THE GUIDANCE OF GOD

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    [Psalms:32:1-11]

    Lesson No.: 
    239
    Class: 
    Junior
    Memory Verse: 

    “I will guide thee with mine eye” (Psalm 32:8).

    Notes: 

    Sin in His Life
    David, the Psalmist, told of his own experience in this Psalm. He told what brought happiness, joy, and blessedness into his life. He knew that he had the favour of God when his sins were forgiven. David had trans-gressed the commandment of the Lord. He had broken God’s laws, and sin was in his life. David was not com-fortable nor happy when he lived such a life; he was miserable and condemned. David knew about that sin in his life, but he did not admit it for a while. David kept silent to try to hide his conviction. Some people under conviction try to keep very busy so they have little time to think and consider their ways.

    David was so thoroughly condemned for the sin in his life that his bones seemed to grow old. David was not condemned only occasionally but all the day long he felt conviction.

    Knowledge of Sin
    David was not happy while trying to cover the sin in his life. Neither is anyone else very happy when he is trying to hide the sin that he knows is in his life. Always there is that fear that his sin will be revealed, that someone will find out about it.

    Conviction
    Knowing that there is sin in one’s life is a step that leads to repentance. A person must know he is a sinner before he can repent. By convicting David of his sin, the Lord was leading David to repentance and his sins could be forgiven. David’s days and nights were filled with unrest because God was dealing with him. The anguish of David’s soul was like the parched heat of summer. Was there no relief?

    Repentance
    There was relief for David when he admitted his sins and turned from them. In love and mercy, God had shown David the sin in his life that David might repent and have comfort in place of unrest. When David con-fessed his transgressions, the Lord forgave him. No longer did David try to cover sin in his life. David admitted that he was a sinner and confessed each sin to the Lord. He found the pardon that he sought. No longer was he undone and restless. His life was different. The hand of God had led David to repentance by convicting him of his sin.

    The Blessed Ones
    David could then testify that he was among the blessed ones. David proved that the Lord is “faithful and just to forgive us our sins” if we confess them (I [John:1:9]). David’s transgression was forgiven. His sin was gone. This was the only way he could have peace of conscience.

    David is not the only person who has been led by the Lord to a place of repentance and to the knowledge of sins forgiven. Many people, young and old, are included in those who are blessed because their sins are gone. They, like David, reached that happy and comfortable condition when their sins were pardoned.

    They confessed their sins; no longer did they try to hide them. They admitted they were sinners and asked for forgiveness. When they repented, their transgression was forgiven. They believed in the promise of God that they would receive mercy. “He that covereth his sins shall not prosper: but whose confesseth and forsaketh them shall have mercy” [Proverbs:28:13]). When their sins were gone they had the rest and relief that Jesus promised when He said, “Come unto me, all ye that labour and are heavy laden, and I will give you rest” [Matthew:11:28]). Their sins were washed away by the Blood of Jesus [Revelation:1:5]). The Lord blotted out their transgressions and will not remember their sins [Isaiah:43:25]). No longer were they charged with iniquity. The Lord gave them righteousness because of their faith [Romans:4:6]).

    Are you among the blessed ones -- the happy ones? Are your sins forgiven, washed away in the Blood of Jesus?

    No Guide
    There was a decided difference in David’s life before he prayed, and after he had received forgiveness. No longer was there condemnation [Romans:8:1]). No longer was there any deceit. He had nothing to cover -- his sins were gone. He did not merely pretend that he was happy -- he was among the blessed ones. No longer did he keep silent -- he said, “Shout for joy.” These were some of the changes that the Lord made in David’s life when David was saved.

    Praying in Time
    David mentioned the necessity of praying in a time when the Lord may be found. The Prophet Isaiah spoke similar words: “Seek ye the LORD while he may be found, call ye upon him while he is near” [Isaiah:55:6]). We can understand from these words that there may be a time when the Lord will not be near and when He may not be found. David did not wait until it was too late to pray. He prayed and sought God when the hand of the Lord “was heavy” upon him.

    When one prays in time, then he is prepared for the things that come to him. David said that in the time of floods of great waters they would not come near him, because he had prayed through to spiritual victory. Some people wait until the time of trouble, floods of trouble, to call upon the Lord. Then they are not sure that they will have time or ability to pray a prayer that God will answer. They take a chance that He will be found, and that He will be near when they need Him. What confidence David had that God would protect him and guide him! “Thou art my hiding place; thou shalt preserve me from trouble; thou shalt compass me about with songs of deliverance.” No wonder David rejoiced and was glad in the Lord!

    A Wise Man
    In the New Testament Jesus taught that whosoever cometh to Him, and heareth His sayings, and doeth them, is likened to a wise man, who built a house after digging deep and laying the foundation on a rock. Then when the floods came and the winds blew, the house did not fall nor was it shaken [Luke:6:48]). Likewise Jesus taught that one who hears the Word and does not obey, is likened to a foolish man who bunt his house on sand [Matthew:7:26]). The rains descended, the floods came, the wind blew -- and down went the house!

    David had his spiritual house built upon a foundation of rock, and was secure when trouble and danger came like floods of great waters.

    A Guide
    When one is obedient to God’s commandments, then God is his Leader and Helper. The Lord said, “I will instruct thee and teach thee in the way which thou shalt go: I will guide thee with mine eye” [Psalms:32:8]). Jesus came “to give light to them that sit in darkness and in the shadow of death, to guide our feet into the way of peace” [Luke:1:79]).

    A guide is one who shows the way by accompanying or by going ahead. The Lord does both -- goes with His people and goes before His people. The Lord will be with His people, for “he hath said, I will never leave thee, nor forsake thee” [Hebrews:13:5]). “Christ also suffered for us leaving us an example, that ye should follow his steps” [1 Peter:2:21]). He has gone ahead of us to point out the way that we should go. He is a light to show us the way and told the Children of Israel that in a time when they would turn to the right or to the left, they would hear these words: “This is the way, walk ye in it” [Isaiah:30:21]).

    Following the Leader
    Perhaps some of you have been on a hike, over a trail that you did not know. It was necessary for you to have a leader or guide to show the way. You put your trust in that guide. You had confidence in him because he knew the way and had been there before. You would not think of going any other way, or taking a side trail or short-cut, lest you would be separated and lost. You knew that you had to follow the guide if you expected to get home safely and you would consider a person very foolish to try any other way.

    Bypath
    There are some people who are not so careful about following the spiritual Guide. The Lord goes before us and with us in the way, but some are enticed by Satan to take bypath to the left or to the right. They are separated from God and His people. Maybe some day they return to the place where they left the way, and maybe they never again find the way that leads to a heavenly Home and everlasting life.

    The Psalmist said, “Be ye not as the horse, or as the mule.” These animals are kept in control and guided into the right way by a bit in the mouth and a bridle on the head. The mule is known for its stubbornness, often not moving unless it wants to do so and then going where it chooses to go. These things are expected of horses and mules because they “have no understanding.” We, as men, women, and children, do not want to act like these animals.

    Let us purpose in our heart to follow the Lord in the narrow way, and not listen to Satan who would like to lead us into the broad way which leads to destruction [Matthew:7:13]). Let us follow the Lord at all times and not go in another way which may seem right to us but “the end thereof are the ways of death” [Proverbs:14:12]).

    Our Leader
    There are times when we refer to the Lord as our Guide, using other names. Jesus said, “I am the good shep-herd, and know my sheep, and am known of mine” [John:10:14]). A shepherd guides and directs the flock or sheep. He leads them to pasture where food and water are provided. He protects them from storms and enemies, and shelters them in the night. “The LORD is my shepherd; I shall not want” [Psalms:23:1]). “When he putteth forth his own sheep, he goeth before them, and the sheep follow him: for they know his voice” [John:10:4]).

    The children of Judah said, “Behold, and himself is with us for our captain” [2 Chronicles:13:12]). In the New Testament we read that Jesus is the Captain of our salvation [Hebrews:2:10]). We sometimes sing about our Captain who has never lost a battle.

    Whether we refer to Him as Pilot, Captain, Shepherd, or another name, let us follow the true Guide, our Lord. May our prayer be like David’s: “Lead me in thy truth, and teach me: for thou art the God of my salvation” [Psalms:25:5]). “Teach me thy way, O LORD, and lead me In a plain path” [Psalms:27:11]). “Teach me to do thy will; for thou art my God: thy spirit is good; lead me into the land of uprightness” [Psalms:143:10]).

    In Psalm 32 David has shown us the good life of rest, gladness, and safety that comes with God’s mercy to those whose sins are forgiven and who trust in the guidance of the Lord. David also tells of the sorrows, dan-gers, and trouble that come to the wicked who trust in themselves. To which one of these groups do you belong?

    Questions: 

    1. Why did David keep silent?
    2. What changed his life?
    3. Who is the blessed person?
    4. How can a person become one of the blessed?
    5. Why should one seek God now?
    6. In time of trouble, what does God do for His people?
    7. How does the Lord guide His people?
    8. Compare the life of the wicked with the life of the righteous.