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Yahweh/Jesus is the safe place for all who would commit to him as Saviour and Lord.

Dan: (00:00)
Hi everyone, and welcome to Training for Life Redeemed. I’m your host Dan, as always, sitting here with my father, David Jackson, and we are working our way through the book of Psalms or the books, I guess. We doing book two at the moment of Psalms. We’re up to Psalm 46,

David: (00:15)
Psalm 46, For the director Belonging to the sons of Korah. According to “the virgins.” A song. God is a shelter and strength for us. He is found to be a mighty help in times of distress. Therefore we do not fear when the landscape changes, and when mountains shake in the heart of the seas. His waters roar and foam. Mountains quake at his rising. Selah The river rapids delight the holy city of God, the holy dwellings of the Most High. God is in the midst of her. She will not be shaken. God will help her before morning. Nations roar. Kingdoms shake. He lets go with his voice. The earth melts. Yahweh of armies is with us. God of Jacob is a stronghold for us. Selah Go and look at the works of Yahweh, who did horrendous things on the earth. Ender of battles to the ends of the earth, He shatters bow, and he cuts off spear. Supply wagons he burns with fire. Relax and know that I am God. I am exalted among the nations. I am exalted in the earth. Yahweh of armies is with us. God of Jacob is a stronghold for us. Selah

Dan: (01:32)
Now dad, Psalm 46 follows on from Psalm 45, which was a lot of fun to record . Yes. Psalm 46 is a delightful psalm. Really. Like I remember this being one of the Psalms that I was meant to be able to translate for my exams, which is meant, you know, you memorize the English and then also work with the Hebrew. Yeah. . There’s nothing like doing Psalms in Hebrew. Hebrew’s hard enough as it is, let alone when it’s written in poetry, .

David: (01:58)

Dan: (01:58)
Right. Psalm 46. Dad is kind of, I don’t know, it’s, it’s a nice psalm, there’s this whole basic praise that kind of runs through it about how God is our strength and protector and looked after us and all the rest of it, which is lovely. If we then put that into some kind of context, then you’re going to suggest here that it’s Sennacherib coming to besiege Jerusalem, where Jerusalem are going to, basically, they’re going to try and starve Jerusalem to death and they’re going to have to Yeah. Live on spring water . Yep. That they had to dig through a tunnel themselves during that siege. That’s the right siege, isn’t it? Yep. That’s the one. And this Sennacherib’s going to have destroyed every other city on the way down. So there’s really no other city but Jerusalem. Yeah. Obviously this isn’t written while they’re in the middle of the siege.

Dan: (02:43)
It’s written afterwards. Yeah. When the, as Assyrians all go home. But that context for them to produce something as lovely as this is pretty quite nice. Yeah. And we see at the beginning here, you’ve got, yeah. Mark’s creation, this whole idea of, you know, kind of founding the, the times and the landscape changing and waters and all that kind of stuff, and land, et cetera. I don’t know. We, we shift from that to the rivers and rapids and stuff. For me, I look at that and I initially went, oh, Jerusalem. And I’m like, no, wait, there’s no rivers or rapids, , Jerusalem, little springs. So can you just explain what, what’s happening as we shift between the first couple of verses talking about Yeah. God being amazing creator and you, the mighty person, to this river rapids delighting the holy city of God.

David: (03:32)
Yeah. So we’ve, as we moved through book two of Psalms, we’ve had psalm 42, 43, 44, which I summarize as my life went down the toilet, but I was faithful to God. I don’t get it. Why? God rescue me. Help. Okay, so that’s your, that’s the bottom of the well misery. that’s the worst of your Christian living. Then Psalm 45, suddenly I’m in the royal palace with all the gold and the jewelry and the, all the, the majesty and the splendor. And I’ve got a king on a throne who is gentle, righteous, doing justice. Basically builds his kingdom on truth, hands it over to Jesus, we’re home. This is peace. This is where God lives. and now I’m back in Jerusalem, walking along the parapet of Jerusalem, looking over the wall. And there’s 85,000 Assyrian soldiers out there. And they’ve just cleaned up the rest of the province of Judah.

David: (04:28)
And outside every city of Judah, in town of Judah are people who have been skinned alive and impaled. And if you want to see the whole thing, there’s a huge wall in the British Museum where Sennacherib boasts about all the cruelties, you can see in eight foot high stone carved cartoon pictures, you know, people with all their bits chopped off and just absolutely horrendous cruelty. So I’ve come from 45, you know, the royal wedding, and now here I am looking out the window at these guys, and you go, I am beside the temple in Jerusalem where God visibly appears. These guys are worshiping fake gods and they’ve just slaughtered their way through Judah, and we are next. Where does my faith go with that? And the guy goes straight back to Eden. Mm-hmm. , you know, and he doesn’t identify Jerusalem as the fortress.

David: (05:28)
The fortress is Yahweh So I, I really like the fact that, during the Reformation, people rediscovered singing. So the, the reformers, they rediscovered the Bible. They rediscovered the Book of Psalms, and Calvin and Luther wanted to reintroduce congregational singing. And they thought the best way to do that would be to set the Psalms to music in a modern, in their own language, instead of these Latin chants that nobody knew it, you know, pie yehu domini whack, . You know, it was, that’s, yeah. Let’s get back to the way God wants to be worshiped. Right. And so Luther Luther hears the Army’s marching outside and they’re singing all their marching songs, and he goes down the pub and they’ve got their German beer steins and they’re singing their songs. And so he takes their tune and he sets Psalm 46, “A Mighty Fortress is our God,” that’s a good military marching kind of song. But it starts off in Eden when we remember where did we come from, this paradise, this garden with the rivers and the whole bit. And then we go to Jerusalem. what verse are we in there? Verse four. So we switch over to the holy city of God, and really, we’ve both been to Jerusalem,

Dan: (06:55)
Definitely no river anywhere near there.

David: (06:58)
No river there. It’s

Dan: (06:59)
Jordan River’s a long way away. .

David: (07:01)
It’s a long way away. It’s not on a mountain. it’s down the slope of a ridge that’s just a pile of rocks. there’s a big gully next to it with a tiny little creek about four foot wide if it rains. there’s

Dan: (07:15)
A spring, a spring

David: (07:15)
There’s a spring. Yeah. Yeah. We, we walked through the tunnel, where they diverted the spring so that it comes into the city.

Dan: (07:22)
Yeah. So they could drink and not so they could drink, could go out and get killed trying to get it.

David: (07:25)
It’s this wide and it’s about that deep . It’s not exactly your whitewater rapids. So it doesn’t look like Eden. I mean, Eden’s got four rivers flying out to, to the world and it’s trees and everything. And there’s, I don’t know that there’s any trees in Jerusalem No.

Dan: (07:41)
Anymore. No. shrubs

David: (07:42)
it’s, you know, you look at it and say, this is the city of God and it’s planted in a Barren looking place. maybe it wasn’t always as Barren as it is now, but it’s, it’s not Eden, but it promises Eden. and it promises Eden even while we’re looking over the edge and going, these bad guys are pretty scary. so where does that leave us? A mighty fortress is our God. Well, Yahweh. May of hosts is with us. The God of Jacob is a stronghold for us. And that’s our chorus at the beginning, in, in the middle and the end. Mm-hmm. . I think that would’ve been hard to remember while you’re standing there looking at this blood thirsty mob os Assyrians Yeah. so let’s, let’s think about, I’m a Christian, I’m living comfortably here in Sydney. when do I look over the parapet and see this?

Dan: (08:47)
Yeah. Not in a physical sense, that’s for sure. At the moment.

David: (08:50)
Not here.

Dan: (08:51)
No, no, no. But I think that there’s an element too. I remember, chatting to people who had come to Australia from overseas where they are, you know, beaten and tortured and whatever. And they were saying that they constantly are praying for the Christians in the West because it’s so easy it’s because of our affluence and our money and our comfort. We, we are not, it’s easy for us to not rely on God, to not think about, you know, God being the one who saves and provides for us because we

David: (09:25)
Don’t need a Fortress

Dan: (09:26)
. That’s right. That’s right. We

David: (09:28)
Might got, we’ve got my security.

Dan: (09:29)
We might in a few more years if things keep going bad overseas, but

David: (09:32)
Yeah. I I was reading one commentary, that I sort of stopped and went, you are kidding. His application of this psalm and the next two psalms was, you will think of this when people call you names or sneer at your faith.

Dan: (09:56)
I’m going to think you’ve gotten all of his chariots and tanks that he commands

David: (10:00)
. And, and he says, you know, we we’re not experiencing anything like this in our modern world. And I’m going, mate, where do you live? Hmm. I go to Multicultural Bible Ministry in Rooty Hill. there’s a free plug, , but we have 70 languages. We had the member for Blacktown at church last night. There’s 180 language groups in Blacktown. and our congregation is full of people who’ve seen their relatives slaughtered. they come from all the countries with all the wars and everything else. Mm-hmm. . I still remember a wonderful family at, whose children I taught at school. dad came out of the killing fields of Rwanda and mum came out of the killing fields of Cambodia. So you got this little girl whose grandparents people were slaughtered. and they know how to sing this song. and we are standing around as a bunch of very comfortable affluent people going, you know, why do I need God as my stronghold? I’ve got security cameras, I’ve got my mobile . Yeah.

Dan: (11:11)
I mean, for us too, there’s also, an element of war that we forget about as Christians quite frequently in the West. And that’s that spiritual element of war as well. Yeah. Where, we need the God who has the hosts to protect us. Absolutely. The, the devil has his hosts and there is that element of spiritual warfare that’s constantly going on that we don’t talk about very much. Yeah. That gets neglected because we’re in the West and things are science based, they’re not spiritually based. Yeah. and people forget that there’s actually, you know, when you have churches that start to do well, things go wrong in them because the devil is actually attacking them, not just because humans stuff up

David: (11:50)
Sometimes. And it’s pretty good at getting in under the wall wall too. Mm-hmm. . Yeah. Yeah. So, and that, that’s where we go back to my, my security doesn’t lie in my church. It doesn’t lie in my, you know, my martial arts skills. It doesn’t lie in all of these things. The only thing that keeps me safe is Yahweh. And even if they kill me, I’m still safe. Yeah. Because Jesus rose from the dead. So I just, I mean, the, the chorus of this song becomes the last line of Matthew’s Gospel now. So you, the chorus says, Yahweh of hosts is with us. Well, Matthew 28, lo, I am with you every day to the close of the age. Mm-hmm. , at the end of the day, you can kill me, but I’m still safe because my home is inside that Citadel, which is the temp, the palace of Yahweh.

Dan: (12:52)
Yeah. And I, I love even the bit above that, where finally you get that kind of element of God going, just relax, man. Like, , like, I’m here. It’s all good. Even though there’s whatever army out there, or people being slaughtered or there’s rumors of wars and all that kind of stuff at the moment, there’s plenty of rumors of wars, Absoluterly. Absolutely. Yeah. People keep talking about World War II possibly coming, and for us to be able to go, you know what? God’s in control of it all. It doesn’t, like even if World War III breaks out, he’s still in control. Yeah. Like, we are relaxing, knowing that he’s Gods and that

David: (13:26)
Here is peace. Here is Shalom. I reading years ago, the stories of the martyrs of the, you know, the 16th century when they were burning Christians alive and their stories of the, particularly the Scots. I, I do like bagpipes, , but you can imagine a bunch of British soldiers surrounding some woman being tied to a stake and burned alive because she’s a Christian. And 600 villages turn out and start singing songs like this. Mm. Six inches from the nose of the British soldiers. and just, you know, yelling the gospel straight into your face, with that kind of, passion and the, the voices of all of these people combining. and you go, it’s not us who are scared, mate. You are touching the apple of god’s eye and you are begging for judgment. Mm-hmm. and we are going to sing it in your face until you get the message. Yahweh’s our stronghold. You really wan to be an Assyrian . It’s not a good place to go. .

Dan: (14:39)
Well, that brings us to the end of this episode. If you would love to come and grab the study notes for this episode, please head over to 102 and make sure you hit the subscribe button or anything that you, wherever you’re listening or watching this on YouTube or something, make sure you come back and join us again next week. We’ll be looking at PSM 47.