12th October 2022
Read Psalm 117
Message Alan Burke
You may before you have one of those bibles with columns down the side or a footer, which little letters beside words in the text refer to. I have one of those bibles before me, sometimes these things are a distraction but in this instance it is useful and there is a little letter ‘c’ in mine before v1. Of course you, if the bible before you makes reference to this likely have something else. The reason why I mention this is because these are what are known as cross-references, they refer to where else that a verse is used in scripture. These cross-references do the hard work and they tell us that With Psalm 117:1 is used by Paul in the book of Romans in 15:11. There Paul uses this verse to speak of the inclusion of the Gentiles, of how Christ is both the hope of the Jews and the gentiles (Rom 15:8-9). He says this…
 For I tell you that Christ became a servant to the circumcised to show God’s truthfulness, in order to confirm the promises given to the patriarchs,  and in order that the Gentiles might glorify God for his mercy. As it is written, …
“Praise the Lord, all you Gentiles,
and sing praises to him, all you peoples.” (Ro 15:11).
For Paul understood how these words of God in the Psalter, written centuries before, spoke of how the covenant of grace would be extended to the Gentiles. That covenant of grace that was first given to Adam and Eve in the midst of the fall when God preached the gospel to the Devil, but then was reaffirmed to Abraham in the promises that were given to him. In Genesis 12, before Abraham had an heir, God promised to Abraham that he would make him into a great nation, that the Lord would bless him, that He would curse those who curse him, and that He would make him a blessing to all the families of the earth. (Gen 12:2-3.) Then in Genesis 15, God reiterated this promise that he had made, he said “Do not be afraid, Abram. I am your shield, your very great reward.” Abram remonstrated that he was still without an heir, and the Lord told him not to fear, taking him outside to look up at the heavens and count the stars, so would his offspring be, and God covenanted Himself to Abraham. Then in Genesis 17, God reassures Abram of his promise, the Lord gives him a new name, no longer is he called Abram but Abraham, telling him that the covenant would be made with not only him but his descendants, that as he was Abrahams God he would be the God of his descendants and fulfil His promises to him.
It was in the coming of Jesus Christ that those promises to bless all the nations of the earth, to give him as numerous descendants as the stars in the sky, through faith all those who are in Christ Jesus to praise the Lord are Abraham’s descendants, we are heirs of the covenant of grace the promise that was given to Abraham. We see it time and time again, the promises of God to Abraham that are fulfilled in Jesus Christ our Lord and saviour, this is why Jesus himself declared that Abraham rejoiced to see His day (Jn 8:56) for in Jesus the promises to Abraham were fulfilled and that salvation was brought to the Gentiles so that we might be redeemed. After millennia, God’s promises to Abraham are still being fulfilled, the promises of God given to Abraham have come not only to the Jews but all who believe in Jesus Christ, we are recipients of the promises that God made to Abraham, of the everlasting covenant, the work of Christ has brought about the fulfilment of the promises that God had made.
Q76 Which is the ninth commandment?
The ninth commandment is, Thou shalt not bear false witness against thy neighbour. (Exod. 20:16)