“Bless the Lord, O my soul, and forget not all his benefits…who redeems your life from the pit, who crowns you with steadfast love and mercy,”- Psalms 103:4
This is a continuation of two previous blogs on the benefits of the Lord. The first was on the forgiveness of sins and the second was on the healing of diseases.
“Is it worth it to follow the Lord?” This is a question that many people have asked themselves over time. The answer is yes! One of the greatest benefits we get is that the Lord redeems our lives from the pit. The word redeem has the idea of buying back from another what was initially belonging to you. God redeems our lives from the pit. What does that mean?
There are many ways in which our birth in sin affects the future we have or hope to have. Of the pit holes that we face as believers, one of the most subtle is the never ending cycle of hidden sins. Yes. We die within not willing to open up and be given freedom in the unity of fellowship. The psalmist says that God redeems our lives from the pit. I would signify the pit here to things that have rendered us useless and caused us to feel out of place. A pit is not a place for jewels and useful material. It’s a place of waste and dirt and stench. There are things in our lives that cause us feel this way. It is important to understand that feelings don’t always reflect reality and that just because we’ve fallen deep down in the pit, God promises to redeem us. He has gone out of His way and given us Christ as a ransom, a redeemer for those who would go to him for salvation. This is good hope for the believer. Why? Because God has already redeemed us from the curse that bound us. Sin! Galatians 3:13 tells us that Christ has redeemed us from the curse of the law. This is a benefit that gives those who would run to him for faith. Dear saint, see what manner of love the Father us bestowed upon you! He has redeemed you from the pit. Such a message of hope is needful in a time where there’s persecution and death and bad vibes about salvation.
Not only does He redeem us from the pit but the Psalmist adds that God crowns us with love and mercy. This is a jaw cracker! Truth our hearts need to grasp. God gives love and mercy. All of these are great ingredients of the gospel. There would be no preaching without love. No gospel without mercy. No cross without the two coming into agreement. Love and mercy kissed and this union brought forth our salvation in heaven with our creator. Hallelujah! 1 John 3:1 we see John drawing our attention to this great fact. It love that makes us become sons of God. Not merit. Love! John 3:16 is a love reminder. God loved and gave us his son. Every saint today is an amazing tapestry of love. When God loves us we see his grace in giving us what we don’t deserve. Love is a benefit of God that should cause our souls to bless the Lord!
But love isn’t the last of it. God crowns our lives with mercy. Mercy is not receiving what we deserve. All of us today, were it not for mercy, would have been firewood for hell, as it were. But God showed us mercy by not giving us judgment. Yes. Judgment. Our sin warranted a death penalty but God chose not to give us judgment. He poured it all upon Christ. Mercy is Christ hanging naked on a tree and saying forgive them for they don’t know what they are doing. It is him painfully crying out, “My God! My God! Why have you forsaken me?”
To think that the benefits of the Lord are only perishables called wealth, finances, and gadgets is a derision. Oh the joy of the heart that knows that God hasn’t held his/ her sins against it! When we know that in God we have been crowned with steadfast love and mercy, the only kind of response is praise! Bless the Lord! Bless the Lord that his love is steadfast and so is his mercy. What is it that has vexed your soul much? Is it a loss of a job, parents, or personal pressures? Whatever it is that has sought to suppress your joy and kill your conviction of the goodness of the Lord, be cheered up! God gives steadfast love and steadfast mercy to those who are his.
Bless the Lord oh my soul!