Pity (Arkaham Ballad)

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Deliver me from the forkèd spears
Of liars who hate You;
You have searchèd me thoroughly
And by Your word I have walked free
Lit by the lamp of truth.

Lit by the lamp of truth I long
To see Your pow’r displayed;
Delight in glorious theater
And see Your enemies scatter
I will not be afraid.

I will not be afraid, for You
Rise up in strength unmatched.
I pity the fool satisfied
With no more portion than this life,
Who could from life be snatched.

Who could from Life be snatched if he
Is pleased to see Your face?
Whose utmost joy to walk with You?
Eternal life is love’s sure proof
His hope is not misplaced.

3-23-2016

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Current Bible Reading Plan

At the turn of the year, Ligonier Ministries posted a helpful list of Bible reading plans. One of those plans is a through-the-New Testament plan called the 5x5x5 plan.

The plan calls for a chapter a day, five days a week. The two off-days are for reflection and/or catch-up. It’s not quite as daunting as a through-the-Bible-in-a-year plan (although those are doable as well).

I modified the plan to include reading through the Psalms and Proverbs. Reading two Psalms a day (and breaking up Psalm 119 into four days) will take you through all 150 Psalms four times in a year. Proverbs has 31 chapters, which works out to a chapter a day most months.

The goal of repeating the Psalms and Proverbs so many times was to become acquainted with and steeped in these books. Since Proverbs calls us to pursue wisdom fervently, then the prolonged stay there can’t help but be beneficial. And since the Psalms are the inspired songs of God’s people, walking back and forth through them will hopefully cause them to seep into the way I think and pray and sing and speak and write.

Here is a PDF of the reading plan. You can print it out double-sided, fold it in half like a book, and it will line up properly. I hope it’s helpful.

Say What?

Where in the world did the name “Psalm Swords and Gospel Towers” come from?

My plan for 2014 is to read through the entire New Testament once, through the Psalms four times, and through Proverbs once a month. In the middle of January, I noticed Ben Myers (@FaithTheology) started a Twitter project tweeting the Psalms.

I thought this was a spectacular idea, so I started tweeting the psalms as well. The #psalmtweet for Psalm 95 was

Guard your hearts from sin by singing! Stand firm against evil by shouts of joyful praise!

The psalm begins with calls for exuberant praise of Yahweh. Then the psalm pivots sharply to warn against committing the same sins as the wilderness generation, who refused to trust and thank God for the myriad ways He lavished grace on them. It seemed to me that the joyful praise of the first half of the psalm was the intended defense against the apostasy described in the second. Hence the tweet, and hence “Psalm Swords.”

We have more than the Psalms, obviously. Singing and praying the Psalms now is a fuller, richer experience because Jesus fulfills, answers, embodies, and completes the Psalms.

  • When they sing of God being a refuge and fortress, we experience that in the salvation Jesus provides: He is the refuge from the wrath we deserve.
  • When they sing of God’s greatness and long for His presence, we know that our acceptance and access to God is bought by Jesus’ perfect sacrifice.
  • When they sing of God’s judgment on enemies, we know that Jesus is returning to right every wrong and throw every evil–even death itself–into the lake of fire.
  • When they beg for forgiveness and mercy, we know that Jesus guarantees the forgiveness and mercy of God to us.

That’s the rationale behind “Gospel Towers.”

Putting the two together, then, my hope is to record various observations on the Scriptures in hopes of being an encouragement to love and trust Jesus as Savior and King.