which when come will usher in glorious times in favor of Zion, the church of GOD.
Psalm 102:14 For thy servants take pleasure in her stones, and favour the dust thereof. (KJV)
For thy servants take pleasure in her stones . . . there were some Jews who took more pleasure in the stones and rubbish of the Temple, as it lay in ruins, than in all the stately palaces in Babylon; and who greatly desired and took delight in gathering these stones, and putting them together again.
And favour the dust thereof . . . literally, pity, show compassion for. They no longer look with indifference on these ruins of Zion. They look with a tender heart on the very dust of those ruins. They feel that a wrong has been done to Zion; they eagerly desire its restoration to its former splendor and glory. They long for a return to it as to their home. They are weary with their captivity, and they are anxiously waiting for the time when they may revisit their native land.
Psalm 102:15 So the heathen shall fear the name of the LORD, and all the kings of the earth thy glory. (KJV)
So the heathen shall fear the name of the LORD . . . this was in some way fulfilled when the rebuilding of the Temple and City of GOD was finished through so many and great difficulties and oppositions, to the admiration, envy, and terror of their enemies (Neh.6:15-16; Ps.126:1-2), but much more truly and fully in building of the spiritual Jerusalem by CHRIST, unto whom the Gentiles were gathered, and the princes of the world paid their acknowledgments.
And all the kings of the earth thy glory . . . it is true that after the edict of Cyrus to restore and rebuild Jerusalem which was about four hundred and ninety years before CHRIST, the Name of the true GOD was more generally known among the heathen. Translating the Sacred Writings into Greek, spread the light of GOD in the Gentile world, which they had not before seen. But things in today’s world greatly resemble the days of Noah’s time (Gen.6:5). Dear one, GOD will tolerate wickedness just so long . . . and then He shall lower the boom! BEWARE!!!
One day, His glorious goodness, power and wisdom shall be made plain to all the world.
Psalm 102:16 When the LORD shall build up Zion, he shall appear in his glory. (KJV)
When the LORD shall build up Zion . . . the City of Jerusalem and the church of GOD in the latter days, when the Lord JESUS returns (Zec.14:1-5; Rev.19:11-21),
He shall appear in His glory . . . then He shall be clearly seen in His glory, which glory will be upon His church and His people, and on which it shall continue. This glory will lie largely in the purity of Gospel Truths and worship; in the number of converts; in the gifts and graces of the SPIRIT of GOD upon them; in their peace, prosperity, unity and holiness; and especially in the Presence of CHRIST with them, who will be seen in all the glory and majesty of His Kingly office. Dear one, CHRIST JESUS will one day reign before His ancients gloriously. The perfections of His nature shall be most wonderfully displayed, for He shall appear in His true character, as a GOD of love, mercy, grace and salvation . . . but also judgment! One day, His glorious goodness, power and wisdom shall be made plain to the entire world.
Psalm 102:17 He will regard the prayer of the destitute, and not despise their prayer. (KJV)
He will regard the prayer of the destitute . . . the prayer of the destitute, the poor, the forsaken, despised people shall be heard.
And not despise their prayer . . . He will not despise, not reject it with contempt and hatred. The meaning seems to be that He will receive their prayer with pleasure, and give an answer to it; for the prayer of these poor destitute ones is a delight to Him (Pro.15:8), and He will accept and answer it.
Psalm 102:18 This shall be written for the generation to come: and the people which shall be created shall praise the LORD. (KJV)
This shall be written for the generation to come . . . this shall be written, shall not be lost nor forgotten, but carefully recorded by GOD’S people, to instruct and encourage of all succeeding generations of what shall happen in the latter days.
And the people which shall be created . . . this could mean either, (1). the Jews which would be restored, who were in a manner dead and buried in the grave, and mere dry bones (Isa.26:19; Eze.37:1-28); and so their restoration might well be called a creation; or, as it is elsewhere, a resurrection. Or, (2). the Gentiles who should be converted, whose conversion may be called a second creation (Jn.3:3-8; Eph.2:8-10,15).
Psalm 102:19 For he hath looked down from the height of his sanctuary; from heaven did the LORD behold the earth; (KJV)
For he hath looked down . . . He hath looked down upon us, not like an idle spectator, but with an eye of pity and relief.
From the height of his sanctuary . . . from His high sanctuary, Heaven, which GOD calls His high and holy place (Isa.57:15). It is from heaven that the Lord beholds the Earth and the inhabitants of it, good and bad. He beholds the world that lies in wickedness and all the vile wickedness committed in it; and one day, all will be called to an account, and be punished for it. He also beholds good people, not only with an eye of providence, to take care of them, to protect and defend them, but with an eye of love, grace and mercy.
Psalm 102:20 To hear the groaning of the prisoner; to loose those that are appointed to death; (KJV)
To hear the groanings of the prisoner . . . most likely the captives in Babylon; those who were held as prisoners there, and who were subjected to such hardships in their long captivity.
To loose those that are appointed to death . . . this may mean either those who were sentenced to death; those who were sick and ready to die; or those who, in their captivity, were in such a state of hardship and suffering that death appeared inevitable. The loose properly means to open, applied to the mouth, for eating (Eze.3:2), or in song (Ps.78:2), or for speaking (Job 3:1), or the ear (Isa.50:5), or the hand (Deut.15:8); or the gates of a city, a door, etc., (Deut.20:11). Here it means to set free, to deliver (Isa.61:1).
Psalm 102:21 To declare the name of the LORD in Zion, and his praise in Jerusalem; (KJV)
To declare the name of the LORD in Zion . . . meaning the prisoners that had been appointed to death, now being loosed might declare what great things the LORD has done for them; gratefully speaking of His love, grace, goodness, wisdom and power, in their deliverance. They boldly and willingly profess His Name, and confess Him before men, showing great honor of it, and seeking glory to His Name.
And his praise in Jerusalem . . . Zion, Jerusalem is the same as the Gospel church state. One day Jerusalem shall be the praise of the entire Earth (Rev.21:22-27); then and there will those that are delivered from the anti-Christian yoke, praise the LORD, sing the song of Moses and the LAMB and glorify our awesome Triune GOD for all that He has done for them.
Psalm 102:22 When the people are gathered together, and the kingdoms, to serve the LORD. (KJV)
When the people are gathered together . . . when the Jews shall be gathered together, and seek the LORD their GOD and their King, the MESSIAH, and appoint them one Head, even CHRIST JESUS (Hos.1:11), and when the Gentiles shall gather together, in great numbers, to the church of GOD.
And the kingdoms to serve the LORD . . . even the kingdoms of this world, which will become His, and will serve Him in righteousness and holiness, freely and cheerfully, with one shoulder and one content; their kings will fall down before the LORD, and all nations shall serve Him (Ps.72:11; Rev.21:22-27), then will be the time when the prisoners shall be LOOSED, and the LORD shall be praised in Zion. One day, the Gentiles as well as the Jews, shall be one common people (Gal.3:6-11, 26-29), and would be brought to the knowledge of the true GOD, and would unite in worship of Him. Isaiah Chapter 60 may help with this . . . . . . . . . . http://godcannotlie.org/book_of_isaiah_ch.60.htm
GOD does NOT Change (102:23-28)
Our bodies soon weaken, our strength decreases, we can expect that months will be cut off in the midst of it all. What should we do to arrange for this in view of this fact? We simply must know it is GOD'S Hand in it, and accept this as part of life. It is comfortable indeed to know, through all the changes and dangers of the church, to remember that CHRIST JESUS is the same yesterday, today and forever (Heb.13:8). In reference to the death of our bodies and the removal of friends, we must remember that GOD is an everlasting GOD. We should not overlook the assurance this Psalm holds within it, for it embraces a happy end to all the true believer's trials. Even though all things are constantly changing, dying and perishing, yet JESUS lives, and thus all is secure if it is in His Hands, for He hath said, because I live ye shall live also (Jn.14:19). What wonderful words of comfort and peace from the Lord JESUS!
Psalm 102:23 He weakened my strength in the way; he shortened my days. (KJV)
He weakened my strength in the way . . . the idea is, that GOD had taken His strength away; He had weakened the Man, JESUS, humbled Him, brought Him low by sorrow. The word way refers to the course which He was pursuing. In His journey of life GOD had afflicted, humbled and prostrated Him.
He shortened my days . . . He seemed to be about to cut me off from life, and to bring Me to the grave. He felt as if He would sink under His troubles (Ps.6:4-6).
*****This can also be considered to be the people of GOD, waiting for latter day glory, weakened by the persecutions of Antichrist, or grown weak in the exercises of their grace, faith, hope and love; which will be their case before these glorious times, and now is (Rev.3:2).
Psalm 102:24 I said, O my God, take me not away in the midst of my days: thy years are throughout all generations. (KJV)
I said, O my God, take me not away in the midst of my days . . . which was always reckoned as a judgment, as a token of GOD'S sore displeasure, and what only befell wicked men (Ps.55:23).
Thy years are throughout all generations . . . although we humans continuously die and perish, Almighty GOD is everlasting and unchangeable, and therefore He is well able to deliver His people, and be faithful in performing all His Promises, and He will be their GOD forever, and for that reason He shall NOT forsake or reject us.
Psalm 102:25 Of old hast thou laid the foundation of the earth: and the heavens are the work of thy hands. (KJV)
Of old hast thou laid the foundation of the earth . . . the eternity of GOD looks both backward and forward, for eternity is both without beginning and without end. The beginning of the Earth is affirmed and illustrated here. The Earth was created by GOD; it did NOT grow from a pre-existent core, nor did it come from the ridiculous, scientific Big Bang Theory. There was NOTHING (Gen. 1:2, 6-7); and GOD produced substance or matter, and out of that created the Earth and the Heavens.
And the heavens are the work of thy hands . . . these are the airy and starry Heavens, and the Heaven of Heavens, where GOD’S throne is; was made by CHRIST Himself, and clearly expresses His power, wisdom and glory.
It seems the Heavens are divided into three:
#1. The aerial, including the clouds and the atmosphere, the heavens above us, until we come to the stars.
#2. The starry Heavens, the Heavens in which the sun, moon, and stars appear to be.
#3. The Heavens beyond the stars. That Heaven was supposed to be the residence of GOD, of angels and of holy spirits. It was this upper Heaven, the dwelling-place of GOD, to which Paul was taken, and whose wonders he was permitted to see . . . this region where GOD dwelt, where CHRIST was seated at the right hand of the FATHER (2 Cor.6:7; Col.3:1; Heb.10:12; 1 Pet.3:22). See Special Comments at the end of this Chapter for more on Heaven.
*****The lower part of the Creation, the LORD'S footstool (Isa.66:1; Mat.5:35; Acts 7:49), is the Earth: this has its foundation; which cannot be searched out (Jer.31:36-37), and shall never be removed. This shows the wisdom of Almighty GOD as a wise Master Builder, and the permanence of the Earth; and is proof of the deity of CHRIST.
Genesis 1:1 In the beginning God created the heaven and the earth. (KJV)
Psalm 33:6 By the word of the LORD were the heavens made; and all the host of them by the breath of his mouth. (KJV)
Proverbs 3:19 The LORD by wisdom hath founded the earth; by understanding hath he established the heavens. (KJV)
Jeremiah 32:17 Ah Lord GOD! behold, thou hast made the heaven and the earth by thy great power and stretched out arm, and there is nothing too hard for thee: (KJV)
John 1:1-3 In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God. 2 The same was in the beginning with God. 3 All things were made by him; and without him was not any thing made that was made. (KJV)
Acts 4:24 And when they heard that, they lifted up their voice to God with one accord, and said, Lord, thou art God, which hast made heaven, and earth, and the sea, and all that in them is: (KJV)
Heb. 1:10 And, Thou, Lord, in the beginning hast laid the foundation of the earth; and the heavens are the works of thine hands: (KJV)
Heb. 11:3 Through faith we understand that the worlds were framed by the word of God, so that things which are seen were not made of things which do appear. (KJV)
Rev. 4:11 Thou art worthy, O Lord, to receive glory and honour and power: for thou hast created all things, and for thy pleasure they are and were created. (KJV)
Before the Earth was, from eternity, fully expresses the eternal existence of CHRIST.
Psalm 102:26 They shall perish, but thou shalt endure: yea, all of them shall wax old like a garment; as a vesture shalt thou change them, and they shall be changed: (KJV)
They shall perish . . . both the Heavens and the Earth, even though so well founded, and so firmly made; shall be dissolved, melt, and pass away one day (Isa.34:4; 51:6; 2 Pet.3:7-12); not as to the substance, but as to the quality of them.
But thou shalt endure . . . CHRIST JESUS as the eternal GOD, from everlasting to everlasting; as Man, will die no more; as MEDIATOR, He will always remain; CHRIST JESUS will be KING forever; His throne shall be forever and ever; His Kingdom is an everlasting one; CHRIST JESUS shall be a Priest forever, after the order of Melchizedek (Heb.5:6; 6:20; 7:11, 17, 21). His once for all Sacrifice (Heb.10:10, 12, 14) was of an eternal effectiveness, and He ever lives to make intercession for His people. He will always continue, as the Prophet (Deut.18:15,18; Acts 3:22-23; 7:37) in His church, to teach by His SPIRIT, His Word and ordinances now; and in the latter days, He will be the LIGHT of the New Jerusalem (Rev.21), and of His saints, forever.
Yea, all of them shall wax old like a garment. . . not only the Heavens, which are as a curtain and garment around the Earth, but the Earth itself (Isa.51:6; Rev.20:11), will lose their beauty and glory, and become useless as to the present form of them.
As a vesture shall thou change them, and they shall be changed . . . this seems to mean that the Earth and Heavens will not perish, as to the substance of them; but change as to their form and fashion; and as to the merits of them, being that all deadly and harmful ones shall, be purged away by fire. The curse (Gen.3:17-19) being removed, the new Heavens and new Earth shall arise out of them (Isa.65:17; 66:22; 2 Pet.3:13).
Yea, all of them shall wax old . . . everything must deteriorate, unless preserved by GOD’S renewing and stimulating energy. Even the Heavens and the Earth are subject to this law; for they must perish as we know them. They had a beginning, and they shall have an end. Wax old means to decay and perish.
Psalm 102:27 But thou art the same, and thy years shall have no end. (KJV)
But thou art the same . . . but Thou art He, that is the Eternal One, and therefore, GOD alone has immortality. ALL created beings are perishable and changeable, because they are not eternal. Only GOD alone is eternal; so GOD alone is everlasting and unchangeable.
And thy years shall have no end . . . (102:24), He that made the Heavens and the Earth . . . will continue to be when they will not be. The world will perish, but GOD will remain (Heb.1:10-12). CHRIST JESUS, GOD'S only begotten SON, was present and active in the Creation of the world (Jn.1:1-3).
*****GOD does NOT change, ever! GOD never changes in His essence, His nature and His perfections. This unchangeableness of GOD was anciently represented by the figure of a cube, a piece of metal or wood made four square; with each and every side exactly the same, no matter which way you turn it, because it is equal to itself in all its dimensions. GOD is said to be the center of all things, and all other things are the perimeter. The center NEVER moves, although the perimeter does. GOD remains immovable in the midst of the circle. GOD alone is eternal; therefore GOD alone is everlasting and unchangeable.
Psalm 102:28 The children of thy servants shall continue, and their seed shall be established before thee. (KJV)
The children of thy servants shall continue . . . the servants of the LORD are the disciples of CHRIST, bringing the Gospel in all successive generations, with whom CHRIST will be to the end of the world. The children are those whom they have begotten again, through the Gospel, to whom they are spiritual fathers. Regenerated souls are meant; and of these there will be a succession in all ages, until latter day glory takes place. TRUE children of GOD know that He is unchangeable, and that all His Promises to His people shall be fulfilled. Even though the Heavens and the Earth would pass away, GOD is always the same. His Word will NEVER fail and His Promises were sure (Mat.5:18; 2:35). The word continue means to dwell, as in a habitation; to abide.
And their seed shall be established before thee . . . the same with the children, the spiritual seed of the church and of faithful servants; these, with the church, in which they are born and brought up, shall be established in CHRIST; the church will be no more in an unstable and fluctuating state, but will be as a tabernacle, that shall not be taken down; yea, shall be established upon the top of the mountains, and exalted above the hills (Isa.2:2-3). It means here that the Gospel church would be firmly and permanently established, would be permanent in the Earth. As God is eternal and unchangeable, so would the safety and welfare of His people be.
Psalm 102 Prophecies Fulfilled in New Testament
#1. The Suffering and Reproach of Calvary. Psalm 102:1-11 Hear my prayer, O LORD, and let my cry come unto thee. 2 Hide not thy face from me in the day when I am in trouble; incline thine ear unto me: in the day when I call answer me speedily. 3 For my days are consumed like smoke, and my bones are burned as an hearth. 4 My heart is smitten, and withered like grass; so that I forget to eat my bread. 5 By reason of the voice of my groaning my bones cleave to my skin. 6 I am like a pelican of the wilderness: I am like an owl of the desert. 7 I watch, and am as a sparrow alone upon the house top. 8 Mine enemies reproach me all the day; and they that are mad against me are sworn against me. 9 For I have eaten ashes like bread, and mingled my drink with weeping, 10 Because of thine indignation and thy wrath: for thou hast lifted me up, and cast me down. 11 My days are like a shadow that declineth; and I am withered like grass. (KJV) Fulfilled: John 19:16-30 Then delivered he him therefore unto them to be crucified. And they took Jesus, and led him away. 17 And he bearing his cross went forth into a place called the place of a skull, which is called in the Hebrew Golgotha: 18 Where they crucified him, and two other with him, on either side one, and Jesus in the midst. 19 And Pilate wrote a title, and put it on the cross. And the writing was, JESUS OF NAZARETH THE KING OF THE JEWS. 20 This title then read many of the Jews: for the place where Jesus was crucified was nigh to the city: and it was written in Hebrew, and Greek, and Latin. 21 Then said the chief priests of the Jews to Pilate, Write not, The King of the Jews; but that he said, I am King of the Jews. 22 Pilate answered, What I have written I have written. 23 Then the soldiers, when they had crucified Jesus, took his garments, and made four parts, to every soldier a part; and also his coat: now the coat was without seam, woven from the top throughout. 24 They said therefore among themselves, Let us not rend it, but cast lots for it, whose it shall be: that the scripture might be fulfilled, which saith, They parted my raiment among them, and for my vesture they did cast lots. These things therefore the soldiers did. 25 Now there stood by the cross of Jesus his mother, and his mother's sister, Mary the wife of Cleophas, and Mary Magdalene. 26 When Jesus therefore saw his mother, and the disciple standing by, whom he loved, he saith unto his mother, Woman, behold thy son! 27 Then saith he to the disciple, Behold thy mother! And from that hour that disciple took her unto his own home. 28 After this, Jesus knowing that all things were now accomplished, that the scripture might be fulfilled, saith, I thirst. 29 Now there was set a vessel full of vinegar: and they filled a spunge with vinegar, and put it upon hyssop, and put it to his mouth. 30 When Jesus therefore had received the vinegar, he said, It is finished: and he bowed his head, and gave up the ghost. (KJV)
#2. Messiah is the Preexistent Son. Psalm 102:25-27 Of old hast thou laid the foundation of the earth: and the heavens are the work of thy hands. 26 They shall perish, but thou shalt endure: yea, all of them shall wax old like a garment; as a vesture shalt thou change them, and they shall be changed: 27 But thou art the same, and thy years shall have no end. (KJV) Fulfilled: Hebrews 1:10-12 And, Thou, Lord, in the beginning hast laid the foundation of the earth; and the heavens are the works of thine hands: 11 They shall perish; but thou remainest; and they all shall wax old as doth a garment; 12 And as a vesture shalt thou fold them up, and they shall be changed: but thou art the same, and thy years shall not fail. (KJV)
When the term heaven is not used symbolically in Scripture, it usually refers to one of three realms.
#1. Our Immediate Atmosphere
#2. Outer Space (The Sun, Moon, And Stars)
#3.The Home where GOD resides
So, we see that the Bible speaks of more than one heaven.
More Than One Heaven
The fact that JESUS passed through the heavens (plural) gives evidence there is more than one heaven.
Hebrews 4:14 Seeing then that we have a great high priest, that is passed into the heavens, Jesus the Son of God, let us hold fast our profession. (KJV)
The Bible refers to the third heaven.
2 Cor.12:2 I knew a man in Christ above fourteen years ago, (whether in the body, I cannot tell; or whether out of the body, I cannot tell: God knoweth;) such an one caught up to the third heaven. (KJV)
So, IF there is a third heaven, common sense tells us that there must also be a first and second Heaven. The Bible, however, does not mention a first and second Heaven.
. . . . . #1. The Atmosphere . . . The First Heaven
The atmospheric heavens include the air that we breathe as well as the space that immediately surrounds the Earth. This supposedly extends about twenty miles above the Earth. The space above this is called the stratosphere. The Bible uses the term heaven to describe this area.
Genesis 6:7 And the LORD said, I will destroy man whom I have created from the face of the earth; both man, and beast, and the creeping thing, and the fowls of the air; for it repenteth me that I have made them. (KJV) . . . Emphasis mine.
Matthew 6:26 Behold the fowls of the air: for they sow not, neither do they reap, nor gather into barns; yet your heavenly Father feedeth them. Are ye not much better than they? (KJV)
. . . The word translated air is the same Greek word that is elsewhere translated Heaven. We have another example of this use in the book of James.
James 5:18 And he prayed again, and the heaven gave rain, and the earth brought forth her fruit. (KJV)
. . . . . #2. The Celestial Heaven . . . The Second Heaven
This use of the term Heaven refers to outer space or the stellar Heaven. It includes the sun, moon, and stars.
Matthew 24:29 Immediately after the tribulation of those days shall the sun be darkened, and the moon shall not give her light, and the stars shall fall from heaven, and the powers of the heavens shall be shaken: (KJV)
Stars are said to be in Heaven.
Deut. 4:19 And lest thou lift up thine eyes unto heaven, and when thou seest the sun, and the moon, and the stars, even all the host of heaven, shouldest be driven to worship them, and serve them, which the LORD thy God hath divided unto all nations under the whole heaven. (KJV)
. . . . . #3. Heaven as the Home of God . . . The Third Heaven
The Bible is crystal clear that GOD is NOT and CANNOT be limited to any one geographical place.
1 Kings 8:27 But will God indeed dwell on the earth? behold, the heaven and heaven of heavens cannot contain thee; how much less this house that I have builded? (KJV)
Yet the Bible also teaches us that there IS a certain, definite geographical place where GOD resides. It is also called Heaven.
The writer to the Hebrews said:
Hebrews 8:1 Now of the things which we have spoken this is the sum: We have such an high priest, who is set on the right hand of the throne of the Majesty in the heavens; (KJV)
Stephen knew he was going into the Presence of the LORD.
Acts 7:55 But he, being full of the Holy Ghost, looked up stedfastly into heaven, and saw the glory of God, and Jesus standing on the right hand of God, (KJV)
Heaven is called the presence of God, but the definite location of GOD’S Home is NOT revealed in the Bible.
Hebrews 9:24 For Christ is not entered into the holy places made with hands, which are the figures of the true; but into heaven itself, now to appear in the presence of God for us: (KJV)
. . . . . The Heaven of Heavens . . . does this also refer to GOD’S Home?
The Bible also speaks the heaven of heavens; which seems to be heavenly spheres beyond that which is visible from the earth. It is called the Heaven of Heavens.
Deut. 10:14 Behold, the heaven and the heaven of heavens is the LORD'S thy God, the earth also, with all that therein is. (KJV)
The psalmist wrote.
Psalm 148:4 Praise him, ye heavens of heavens, and ye waters that be above the heavens. (KJV)
Summary: Sometime the word heaven is used symbolically in Scripture, but when used of an actual place, the Bible speaks of three Heavens:
#1. The first is the atmosphere above us.
#2. The second Heaven is the stellar heaven, the sun, moon, and stars.
#3. The third Heaven is where GOD resides, above the other two regions.
But, please remember that GOD is NOT limited to one geographical place. Since GOD the FATHER is SPIRIT (Jn.4:24), He is omnipresent, He is everywhere!
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