Sunday, December 19, 2010

The Basis of Praise

“Surely God is my salvation;

I will trust, and will not be afraid,

for the Lord God is my strength and my might;

he has become my salvation.”

~Isaiah 12:2 (NRSV).

To know this by living it is a raucous blessing. It is cognisance; the resting ‘within’ the facts of faith. For, it is faith that says, “God is my salvation; what can humanity do to me?”

Faith is backed up in the established promise. That is, when we’ve taken heed of the Holy Spirit, believed what was ushered into our spirits, and we’ve taken the necessary leap—and succeeded.

This is the basis of praise.

God has been our strength, the One to which we went and leant.

The salvation of the Lord, moreover, is not that one-off event in the dimly-lit years or decades since first belief. This salvation happened yesterday, and the day before that! Its recency commands our respect. God has spoken through life itself.

The True Nature of Salvation

Against the bodily death that happens day by day, each day, all our lives, the spirit within the soul is not only indestructible; it’s anchored to God if that be its will.

The Four Blessed Characteristics of ‘The Saved’

According to Moyter, there are four typologies of the saved that are contained within the “bracketed” structure in the verse above. These are all activity based:

1. They trust: a “soundly based confidence” is known by the person experiencing the salvation of the Lord.

2. Fear is ended: this is why salvation is mostly about the day to day than a one-off event. We must actively trust God so we don’t succumb to fear.

3. There is strength: directly from God’s Spirit comes a strength that can only come from God because we can’t explain it. The lightness in our spirits manifests itself so we can feel this unexplained strength.

4. A song is issued: the whole verse would fit beautifully in the psalms. It has ‘song’ written all over it. Our song is rich with praise.

Where Praise Comes From

How on earth do we find breath for praise if we don’t feel delivered?

But, we’re delivered every single day of our lives, just as surely by the lives we’re allowed to maintain, however strained they might very well be. And when we feel saved—attributing every blessing to the Presence of the Lord, who is for us—we will slowly and surely experience more of the four characteristics of the saved mentioned above.

When we feel saved we’ll be motivated to act as saved people.

© 2010 S. J. Wickham.

General Reference: J. Alec Moyter, The Prophesy of Isaiah: An Introduction & Commentary (Downers Grove, Illinois: InterVarsity Press, 1993), p. 129.

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