PSALM 44:24 - Berean Lamp Memory Verse - (Wed 20-27)

Posted by Nathan Warner on

The Berean Lamp Memory Verse for this week is:

“Why do You hide Your face and forget our affliction and our oppression?” (Psalm 44:24)

In terms of deeds, Elijah is the greatest prophet that ever lived. Yet, he lived in one of the most oppressive times imaginable. Due to the oppression of the government towards faithful people, Elijah was so weighed down and anxious that he feared for his life and fled into the wilderness soon after performing an amazing miracle (calling fire from Heaven). He despaired because he thought he was the only follower of God left in Israel as his only information was the oppressive news he heard every day - a constant stream of Jezebel’s horrific labors in the land. Jezebel had killed the priests and replaced them with her own priests to Baal. Baal worship was the glorification of the works of the flesh - the fruit of the devil, which is oppression: “immorality, impurity, sensuality, idolatry, sorcery, enmities, strife, jealousy, outbursts of anger, disputes, dissensions, factions, envying, drunkenness, carousing, and things like these” (Gal. 5:19b-21a). Israel was permeated with Baal worship, which entered every aspect of the culture, down to the family and home —it was a "social media" of spiritual and physical depravity that suppressed the truth and filled the land with ungodliness. The practices of Baal were universally triumphant in the land and they spread oppression among the people. Through subtle and overt methods, Jezebel had oppressed the true faith in Israel.

Understandably, Elijah might have felt God had hid his face and had forgotten their oppression, and he thought his life was pointless for it seemed that he had failed to make a difference. From Elijah’s perspective, Jezebel had won. He saw no one coming to his aid, and he only saw defeat at every turn. But God was in control. Unbeknown to Elijah, God had reserved 7,000 people who had never worshiped Baal - people Jezebel didn't even know about. On top of this, Elijah had no idea that he was on the cusp of anointing Hazael king over Aram, Jehu king over Israel, and Elisha as his own successor to do more than Elijah had done. Elijah did not know because his eyes had only seen what Jezebel wanted him to see and his ears had heard what Jezebel wanted him to - oppression, defeat, affliction. And yet, hidden out of even Jezebel's sight, God was preparing a King who would snuff out Jezebel's legacy and eradicate Baal worship from the land.

This lesson has never been more apt than today, when governments around the world are becoming more hostile and oppressive to Believers and when the media (news, social media, tv, movies, etc) permeates our eyes and ears with the works of the flesh and parades its message that Christians are alone and marginalized. From what we are allowed to see and hear, everything is going from bad to worse. In addition, the works of Jezebel (her harlotries and sorcery) are not dissimilar to how media has been weaponized to spread immorality and punish and suppress truth today (by shaming and destroying people), so only "approved" voices can be heard. And Jezebel's tactic of using "fake" news to get Naboth killed is not unlike the power-plays of today, when people manufacture lies to destroy their opponent’s reputations and seize power - only Jezebel didn't stop at assassinating character and destroying people's livelihoods - she used hearsay and words taken out of context to rile up a lynch mob to kill Naboth. We are not far from this in our own country, today, unfortunately. In our modern oppression, many of us feel like Elijah and could say with him, "I alone am left...It is enough; now, O Lord, take my life, for I am not better than my fathers."

May we always take heart that God is sovereign and that He is in control of all things. Like Elijah, we know about the world mostly what the world wants us to know, not all that actually is. There is much we do not know, but God knows all, and our faith is in Him. In his oppression, Elijah did what we should do - he sought God. He sought the Lord on the Mountain of God, "a mountain that can be touched and to a blazing fire, and to darkness and gloom and whirlwind," but you and I, Believer, "have come to Mount Zion and to the city of the living God, the heavenly Jerusalem, and to myriads of angels, to the general assembly and church of the firstborn who are enrolled in heaven, and to God, the Judge of all, and to the spirits of the righteous made perfect, and to Jesus, the mediator of a new covenant, and to the sprinkled blood, which speaks better than the blood of Abel" (Hebrews 12:18; 22-24). We have great encouragement in this. We too are on the cusp of good things, for Jesus is coming again, and we will be with Him. Even so, Amen.


Other verses to consider:

GOVERNMENTAL OPPRESSION:

“This shall be his land for a possession in Israel; so My princes shall no longer oppress My people, but they shall give the rest of the land to the house of Israel according to their tribes” (Ezekiel 45:8).

GOVERNMENTAL, CULTURAL, AND SPIRITUAL OPPRESSION:

“Ahab called Obadiah who was over the household. (Now Obadiah feared the Lord greatly; for when Jezebel destroyed the prophets of the Lord, Obadiah took a hundred prophets and hid them by fifties in a cave, and provided them with bread and water.)” (1 Kings 18:3-5).

“Now Ahab told Jezebel all that Elijah had done, and how he had killed all the prophets with the sword. Then Jezebel sent a messenger to Elijah, saying, ‘So may the gods do to me and even more, if I do not make your life as the life of one of them by tomorrow about this time.’ And he was afraid and arose and ran for his life and came to Beersheba, which belongs to Judah, and left his servant there. But he himself went a day’s journey into the wilderness, and came and sat down under a juniper tree; and he requested for himself that he might die, and said, ‘It is enough; now, O Lord, take my life, for I am not better than my fathers.’ He lay down and slept under a juniper tree; and behold, there was an angel touching him, and he said to him, ‘Arise, eat.’ Then he looked and behold, there was at his head a bread cake baked on hot stones, and a jar of water. So he ate and drank and lay down again. The angel of the Lord came again a second time and touched him and said, ‘Arise, eat, because the journey is too great for you.’ So he arose and ate and drank, and went in the strength of that food forty days and forty nights to Horeb, the mountain of God. Then he came there to a cave and lodged there; and behold, the word of the Lord came to him, and He said to him, ‘What are you doing here, Elijah?’ He said, ‘I have been very zealous for the Lord, the God of hosts; for the sons of Israel have forsaken Your covenant, torn down Your altars and killed Your prophets with the sword. And I alone am left; and they seek my life, to take it away.’ So He said, ‘Go forth and stand on the mountain before the Lord.’ And behold, the Lord was passing by! And a great and strong wind was rending the mountains and breaking in pieces the rocks before the Lord; but the Lord was not in the wind. And after the wind an earthquake, but the Lord was not in the earthquake. After the earthquake a fire, but the Lord was not in the fire; and after the fire a sound of a gentle blowing. When Elijah heard it, he wrapped his face in his mantle and went out and stood in the entrance of the cave. And behold, a voice came to him and said, ‘What are you doing here, Elijah?’ Then he said, ‘I have been very zealous for the Lord, the God of hosts; for the sons of Israel have forsaken Your covenant, torn down Your altars and killed Your prophets with the sword. And I alone am left; and they seek my life, to take it away.’ The Lord said to him, ‘Go, return on your way to the wilderness of Damascus, and when you have arrived, you shall anoint Hazael king over Aram; and Jehu the son of Nimshi you shall anoint king over Israel; and Elisha the son of Shaphat of Abel-meholah you shall anoint as prophet in your place. It shall come about, the one who escapes from the sword of Hazael, Jehu shall put to death, and the one who escapes from the sword of Jehu, Elisha shall put to death. Yet I will leave 7,000 in Israel, all the knees that have not bowed to Baal and every mouth that has not kissed him.’” (1 Kings 19:1-18)

"When Joram saw Jehu, he said, 'Is it peace, Jehu?' And he answered, 'What peace, so long as the harlotries of your mother Jezebel and her witchcrafts are so many?'" (2 Kings 9:22).

“Then I looked again at all the acts of oppression which were being done under the sun. And behold I saw the tears of the oppressed and that they had no one to comfort them; and on the side of their oppressors was power, but they had no one to comfort them. So I congratulated the dead who are already dead more than the living who are still living. But better off than both of them is the one who has never existed, who has never seen the evil activity that is done under the sun” (Ecclesiastes 4:1-3).

CALL TO THE LORD

“I will say to God my rock, ‘Why have You forgotten me? Why do I go mourning because of the oppression of the enemy?’” (Psalm 42:9)

“Why do You hide Your face and forget our affliction and our oppression?” (Psalm 44:24)

“The Lord also will be a stronghold for the oppressed, A stronghold in times of trouble; And those who know Your name will put their trust in You, For You, O Lord, have not forsaken those who seek You” (Psalm 9:9-10).

“And if He rescued righteous Lot, oppressed by the sensual conduct of unprincipled men (for by what he saw and heard that righteous man, while living among them, felt his righteous soul tormented day after day by their lawless deeds), then the Lord knows how to rescue the godly from temptation, and to keep the unrighteous under punishment for the day of judgment” (2 Peter 2:7-9).

“He delivers the afflicted in their affliction, And opens their ear in time of oppression. Then indeed, He enticed you from the mouth of distress, Instead of it, a broad place with no constraint; And that which was set on your table was full of fatness” (Job 36:15-16).

“For the wicked boasts of his heart’s desire, And the greedy man curses and spurns the Lord. The wicked, in the haughtiness of his countenance, does not seek Him. All his thoughts are, ‘There is no God.’ His ways prosper at all times; Your judgments are on high, out of his sight; As for all his adversaries, he snorts at them. He says to himself, ‘I will not be moved; Throughout all generations I will not be in adversity.’ His mouth is full of curses and deceit and oppression; Under his tongue is mischief and wickedness. He sits in the lurking places of the villages; In the hiding places he kills the innocent; His eyes stealthily watch for the unfortunate” (Psalm 10:3-8).

“Day and night they go around her upon her walls, and iniquity and mischief are in her midst. Destruction is in her midst; Oppression and deceit do not depart from her streets. For it is not an enemy who reproaches me, then I could bear it; Nor is it one who hates me who has exalted himself against me, Then I could hide myself from him. But it is you, a man my equal, my companion and my familiar friend; We who had sweet fellowship together walked in the house of God in the throng” (Psalm 55:10-14).

“Establish my footsteps in Your word, And do not let any iniquity have dominion over me. Redeem me from the oppression of man, That I may keep Your precepts. Make Your face shine upon Your servant, and teach me Your statutes” (Psalm 119:133-135).

“For oppression makes a wise man mad, And a bribe corrupts the heart” (Ecclesiastes 7:7).

“You shall not oppress a stranger, since you yourselves know the feelings of a stranger, for you also were strangers in the land of Egypt” (Exodus 23:9).

“The Lord also will be a stronghold for the oppressed, A stronghold in times of trouble; And those who know Your name will put their trust in You, For You, O Lord, have not forsaken those who seek You” (Psalm 9:9-10).

“O Lord, You have heard the desire of the humble; You will strengthen their heart, You will incline Your ear To vindicate the orphan and the oppressed, So that man who is of the earth will no longer cause terror” (Psalm 10:17-18).

“Let the mountains bring peace to the people, And the hills, in righteousness. May he vindicate the afflicted of the people, Save the children of the needy And crush the oppressor. Let them fear You while the sun endures, And as long as the moon, throughout all generations” (Psalm 72:3-5).

“Consider the covenant; For the dark places of the land are full of the habitations of violence. Let not the oppressed return dishonored; Let the afflicted and needy praise Your name. Arise, O God, and plead Your own cause; Remember how the foolish man reproaches You all day long” (Psalm 74:20-22).

“Who satisfies your years with good things, So that your youth is renewed like the eagle. The Lord performs righteous deeds And judgments for all who are oppressed. He made known His ways to Moses, His acts to the sons of Israel” (Psalm 103:5-7).

“Who made heaven and earth, The sea and all that is in them; Who keeps faith forever; Who executes justice for the oppressed; Who gives food to the hungry. The Lord sets the prisoners free” (Psalm 146:6-7).

“He who oppresses the poor taunts his Maker, But he who is gracious to the needy honors Him” (Proverbs 14:31).

“A leader who is a great oppressor lacks understanding, But he who hates unjust gain will prolong his days” (Proverbs 28:16).

“And the people will be oppressed, Each one by another, and each one by his neighbor; The youth will storm against the elder And the inferior against the honorable” (Isaiah 3:5).

“‘Let the outcasts of Moab stay with you; Be a hiding place to them from the destroyer.’ For the extortioner has come to an end, destruction has ceased, Oppressors have completely disappeared from the land” (Isaiah 16:4).

“I composed my soul until morning. Like a lion—so He breaks all my bones, From day until night You make an end of me. Like a swallow, like a crane, so I twitter; I moan like a dove; My eyes look wistfully to the heights; O Lord, I am oppressed, be my security” (Isaiah 38:13-14).

“For our transgressions are multiplied before You, And our sins testify against us; For our transgressions are with us, And we know our iniquities: Transgressing and denying the Lord, And turning away from our God, Speaking oppression and revolt, Conceiving in and uttering from the heart lying words. Justice is turned back, And righteousness stands far away; For truth has stumbled in the street, And uprightness cannot enter” (Isaiah 59:12-14).

“For if you truly amend your ways and your deeds, if you truly practice justice between a man and his neighbor, if you do not oppress the alien, the orphan, or the widow, and do not shed innocent blood in this place, nor walk after other gods to your own ruin, then I will let you dwell in this place, in the land that I gave to your fathers forever and ever” (Jeremiah 7:5-7).

“O Lord, You have pleaded my soul’s cause; You have redeemed my life. O Lord, You have seen my oppression; Judge my case. You have seen all their vengeance, All their schemes against me” (Lamentations 3:58-60).

“‘Behold, all souls are Mine; the soul of the father as well as the soul of the son is Mine. The soul who sins will die. But if a man is righteous and practices justice and righteousness, and does not eat at the mountain shrines or lift up his eyes to the idols of the house of Israel, or defile his neighbor’s wife or approach a woman during her menstrual period— if a man does not oppress anyone, but restores to the debtor his pledge, does not commit robbery, but gives his bread to the hungry and covers the naked with clothing, if he does not lend money on interest or take increase, if he keeps his hand from iniquity and executes true justice between man and man, if he walks in My statutes and My ordinances so as to deal faithfully—he is righteous and will surely live,’ declares the Lord God” (Ezekiel 18:4-9).

“Therefore, return to your God, observe kindness and justice, and wait for your God continually. A merchant, in whose hands are false balances, he loves to oppress” (Hosea 12:6-7).

“Behold, I am going to deal at that time With all your oppressors, I will save the lame And gather the outcast, And I will turn their shame into praise and renown In all the earth” (Zephaniah 3:19).

“Thus has the Lord of hosts said, ‘Dispense true justice and practice kindness and compassion each to his brother; and do not oppress the widow or the orphan, the stranger or the poor; and do not devise evil in your hearts against one another’” (Zechariah 7:9-10).

Tags: anxiety, baal, despair, elijah, encouragement, fear, fruit, god, government, hear, immorality, information, jesus, jesús, jezebel, knowledge, media, oppression, see, social media, weight, works of the flesh

Comments


©2019 Berean Lamp Ministries

Powered by Ekklesia 360