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and 18th verses : “O God, Thou hast taught me from my youth : and hitherto have I declared Thy wondrous works. Now also when I am old and greyheaded, O God, forsake me not.” This seems to be the language of an old man, and of a man of experience; and it is of this experience, as contained in our text, that we shall have to speak this evening : “I will go in the strength of the Lord God: I will make mention of Thy righteousness, even of Thine only." I think that you will agree with me upon this point; that this is the language of a child of God, who knows what it is to be emptied of self and of everything, save Jehovah, His Strength, and His Righteousness.

Our text contains two resolutions. The first is this: I will go in the strength of the Lord God.And the second is this: I will make mention of Thy righteousness, even of Thine only.

I shall take up the first resolution and endeavour to open it up to you a little in this way : first, the Lord God; then, the Strength of the Lord God; and then, the Psalmist's resolve : “I will go,"—in the Prayer Book version it is—“I will go forth in the strength of the Lord God."

“ The Lord God.” Here are two words, and both are applied to each Person in the Trinity. “ The Father is Lord.” And He

appears as such to Abram, saying: “I am thy Shield, and thy exceeding great Reward” (Genesis xv). What more does a child of God need than this? This word Lord is applied to the Second Person in the Trinity in the 110th Psalm : “The Lord said unto my Lord, “Sit Thou at My Right Hand, until I make Thine enemies Thy footstool.”' It is applied to the Holy Ghost in the 2nd Epistle to the Thessalonians, the 3rd chapter, and the 5th verse : “The Lord direct your hearts into the love of God, and into the patient waiting for Christ. In this verse you

” see that it is the Holy Ghost that is spoken of as Lord ; and He directs the hearts of the regenerate into the love of God. And then the next thing that He directs them into is this : “ the patient waiting for" the Lord Jesus Christ.” And thus, it is established beyond all doubt, “

, that which has been held by the professing and true Church of God: “the Father is Lord, the Son Lord, and the Holy Ghost Lord.” The other word for God is one which occurs frequently in the Old Testament, and means the Self-Existent One. You have a fair definition of this word in the 3rd chapter of Exodus. When Moses was about to be sent down into Egypt to deliver Israel thence, he wished to know what he was to say to the Israelites if they asked after the Name of Him who had sent him. Jehovah told him what to say: “I AM THAT I AM hath sent thee unto them ” (verse 14th). He was to go and say: “The Lord God batb met with us, and He is coming down to deliver His people Israel out of Egypt, and to bring them forth into the land of Canaan." This word is beautifully explained by our Lord in the 1st chapter of Revelation, and the 8th verse : “I am Alpha and Omega, the beginning and the ending, saith the Lord, which is, and which was, and which is to come, the Almighty.” « Jesus Christ, the same yesterday, and to-day, and for ever" (Hebrews xüi. 8). The Lord God Jehovah, Father, Son, and Spirit. It might, perhaps, be

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considered unnecessary to enlarge much on these words, and especially so as they occur so frequently in the Scriptures. But I do find myself, from my own experience, that it is of the greatest importance to be very particular in setting forth the Trinity in preaching the Gospel. And I do not believe that any person has ever been saved, or ever will, or can be, saved without the Trinity. And, therefore, I hope that every sermon I preach either here, or elsewhere, may always be a Trinity sermon.

Now take the next expression : The Strength of the Lord God." Look how the Lord God is spoken of in this Psalm. He is described by certain figures of speech. You may take the 3rd verse : “ Be Thou my Strong Habitation.The latter part of it: “Thou art my Rock and my Fortress.Again : “ Thou art my Strong Refuge” (verse 7). Here you have four words to set forth the Lord God in His relationship to His people. He is a Habitation for them. Is He a safe one think

you ? “Lord, Thou hast been our Dwelling Place in all generations (Psalm xc. 1). And as in the past, so now and for ever. 6. The Name of the Lord is a Strong Tower : the righteous runneth into It, and is safe” (Proverbs xviii

. 10). In this Habitation there is Spiritual provision, even everything necessary to supply all the wants and needs of the people that dwell therein. Then He is a Rock, Rock." Why a Rock! For security and for safety. And so it is, for our Lord

a ? brings out this idea in the 16th chapter of St. Matthew's Gospel : He builds His church “upon this Rock”—that is, upon Himself-" and the gates of hell shall not prevail against it" (verse 18). Not a single stone can be removed from this Rock. I know that this is a different Gospel from that which some preach. But the Gospel, as it comes from our God, is a sure, safe, and glorious Gospel. It takes hold of the sinner, puts him on Christ the Foundation, and then keeps him there. This is what the Lord is to His people. He is their Rock. You may enlarge upon this point for yourselves. All true believers are stones built upon this Rock. The winds may blow, and the rains may fall, and the floods may dash against this house which is built upon this Rock-Christ-but there is no such thing as blowing it down, or washing it away, remains firm and secure, notwithstanding all the storms and the tempests to which it is subjected (Matthew vii

. 24, 25). He is also my Fortress. Another word to convey the idea of security and safety. Now, to be in the Fortress, is to be in the Lord protected, kept, and preserved from all danger. The enemies and foes of the Lord may assail His people, but they stumble and fall. The Lord is a strong Fortress to His people. Break through the Lord, and you will break through the walls that protect the Church. Beloved, this cheers my heart when I think of it, that before an enemy can touch one of God's children, he must touch God, and break through Him. “ He that toucheth you toucheth the apple of His eye” (Zechariah ii. 8). Then

( again, He is a Refuge. This idea is probably taken from the cities of refuge. When the manslayer once got within the gates of any one of the cities of refuge he was safe from the avenger of blood (Joshua xx). So it is as regards every man that is in Christ Jesus, he is in the City of Refuge, the only Place of Safety and Security from the avenger of

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blood—the law. The law can do nothing with him. This, you will see, is what the Lord is in this Psalm to His people.

But the Strength of the Lord, under the Old Testament Dispensation, was symbolized in a very remarkable manner. It was symbolized by the ark. This ark was sometimes called the “ark of the covenant." times “the ark of God," and sometimes the “ark of Thy Strength.” In itself it might appear very insignificant. Well, but it is insignificant things which God generally employs for the accomplishment of His own purpose. He takes up things that are foolish to confound the wise, and “the weak things of the world to confound the things which are mighty ; and base things of the world, and things which are despised, hath God chosen, yea, and things which are not, to bring to nought things that

(I Corinthians i. 27, 28). The ark was the ark of God's strength. And when we turn to the 25th chapter of the book of Exodus, we read an account of it, how it was made and finished, and of its' use. to be the meeting place for God and the sinner. It was a symbol of His Presence, Power, and Strength. It was all this. Now, look at the movements of this ark. When Joshua was about to pass over Jordan, the ark had to go first, borne by the priests. And, we read in the latter part of the 3rd chapter of Joshua, that as soon as the feet of the priests touched the waters of Jordan, Jordan “stood, and rose up upon a heap," on the one hand, and on the other the waters were cut off, so that the people of God passed over on dry ground. As to the priests who bore the ark, they stood in the midst of Jordan. But how long did they stand there ? Until all Israel had passed over.

You will see that there was nothing in the ark itself. No, certainly not in itself, And yet it was the symbol of God's Presence, Power, and Strength, Who alone can hold the waters from overflowing His people. Mark ! All Israel passed over! Then the ark came up, borne by the priests. This reminds me of a passage in the 43rd of Isaiah : “When thou passest through the waters I will be with thee; and through the rivers, they shall not overflow thee: when thou walkest through the fire thou shalt not be burned, neither shall the flame kindle upon thee.” The Lord stands in the midst of the fires and waters, and has power and strength to prevent the fires from burning thee and the waters from drowning thee. The Strength of the Lord God shall both protect thee and preserve thee.

But again, the ark is employed on another occasion. Jericho is to be taken, and it is to be taken in the Lord's way. He gives directions that they are to go round the city of Jericho seven days; on six days once each day, and on the seventh day seven times. Well, this is a very strange way of taking a city. Are the walls of Jericho to yield to this? Are the inhabitants of Jericho to be taken and slain? There is nothing in the ark itself. Certainly not. The servants of God were to do the bidding of God. The priests bore the ark. The rams' horns were blown, and thus once a day during six days they compassed the city. Then on the seventh day they went round it seven times. “ And it came to pass at the seventh time, when the priests blew with the trumpets, Joshua said unto the people, shout, for the Lord hath given you the city.” And what then? The wall of

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Jericho fell down flat, and the Israelites possess the city of their enemies. What is this? We see the symbol of God's power and presence in taking possession of Jericho, and in destroying those who were the Lord's enemies. So they

“ took the city,” and went into it, and destroyed the inhabitants thereof (Joshua vi. 1-21). Again, this ark was very troublesome. Israel did not always walk closely with God. But God knows best how to chastise His people. And this we may observe by the way.

That God's children ought never to attempt to chastise each another, but leave all chastisement to God. He always does it best, for He does it in lovingkindness and in tender mercy. You know that the ark of God was taken by the Philistines in the time of poor old Eli; and then the cry went forth : “The glory is departed, is departed from Israel, for the ark of God is taken” (1 Samuel iv. 21). Well, the Philistines got the ark of God, the symbol of His Strength. What are they going to do with it? They must have a place for it. So they take it and put it in the house of Dagon the god of the Ashdodites. Dagon and the ark are together. Which of the two is to yield ? The Ark of God or Dagon ? To-morrow shall declare. " And when they of Ashdod arose early on the morrow, behold, Dagon was fallen upon his face to the earth before the ark of the Lord. And they took Dagon, and set him up in his place again.” What happened the next night? Well, he falls down again before the ark of the Lord, and both his head and his hands were cut off. But the ark of God is safe and secure. What was there in the ark ? Nothing, you say, but then it was the symbol of God's strength, power, and presence, for the destruction of idolatry and idolaters. As it was then, so it shall be before our ark, the Lord Jesus Christ, Who is the Strength of God. All idolatry must fall and perish before Him. Again, the Philistines wanted to get rid of the ark, and so they carry it about from Ashdod to Gath, and from Gath to Ekron. And when the Ekronites suffered greatly, they too, wanted to get rid of it. And a new cart is made, and two milch kine are procured to take away the ark. The men of Bethshemesh are smitten for looking into the ark. The Philistines only had it seven months among them, but it gave them a great deal of trouble. The enemies of the Lord may profess to have Christ, but they know not what to do with Him. The ark was brought to Kirjath-jearim, and remained there for twenty years. The

presence of the ark amongst the enemies of God is their curse, but its presence with the people of God is their blessing. God blessed the house of Obed-edom and all that he had. The ark of God was there (I Chron. xiii. 14). And so it was with David. And so it comes to pass that when we preach the Gospel of our Lord Jesus Christ, to one it is “the savour of life unto life,” and to another it is “the savour of death unto death” (II Corinthians ii. 16). The Strength of the Lord was symbolized by the ark. But all this symbolism pointed to the Lord Jesus Christ, the Man of God's right hand. Hence we read that God hath “ laid help upon One that is mighty,” that is upon the Lord Jesus Christ (Psalm lxxxix. 19). And the Lord Jesus Christ appeared in the flesh, and proclaimed Himself as the Mighty One. “ All power is given unto Me in heaven and in earth" (Matthew xxviii. 18). St. Paul

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realized the power that is in Christ Jesus, for he says: “I can do all things through Christ Who strengtheneth me” (Philippians iv. 13). He exhorts the christians at Ephesus to be strong in the Lord and in the power of His Might.” And why? Because in Him dwells all the fulness of grace, wisdoin, and knowledge. And it is out of His fulness that the believer receives grace for grace.

The Lord Jesus Christ is the Great Storehouse for His people. It is from strength to strength they go until they all appear before God in Zion. St. Paul had learnt this by experience, for we read that he had been taught that God's grace was sufficient for him, that His strength was made perfect in weakness. “Most gladly therefore will I rather glory in my infirmities.” Why? “ That the power of Christ may rest upon me (II Corinthians xii. 9). He knew something then of the Strength of the Lord, and of His presence when he said he could do all things through Christ Who strengthened him. This is in keeping with the practical and experimental part of our text.

Let us now notice the Psalmist's resolve : I will go forth in the Strength of the Lord God.” · Well,” you say “any person may do that.'

It is only those who are spiritually taught and spiritually enlightened that have the faith which is peculiar to the Psalmist. Indeed, it is only those who have this hope wrought in them by the Holy Spirit who can truly use the language of the text. I do not wish to quarrel with any person upon this point, but I am as firmly persuaded of it in my own mind, as I am that I am speaking to you at this

very moment. The children of God themselves are utterly unable, without the Spirit to take a single step in the Lord Jesus Christ.

It is only heavenly wisdom that can bring about this resolve. “I will go." I might mention to you one or two lively cases. “ To whom shall we go ?" said Peter, when our Lord said to him : “Will ye also go away ?”. “ To whom shall we go ? Thou hast the words of eternal life” (John vi. 67, 68). I will go “to my Father," I hear the voice of the prodigal saying when he had spent everything that he had ; and had become awakened by the Spirit of God : “I will arise and go to my Father, and will say unto him, "Father, I have sinned against heaven, and before thee, and am no more worthy to be called thy son. “I will go to my Father” (Luke xv. 18, 19). Now this is right. But through whom shall he go to his father? The verse which I have quoted does not say, but we learn from other Scriptures. In going to the Father we have to go the right way. And what is the right way? The Lord Jesus Christ has told us that the way to the Father is by Himself. He says: “I am the Way, I am the Truth, I am the Life ; and no man cometh unto the Father, but by me (John xiv. 6). Jesus is the way to the Father. And David knew it when he said : “I will go in the Strength of the Lord God." I will go in the name of the Lord Jesus Christ. Now, I will go this way in preaching the Gospel : “I will go in the strength of the Lord God.” 56 Ah! yes, but you know that you must exercise your own power. Indeed, it is in your power to go, or not to go, as you please.” I pity all such babblers from my very heart, for they have never been made to

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