Blessed is the people that know the joyful sound: they shall walk, O LORD, in the light of thy countenance. In thy name shall they rejoice all the day: and in thy righteousness shall they be exalted. For thou art the glory of their strength: and in thy favor our horn shall be exalted. For the LORD is our defense; and the Holy One of Israel is our king. (Psalm 89:15-18)

True Believers In Christ Bask In God’s Presence

With all the centered on self teaching spewed forth from the ECoD of new evangelicalism, which has now penetrated within the evangelical community itself through her contemplative spirituality, the following words about these inspiring verses from the great Bible commentator Matthew Henry are like a cup of cold water to weary travelers:

The psalmist, having largely shown the blessedness of the God of Israel, here shows the blessedness of the Israel of God. As there is none like unto the God of Jeshurun, so, happy art thou, O Israel! there is none like unto thee, O people! especially as a type of the gospel-Israel, consisting of all true believers, whose happiness is here described.

O yes, all true regenerated believers, already saved by God’s grace alone; through faith alone; in Christ alone, rejoice in the joyful sound of the Great Shepherd’s Voice in the Bible, and we already bask in His countenance–the presence–of our glorious God Who dwells within His true people. Maybe you’ve wondered why you haven’t been drawn in by the many false teachers infesting the Purpose Driven Church and the Emergent Church and the Word Faith Church and yet so many other professing Christians have. Then let me remind you of some comforting Words spoken by our Lord to those of us who are the elect sheep of His pasture:

“The man who enters by the gate is the shepherd of his sheep. The watchman opens the gate for him, and the sheep listen to his voice. He calls his own sheep by name and leads them out. When he has brought out all his own, he goes on ahead of them, and his sheep follow him because they know his voice. But they will never follow a stranger; in fact, they will run away from him because they do not recognize a stranger’s voice.” (John 10:2-5)

Stand Against Those Who Would Dare Malign God’s Word

Might we today spend some time in prayer thanking our Great God and Savior for His tender mercies, for training us to hear His Voice, and for His most glorious presence within us. We know we don’t need to listen to the voice of the stranger and go seek God’s presence through counterfeit Contemplative/Centering Prayer, for His true sheep are always in His presence. And the NIV brings this out further and adds another key point when it translates verse 15 – Blessed are those who have learned to acclaim you, who walk in the light of Your presence, O LORD. God’s children will have a hunger for the light of [His] presence and to learn to acclaim our Lord in the Holy Scriptures as well.

Our Lord’s true sheep will also have a hunger to hear His voice as we study the Bible and we will be anxious to obey what our Great Shepherd says within. As I was saying to an antagonist just the other day: “There is absolutely nothing you are going to say that will sway me from what the text of God’s Word says.” This is as long as Jesus chooses to sustain me, but this is precisely the point my brothers and sisters. Our text says – the glory of their strength: and in thy favor our horn shall be exalted. For the LORD is our defense; and the Holy One of Israel is our King. God Himself is our Deliverer and our Savior, and He said: “behold, I am with you always, to the end of the age” (Matthew 28:20, ESV).

Beloved of God, today I encourage you to ask the Lord to deepen your desire for reading His Bible so you can better offer yourself as a living sacrifice holy and pleasing to God—this is your spiritual act of worship. Do not conform any longer to the pattern of this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind. Then you will be able to test and approve what God’s will is—his good, pleasing and perfect will (Romans 12:1-2). Did you catch that? We must be transformed by the renewing of our minds. And this is why wayward men like Living Spiritual Teacher Richard Foster who speak for the stranger are trying to get you to shut down your minds in Contemplative/Centering Prayer which is actually transcendental meditation using Christian terminology.

However there is good news; if you have been involved in this contemplative spirituality, why not renounce this pagan practice originating in the apostate Church of Rome, ask God to forgive you and then come along with those of us who walk in the light of [God’s] presence as we shout joyfully:

Blessed are those who have learned to acclaim You,
who walk in the light of your presence, O LORD. They rejoice in Your name all day long; they exult in Your righteousness. For You are their glory and strength, and by Your favor You exalt our horn. Indeed, our shield belongs to the LORD, our King to the Holy One of Israel.

To God only wise, be glory through Jesus Christ forever. Amen.