1 Give thanks to the Lord, for he is good! His faithful love endures forever. 2 Has the Lord redeemed you? Then speak out! Tell others he has redeemed you from your enemies. 3 For he has gathered the exiles from many lands, from east and west, from north and south.
Psalm 107 starts with a call to give thanks to the Lord, it is a proclamation of His power, presence, and protection, it is the cry of thanksgiving. Has the Lord redeemed you? Then speak out! It is really about two cries, a cry for the Lord and about the Lord. Psalm 107 deals with God’s deliverance of 4 different groups of people, their difficulties were different but their deliverer was the same.
- The 1st group ‘The Wanderers’ (Need Direction)
“4 Some wandered in the wilderness, lost and homeless.”
This is the group who has lost their way, they walk through life without true direction or a deep sense of belonging. Drifting from place to place, they are up and down, here today and gone tomorrow. Through hurts or a series of wrong choices they just go through life a little numb, wandering through life with little peace or rest, constantly searching, and never settling. The result: 5 They were hungry and thirsty, and their lives ebbed away. They long for something more but do not know where to turn. They have a desperate hunger and intense thirst but everything they have tried leaves them empty, so they are never content. Unsatisfied and with the attitude of, “this is all there is, this is all I deserve” they end up on the verge of exhaustion.
But…..Here’s the first Cry… 6 “Lord, help!” they cried in their trouble, and He rescued them from their distress. 7 He led them straight to safety, to a city where they could live.
He heard their Cry and answered them. At the last moment, as they are fading away, they cried out. Charles Spurgeon writes:
‘Some men will never pray till they are half starved, and for their best interests it is far better for them to be empty and faint than to be full and stouthearted. If hunger brings us to our knees it is more useful to us than feasting; if thirst drives us to the fountain it is better than the deepest draughts of worldly joys; and if fainting leads to crying it is better than the strength of the mighty.’
Deliverance comes on the heels of prayer and God didn’t just show them the way out, He delivered them and led them by a straight way, for there is only one way. Why do we always seem to take the long way home? Maybe because it takes a long time before we stop long enough to admit we are lost. Do you want God to lead you to a place where you can settle, where you can belong, lay down roots and live. Then cry out, you don’t have to go round and round you can experience direction and return. The second part of the wanderers cry is a cry of homecoming : 8 Let them praise the Lord for his great love and for the wonderful things he has done for them. 9 For he satisfies the thirsty and fills the hungry with good things.
Has God directed you out of the desert will you praise? He is the one who satisfies the thirsty and fills the hungry who gives direction to the lost and a home to the wanderer.
- The 2nd Group ‘The Prisoners’ (Need Deliverance)
10 Some sat in darkness and deepest gloom, imprisoned in iron chains of misery. 11 They rebelled against the words of God, scorning the counsel of the Most High. 12 That is why he broke them with hard labor; they fell, and no one was there to help them.
The thought of sitting in darkness and the deepest gloom really speaks of isolation, it brings a sense of fear, abandonment despair and hopelessness. What lurks in the dark is every nightmare imaginable. The sad thing is that these prisoners put themselves in this situation, they turned away from God. They rebelled against the words of God and despised His counsel, they heard and chose to go in another direction. Look where it led them into bondage, they labor and work and stumble. There is no rest while in bondage, no pity or sympathy, because no one is around to help. So they become prisoners in the chains of their choices.
The second CRY….13 “Lord, help!” they cried in their trouble, and he saved them from their distress. 14 He led them from the darkness and deepest gloom; he snapped their chains.
He brought them out, again he did not show them the way out, “Uh the door is over there”, He brought them out personally as He broke away their chains. You don’t have to be a prisoner, you can be free, do you need to cry out and experience deliverance and be released.
The second part of the prisoners cry is the cry of freedom 15 Let them praise the Lord for his great love and for the wonderful things he has done for them. 16 For he broke down their prison gates of bronze; he cut apart their bars of iron. God desires to deliverance us from our bondage, to break the chains and tear down the gates that bar our way to freedom.
Has the Lord redeemed you? Then speak out, stop right now and give thanks.