Seed pod explosions set off chain reactions of growth. I watched a slow motion video of this once and it was breathtaking. The pod explodes, seeds fly everywhere. Seeds hit other pods and cause them to explode. Keep in mind that just one flying seed has the potential to create a new plant, with new pods and more seed. Just one seed has amazing life and growth potential.
(Photo credit: ifioridelbene.com)
Just one verse in the Bible can explode with truths about God! The other day I read Psalm 4, verse one, and it produced an explosion of truth seeds in my mind. These truth seeds encourage my trust in God, and deepen my relationship with Him.
Faith Building Truth Seeds
Psalm 4:1 is loaded with truths to produce life giving/life enriching faith.
“Answer me when I call O God of my righteousness! You have given me relief when I was in distress. Be gracious to me and hear my prayer.” (ESV)
Seed 1: Speaking to God with Force
The term “answer me” in Hebrew is in the imperative mood, so the psalmist is giving a command to God.
This verb in the imperative mood reveals how intimate I can be with God. When I am in need, I can approach God with confident strength, boldly telling God to “hear my prayer and answer me.”
Through my faith in Jesus, I am brought into a personal relationship with God. There are times to revere God with praise and thanksgiving, and times I can be open and boldly demand his help. It is comforting to know that I can express my desperation in such a real and raw way and still be accepted by God.
Seed 2: God of My Righteousness
The psalmist through the inspiration of the Spirit refers to God as “the God of my righteousness.” This is a truth expressing who God is and who the source of my righteousness is. I can only approach God with an “imperative” when I understand that my righteous standing with God is his and is gifted to me.
God gifts me His “righteous” status through the redemptive work of Jesus, and therefore I am able to approach God. Scripture bears witness to this.
- God made him who had no sin to be sin for us, so that in him we might become the righteousness of God. 2 Cor. 5:21
- And this righteousness from God comes through faith in Jesus Christ to all who believe. Romans 3:22
- It is because of Him that you are in Christ Jesus, who has become for us wisdom from God: our righteousness, holiness, and redemption. 1 Corinthians 1:30
This “seed truth” that God is the God of my righteousness gives me security. My relationship with God is anchored in Jesus, the Son of God. It doesn’t depend on my up and down feelings or my up and down performance.
Knowing that Jesus is my righteousness makes me able to cry out “answer me. O God” even when I have messed up and don’t measure up.
Seed 3: God Gives Relief from Distress
Relief and distress in this verse are opposites.
- In Hebrew the term for relief means “to expand; to provide a large space.”
- The word for “distress” means “a narrow, tight place; pressed down.” This is similar to expressions we use when hard pressed like: “between a rock and a hard place,” or, “the walls are pressing in.”
Distress referring to those tight and pressing circumstances, come in many forms; inner struggles to trust God; frustrations with family members, friends, people; tasks at work; physical health challenges; failures; lost dreams, and so on.
The psalmist states that God has given him relief from his distress. There are many accounts in the Bible that describe what such relief looks like.
Psalm 23 provides a visual of this truth. God, our Shepherd, brings us into green pastures, leads us by quiet waters, restores our soul, provides safety in the dark/tight places, comforts us and follows us with His goodness and mercy.
Again, we see this truth in Psalm 18:19, “He brought me out into a spacious place; he rescued me because he delighted in me.”
The truth that God relieves my distress gives me hope! God is going to bring me out from under the oppressive weight of my distress to a spacious place of inner peace.
Seed 4: God Listens to Us with Grace
The psalmist asks God to hear his prayer with ears of grace. The word “hear” in this verse means “to listen carefully.” God listens with attention and with the intent to help us.
Isaiah 65: 24 attests to this truth: “Before they call, I will answer, while they are yet speaking, I will hear.” Even though Isaiah is referring to Israel, this passage reveals a truth about the character of God, which is His readiness to hear us when we turn to Him in faith.
Psalm 34:15 states this truth, “ The eyes of the LORD are on the righteous, and His ears are inclined to their cry.” The apostle Peter may have been thinking of this very Psalm when he speaks this truth in 1 Peter 3:12a, “ For the eyes of the Lord are on the righteous and his ears are attentive to their prayer…”
It is reassuring to know that God hears my prayers with attention, a readiness to listen, and intention to act.
Truth Feeds Faith
The Word of God is amazing. The Spirit uses the Word to bring us into a deep, intimate, knowledge of God.
Studying and meditating on just one verse can reveal many truths that bring life to our faith and deepen our heart connection to God.
I encourage you to read verse by verse, word by word and ask God to show you wonderful things in His Word.
“Open my eyes that I may see wonderful things in Your Word.” Psalm 119:18