January 23, 2018

My Hope Is Built On Nothing Less

psalmshymnsspiritualsongskjv

My hope is built on nothing less
Than Jesus’ blood and righteousness
I dare not trust the sweetest frame
But wholly lean on Jesus’ name

When darkness seems to veil His face
I rest on His unchanging grace
In every high and stormy gale
My anchor holds within the veil

His oath, His covenant and blood
Support me in the ‘whelming flood
When all around my soul gives way
He then is all my hope and stay

On Christ the solid rock I stand
All other ground is sinking sand
On Christ the solid rock I stand
All other ground is sinking sand

When the last trumpet’s voice shall sound
O may I then in Him be found
Clothed in His righteousness alone
Faultless to stand before His throne

Sovereign Grace Music
Words by Edward Mote (1797-1874)

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We use the word ‘hope’ often in our daily lives.  We hope it’s a sunny day, we hope there are good sales when we go to the grocery store, we hope we sleep well at night.  There’s also the more serious hopes.  We hope our kids stay healthy, we hope we get the job promotion, we hope our budget stretches to the end of the month, we hope we make it to Heaven.  I’m sure you have heard all of those hopes, have even said them…and many more.

Those hopeful comments express the day-to-day feeling of desire for a certain thing to happen, a wishful thinking.  The hope that is sung about in this old hymn is based on a trust in something or someone.  Defined by one Biblical source it is an ‘expectation of, a looking forward to, something beneficial now and in the future’.  Another source uses the words ‘confidence, to anticipate, welcome, an expectation of what is sure, certain’, to describe this kind of hope.

Now faith is the assurance (the confirmation, the title deed)
of the things [we] hope for, being the proof of things [we] do not see
and the conviction of their reality
[faith perceiving as real fact what is not revealed to the senses].
Hebrews 11:1 AMP

…So that by two unchangeable things,
in which it is impossible for God to lie,
we who have fled for refuge might have strong encouragement
to hold fast to the hope set before us.
Hebrews 6:19

As a child, I remember ‘belting out’ the words to this chorus, “On Christ the solid rock I stand; All other ground is sinking sand.”  I love the words of this old hymn, because they are true.  The hope I have is built on Christ, The Rock, His blood and His righteousness.  That is all I ever want to trust in. All other hope is “sinking sand.”  People, as caring and well-meaning as they can be, are not enough to secure my standing before God.  In the “high and stormy gale” there is no anchor that holds me like Jesus.

For it says in Scripture:

“Behold, I am laying in Zion a stone, a cornerstone chosen and precious,
and whoever believes in Him will not be put to shame.”
So the honor is for you who believe…
1 Peter 2:6-7

For no one can lay a foundation other than that which is laid,
which is Jesus Christ.
1 Corinthians 3:11

Here are just a few Scriptures of assurance that God is our Hope, our Refuge, our Strength in life:

On God my salvation and my glory rest;
The rock of my strength, my refuge is in God.
Psalm 62:7 NASB

He only is my Rock and my Salvation, my Fortress; I shall not be shaken.
Psalm 62:6 ESV

You are my hiding place; You preserve me from trouble;
You surround me with songs of deliverance.
Psalm 32:7 NASB

The LORD is my Light and my Salvation; whom shall I fear?
The LORD is the Stronghold of my life; of whom shall I be afraid?
Psalm 27:1 ESV

God is our Refuge and Strength, a very present Help in trouble.
Therefore we will not fear…
Psalm 46:1-2 ESV

He who dwells in the shelter of the Most High will abide in the shadow of the Almighty.
I will say to the LORD, “My Refuge and my Fortress,
my God, in whom I trust.”
Psalm 91:1-2 ESV

Fear not, for I am with you; be not dismayed, for I am your God;
I will strengthen you, I will help you,
I will uphold you with My righteous right hand.
Isaiah 41:10 ESV

I encourage you to meditate on this parable from Jesus:

Therefore everyone who hears these words of Mine and puts them into practice is like a wise man who built his house on the rock.  The rain came down, the streams rose, and the winds blew and beat against that house; yet it did not fall, because it had its foundation on the rock.  But everyone who hears these words of Mine and does not put them into practice is like a foolish man who built his house on sand.  The rain came down, the streams rose, and the winds blew and beat against that house, and it fell with a great crash.

Matthew 7:24-27

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Who or what is your rock, your refuge?  Do you live in hope, in confidence, and in certainty of Jesus Christ as your sure foundation?  My prayer is that you can ‘belt out’ this song with me:

My hope is built on nothing less
Than Jesus’ blood and righteousness
On Christ the solid rock I stand
All other ground is sinking sand
IT IS SO!

God’s Promises

He who dwells in the shelter of the Most High will abide in the shadow of the Almighty.
I will say to the Lord, “My refuge and my fortress, My God, in whom I trust!”
For it is He who delivers you from the snare of the trapper and from the deadly pestilence.
He will cover you with His pinions, and under His wings you may seek refuge;
His faithfulness is a shield and bulwark. You will not be afraid of the terror by night,
Or of the arrow that flies by day; Of the pestilence that stalks in darkness,
Or of the destruction that lays waste at noon.
A thousand may fall at your side and ten thousand at your right hand,
But it shall not approach you. You will only look on with your eyes
And see the recompense of the wicked.
For you have made the Lord, my refuge, even the Most High, your dwelling place.
No evil will befall you, nor will any plague come near your tent.
For He will give His angels charge concerning you, to guard you in all your ways.
They will bear you up in their hands, that you do not strike your foot against a stone.
You will tread upon the lion and cobra, the young lion and the serpent you will trample down.
Because he has loved Me, therefore I will deliver him;
I will set him securely on high, because he has known My name.
He will call upon Me, and I will answer him; I will be with him in trouble;
I will rescue him and honor him. With a long life I will satisfy him
And let him see My salvation.
Psalm 91

What a beautiful communication of Almighty God’s love for us! Full of promises telling us of just how God desires to care for us, and declarations of all He will do for us! If I have counted correctly, God makes thirty promises to us just in this one psalm.

God is faithful to each and every promise He has made…we stake all of our beliefs and our trust in Him on this absolute fact, true? But we must remember that sometimes He has attached a condition to be met (by you and me) to receive the fulfillment of a promise. Such as here, in verse 1…the writer of this psalm declares God to be El Shaddai which is interpreted as God Almighty or All-sufficient. If you and I ‘dwell in the shelter of the Most High’ then these promises are covering us. His shelter and His shadow provide refuge for those who dwell and abide.

This week in the Seeking Him daily devotional blog, our sisters are writing on Psalm 46. There, too, the psalmist confesses the Truth of just Who God Almighty is—our Refuge and our Strength.

God is our refuge and strength, an ever-present help in trouble.
Therefore we will not fear, though the earth give way….
Verses 1 and 2

As we go forward from today, the first day of 2014, may we yearn to know God’s promises, do our part (where necessary), and be oh-so-very-thankful for all that we receive from our Faithful Father God!

Can I encourage you to try a little exercise?  Pick up your Bible, turn to the page where Psalm 91 is printed, and read ALOUD all the promises (30 of them remember!) included in just this one short psalm.  Every place there is a pronoun relating to us (he, him, you, your) replace it with your own name.  For example, speak your name where the   ♥   is.

Because {   ♥   } has loved Me, therefore I will deliver {   ♥   };
I will set {   ♥   } securely on high, because {   ♥   } has known My name. {   ♥   } will call upon Me, and I will answer {   ♥   };
I will be with {   ♥   } in trouble; I will rescue {   ♥   } and honor {   ♥   }.
With a long life I will satisfy {   ♥   } and let {   ♥   } see My salvation.

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Almighty God, we praise You and thank You for Your awesome promises! How blessed we are by all Your promises! You have promised to provide for, and guide, and protect, and rescue, and deliver, and hear, and answer us. May we hold Your word(s) in our heart so that we do not sin against You. We surely need Your help to faithfully do so! We love You so very much, Lord! We pray and ask these things in Jesus’ name.    ♥  Amen.