ALL THINGS NEW

A NEW SONG – 3

This new song that the Lord puts in the hearts of those who believe in him is neither an unrealistic ‘singing in the dark’ nor an exercise in self-deception. Nor does it arise from pagan creative visualization techniques or from pseudo-Christian ‘positive confession’ theology.

This song is sung by those who know the depths of long-term despair from which God has rescued them:

“I waited patiently for the LORD; he turned to me and heard my cry.
He lifted me out of the slimy pit, out of the mud and mire …” [Psalm 40:1,2]

This song is sung by those who know the extent of their on-going sinfulness:

“For troubles without number surround me; my sins have overtaken me, and I cannot see.
They are more than the hairs of my head, and my heart fails within me.” [Psalm 40:12]

This song is grounded in the righteousness of God, by which he justifies the sinner, and which was demonstrated, implemented and validated in the sin-bearing, substitutionary sacrificial death of Jesus Christ:

“Then I said, ‘Here I am, I have come … I desire to do your will, O my God’ …” [Psalm 40:7]

“And by that will, we have been made holy by the body of Jesus Christ once for all.” [Hebrews 10:(9)10]

“God presented him as a sacrifice of atonement through faith in his blood. He did this to demonstrate his justice …” [Romans 3:25]

The one who sings this song knows that God is a God of mercy, a mercy that encompasses and expresses both God’s love and God’s truth … and that only this mercy stands between the singer and ultimate disaster and destruction:

“Do not withhold your mercy from me, O LORD; may your love and your truth always protect me.” [Psalm 40:11]

This song, therefore, has one focus: to give praise to this amazing, forgiving God, to make known his incredible and unexpected act of salvation:

“He put a new song in my mouth, a hymn of praise to our God …
“I will proclaim righteousness in the great assembly; I do not seal my lips …
I do not hide your righteousness in my heart; I speak of your faithfulness and salvation.
I do not conceal your love and your truth from the great assembly.” [Psalm 40:3,9,10]

The singer of this song knows without any doubt that God is for him, that God loves him, that God is merciful and forgiving towards him, that God will never turn him away, and he therefore rejoices in God and gets his joy from God:

“But may all who seek you rejoice and be glad in you;
may those who love your salvation always say ‘The LORD be exalted.’ “ [Psalm 40:16]

“ … we also rejoice in God through our Lord Jesus Christ, through whom we have now received reconciliation.” [Romans 5:11]

This new song of joy is the song of the redeemed. No one else knows it; no one else understands it. May we who are redeemed by the blood of the Lamb imitate the writer of Psalm 40: he did not hide, he could not keep quiet about, its glorious, liberating, joyful truth.

Additional Scriptures: Psalm 130; Romans 1:16,17; 3:21-31; 4:5; Revelation 14:3; 7:1-12.

© Rosemary Bardsley 2012