A spring spouting
The Lord loveth the gates of Zion more than all the dwellings of Jacob.
Glorious things are spoken of thee, O city of God. Selah.
I will make mention of Rahab and Babylon to them that know me: behold Philistia, and Tyre, with Ethiopia; this man was born there.
And of Zion it shall be said, This and that man was born in her: and the Highest Himself shall establish her.
The Lord shall count, when He writeth up the people, that this man was born there. Selah.
As well the singers as the players on instruments shall be there: all my springs are in Thee.” (Ps. 87).
In David’s time and place, to be born in this or that country was to be ruled by their gods. It was to be subjects not only of the king governing them but also of the nation’s pagan religion. Both god and king required the allegiance and a portion of the people’s income for subsistence in return for the protection which they provided the people.
So David uses that theme for Israel and for the king of Israel, Yahweh. In Him the son of Jesse found perfect joy and strength. He was born again in Zion the city of Jehovah. And since he lived there, he had continual joy and strength.
When he said, “All my springs are in thee,” (Ps. 87:7) it was that he had perfect peace of mind there as if he were transported to heaven. The people of the orient likened peace of mind to health of the stomach, since the mind and stomach are interdependent. Isaiah said, “With joy shall ye draw water out of the wells of salvation.” (Is. 12:3).
White Oak Canyon, in the Shenandoah National Park, looks like a fairy land come true. Hike up the wide wooded hollow the day following a period of rain and you enjoy the sights and sounds of a full and strong river with its 4 or 5 cascading waterfalls and innumerable large and small springs of water spouting out of the banks and feeding the river. Truly other worldly! It must resemble David’s vision of the heavenly Mt. Zion with the water of life springing out of it everywhere!
The purest water comes out of the ground in that park and drains into the river purified by its successive falls. Likewise, from atop Mt. Zion flows the “river of water of life, clear as crystal, proceeding out of the throne of God and of the Lamb.” (Rev. 22:1). And those who are “born again” there today will have such peace with God that it will be “in him a well of water springing up into everlasting life.” (Jn. 3:3;4:14). Jesus knew this peace every day of His life; every minute, every moment.
And He promised us, “‘He that believeth on Me, as the scripture hath said, out of his belly shall flow rivers of living water.’ (But this spake He of the Spirit, which they that believe on Him should receive.)” (Jn. 7:38,39). Here He may have merged Solomon’s words. “The words of a man’s mouth are as deep waters, and the wellspring of wisdom as a flowing brook.” (Pro. 18:4). “The spirit of man is the candle of the Lord, searching all the inward parts of the belly.” (Pro. 20:27). His promise is that we can be possessed by the heavenly agencies, “filled with all the fulness of God.” (Eph. 3:19). This we must take full advantage of while it is available, while is it is still day, while we still have peacetime.
A soul thus kept in possession by the heavenly agencies is impregnable to the assaults of Satan.… The only defense against evil is the indwelling of Christ in the heart through faith in His righteousness. Unless we become vitally connected with God, we can never resist the unhallowed effects of self-love, self-indulgence, and temptation to sin. Desire of Ages, p. 324.
“Seek ye the Lord while He may be found, call ye upon Him while He is near:
Let the wicked forsake his way, and the unrighteous man his thoughts: and let him return unto the Lord, and He will have mercy upon him; and to our God, for He will abundantly pardon.
For My thoughts are not your thoughts, neither are your ways My ways, saith the Lord.
For as the heavens are higher than the earth, so are My ways higher than your ways, and My thoughts than your thoughts.
For as the rain cometh down, and the snow from heaven, and returneth not thither, but watereth the earth, and maketh it bring forth and bud, that it may give seed to the sower, and bread to the eater:
So shall My word be that goeth forth out of My mouth: it shall not return unto Me void, but it shall accomplish that which I please, and it shall prosper in the thing whereto I sent it.
For ye shall go out with joy, and be led forth with peace: the mountains and the hills shall break forth before you into singing, and all the trees of the field shall clap their hands.
Instead of the thorn shall come up the fir tree, and instead of the brier shall come up the myrtle tree: and it shall be to the Lord for a name, for an everlasting sign that shall not be cut off.” (Is. 55:6-13).
The Christian must have the experience of the promised land of rest, the sense of “quietness in his belly,” (Job 20:20) “a land flowing with milk and honey.” (Ex. 13:5). He will “see the rivers, the floods, the brooks of honey and butter.” (Job 20:17). These are promised only to those who seek Jesus: they go to no one else.
“For this shall every one that is godly pray unto Thee in a time when Thou mayest be found: surely in the floods of great waters they shall not come nigh unto Him.” (Ps. 32:6). “The wisdom that is from above is first pure, then peaceable, gentle, and easy to be intreated, full of mercy and good fruits, without partiality, and without hypocrisy.” (Jas. 3:17). “Her ways are ways of pleasantness, and all her paths are peace.” (Prov. 3:17).
But the time is coming when instead of peace bitterness will fill the earth. The Lord will remove His Spirit of grace. Only those who gratefully partook of it in the time it was offered will have it in that day. Everyone else will suffer the emptiness that Satan will bring into them.
In its absense will come a violent and desperately evil spirit which “descendeth not from above, but is earthly, sensual, devilish. For where envying and strife is, there is confusion and every evil work.” (Jas. 3:15,16).
The prophecy says, “And the third angel sounded, and there fell a great star from heaven, burning as it were a lamp, and it fell upon the third part of the rivers, and upon the fountains of waters;
And the name of the star is called Wormwood: and the third part of the waters became wormwood; and many men died of the waters, because they were made bitter.” (Rev. 8:10,11). They will suffer a horrible, painful darkness and hopelessness devoid of a knowledge of the God of love for man. “And the fifth angel poured out his vial upon the seat of the beast; and his kingdom was full of darkness; and they gnawed their tongues for pain, and blasphemed the God of heaven because of their pains and their sores, and repented not of their deeds.” (Rev. 16:10,11). “God shall cast them out of his belly.” (Job 20:15). And Satan will have full control of them.
“Should a wise man utter vain knowledge, and fill his belly with the east wind?” (Job 15:2). The east wind was a wind with scorching heat from the desert. Here the scripture speaks of those in whom Satan uses knowledge to create a fire that burns in the soul of them who he possesses. And the devil is so devious that he loves to use religion and morality also. “For the congregation of hypocrites shall be desolate, and fire shall consume the tabernacles of bribery.
They conceive mischief, and bring forth vanity, and their belly prepareth deceit.” (Job 15:34,35).
“For they that are such serve not our Lord Jesus Christ, but their own belly; and by good words and fair speeches deceive the hearts of the simple.” (Rom. 16:18). “For many walk, of whom I have told you often, and now tell you even weeping, that they are the enemies of the cross of Christ: whose end is destruction, whose God is their belly, and whose glory is in their shame, who mind earthly things.” (Phil. 3:18,19).
“Lest there should be among you man, or woman, or family, or tribe, whose heart turneth away this day from the Lord our God, to go and serve the gods of these nations; lest there should be among you a root that beareth gall and wormwood….” (Deut. 29:18). The coming “time of trouble, such as never was since there was a nation” will be a horrible time. It has already begun since around 1850, and will increase as the Holy Spirit is poured out upon all flesh and rejected. (Dan. 12:1;Joel 2:28).
Then, as “the Spirit of the Lord departed from Saul, and an evil spirit from the Lord troubled him,” (1Sam. 16:14) so it will be in the future because “My people would not hearken to My voice; and Israel would none of Me.” (Ps. 81:11). This is the cause of the “great tribulation, such as was not since the beginning of the world to this time, no, nor ever shall be.” (Matt. 24:21). “And the smoke of their torment ascendeth up for ever and ever: and they have no rest day nor night, who worship the beast and his image, and whosoever receiveth the mark of his name. Here is the patience of the saints: here are they that keep the commandments of God, and the faith of Jesus.” (Rev. 14:11.12).
“I must work the works of Him that sent Me, while it is day: the night cometh, when no man can work.” (Jn. 9:4). “This is the work of God, that ye believe on Him whom He hath sent.” (Jn. 6:29). Let us burrow deep into the bosom of God as Jesus did it without ceasing. Let us get there (our justification), and abide there (our sanctification), and be sealed in there (our glorification).
“All my springs are in Thee.” (Ps. 87:7).