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Chinese11/14/2019English
經文:詩篇第四二、四三、四四篇
鑰節:「求您發出您的亮光和真實,好引導我,帶我到您的聖山、到您的居所。」(44:3)
提要

        詩篇第四二和四三篇本來是一篇詩篇。兩者的美麗的詩文風格完全相同,就像它們的主題一樣。從題目看,這一詩篇是由可拉後裔的哥轄人(代上6:31~37)組成的利未人樂隊中主要成員(43:4)所撰。毫無疑問地,大衛為外邦國度的一個俘虜(42:9下;43:1),當他寫下這些話時,他已經被押解上路,走向一個外國人的國家。

        他一回首發現他已遠離了家鄉耶路撒冷,順著敘利亞和遠東之間的危險地帶,黑門嶺坡地上的約旦河東北方前進(42:6)。他的心裡非常想與上帝交通。他想與上帝交通的迫切心情就像他想用水維持生命一樣,因為上帝就是他的泉源──他的生命源頭(比較耶2:13;詩63:1;84:2;約4:14;6:35)。他渴望再度返回耶路撒冷,但是因為他的夢想不能實現,他就非常憂慮不安。當他看到約旦河的湍流,聽到它的流聲,他就感到重重的悲傷浪潮浸過了他的全身(42:7)。

        關於他所信的上帝,仇敵不斷地笑他:「你的上帝在那裡呢?」(42:10下)。當然,他反駁他們,堅稱他的上帝一定會拯救,但是問題像洪水一樣流經他的腦海,因而內心深感痛苦,他的上帝是否已經忘了他及丟棄了他?(42:9;43:2)。他心裡明白,他的上帝依然在注視他,以及祂依然給他一首要唱的新歌(42:8)。他憑著信心宣稱,他仍然有盼望,而且有一天他要在聖山上的會幕裡用他的聲音頌讚上帝(42:5、11;43:5)。他從絕望的深淵回到希望,從懷疑回到確信,以及從迷惘混亂回到堅強的信心。他祈求上帝的光亮與真理會帶領他回到耶和華的聖山(43:3)。上帝的光亮和真理又在耶穌基督裡位格化了,祂就是帶領我們回到耶和華聖山的真神(約1:4~5、9、17)。

        詩篇第四四篇也被認為屬於可拉後裔的詩篇。詩人大衛描述戰敗的悲慘及他子民被擄的經過。這篇詩篇的歷史背景並不明顯。詩人痛苦地向上帝抱怨,上帝實在不應讓這種事情發生。他聲稱以色列和猶大依然忠心地追隨上帝,所以上帝使他遭遇如此不幸的事實,使他感到迷惘和不安。在過去,上帝總是為他而戰,也拯救他脫離苦難(44:4~7)。如果他們重新崇拜偶像,詩人大衛說,發生這些事情倒是可以理解的,甚至是意料中的,但是他們並沒有崇拜偶像啊!他依然忠心地跟隨上帝啊!為什麼上帝要使這樣的不幸和災禍臨在他們的身上呢?

        詩人大衛就像任何其他的人一樣,一點都不了解上帝的道路,但是我們知道,凡事上帝容許發生在祂兒女身上,一定有祂的目的;最後,這些事一定會為祂的兒女帶來益處,雖然它們在發生的時候似乎未必如此。這種情況事實上在質疑:「義人為何要受苦?」在那個時候,他們還沒有領受上帝的充份啟示,所以他們不能像我們這樣明白,義人受苦乃是平常的事(太5:11;約15:20、25;徒14:22;羅8:36;提後3:12)。試驗就是上帝用來提煉祂子民的工具。他們的受苦和放逐就像篩子篩麥子一樣篩選他們。那些真心跟從耶和華的人依然會忠心地追隨祂;反之,那些不忠心的人就會被四周拜偶像的國家捕捉去,並且會像糠皮一樣,隨風而逝。結果,上帝為祂自己保存了一批忠心的餘民。

        詩人大衛雖然對整個情況感到迷惘不解,他依然信心不變,並且祈求上帝,因為他所信的上帝是憐憫人的上帝,也是會垂聽祂子民禱告的上帝。

禱告

        我們的天父,我們要敬拜您,而且要每天接近您,即使我們靈命的成長要經過試探和試驗。我們在試探時要有喜樂,因為我們知道,我們就是您的忠心餘民中的一部份(雅1:2~4)。奉主耶穌基督聖名,阿們!

English

Scriptures:Read Psalms 42, 43&44
Key Verse:"Oh, send out Your light and Your truth! Let them lead me; let them bring me to Your holy hill and to Your tabernacle."(Psalm 43:3)
Overview

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        Psalms 42 and 43 were originally one compostion. The beautiful poetic style is the same in both, as is the subject matter. It appears from the title that the poem was written by a leading member of the Levitical musical guild (43:4) from the Kohathite division of the sons of Korah (1 Chronicles 6:31-37). No doubt the psalmist was a captive of an ungodly nation (42:9b; 43:1) and may have been en route to a foreign country when he penned these words.

        He finds himself far from Jerusalem, northeast by the headwaters of the Jordan on the slopes of Mount Hermon (42:6), along the caravan route between Syria and the far east. His strongest desire is to commune with God. He needs this as much as he needs water to live, for God is his fountain —his source of life (cf. Jer. 2:13; Psalm 63:1; 84:2; John 4:14; 6:35). He longs to go once again to Jerusalem and worship the Lord "with the voice of joy and praise" (42:4b); but since he could not, he was extremely sorrowful. As he sees and hears the rapids of the Jordan, he feels waves of grief coming over him (42:7).

        His enemies constantly taunt him regarding the seeming indifference of his God: "Where is your God?" (42:3b, lOb). Surely he retorted that His God would deliver him, but questions flooded his mind and he was greatly distressed. Had God forgotten him and cast him off? (42:9; 43:2). In his heart he knew that God was still watching over him and that God would still give him a song to sing (42:8). With faith he declared that there was still hope and he would one day lift his voice in praise to God again in the tabernacle on His holy hill (42:5, 11; 43:5). He turns from despair to hope, from doubt to assurance, and from confusion to a resolution of strong faith. He prayed that God's light and truth would lead him back to the Lord's presence (43:3). The Light and truth of God have been personified in Jesus Christ, and He is the One to lead us into the presence of God (John 1:4-5, 9, 17).

        Psalm 44 is another psalm ascribed to the sons of Korah. The psalmist writes of a disturbing military defeat and a captivity of his people. The historical occasion this psalm addresses is unknown. The psalmist complains bitterly to the Lord that there was no justification for Him to allow such a thing to happen. He claims that Israel/Judah had remained faithful in following the Lord, and so the psalmist is confused and upset that God allowed such a calamity to overtake them. In the past, God had always fought for them and saved them (44:4-7). If they had turned to idolatry, then the psalmist says such a thing would be understandable and even expected, but they did not; they were faithful to the Lord. Why then had this terrible calamity come upon them?

        The psalmist, like any other person, could not understand the ways of God, but we know that the Lord has a purpose in whatever He allows to happen to His children, and it is for their ultimate good, although to them it may not seem so at the time. The situation described is in effect asking, "Why do the righteous suffer?" At that time, they did not have the fuller revelation of God which teaches us that it is not unusual for the godly to suffer (Matt. 5:11; Johnl5:20, 25; Acts 14:22; Rom. 8:36; 2 Tim. 3:12). Trials are a means God uses to refine His people. Their suffering and exile would sift them like wheat. Those who are truly committed to the Lord will remain faithful to Him, and those who are not will be caught up in the idolatry of the surrounding nations and be blown away like chaff in the wind. Thereby, God is reserving a faithful remnant for Himself.

        The psalmist was in turmoil and confusion about the whole situation, but he still had the faith and sense to call upon God, for truly the Lord is merciful and hears the prayers of His people.

Prayer

        Heavenly Father, our desire is to worship You and daily grow closer to You, even though this growth may require trials and testings. With joy we will endure, knowing we are part of Your faithful remnant (James 1:2-4).


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