诗篇卅三篇

1义人哪,你们应当靠耶和华欢乐!正直人的赞美是合宜的。
2 你们应当弹琴称谢耶和华,用十弦瑟歌颂祂。
3 应当向祂唱新歌,弹得巧妙,声音洪亮。
4 因为耶和华的言语正直,凡祂所做的尽都诚实。
5 祂喜爱仁义、公平,遍地满了耶和华的慈爱。
6 诸天藉耶和华的命而造,万象藉祂口中的气而成。
7 祂聚集海水如垒,收藏深洋在库房。
8 愿全地都敬畏耶和华,愿世上的居民都惧怕祂。
9 因为祂说有,就有;命立,就立。
10 耶和华使列国的筹算归于无有,使众民的思念无有功效。……

这是一篇赞美诗,是写给义人的赞美诗,因为只有义人对神的赞美才是有意义的。世界上除了耶稣,原没有义人。义人是指相信神,接受了耶稣的宝血遮盖,被神赦免其过的人。

为什么只有义人对神的赞美才有意义呢?因为信仰是指一种生命内在的变化,从前跟上帝没有关系,现在成为家人的关系;也是指一种生命的改变,因为不再是在外面流浪没有家的人,生活的想法和方式就有了改变。假如信仰只是一种外在的宗教行为,那么全世界的宗教就都一样。但是只有在基督里,人才能有生命的改变,和神建立关系。

Seek God and Experience Rest on Every Side

Hi GAMErs,

Today’s passage is 2 Chronicles 16:1-14.

2 Chronicles 16:7 (NIV) 
7  At that time Hanani the seer came to Asa king of Judah and said to him: “Because you relied on the king of Aram and not on the LORD your God, the army of the king of Aram has escaped from your hand.”

On verses 1-9:  King Asa and his land of Judah are attacked by Baasha king of Israel.  Baasha sets up a stronghold at Ramah near the border of Israel and Judah, preventing any more Israelites from flocking to Judah (see 2 Chronicles 15:9).  Instead of placing his hope in God, Asa places his hope in King Ben-Hadad of Aram to save him.  With silver and gold from the temple as well as from his own palace, Asa bribes King Ben-Hadad of Aram to break his treaty with Baasha and attack Baasha.  King Ben-Hadad of Aram accepts the bribe and helps Asa to fend off Baasha.  However, God sends the prophet Hanani to rebuke Asa, saying that “[b]ecause you relied on the king of Aram and not on the LORD your God, the army of the king of Aram has escaped from your hand” (v7).  

诗篇卅二篇

大卫的训诲诗。

1 得赦免其过、遮盖其罪的,这人是有福的!
2 凡心里没有诡诈,耶和华不算为有罪的,这人是有福的!
3 我闭口不认罪的时候,因终日唉哼而骨头枯干。
4 黑夜白日,祢的手在我身上沉重,我的精液耗尽,如同夏天的干旱。(细拉)
5 我向祢陈明我的罪,不隐瞒我的恶。我说「我要向耶和华承认我的过犯」,祢就赦免我的罪恶。(细拉)
6 为此,凡虔诚人都当趁祢可寻找的时候祷告祢,大水泛溢的时候,必不能到祂那里。
7 祢是我藏身之处,祢必保佑我脱离苦难,以得救的乐歌四面环绕我。(细拉)

8 我要教导你,指示你当行的路,我要定睛在你身上劝诫祢。

9 你不可像那无知的骡马,必用嚼环辔头勒住牠,不然就不能驯服。
10 恶人必多受苦楚,唯独倚靠耶和华的,必有慈爱四面环绕他。
11 你们义人应当靠耶和华欢喜快乐,你们心里正直的人都当欢呼!

在诗篇第一篇和卅二篇的第一个字都是“ashrei”(אשרי),英文译为“快乐”,中文译为“有福”。第一篇第一节这样开始:Happy is the man who has not followed the counsel of the wicked。中译:1-2节:不从恶人的计谋,不站罪人的道路,不坐亵慢人的座位,唯喜爱耶和华的律法,昼夜思想,这人便为有福!

32篇第一节:Happy is he whose transgression is forgiven, whose sin is covered over. 得赦免其过、遮盖其罪的,这人是有福的!

诗篇的一开始就谈到人生之福Happy的可能性。第一篇讲到的有福,是指当人逃避罪恶的选择,立意跟随神走敬虔的道路时,他的人生必然蒙福Happy, 蒙福的人生自然是快乐的人生。

Seek God and Experience Rest on Every Side

Hi GAMErs,

Today’s passage is 2 Chronicles 15:1-19.

2 Chronicles 15:4 (NIV) 
4  But in their distress they turned to the LORD, the God of Israel, and sought him, and he was found by them.

On verses 1-19:  In this passage God sends Azariah with a message to King Asa of Judah at a time when Asa fears going to war (v1).  He reminds Asa of how God worked in the past – how there was a time in Israel’s history when the Israelites did not know God personally (v3-4). At that time there was lots of unrest and turmoil from wars and threats of war (v5-6).  But when the Israelites turned to God and sought God, they found Him and experienced Him personally (v2-6).  With this in mind, Azariah tells King Asa to be strong and to keep going with the work Asa started in removing idolatry from the land of Judah (v7).  Encouraged by Azariah’s message, Asa removes idols from the lands of Judah and Benjamin (v8).  He repairs the altar at the front of the temple (v8).  He also assembles all his people at Jerusalem for a worship service (v9-10).  At the worship service Asa and the people offer plentiful sacrifices to God (v11) and covenant to seek God together (v12-14), all with great rejoicing (v15a).   As further evidence of how committed and eager Asa’s heart was to seeking the Lord (v17), he deposes his grandmother Maacah as queen mother and burns up the Asherah pole she had erected (v16).  He also brings the silver, gold and articles of his father Abijah into the temple (v18).   As a result, Asa and the nation of Judah enjoyed ten years of peace (v19; see also 2 Chronicles 14:1).

诗篇卅一篇

大卫的诗,交于伶长。For the leader. A psalm of David.

1 耶和华啊,我投靠祢,求祢使我永不羞愧,凭祢的公义搭救我。
2 求祢侧耳而听,快快救我,做我坚固的磐石、拯救我的保障。
3 因为祢是我的岩石,我的山寨,所以求祢为祢名的缘故,引导我,指点我。
4 求祢救我脱离人为我暗设的网罗,因为祢是我的保障。
5 我将我的灵魂交在祢手里,耶和华诚实的神啊,祢救赎了我!
6 我恨恶那信奉虚无之神的人,我却倚靠耶和华。
7 我要为祢的慈爱高兴欢喜,因为祢见过我的困苦,知道我心中的艰难。
8 祢未曾把我交在仇敌手里,祢使我的脚站在宽阔之处。
9 耶和华啊,求祢怜恤我,因为我在急难之中,我的眼睛因忧愁而干瘪,连我的身心也不安舒。
10 我的生命为愁苦所消耗,我的年岁为叹息所旷废,我的力量因我的罪孽衰败,我的骨头也枯干。……

在希伯来文里,在这诗篇的最前面注明了这是大卫王写给领导者For the leader的诗篇。他没有夸耀他的功绩,相反地,他把自己的软弱全然呈现在世人面前。他把他最痛苦最无助时的感情表露无遗。让世人明白,不要只看领导者辉煌的一面,事实上,每个领导者都有他软弱失败的时候。而能让一个真正的领导者得力重新抬头,是来自仰望神,来自耶和华的帮助。

也让所有想当领导或是己经当领导的人明白,虽然社会上有很多教导做领导者的功课和方法,但是当你真正面对挑战时,只有仰望神才能成为得胜的领导者。大卫教导我们,面对强敌时,你必须从内心壮大自己,而唯有亲近神,按著神的话语去行事为人才能得到真正的力量。

根据犹太拉比Rashi的解释,大卫写这诗篇是在他从非利士人的手拯救了基伊拉城之后,扫罗派人去追杀大卫。大卫问神,基伊拉的人会不会把他交给扫罗,神说,会。于是大卫只好再度逃亡。但是也因着神的带领,大卫可以逃脱扫罗的手, 因而大卫以感恩的心写下这篇诗歌,赞美神的救赎。

Place Your Hope in God and Rely on His Strength

Hi GAMErs,

2 Chronicles 14:1-7 (NIV) 
1  And Abijah rested with his fathers and was buried in the City of David. Asa his son succeeded him as king, and in his days the country was at peace for ten years. 
2  Asa did what was good and right in the eyes of the LORD his God. 
3  He removed the foreign altars and the high places, smashed the sacred stones and cut down the Asherah poles. 
4  He commanded Judah to seek the LORD, the God of their fathers, and to obey his laws and commands. 
5  He removed the high places and incense altars in every town in Judah, and the kingdom was at peace under him. 
6  He built up the fortified cities of Judah, since the land was at peace. No one was at war with him during those years, for the LORD gave him rest. 
7  “Let us build up these towns,” he said to Judah, “and put walls around them, with towers, gates and bars. The land is still ours, because we have sought the LORD our God; we sought him and he has given us rest on every side.” So they built and prospered.

On verses 1-7:  Asa takes over from his father Abijah as the new king of Judah.  Asa’s first course of action is to lead Judah in turning away from idol worship (v3, 5) and toward seeking and obeying the Lord (v4).  As a result, the land of Judah experiences great peace, rest, strength and prosperity (v5b-7).

What can we learn from this?  When we take the time to remove the idols from our lives and to seek the Lord, we give God more room to work and in return He brings His peace and blessing into our lives. 

The God Who Sees All of Me

Hi GAMErs,

Today’s passage is 2 Chronicles 13:1-22.  Let’s go!

2 Chronicles 13:18 (NIV) 
18  The men of Israel were subdued on that occasion, and the men of Judah were victorious because they relied on the LORD, the God of their fathers.

On verses 1-22:  King Abijah takes over from his father Rehoboam as king of Judah and goes to war against King Jeroboam of Israel.  Despite being grossly outnumbered (compare Abijah’s 400,000 soldiers to Jeroboam’s 800,000 troops) and despite Jeroboam’s attempt to ambush Abijah’s army, Abijah’s army gains a decisive victory over Jeroboam’s army.  The reason the Chronicler gives for Abijah’s victory is because he and his troops “relied on the Lord, the God of their fathers” (v18).

Here the Chronicler focuses on how Abijah relied on the Lord.  He even includes a speech from Abijah about how faithful he and his people of Judah are compared to Jeroboam and Israel.  In contrast, when 1 Kings 15 gives its account of Abijah’s reign as king of Judah, its treatment of Abijah is negative. The writer of 1 Kings says that Abijah “committed all the sins his father had done before him”, that “his heart was not fully devoted to the LORD his God”, and that it was for the sake of his father David that God allowed Abijah to have any strength at all (1 Kings 15:4).