Friday, November 12, 2010

An international Sunday school lesson commentary
For Sunday November 14, 2010

(GOD can make us glad all our days, starting right now)
(Psalm 90)

The biblical collection that comprises the book of Psalms, actually, consists of five separate books. Book one is Psalm 1-41, book two 42-72, book three 73-89, book four 90-106, and book five is psalm 107-150. Psalm 90 is believed by most scholars, to be a prayer by Moses, the mighty man of GOD. It is the first psalm of the fourth book in the collection, and if Moses truly is the author, that makes this psalm the oldest one in the psalter.
Psalm 90 contrasts the eternal qualities of GOD, against the frailties of man, which are, quite frankly, a consequence of our sins against GOD. For we must always remember that it is sin that brought physical death into the world, and now, GOD, through HIS mercy, in the person of JESUS CHRIST, grants us a second chance at a relationship with HIM, and a second chance at re-obtaining the “eternal life status” that was lost through the disobedience of Adam and Eve.
This psalm also reminds us of how GOD, through that same mercy and unfailing love for us, is also willing to bring joy to our brief, but unstable and unfaithful lives here on earth, that is, whenever, and, if ever, we decide to accept HIS salvation gift, “take on JESUS’ task” (take the gospel message to others), and “take up our own cross” (resist the temptations of sin, through the power of the HOLY SPIRIT in us).
Moses forfeited his opportunity to enter into the “Promised Land” (Numbers 20:12 & Deuteronomy 3:23-27) when he lost his temper because of his people’s disobedience, and then, failed himself, to follow the exact instructions of the LORD. As a result of his own anger and disobedience, he was left with the choice of either drowning in self-pity for what he had done, or, he could continue on with his work and help the next generation, namely Joshua, to make better decisions than he did, when faced with similar situations as leaders.
Moses, first of all, wanted young Joshua, for instance, to stay focused on GOD’s very presence, in times of trouble. It is a natural human reaction for us to focus on “self” by throwing a pity party whenever things don’t go our way, however, time is short for us, and unlike GOD, WHO has no beginning or end, we, on the other hand, all come into this world with an expiration date on us (Psalm 90:1-6). And so, it is in those times of trouble when we should most of all, trust GOD. GOD will always give us the ability to refocus on HIM and HIS presence during times of despair, so that we can continue on with our life work, and not linger in doubt and pity for too long.
Secondly, we see in Moses’ prayer, that he understood that it is extremely important for us to use GOD’s time wisely, so that we may grow in wisdom (Psalm 90:24). Each of us needs to cogitate seriously on what time we have left in this world, and on how we can better use it to glorify the LORD, WHO created us expressly for HIS OWN purpose and use.
And then finally, we need to finish well! Moses asked GOD to give him insight on how to use the remainder of his life. He realized that he had already wasted too much time on foolish anger, and now he sought only to repent, and to petition that GOD, through HIS mercy and benevolence, would extend to him joy and peace, and make all of his work successful, for the rest of his life. He asked for gladness in proportion to his former misery, and that he be able to pass on a legacy of faith, so that the children who followed him, would be able to see and experience GOD’s wonderful glory at work in their lives, for generations to come (Psalm 90:13-17). Moses wanted GOD to grant him joy, and the beauty of life, even though he would never see the fruition of the work that GOD had called him to do (entering the “Promised Land”), in his lifetime.

A Sunday school lesson by,
Larry D. Alexander

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