Psalm 49:15: “But God will redeem my soul from the power of the grave, / For He shall receive me. / Selah”

November 22nd, 2020 by Pastor Ed in devotional

This is one of the greatest affirmations of trust and confidence in God in all the psalms. Someone said that this is the whole Gospel in 2 words: “But God.” All of humanity is dead, lost, bound, and held captive in prison. No one can buy their way out of death, “But God,” the only one who is capable of redeeming, made a way through Himself for us to be made alive, found, and set free. These 2 words, “But God,” appear 42 times in Scripture, and 17 of those times are found in the Apostle Paul’s New Testament letters. He wrote to the Ephesians:

And you He made alive, who were dead in trespasses and sins, in which you once walked according to the course of this world, according to the prince of the power of the air, the spirit who now works in the sons of disobedience, among whom also we all once conducted ourselves in the lusts of our flesh, fulfilling the desires of the flesh and of the mind, and were by nature children of wrath, just as the others. But God, who is rich in mercy, because of His great love with which He loved us, even when we were dead in trespasses, made us alive together with Christ (by grace you have been saved),” (Eph. 2:1–5, italics added).

A. J. Gordon was the pastor of a church in Boston a century ago. One morning he saw a young boy in front of the sanctuary carrying a rusty cage in which several birds fluttered nervously. Gordon inquired, “Son, where did you get those birds?” “I trapped them out in the field,” the boy replied. “What are you going to do with them?” Gordon asked. “I’m going to play with them, and then I guess I’ll just feed them to an old cat we have at home.” Gordon offered to buy them, but the boy exclaimed, “Mister, you don’t want them, they’re just little old wild birds and can’t sing very well.” Gordon replied, “I’ll give you $2 for the cage and the birds.” “Ok, it’s a deal, but you’re making a bad bargain,” the boy said. The exchange was made and the boy went away whistling, happy with his shiny coins. Gordon walked around to the back of the church property, opened the door of the small wire coop, and let the struggling creatures soar into the blue. The next Sunday he took the empty cage into the pulpit and used it to illustrate his sermon about Jesus coming to seek and to save the lost, paying for them with His own precious blood. “It was a thrill to let those birds fly away,” said Gordon. “And that little boy was wrong. He told me the birds could not sing. But when I released them and they winged their way to freedom, it seemed to me they were singing, ‘Redeemed, Redeemed, Redeemed!’”

“Thank You, LORD, for Your Redemption.”