Psalms 120 – From Tents of Darkness into Light

“In my distress I cried unto the LORD.”  Oh, the height, width, and depth of such a cry the Lord alone can see.  But why the distress?

“Woe is me, that I sojourn in Mesech, that I dwell in the tents of Kedar!”

The Bible says little about Mesech, minus that this was the name of one of the children of the “good sons” of Noah, but also, that Gog is the chief prince thereof, the mysterious name from which turns the final battle in the great controversy that has so long raged.  But there is an interesting characteristic of the tents, the dwelling places, of Kedar: “I am black, but comely, O ye daughters of Jerusalem, as the tents of Kedar, as the curtains of Solomon.  Look not upon me, because I am black.” S.o.S. 1:5-6.  Those tents are tents of darkness, and what has made them black as night?

“My soul hath long dwelt with him that hateth peace. I am for peace: but when I speak, they are for war.”

Spurgeon, in reference to this scripture in Treasury of David puts it plainly: “A peace maker is a blessing, but a peace hater is a curse. To lodge with such for a night is dangerous, but to dwell with them is horrible…He felt the time of his dwelling with quarrelsome spirits to be long, too long; and he only endured it because, as the Prayer book version has it, he was constrained so to abide.”  Oh, who can know the woes of one who seeks for unity in the Spirit of grace and truth but is only met with sharpness, reproach, railings, criticism, and mocking? how torturous to the soul sensitive to the other’s need for Christ to manifest Himself within!  And as Cain stood up against Abel when, from a heart a love, Abel would only warn for concern for Cain’s own good, so the spirit of the enemy will manifest.  The plant of love cannot survive long under such conditions, and will whither, and in such tents, Satan would succeed in destroying the plant ultimately.

“Deliver my soul, O LORD, from lying lips, and from a deceitful tongue.  What shall be given unto thee? or what shall be done unto thee, thou false tongue? Sharp arrows of the mighty, with coals of juniper.”

As a seven-horned beast let loose, so little realized are the far-reaching results of a tongue let loose in gross exaggerations, malice, and deceit.  But there was hope.  David well knew that he was only a sojourner in such a place, and that his time was temporary for such.  There was an exceedingly bright light shining from outside those dark tents.  The hope of release from bondage burned within the heart of David, of which he could not shake, that pulled him through the sojourn, of which he could testify: “In my distress I cried unto the LORD, and he heard me.” light

May the Lord lovingly lead you to know His name,

Jeffrey Maxwell


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