Until He Pleads My Cause

The prophet advises that we bear the indignation of the Lord God, for he will clear us from criticism, blame and guilt.

Ps 19:14 – Let the sayings of my mouth, And the meditation of my heart, Be for a pleasing thing before Thee, O Jehovah, my rock, and my redeemer! (YLT)

The sayings of my mouth.

Expressions that expose what is in my heart, revealing what I perceive to be truth and wisdom.

The meditation of my heart.

To earnestly, deeply think and to murmur with tenderness, evoking a strong emotional response.

Do I intentionally participate in these practices on a regular basis? Do I listen and consider the words that come out of my mouth to know what they reveal about what is in my heart? Do I make it a habit to earnestly, deeply think and to murmur God’s words with tenderness until they evoke a strong emotional response to him from the core of my being?

Ps 19:12-14 – Errors! who doth understand? From hidden ones declare me innocent, Also — from presumptuous [arrogant] ones keep back Thy servant, Let them not rule over me, Then am I perfect, And declared innocent of much transgression, Let the sayings of my mouth, And the meditation of my heart, Be for a pleasing thing before Thee, O Jehovah, my rock, and my redeemer! (YLT)

It seems that David, the one whom God proclaimed to be ‘a man after my heart, who will do all my will’ (Acts 13:22) regularly participated in these practices. He seemed to have a particularly strong awareness of his constant, continual need for communion with the Lord, and when he broke it, he earnestly sought the Lord, confidently asking him to restore it once again.

As a deer pants for flowing streams, so pants my soul for you, O God. My soul thirsts for God, for the living God. When shall I come and appear before God? My tears have been my food day and night, while they say to me continually, “Where is your God?”

These things I remember, as I pour out my soul: how I would go with the throng and lead them in procession to the house of God with glad shouts and songs of praise, a multitude keeping festival. Why are you cast down, O my soul, and why are you in turmoil within me? Hope in God; for I shall again praise him, my salvation and my God. (Psalm 42:1-5 – ESV)

Hope

Where is your God?
Hope in God.
Hope. Is hope a verb? An action? Doing? Being?
Hope. Is hope a noun? Is hope something that I possess. Is hope something or someone that possesses me?

Hope in God; for I shall again praise him, my salvation and my God

John 3:19-21 – “This is the crisis we’re in: God-light streamed into the world, but men and women everywhere ran for the darkness. They went for the darkness because they were not really interested in pleasing God. Everyone who makes a practice of doing evil, addicted to denial and illusion, hates God-light and won’t come near it, fearing a painful exposure. But anyone working and living in truth and reality welcomes God-light so the work can be seen for the God-work it is.” (MSG)

If we hoped in God, we’d surely run for the God-light. But our natural tendency is to run for the darkness.

Darkness. Not really interested in pleasing God.
Addicted to denial.
Addicted to illusion.
Hating God-light.
Avoiding God-light.
Making a practice of evil.
Toil. Anguish. Calamitous. Ill. Diseased. Derelict.
Fearing.
Fearing a painful exposure.
Unwilling to bear the indignation of the Lord God.
This is the crisis we’re in.

Honesty

Luke 2:34-35 – Simeon went on to bless them, and said to Mary his mother, This child [Christ Jesus] marks both the failure and the recovery of many in Israel, A figure misunderstood and contradicted — the pain of a sword-thrust through you — But the rejection will force honesty, as God reveals who they really are. (MSG)

Falling and rising. Failure and recovery. Dying and resurrection. As God reveals who they really are…

The fall. Opposed to the Lord Jesus Christ. Speaking against him. Misunderstanding him. Contradicting him. Evil. Anguish. Addiction. Fear.

The rising again. A standing up again, i.e. literally a resurrection from death, or figuratively a recovery of spiritual truth. Discovering who we really are, vessels of mercy, beloved children of God.

Job 24:13 – “There are those who rebel against the light, who are not acquainted with its ways, and do not stay in its paths. (ESV)

Are you aware of the ways that defects, flaws and errors in your thinking and ways bring anguish to yourself and everyone around you?

Are you aware of denial in your thinking? Are you aware of Illusion in your way of living?
Are you acquainted with the light and its ways?
Do you know how to stay in the light’s path?

Prov 4:19 – The way of the wicked [morally wrong, addicted to denial and illusion] is like deep darkness; they do not know over what they stumble. (ESV)

They do not know

They, vessels of wrath, do not know that they rebel against the light to their own harm and to the harm of those around them.

Lam 2:14 – Your prophets have seen for you false and deceptive visions; they have not exposed your iniquity to restore your fortunes, but have seen for you oracles that are false and misleading. (ESV)

Your prophets…have not exposed your iniquity to restore your fortunes…

Exposed…to restore. That’s the way of the light. But we fear the pain of exposure, and so work to avoid it, and so miss restoration of our fortunes.

God’s thoughts and ways are very different from human thoughts and ways! We fear being exposed, expecting shame and rejection and punishment and destruction. God exposes our iniquity to heal and to restore. Our addiction to denial and illusion accomplishes our destruction. God is in the business of restoring our fortunes. But that comes after our addiction to denial and illusion has been exposed and acknowledged and grieved and destroyed.

How does God destroy?

Eph 5:13-14 – But when anything is exposed by the light, it becomes visible, for anything that becomes visible is light. Therefore it says, “Awake, O sleeper, and arise from the dead, and Christ will shine on you.” (ESV)

When anything is exposed by the light
It becomes visible.
Anything that becomes visible is light.
Exposed: to confute, admonish, convict, convince, tell a fault, rebuke, reprove.1
When anything is exposed by the light it becomes visible.
Visible: to render apparent.2

My unwholesomeness made visible. My defects, flaws, and errors made plain. The hurtful effect of my thoughts, words, emotions, will, desires, and actions made apparent. To restore my fortunes!

The vessel of wrath. The vessel of mercy.

How does the prophet Micah advise us to respond to the Lord God as he exposes our iniquity?

Mic 7:9 – I will bear the indignation of the Lord because I have sinned against him, until he pleads my cause and executes judgment for me. He will bring me out to the light; I shall look upon his vindication. (ESV)

I will bear the indignation of the Lord

Because I have sinned against him,
I will bear the indignation of the Lord.
I have missed the mark, bending from the ways of the Lord God, deviating from the path that he marked out for me.
I have danced to the music of denial and illusion. I have been drawn into the arms of an opposing dance partner.
I will bear the indignation of the Lord…until he pleads my cause.

Plead: to toss, grapple, wrangle, hold a controversy, defend, chide, contend, debate, plead, rebuke, strive.3

Cause: a contest, personal or legal.4

I will bear the indignation of the Lord because I have sinned against him, until he pleads my cause…

I will bear the indignation of the Lord because I have sinned against him…until he executes judgment for me.

Judgment for me: a verdict, justice.5
I will bear…until the Lord God pleads my cause…
My soul thirsts
My soul thirsts for God, for the living God.
When?
When shall I come and appear before God? (Ps 42:2)
The Lord God pleads my cause.
He will
He will bring me out
He will bring me out to the light
I shall
I shall look upon his vindication.
His vindication. He shall make all right. He shall make me prosper.6

Anyone working and living in truth and reality welcomes God-light so the work can be seen for the God-work it is. (John 3:21)

When anything is exposed by the light, it becomes visible, for anything that becomes visible is light.

“Awake, O sleeper, and arise from the dead, and Christ will shine on you.”

Awake!

1 Cor 15:44 – When sown, it is an ordinary human body; when raised, it will be a body controlled by the Spirit. If there is an ordinary human body, there is also a body controlled by the Spirit. (CJB)

Collect your faculties. Rouse from sleep. Rouse from sitting or lying. Become active. Come out of a state of disease. Come out of obscurity, ruin, nonexistence.7

Awake! Arise from the dead! And Christ will shine on you.

How do we awake?

The apostle Paul described his experience this way: But when he who had set me apart before I was born, and who called me by his grace, was pleased to reveal his Son to me… (Gal 1:15-16 ESV)

For God has consigned all to disobedience, that he may have mercy on all. Oh, the depth of the riches and wisdom and knowledge of God! How unsearchable are his judgments and how inscrutable his ways! “For who has known the mind of the Lord, or who has been his counselor?” “Or who has given a gift to him that he might be repaid?” For from him and through him and to him are all things. To him be glory forever. Amen. (Rom 11:32-36 ESV)

The apostle Peter advises: And after you have suffered a little while, the God of all grace, who has called you to his eternal glory in Christ, will himself restore, confirm, strengthen, and establish you. (1 Peter 5:10 ESV)

So, fret not! Do not let anger, zeal or jealousy blaze up.
Be still. Rest. Be dumb. Dumfounded. Silent. To fail or perish. To thrust away. Cleanse.
Rest in the Lord.
Wait patiently. To twist or whirl in a circular or spiral manner, i.e. specifically to dance, to writhe in pain (especially of childbirth) or fear.

Rest in the Lord and wait patiently for him. (Ps 37:7)

Hope in God.
Hope.
Wait. Be patient. Stay. Tarry. Trust.
Called by his grace.
Pleased to reveal his Son to me.
That he may have mercy.
He will himself restore, confirm, strengthen, and establish me.
Hope in God.
Be still.
Rest.
Wait.

Interact with the words of Scripture through deep, careful study.

Then move beyond logic and reason; move from head to heart to spirit.

Meditate. Experience the word of Scripture bodily by moaning, growling, uttering, speaking aloud each word, syllable by syllable. Experience the words of Scripture expressing the longing and desire and hope in the depth of your own soul. Become acquainted with your longing. Anticipate that your soul’s longing will be satisfied, its hunger will be filled with good things, and it will be healed and made complete again. Let the inspired word of God arouse feelings of awe.

2 Cor 13:14 – the grace of the Lord Jesus Christ, and the love of God, and the fellowship of the Holy Spirit, [is] with you all! Amen. (YLT)

Contemplate. Sit quietly without thinking, without murmuring. Simply be. Become conscious of your companions.

Stay in this place of rest and fellowship for as long as you can.

When finished, select just one word or phrase and carry it with you all day, thinking about it, murmuring it, holding it, treasuring it. Let it soak deep into your soul. Tomorrow, meditate on the entire text again. Select the same word or phrase or a different one to carry with you all day, thinking about it, murmuring it, holding it, treasuring it. Do this practice every day. Let God’s Word begin to fill your soul with good things.

I ponder every morsel of wisdom from you, I attentively watch how you’ve done it. I relish everything you’ve told me of life, I won’t forget a word of it. (Ps 119:15-16 MSG)

 

But it is the spirit in man, the breath of the Almighty, that makes him understand. (Job 32:8 ESV)

I encourage you to find ways to become aware of Holy Spirit and to surrender to Holy Spirit’s convicting, enlightening, restorative ministrations.

Perhaps the following is David’s secret to becoming a man after God’s heart, who would do all God’s will.

Ps 62:1-2, 6-8 – For God alone my soul waits in silence; from him comes my salvation. He only is my rock and my salvation, my fortress; I shall not be greatly shaken.

For God alone, O my soul, wait in silence, for my hope is from him. He only is my rock and my salvation, my fortress; I shall not be shaken. On God rests my salvation and my glory; my mighty rock, my refuge is God. Trust in him at all times, O people; pour out your heart before him; God is a refuge for us. Selah [Pause. Breathe. Reflect.] (ESV)

For God alone my soul waits in silence.

Stillness. Silence. Quiet. Trust. Fail or perish. Destroy.

As you wait before God in stillness, silence, quiet, and trust, do you become aware of anything that fails, perishes, is destroyed – simply by your stillness and silence?

From him comes my salvation.

Deliverance. Aid. Victory. Prosperity. To be open, wide or free.

As you wait before God in stillness, silence, quiet, and trust, what do you become aware of being/wanting to be delivered from? Do you sense your heart and mind and body and spirit being open, wide and free, able to let go? Are you open and free to receive the Lord’s aid? Are you open and free to accept God’s way and work of deliverance? Are you open and free to delight in God’s definition and timing of prosperity?

He only is my rock and my salvation.

Refuge.

As you wait before God in stillness, silence, quiet, and trust, concentrate on what refuge looks and feels like.

My Fortress.

Defense.

As you wait before God in stillness, silence, quiet, and trust, concentrate on what your defense looks and feels like.

I shall not be greatly shaken.

I shall not greatly waver, slip, fall in decay, be out of course.

As you wait before God in stillness, silence, quiet, and trust, sense his presence with you, Grace (favor), Love, Fellowship.

For God alone, O my soul, wait in silence

To be dumb, silent, astonished. To stop. To perish.

Turn your focus and intention deeper in your interior, to the inner sanctuary of the temple where God lives in you. As you wait before God in stillness, silence, quiet, and trust, become aware of anything that astonishes you. What silences you? What stops? What perishes?

For my hope is from him

Hope. A cord as an attachment. Expectation. To bind together, perhaps by twisting.

As you wait, stay, tarry before God in the inner sanctuary, in stillness, silence, quiet, and trust, envision being bound to your companions with a cord, a cord of hope, perhaps like an umbilical cord, that comes from God.

On God rests my salvation and my glory.

Weight; rich, honor. Splendor. Abundance.

As you wait before God in the inner sanctuary, in stillness, silence, quiet, and trust, consider the fortunes that are already yours: Grace, Love, Fellowship, salvation, refuge, defense, being on course, a bond, attachment, union…

Trust in him at all times

Hurry for refuge. Be confident, sure.

Pour out your heart before him

Spill forth; Expend life, soul, complaint, money, etc. Sprawl out. Empty.

God is a refuge for us.

Shelter. Protection. Confide in.

As you wait before God in the inner sanctuary, in stillness, silence, quiet, and trust, without using words entrust your deepest secrets, fears, desires to God.

Selah.
Pause. Suspension of music.

Now go deeper into silence.
Breathe.
Inhale.
Exhale.

As you wait before God in the inner sanctuary, in stillness, silence, quiet, and trust, sense the Spirit.
Place yourself in a position for the Spirit to do for you what you can not do for yourself.

Rom 8:26-27 – Likewise the Spirit helps us in our weakness. For we do not know what to pray for as we ought, but the Spirit himself intercedes for us with groanings too deep for words. And he who searches hearts knows what is the mind of the Spirit, because the Spirit intercedes for the saints according to the will of God. (ESV)

Become aware as the Spirit herself pleads on your behalf;
Pleads with groanings too deep for words.
The one who searches your heart
Knows exactly what the Spirit is thinking
Because her pleadings for you are in accord with God’s will.
For God alone, O my soul, wait
Wait in silence.
The Spirit himself interceding for you according to the will of God.

Close your eyes. Stay in this position of quiet anticipation, bearing the Lord God’s indignation as he pleads your cause, brings you out to the light, and makes all things right.

When ready, open your eyes.
Breathe in.
Breathe out.
Rise.

Go, with replenished soul, work and live in the light of spiritual truth so the work can be seen for the God-work it is.

2 Peter 3:18 – But grow in the grace and knowledge of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ. To him be the glory both now and to the day of eternity. Amen. (ESV)

Phil 4:23 – The grace of the Lord Jesus Christ be with your spirit. (ESV)

*****

Resources/For deeper study:

1Exposed: NT:1651 <START GREEK>e)le/gxw<END GREEK> elegcho (el-eng’-kho); of uncertain affinity; to confute, admonish: KJV – convict, convince, tell a fault, rebuke, reprove. (Biblesoft’s New Exhaustive Strong’s Numbers and Concordance with Expanded Greek-Hebrew Dictionary. Copyright © 1994, 2003, 2006, 2010 Biblesoft, Inc. and International Bible Translators, Inc.)

2Visible: NT:5319 <START GREEK>fanero/w<END GREEK> phaneroo (fan-er-o’-o); from NT:5318; to render apparent (literally or figuratively): (Biblesoft’s New Exhaustive Strong’s Numbers and Concordance with Expanded Greek-Hebrew Dictionary. Copyright © 1994, 2003, 2006, 2010 Biblesoft, Inc. and International Bible Translators, Inc.)

3Plead: OT:7378 <START HEBREW>byr!<END HEBREW> riyb (reeb); or ruwb (roob); a primitive root; properly, to toss, i.e. grapple; mostly figuratively, to wrangle, i.e. hold a controversy; (by implication) to defend: KJV – adversary, chide, complain, contend, debate, ever, lay wait, plead, rebuke, strive, thoroughly. (Biblesoft’s New Exhaustive Strong’s Numbers and Concordance with Expanded Greek-Hebrew Dictionary. Copyright © 1994, 2003, 2006, 2010 Biblesoft, Inc. and International Bible Translators, Inc.)

4My cause: OT:7379 <START HEBREW>byr! <END HEBREW> riyb (reeb); or rib (reeb); from OT:7378; a contest (personal or legal): (Biblesoft’s New Exhaustive Strong’s Numbers and Concordance with Expanded Greek-Hebrew Dictionary. Copyright © 1994, 2003, 2006, 2010 Biblesoft, Inc. and International Bible Translators, Inc.)

5Judgment for me: OT:4941 <START HEBREW>fP*v=m!<END HEBREW> mishpat (mish-pawt’); from OT:8199; properly, a verdict (favorable or unfavorable) pronounced judicially, especially a sentence or formal decree (human or [participant’s] divine law, individual or collective), including the act, the place, the suit, the crime, and the penalty; abstractly, justice, including a participant’s right or privilege (statutory or customary), or even a style:

OT:8199 <START HEBREW>fp^v*<END HEBREW> shaphat (shaw-fat’); a primitive root; to judge, i.e. pronounce sentence (for or against); by implication, to vindicate or punish; by extension, to govern; passively, to litigate (literally or figuratively): (Biblesoft’s New Exhaustive Strong’s Numbers and Concordance with Expanded Greek-Hebrew Dictionary. Copyright © 1994, 2003, 2006, 2010 Biblesoft, Inc. and International Bible Translators, Inc.)

6Vindication: OT:6666 <START HEBREW>hq*d*x=<END HEBREW> tsedaqah (tsed-aw-kaw’); from OT:6663; rightness (abstractly), subjectively (rectitude), objectively (justice), morally (virtue) or figuratively (prosperity):

OT:6663 <START HEBREW>qd^x*<END HEBREW> tsadaq (tsaw-dak’); a primitive root; to be (causatively, make) right (in a moral or forensic sense): (Biblesoft’s New Exhaustive Strong’s Numbers and Concordance with Expanded Greek-Hebrew Dictionary. Copyright © 1994, 2003, 2006, 2010 Biblesoft, Inc. and International Bible Translators, Inc.)

7Awake: NT:1453 <START GREEK>e)gei/rw <END GREEK> egeiro (eg-i’-ro); probably akin to the base of NT:58 (through the idea of collecting one’s faculties); to waken (transitively or intransitively), i.e. rouse (literally, from sleep, from sitting or lying, from disease, from death; or figuratively, from obscurity, inactivity, ruins, nonexistence): (Biblesoft’s New Exhaustive Strong’s Numbers and Concordance with Expanded Greek-Hebrew Dictionary. Copyright © 1994, 2003, 2006, 2010 Biblesoft, Inc. and International Bible Translators, Inc.)

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