Growing in the Fear of the Lord Through the Psalms

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“Then the earth shook and trembled; the foundations also of the hills moved and were shaken, because he was wroth. There went up a smoke out of his nostrils, and fire out of his mouth devoured: coals were kindled by it. He bowed the heavens also, and came down: and darkness was under his feet. And he rode upon a cherub, and did fly: yea, he did fly upon the wings of the wind” (KJV, Ps. 18:7-10).

“Then the earth shook and trembled”

Father, You are an amazingly powerful God. May I never forget that You are God Almighty? Whatever You so desire, You are able to perform. Your Word says that the earth shook and trembled before You.

However, I can often lose sight of the fear of God in my life, and when I do, I begin to wander.

Help me always to fear Your name. Help me to grow in grace as I fear You and look upon You in awe. If the earth shook and trembled before You, how much more should one created in Your image shake and tremble before You?

You have made me to fear You and have promised me that it is good for me when I do. Scripture says, “The fear of the Lord is the beginning of knowledge: but fools despise wisdom and instruction” (Prov. 1:7).

May I never despise Your wisdom but grow in my knowledge and understanding of You through my fear of You.

“the foundations also of the hills moved and were shaken”

Not only did the earth shake and tremble, but the foundations were moved. So may I also be moved by You, Lord. Give me a passion for You. I desire for a fire to burn within and a love for You to overflow in my life.

If the hills were moved by You, how much more should one created in Your image be moved by You?

I am reminded of those who were on the road to Emmaus. Jesus came alongside them and opened the Scriptures to them. He helped them to understand the Word of God.

Then they declared, “…Did not our heart burn within us, while he talked with us by the way, and while he opened to us the scriptures” (Luke 24:32). Jesus, would You please talk with me, open up the Scriptures, and cause my heart to burn as well?

“because he was wroth”

Father, I thank You for sending Jesus to die for my sin. The Bible makes it clear that sin provokes You to wrath. You are a just Judge and One Who experiences indignation toward sin daily.

However, You are patient because You do not want people to perish. Instead, You desire that all would come to repentance. It does not delight You when the wicked die. On the contrary, Your Word has told me that You gave Your Son as a ransom price to atone for sin.

In Christ, the record of debt that stood against me has been nailed to the cross. You have removed my sin as far as the east is from the west. Thus, You do not hold my sin against me because it has been paid for.

Yes, You will discipline me as Your child when I sin and stray. However, nothing can separate me from the love of Christ. Jesus, thank You for taking on Yourself the wrath of God that I deserved.

“There went up a smoke out of his nostrils”

Although I have been forgiven for my sin, I know that not everyone is a believer. Father, may your Word go forth into the land and produce fruit. May Your name be hallowed and the Gospel proclaimed. Smoke is said to billow from Your nostrils.

Your Word tells me about Your wrath as I read, “The Lord will not spare him, but then the anger of Lord and his jealousy shall smoke against that man, and all the curses that are written in this book shall lie upon him, and the Lord shall blot out his name from under heaven” (Deut. 29:20).

Father, I thank You again that Jesus has taken the curse upon Himself and that I am forgiven in Him.

“and fire out of his mouth devoured: coals were kindled by it”

I realize that anger is often sinful. When I am selfish and lack self-control, I am sinfully angry. However, I also see that You get angry. I am aware that when Jesus came to the earth and flipped over the money changers’ tables, He was angry.

However, when Jesus got angry, it was for Your glory because they had made His Father’s house into a den of robbers. Help me to guard against sinful anger but to embrace biblical anger for Your glory.

“He bowed the heavens also”

Father, You bowed the heavens before You. So may I also bow in Your presence. Teach me to have a disposition of submission before You. Jesus, You are the King of kings, but often I seek to set up my own kingdom.

I desire too often to make my own rules and live according to my will. But I know that Your ways are good for me. You have shown me how to do the Father’s will and deny myself.

Sometimes I can say along with the rebels of Psalm 2, “Let us break their bands asunder, and cast away their cords from us” (Ps. 2:3). But then, You graciously remind me of the errors of my ways and help me to repent. So may I learn to “Serve the Lord with fear, and rejoice with trembling” (Ps. 2:11).

“and came down”

You have always desired to be involved with Your creation. In the Garden, You walked with man. After man sinned, You sent them away from Your presence. The blood of Abel cried out from the ground, and You spoke with Cain. You talked with Noah and told him to build an ark.

Later, You came down to the people at the tower of Babel and confused their language. When the sin was great in Sodom, You went down again to behold what was happening in the city. Your Word tells me that Moses was a man who spoke with You face to face, much like someone would talk to a friend.

Thank You for being involved in my life as well.

“and darkness was under his feet”

Father, would You also triumph over the darkness in my life? Would You stand over it and set it under Your feet? Thank You for taking me out of the kingdom of darkness and transferring me into the kingdom of Your beloved Son. You are the victorious God, and nothing shall thwart Your plans.

“And he rode upon a cherub, and did fly”

You are also a miracle-working God. Your Word tells me that You flew upon a cherub. Many times, I read of matters in Your Word that defy my personal experience.

I have never seen a worldwide flood or a talking donkey. I have never seen men swallowed by a fish or the ground. I have never witnessed the dead come back to life or the lame walk again. I have been unable to behold demons being cast out or Jesus walking on water.

However, I believe You can defy the laws of nature as You are the Creator of everything.

“yea, he did fly upon the wings of the wind”

I am reminded of the power of the Spirit in the book of Acts. When the people were tarrying in the upper room, the Holy Spirit came like a mighty rushing wind.

Your Word tells me, “And suddenly there came a sound from heaven as of a rushing mighty wind, and it filled all the house where they were sitting” (Acts 2:2). I am also told, Lord, “The wind bloweth where it listeth, and thou hearest the sound thereof, but canst not tell whence it cometh, and whither it goeth: so is ever yone that is born of the Spirit” (John 3:8).

Will You also help me to mount up on the wings of eagles today by the power of Your Spirit? In Jesus’ name, Amen.

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