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Rainbow Divider
MCM Broadcast

TV Broadcast #1139

My Light and My Salvation
Part One

August 3, 2014

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Transcript of message from TV Broadcast 1139 -- taken from Closed Captioning Text

— Brother Phil Enlow: Turn, if you will, to an often-favorite Psalm, number 37, I believe it is…no, it’s not 37…oh yeah, 27. Praise the Lord! I’m not quite awake yet this morning, but that’s all right. Thank the Lord that when we’re weak, we’re strong. He doesn’t look for strength or ability. He looks for availability. So let’s just be available to the Lord and ask Him to work, because His is faithful. I think I’m just going to go ahead and read this and then I’ll ask the Lord to focus on what He has in His mind and His heart.

Psalm of David, of course, he says, “The Lord is my light and my salvation—whom shall I fear? The Lord is the stronghold of my life—of whom shall I be afraid? When evil men advance against me to devour my flesh, when my enemies and my foes attack me, they will stumble and fall. Though an army besiege me, my heart will not fear; though war break out against me, even then will I be confident. One thing I ask of the Lord, this is what I seek: that I may dwell in the house of the Lord all the days of my life…” (NIV).

It’s interesting. We worked on two songs of that theme last night. I had this already in my mind. “…To gaze upon the beauty of the Lord and to seek him in his temple. For in the day of trouble he will keep me safe in his dwelling; he will hide me in the shelter of his tabernacle and set me high upon a rock. Then my head will be exalted above the enemies who surround me; at his tabernacle will I sacrifice with shouts of joy; I will sing and make music to the Lord. Hear my voice when I call, O Lord; be merciful to me and answer me.

“My heart says of you, seek his face! Your face, Lord, I will seek. Do not hide your face from me, do not turn your servant away in anger; you have been my helper. Do not reject me or forsake me, O God my Savior. Though my father and mother forsake me, the Lord will receive me. Teach me your way, O Lord; lead me in a straight path because of my oppressors. Do not turn me over to the desire of my foes, for false witnesses rise up against me, breathing out violence. I am still confident of this: I will see the goodness of the Lord in the land of the living. Wait for the Lord; be strong and take heart and wait for the Lord.”

Well, Praise God! This is a psalm, a prayer of a man after God’s own heart. You remember how God granted the desire of the Israelites for a king, and Saul became king for a time, but Saul was kind of like a lot of people, sometimes like a lot of us, maybe. He…the Lord told him to do something and he had a better idea. And there just was something about his heart that had a self-will, was self-driven. And so finally the Lord rejected him, but off to the side He had been developing a young man. And the young man’s name was David.

And you know, I want to encourage our young people. You’re living…you’re doing things that may seem mundane and unimportant. They’re not. Everything that you do in your life, God is involved and He wants us to live with an awareness of Him.

When David was out minding the sheep, I’m sure that it was the last thing on his mind that he would be a warrior, that he would be a king. All he was worried about was doing the job that had been given him to do, and he did it. But he did it with a ‘God-consciousness.’ He used his time to worship the Lord, and to get to know the Lord, and to talk to the Lord, and to trust Him with the issues that came like the lion and the bear. He just did what came to his hand to do, and God was working. God was molding a man.

And so, I don’t care who you are or what’s going on, but the Lord is molding you and He wants your life. Right now, what you’re doing, the thing that you think isn’t important, matters to Him. Because it’s not the ‘what’ we do, it’s how we do it, and whether we do it to Him. So God help every one of us not to dismiss our lives as unimportant and the things that we do as unimportant. Nothing is unimportant to God.

But anyway, here’s David, and you see a number of things in this scripture. You see the way David looked at life but yet, I want to…because we’ve read the whole thing, I want to draw your attention to one little fact, one little thing in this Psalm that kind of gives it a flavor, sets it in its context. Because you might suppose, listening to all these glorious pronouncements of David, that he was in a wonderful place, he was sitting in the midst of a whole lot of the people of God, and they were singing songs, and they were happy, and there was a spirit of joy and victory. And so, in the throes of that, he was able to say all these wonderful things, somewhat like we do.

But that’s not when this happened, is it? You listen to the parts…his prayer down there. “Hear my voice when I call.” This is a time when things probably don’t look good. This was probably written during, maybe perhaps when he was running from Saul. I don’t know the historical setting for this particular psalm.

But David had a lot of trouble in his life, and yet there was something about him that regardless of the outward circumstances, there was a bedrock conviction in his heart, and that was what he is conveying to himself, and to the Lord, and no doubt, to the Devil. Lord, I’m in a place where I’m crying out to You. And even though I’ve said all these positive things like, ‘oh God, don’t forsake me,’ there’s this sense of need, isn’t there?

You don’t get the sense that he’s exhilarated right now, that he’s feeling those icicles up and down his spine. He’s not going by feelings, is he? He’s actually in a place where he really feels his need! He’s aware of danger! He’s aware of trouble! He’s aware of his own weakness! He’s aware that he doesn’t know what to do! It kind of sounds like us, doesn’t it?

( congregational response ).

But yet, there is something about David that absolutely forms an anchor for his soul, and that’s what he surrounds this prayer, toward the end of the passage, he surrounds that with these wonderful confessions.

And these confessions are not just like…blowing smoke, or trying to be brave. We call that bravado when somebody acts brave when they really don’t have the foundation to be brave. They ‘whistle through the graveyard’ to make people think there’s no problem. But God is not looking for bravado. He’s looking for a faith that gives us a solid reason to be confident, to be brave.

He uses the expression ‘I’m confident of this, I’m confident of that.’ Why was he confident of that? Surely he’s not looking at himself. But there was something…he had come into a knowledge of God, a relationship with God, and that relationship taught him something about Him, and because of that, he found strength and confidence—only in that!

Folks, if your hope and your confidence is in anything other than the Lord, you are in a terrible place! You know, the scripture talk about a time when men’s hearts will be, doing what? They’ll be, “…failing them for fear.” (KJV). Why? Because of, “…those things which are coming on the earth.” You know, men are really proud, blind creatures, aren’t they? They run around acting all cocky and sure of themselves, and all you have to is have a little earthquake or a little storm and…

( gasping ).

You know. All of a sudden, that confidence just goes right out the window. But I’ll tell you what, God has given us a reason to hope this morning! The same God that was with David, that taught him all these things, is with us! And He’s with you this morning! And with me! In the weakness, the uncertainty that we experience in life, we don’t have to be controlled by that! We can have a reason to have confidence and hope.

And so, he begins this Psalm with these simple words. “The LORD is my light and my salvation.” (NIV). Now, let’s sort of break that down just a little bit. The Lord is my light. What is light? We sort of associate that with knowledge, with wisdom, with knowing what’s really going on, and what to do. And you know, what is the world’s wisdom? I mean, what does the world go by?

( congregational response ).

Yeah, it goes by its own thoughts. And we know that the world is in darkness! It’s in blindness, and why? The devil has blinded the minds of those that don’t see, “…the glory of God in the face of Jesus Christ.” (KJV). There’s only one source of truth!

And you know, Jesus talked about our eye being single, didn’t He? That means we’re only looking at one source of light, and that’s what David did. He said, when I don’t know what to do, when I don’t get it, when I don’t understand, I don’t know which way to go or what to do, I have one source of light. I’m not looking for something else. I’m not trying to get people’s opinions. I’m not trying to go by the wisdom of the world in some fashion or form. I’m fixed in my position. I know that apart from God showing me what to do, I don’t know!

Folks, that’s an awesome place to be! It feels very uncertain at times, because, how many times have we heard the scripture in Isaiah about…what do you do, you’re one that fears the Lord, but you’re walking… right now, your circumstances are that you’re walking in darkness and you don’t have any light. You know, God allows that to happen to us frequently! He puts us in positions where we don’t know what to do. We don’t feel exhilarated. We don’t have any of the support system that we love to grab for ourselves, and all we can do…that really proves where we’re looking!

And I’ll tell you, there are an awful lot of people who will try to use God to get what they want, but they have always got a “Plan B.” If this doesn’t work then I will do this…or okay, God, You’re not answering me so I’m gonna talk to my friends and see what they think. I’m gonna see what their opinion is about this. I’m gonna see…what’s the standard of the world? What is their wisdom about this situation?

Folks, we need one standard. This world is going to Hell. It’s headed for destruction. And I believe with all my heart that we have One dwelling among us, only because of His grace, only because He has blotted out our sins…we have One dwelling among us who is the very source of all Light and Truth.

( congregational amens ).

Oh my! I don’t want to run in my own strength. I don’t want to build a fire and call it light. I don’t want to trust in my own mind! And that’s what people do. They think they’re smart enough to assess and figure things out, and chart their course, and what they’re really going by are the impulses that arise from their flesh, from their mind. They’re influenced by the opinions of others! They want to appear well in the eyes of their peers!

It affects every one of us. It really affects young people! Man, they do not want to be different. They don’t want to have people think that they’re crazy, and they’re weird, and they’re off-beat. My God, we need to have such conviction. God needs to be so real.

This is not something you can just sort of drum into people and people will say, okay, I’m gonna do that. This is something where God has to make Himself known. You know, there was a God in Israel and most of the Israelites didn’t know Him. And they didn’t know Him…the reason they didn’t know Him was not that He wasn’t available!

But here was a young man that when God came knocking, when God came revealing Himself, there was something in him that opened his heart—that opened his heart, and the sense of opening his heart is, God, I need You. I don’t have what I need. I am not able to live…I see who You are, I know that You are the Creator, You are the Most High God, You’re the One who made the stars. And here You are…You’re actually communicating with me!

Yeah, think about that. Think about the words that David wrote. “What is man that you are mindful of him, the son of man that you care for him?” Think about who you are! Think about a God who can breathe out stars! And then just take it in, that He loves you, He’s concerned about you. My God, if you lose your comb, He’s concerned about that. He’s concerned about…He keeps track of the hairs on your head! No some of you don’t have as many to worry about as you used to.

( laughter ).

But that’s all right. He knows! He knows about all those things. This is an awesome God! But David had somehow come to know about Him, and the more he knew about this God and the more God began to teach him about Himself, the more he wanted to know! There was a hunger in him. You know, there’s no way that you and I would have any desire at all toward God if God did not come searching for us!

( congregational amens ).

Lord, we have nothing to pat ourselves on the back about. We have nothing that we can present to Him but our brokenness and our need, and know that there’s a God who loves us and is concerned about us.

But this business of light…my God, do you think these scientists, for example, and philosophers who are so confident in man and his ability, and the doctrine of the story of evolution that they tell, and the hope that they see for the world and all that…do you think they’re uncertain about that? Do you think they’re just sort of, ‘I don’t know about that’? No! They are absolutely sure of themselves! And the light that is in them is darkness! It is blindness!

Oh my, I want to open my heart. Folks, I’ll say again to young people. You are absolutely being subjected in this hour to darkness, in the philosophies, the ideas of this world! I want one source of Light! I want to know Him! I want to see my life through His eyes!

Now that’s not a pleasant thing sometimes! If you’re trying to be proud, and think something of yourself, to see yourself through His eyes is to see how rotten, how undeserving, how weak, how unable you are! But, the flip side of that is to see the magnitude of His love for you because He loves you anyway.

( congregational amens )..

And all of the things that are wrong with you, He’s done everything necessary to fix them! So Praise God, the thing that we shrink from…we don’t want to know the truth about ourselves and really face that, that’s the very thing that we need! It’s the pathway to freedom, to be known and loved of God anyway!

Oh, praise God! I want to open my heart to Light. I don’t want to shrink from it. I don’t want to say, oh God, I don’t want to see that, I don’t want to admit that. No! I want to say, Lord, You’re my Light. I want to see me, I want to see my circumstances through Your eyes.

I want to be able to understand people around me. I want to be able to see them with the same compassion that You have toward them. Because otherwise, I’m just sitting here fighting. I’m striving for self. God, give me Your eyes to see, so that I can have a forgiving heart.

You think about David, and you think about all that he went through from the house of Saul. And you think about how the king just went out with his armies bent on killing David! Twice, David was in a position to kill Saul, and his men were telling him to do it! And he said, no, I can’t do that. That isn’t right! What was it? There was something in his heart that knew what was right and was able to see the situation differently, even than his own men, and he was able to stand there and say, no, I will not take the head off the Lord’s anointed. I won’t touch him!

And after all that was over and the house of Saul was defeated, Saul and Jonathan were dead, and David finally came to the throne. Do you remember what he did with respect the house of Saul? He said, is there not someone who is, “…left of the house of Saul, that I may shew him kindness…?” (KJV).

Wow! You talk about the ability to see life, to see people’s imperfections, to see everything through His eyes. I want that kind of Light. He’s the only source of it! My God, do we go by our own wisdom and understanding a lot more than we think we do?!

But David is absolutely fixed on this principle. And obviously, it doesn’t mean he knew it all. But he knew how to approach life. God, I don’t know anything unless You show me, unless You open my eyes. I want Your Light! I want You to be my Light and my understanding.

But he says, “…and my salvation.” (NIV). David understood that he was not in charge of his life! He was not able to cope with the things that came upon him. Time and time again, the Lord arranged for him to be in desperate conditions! But God did not allow him to be in those places of need so that David would feel like dirt, but rather that he would turn his heart toward God, and say, God, You’re my salvation, You’re the only way out of this. But Lord, I know, I’ve been there, I have seen time and time again when I was in that difficult place where there was no help and no hope, and I called upon You and You rescued me! You did for me what was utterly impossible! Praise God!

And so that’s the confidence, that’s the confession that David had. You remember when he faced Goliath. What was the thing that gave him hope and confidence? What was it? What did he look back to?

( congregational response ).

Yeah, the lion and the bear! Do you think the Lord knew about Goliath to come? Maybe some of us have got some ‘Goliaths’ in our future. Maybe some of the things we’re experiencing right now are to get us ready for Goliath, so we can look back and say, hey, wait a minute. I see this through different eyes than everybody else.

This is not my battle! This is not just about me! This is God’s battle! God’s already put me on the field of battle and He’s showed me that it was His battle! And He fought and He won, and I came out okay! I’m gonna draw from that. I’m gonna see Him as my salvation in this circumstance.

Oh my. Are you trying to figure your way through life? Are you trying to claw your way through life and solve your problems yourself? Is coming to God your last option? My word, He wants us to live like David. He’s my salvation. Every circumstance that arises…Lord, I know that You have allowed this. You’ve put it in my pathway, but You’re always the One who is my Deliverer. I never feel that my lot in life is to rise up and do in my own wisdom and my own strength! You are always the One to whom I am to look!

Praise God! That’s what God is seeking to do in us! Folks, if we are going to be His people in this dark hour, we gonna have to be a people who have this conviction formed in us! God is doing it, and He’s going to do it, and He’s gonna do what it takes. And I’ll tell you, there is so much…I see my need.

Good Lord, I came in this morning, I didn’t even feel like getting out of bed hardly today. Some of you probably feel the same way. Just weak! But thank God! He does not need my strength, doesn’t need anything, but just to say, okay Lord. It’s not I anyway, it’s Christ!

But that’s everybody! That’s what He’s looking for from you in your circumstances every single day. He’s looking for someone who will confess in the face of need, because all that David says, these positive things, are a preface to this prayer. Oh God, I’m in trouble. Help me.

The Lord…and look at this other thing. “The Lord is my light and my salvation.” That takes it from being a vague principle to right now! It’s awfully easy to assert a principle, but in the moment to feel very weak, very uncertain, very…full of every other kind of sense than this. But David’s confession was not, Lord, You ‘were’ my salvation. That was great. Lord, I know down there someday, you’re gonna be…no! The Lord ‘is’!

( knocking ).

( congregational amens ).

That means right not, sitting in the pew, or standing here — especially standing here — with everything that we feel, all the uncertainties and all the weaknesses and all the troubles and whatever it is that we’re coping with, He ‘is’ my salvation this moment! I’m looking to Him! I’m depending, not upon me, but upon Him! He is! I confess that. I need His salvation!

Oh my, if you feel confident in yourself, God’s got to take you down a whole bunch of notches. And He loves you enough to do it, if you’ll open your heart to Him. And boy, once He brings you down, He’s gonna bring you so far up, you won’t believe it. He is a faithful, wonderful Lord.

“The Lord is my light and my salvation.” You can think of this in the historical context, too. David was dealing with real enemies, wasn’t he? And sometimes his enemies were foreign and they got their ‘light’ from their gods, their priests, their prophets. They thought they knew what was what, and they relied upon their own strength, their warriors. What were the Philistines relying on when they came against David?

( congregational response ).

Well they relied on their Gods and they relied on Goliath. Hey, we’ve got us a champion. We know he’s our salvation. Well, I’ll you what, he didn’t do much good, did he, against the God of gods?

( congregational response ).

So David was looking at real life battles and situations and recognizing Lord, I am continually in a place where I don’t know what to do, and I don’t have the strength to meet this challenge. But I’m dealing with people who do not understand this, and they are looking to other sources of wisdom, to other sources of help. And so you see why he was able to follow what he said by saying, “Whom shall I fear?” (NIV).

( congregational amens ).

Man, those guys are in trouble. Yeah, they may have a million-man army, and they’ve got all these gods, and they have gone everywhere conquering this, and conquering that, but they are in deep trouble, because I’m trusting in the One who made the heavens and the earth! I’m not gonna run out there and try to figure this out. I’m looking to Him to tell me what to do!

It kind of worked pretty good for Jehoshaphat, didn’t it? He had an army that was about a million strong. But he took the position here, oh God, we don’t know what to do. Tell us what to do. Fight the battle. And He said, the battle is not yours, it’s Mine. You send the singers out and I’ll take care of business, and He did.

Oh, that was David’s God. Is that your God, this morning? This is where it comes down to. We can study these historical lessons, and say, wow, wasn’t that great? But I’ll tell you, what needs to be great is, we need to be living every day, getting up in the morning, this conviction needs to be our way of looking at life, every single day. “The Lord is my light.” I don’t know what to do. He’s my light! There are things wrong with me, there are things that I have to deal with in my circumstances. Lord, You are my salvation! I’m trusting in You this day!

Then he says something else. “The Lord is the stronghold of my life—of whom shall I be afraid?” Now you get this sense, later on, about the sense of shelter, but what’s a stronghold? When you think militarily, what’s a stronghold? It’s a very defensible place. It’s a place where you can feel secure. Maybe you’re in a place where there are rocks around you, and nobody can get at you. You’re in a position where you’re higher than the enemy, and you can fire down at him, and he can’t easily get to you. And you go out to battle but then you can retreat to your stronghold.