En Gedi: Finding rest in the wilderness!

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The Power of His Presence II!

Posted by Scott on October 22, 2007

Daily Devotions

From the Writings of Ray Stedman

 

Help From The Sanctuary

READ: Psalm 20

May he send you help from the sanctuary and grant you support from Zion (Psalm 20:2).

That is wonderful–“help from the sanctuary”! The sanctuary is always a picture of the place where we meet with God. In Israel it was the temple, the place where the Israelites came to get their thoughts straightened out, to get their thinking corrected. There they met with God, and there they heard the Word of God, the mind and thoughts of God.

In Psalm 73 the psalmist is deeply troubled by the prosperity of the wicked, that perennial problem that can still bother us: Why do the ungodly prosper while the righteous seem to be downtrodden all the time? This had upset him–until he finally went into the sanctuary. There he began to perceive their end. There he began to see the whole story; he began to see the frill picture, and his thoughts were corrected. This is what the sanctuary does.

For us the sanctuary is the Scriptures. There is where we get help. It is there that our minds are illuminated, that we begin to see the world the way it is, not the way it appears to be. There is not one of us who has not already learned that life is not the way it seems to be, that what looks to be the answer and what we are convinced at first is the way things are often turns out to be exactly the opposite. Life is filled with illusion, with deceit; things are not what they appear to be. Doesn’t your heart cry for somebody to tell you the truth, to tell you the way things really are, to open your eyes to what is going on? That is what the Bible does. And unless you are in the Scriptures, there is no help. “May you find help in the sanctuary, in the Scriptures,” is the psalmist’s prayer, “that your eyes might be enlightened and you might understand.”

Help from the sanctuary and support from Zion. Zion is another name for Jerusalem, the capital of the kingdom. In the Scriptures it stands as a symbol of the invisible kingdom of God with which we are surrounded, made up of ministering angels sent forth to serve those who are to be the heirs of salvation. In other words, all the invisible help that God can give you in the day of trouble, in the hour of pressure, is made available by prayer.

Remember that in the Garden of Gethsemane, as Jesus was praying and sweating drops of blood in the height of His agony, an angel appeared and ministered to Him and strengthened Him. That angel was made visible to Him in order that we might be taught a lesson of what happens when we pray. I have gone into prayer depressed and defeated, but while I have prayed I have felt my spirits caught up, changed, and strengthened. I came out calm, at rest, and at peace. Why? Because I have received help from Zion.

Lord, there are far too many places I turn in times of trouble. Teach me to turn to your sanctuary for the help that I need.

-Scott Bailey 2007

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