Psalm 41

Blessed is the one who considers the poor![a]
    In the day of trouble the Lord delivers him;
the Lord protects him and keeps him alive;
    he is called blessed in the land;
    you do not give him up to the will of his enemies.
The Lord sustains him on his sickbed;
    in his illness you restore him to full health.[b]

As for me, I said, “O Lord, be gracious to me;
    heal me,[c] for I have sinned against you!”
My enemies say of me in malice,
    “When will he die, and his name perish?”
And when one comes to see me, he utters empty words,
    while his heart gathers iniquity;
    when he goes out, he tells it abroad.
All who hate me whisper together about me;
    they imagine the worst for me.[d]

They say, “A deadly thing is poured out[e] on him;
    he will not rise again from where he lies.”
Even my close friend in whom I trusted,
    who ate my bread, has lifted his heel against me.
10 But you, O Lord, be gracious to me,
    and raise me up, that I may repay them!

11 By this I know that you delight in me:
    my enemy will not shout in triumph over me.
12 But you have upheld me because of my integrity,
    and set me in your presence forever.

13 Blessed be the Lord, the God of Israel,
    from everlasting to everlasting!
Amen and Amen.

Sermon Transcription:

Dr. Stewart
Good morning. Good to see you all this morning. We’re going to study Psalm 41. But first, let me tell you this story from my life. In my fourth year of medical school, I went to Africa on a medical rotation. What a great thing to be able to go to Africa. We really were all about that. And in fact, my wife, Karen, went with me and she worked as a nurse there. I’d studied the common illnesses there and while I was there, I got sick. But it wasn’t malaria or sleeping sickness or parasites. I’d love to tell you I had some exotic disease that took me to the edge of death and God healed me. I’d love to tell you that but it’s not true. It didn’t happen. I caught a cold. I was a little weak and had a runny nose but that was it. God preserved me. And a nurse took care of me. (Fellowship laughing) I was a little down. But not much. Have you ever been really, really down and out? Have you ever been really weak, really depressed, really, really sick? You know, there was a time in my medical practice, early on, when I was very discouraged and depressed. I didn’t know if I would recover from that. I was being sued for $5 million over a baby I delivered which developed cerebral palsy. Before this, I was pretty self confident. And, you know, I often was prideful. Still I can be but maybe more then. This brought me down. I had real enemies who I thought hated me. I was afraid for my family, I was afraid for my career, I was afraid about my reputation. This brought me low enough that I cried out to God for mercy. I had to trust him with my family, trust him with my career, trust him with my reputation. So in a small way, I think I can relate to David on this psalm. It says in Psalm 41:1b, “In the day of trouble the Lord delivers him.” The Lord took care of us, he took care of my family, my practice. I had to give my reputation to him. Praise his name.

Psalm 41 is the last psalm in this book. If you’ve not studied Psalms before, you may not realize that there are five books within the book of Psalms. And the first book ends with chapter 41. There’s different emphasis in the books. There’s a doxology at the end of each book. So verse 13 of chapter 41 is the doxology for this section. The emphasis in this book is on Jehovah, Yahweh, which is appropriate for what we’ve been studying. Next week, we’ll start a new series in Ephesians. So we’ll end our study in Psalms today. Let’s read together, Psalm chapter 41, “Blessed is the one who considers the poor! In the day of trouble the Lord delivers him. The Lord protects him and keeps him alive. He’s called blessed in the land. You do not give him up to the will of his enemies. The Lord sustains him on his sickbed, in his illness you restore him to full health. As for me, I said, O Lord, be gracious to me, heal me, for I have sinned against you! My enemies say of me in malice, When will he die and his name perish? And when one comes to see me, he utters empty words, while his heart gathers iniquity. When he goes out, he tells it abroad. All who hate me whisper together about me, they imagine the worst for me. They say, A deadly thing is poured out on him, he will not rise again from where he lies. Even my close friend in whom I trusted, who ate my bread, has lifted his heel against me. But you, O Lord, be gracious to me and raise me up, that I may repay them! By this I know that you delight in me, my enemy will not shout and triumph over me. But you have upheld me because of my integrity, and set me in your presence forever. Blessed be the Lord, the God of Israel, from everlasting to everlasting. Amen and Amen.”

Blessed is the one who considers the poor. Who are the poor? Those that are in poverty. And that’s pretty straightward. Consistent with the rest of the Bible. God cares about the destitute, Psalm 14:31 says, He who oppresses the poor shows contempt for his maker. So you know, we can make this sermon about class inequality and the need for to be socially active and improving poverty in our community, which would be a good thing. Because there’s definitely poverty in our community. But as you read this psalm, it’s about more than just the physically poor. Included in this verse is a broader scope. The Hebrew word for poor means weak. Poverty certainly weakens people, but so do many other things: sickness, affliction, persecution and sin. I think the monetarily poor are included, as they would be those who are poor in spirit. There are the proud poor and the violent, hateful poor, who want nothing to do with God, and may hate his people. I’m not speaking about them unless they’re willing to change. But the poor includes those in poverty as well as the sick, those physically and emotionally sick. They are the afflicted, where life’s circumstances have beaten them down or people are out to get them. Those with depressions definitely are included in this group. The poor includes those who sin, who see it and own it and come to God to deal with it, all these are included.

The first part of this book, if you notice, starts with a blessing. And there’s three Psalms in these 41 chapters that have a blessing at the beginning. The first is Psalm 1, “Blessed is the man who walks not in the counsel of the ungodly.” There’s a blessing that starts that book. And we would find there, a contrast between the righteous and the wicked and as you read that first psalm. Psalm 32 also has a blessing. It says, “Blessed is the man whose sin is forgiven.” How important is that?! And then Psalm 41, “Blessed is he who considers the poor.” When I first read this psalm, I thought verse one through three seemed a bit out of place, like it didn’t quite fit with what he says later. He’s talking about all the bad things that happened to him, that people are saying about him. And it’s about David’s life and so this didn’t quite seem to fit. But what it ends up being is this, it’s a contrast, just like in Psalm 1. And the contrast here is that God’s going to bless those who help and love the poor. Those who hate the poor, those who hate the helpers of the poor, it’s not going to go well for him. It’s the contrast.

So who wrote this psalm? David. Could he be poor? He was the king, right? He’s rich. How could he be poor? He’s poor. There’s some ways that he’s very poor. We said it meant weak. We think of David as being strong but what happened to David? He was weak when he gave into the desires of the flesh with Bathsheba. And then because he sinned by giving into lust and stole another man’s wife, he had to do what? He had to commit murder to hide it, right? And he had Uriah killed. And also David was weak, poor, when he was pursued by his enemy, he was forced to flee from Jerusalem. He was forced to leave and be in exile because of his son, Absalom, who forced him out. What a terrible place to be. David’s weeping as he’s leaving Jerusalem, he’s depressed. My son’s trying to kill me and takeover. David was poor and weak many times. I can’t tell you which particular period of David’s life this psalm but we do know, from verse one that we will be blessed if we consider the poor, which includes not just thinking about the poor but giving support and help and be a true friend. And for the person who’s sinned, we’ve got to be willing to come alongside them and help them out, in hopes that they will repent. We’re promised a blessing. In fact, we’re guaranteed a blessing here. We must choose to reach out to those who are down. Often they’re seen by the world as losers. Think about Job, how did his friends look at him? Job’s friends questioned, What happened to him? He lost all his kids and his stuff. And he was down and he was sick. And why? Why did they say that he was down? Because he sinned, he must be wicked! What did he do?! What’s in his closet that caused all this?! They thought he was in so much trouble with God. But people look at situations like this and they make ill advised judgments about people. In our society, and at times in the church, we tend to jump to rash decisions about people without having all the information, without investigate thoroughly. We don’t have the whole story, we understand what God’s doing with that person, in their lives. If we go with the crowd, we may be tempted to talk behind their backs or to believe there’s no hope for them. They are done for. To be blessed, we must be willing to reach down to any person, even a person like David, who was an adulterer, a murderer and in exile. Of course, David’s sins are red letter sins, right? They are sins that would go up on the marquee in our society, and people would talk about it and publish things about it, it would be there. But all of us are sinners, aren’t we. And as Jesus defines murder, we’ve all murdered other people, or committed adultery by lust.

So as we reached down, there are seven blessings between verse one and three that are given here. And we’ll just kind of briefly go through these because they’re pretty self explanatory. Blessing 1) “In the day of trouble the Lord delivers him. 2)The Lord protects him and 3)keeps him alive. 4)He is called blessed in the land. 5)You do not surrender him to the desire of his enemies. 6)The Lord sustains him on his sickbed. 7)In illness you restore him to full health.” So these blessings go from general to specific. He first delivers and protects. And then we seeing him sustaining him on this specific thing, his sickbed. Notice when the Lord delivers, it’s in the day of trouble, he does not deliver us from the day of trouble. He doesn’t prevent the day of trouble. It seems we’re destined for a certain amount of trouble, aren’t we? Jesus told us that in this world you will have trouble. In fact, he tells us in another place, we have a daily allotment of trouble we need to go through every day. God shows himself strong in delivering those who are willing to reach out to the poor and the weak.

Now these blessings are self explanatory, but consider verse three. He sustains him on his sickbed. John MacArthur says, This pictures God as a physician dispensing tender loving care. I disagree. I don’t do that very often with John MacArthur, but I’m going to disagree with him about this. This pictures God as a physician, dispensing tender loving care. Now, what’s wrong with that picture? Doctors don’t do that! They don’t. They’re not the ones who supply the tender care to patients. Almost never, right? Who does the care? The nurses and the nurses aides do that, don’t they? I was with a patient on Friday, and she was quite ill. I was trying to get her medical history but she kept coughing and spitting stuff up. It was really annoying. I just couldn’t get my job done. (Fellowship laughting) And who had the wash cloth that wipe the lady’s mouth off? Was it me? It wasn’t me. It was the nurse who did that. So what this verse is saying is that God flips the mattress on the sickbed. That’s literally what this means in this culture. They didn’t make a bed with blankets like we do. They flipped the mattress, because you’re on one side and it got bumpy and hard. And then when you flipped it, it was softer and better. That’s what the Hebrew word means. He’s the one in the trenches. God is bending down to care for the sick. Matthew Poole calls this strange condescension as God changes or overturns the sick bed to make it soft and easy for the sick person. Spurgeon says the Lord himself will make their bed of sickness. That’s amazing humility. He not only cares for the sick, but he heals them. The last part of the verse, God will “restore him to full health”. People come to me and thanked me for healing them. And I usually point them to an Old Testament verse about a king which says, He, the king trusted in the doctors and he died. Please don’t trust me for your ultimate help. It isn’t me, it’s God. Whether it is medicine, doctors, nurses or nurses aids, God is a healer. He deserves the praise.

Verse four comes back to David. David makes it clear here that he is a sinner, he’s not perfect in showing mercy to the poor. In fact, Nathan comes to rebuke David and tells him the story of a rich man and a poor man. The poor man had one little ewe lamb. The rich man in the story is who? David and he is the king. And Uriah is the poor man with one little ewe lamb, his wife, Bathsheba, who David steals and has Uriah killed. David is a great sinner. But he speaks generally about his whole life. I don’t think he’s only talking about these two sins. I think he’s talking about his life, in general. There are a lot of sins we store up, not just the big ones. He admits his sin as he does in other psalms. There are two psalms you can read all about David’s repentance over this sin. In Psalm 32 and 51, David talks about that and the effects on his body. So he repents and he asked God to forgive him. Verse 4b, “Heal me, for I have sinned against you.” That’s pretty straightward, right? David’s owning his sin. I’m a sinner. I accept it. I know I need to change. I need healing. Forgive me. Spurgeon says, Sin is the root of his sorrows. David is suffering, sin and suffering are inevitable companions. David freely admits his sin, he owns his sin, he turns from his sin to God for healing, for forgiveness. This is the greatest healing of all, forgiveness of our sins. Greater than any illness that can be healed. It’s our soul, our life with God, forever. Forgiveness would help David with some physical symptoms too. As we look just briefly at Psalm 32, he talks about his strength being dried up, he was physically weak, his bones wasted, I believe he lost weight. He felt like there was a weight on him, like he could hardly get up and move. All these symptoms go along with guilt and depression at times.

And in Psalm 41, verse five, he tells us the perspective of his enemies. So he’s gonna switch gears here. “My enemies say of me in malice, When did he die and his name perish?” That’s pretty bad, isn’t it? I mean, they don’t only want him dead, they want every vestige of him out of the way. Like, I want to wipe it out, any memory or thought people had of David, we want to get rid of it. This is hater speech, it is satanic, the worldly perspective for us. How do we get back to the blessing in verse one. So let’s ask this question as we come to these, How could they have helped David? They should not be making rash judgments, but they should be asking questions. Is God involved in David’s life? If he is what, what could he be doing? And how could they help? Maybe they could have come alongside David in this devastated position and be a friend to him, listen to him, and help him encourage him.

But instead, verse six, “And when he comes to see me, he utters empty words, while his heart gathers iniquity.” He’s looking for ammunition. And “when he goes out, he tells it abroad.” They come to say nothing that will help, they listen not to be a support or help but to store up things that are negative, that will tear him down. Spurgeon says this, I really like this, While the fox calls on the sick lamb his words are soft, but he licks his lips in hope of a carcass. It is wretched work to have spies haunting your bedroom, calling in pretend kindness but with malice in their hearts. Out of the sweetest flowers chemists can distill poison, and from the purest words and deeds malice can gather groundwork for a slanderous report. He makes his lies and then vends them in open market. A little fault is magnified, a mistake becomes a crime. It reminds me of the tabloids in the grocery store. Right? You see them, everyone sees them, there right out there in front before you check out. Big headline… David’s son Absalon overthrows his wicked father! David is done! What would a true friend do here for David? They’d be with him, they’d come to him and offer words of encouragement for support. If David made a mistake, what would you do if you’re his friend? Would you publish it? No, you keep it in confidence. You wouldn’t share it with other people. In fact for most things, you’d let love cover it when they’re the small things. Love can cover that, 1 Peter 4:8, “Above all, continue to show deep love for each other, for love covers a multitude of sins.” Sometimes though, even though that’s true, love won’t cover it, it keeps coming up. And if it comes up, you need to deal with you. But not in public, to everyone else.

Verse seven, “All who hate me whisper together about me, they imagine the worst for me.” They imagine the worst. What is that? I would say imagining the worst about a person is hate. And where I get that is because in 1 Corinthians 13:7, it says, love believes the best, right? You’re trying to put the best spin on this not the worst spin. Yet there are times, I often imagine the worst about people. But that’s not loving. We need to give them the benefit of the doubt. Verse eight, his enemy say a deadly thing is poured out on him, he will not rise from where he lies. They are convinced God has abandoned him. They can’t fathom that God would answer David’s prayer in his awful situation. They believe God has cursed him. He will never recover. So what would a friend say to this? They would come alongside him, like we said, and they might even have to be honest with him. David doesn’t look so good. He looks pretty down and he looks pretty bad here. Maybe they’d have to be honest. But even though he’s low, they’d probably grab his hand and they’d probably pray with him, wouldn’t they. They’d pray for his health, for his healing, they’d help him in this process of repentance. They continue to pray for him, that he be healed and he rise out of these ashes like a phoenix.

Verse nine, “Even my close friend in whom I trusted, who ate my bread has lifted his heel against me.” This is quoted someplace else. It’s in the New Testament. Jesus actually quotes this verse about Judas in John 13:18. But he leaves out the part about the close friend, which is kind of interesting. Maybe it’s because he didn’t allow Judas to become as close to a friend as maybe John and James and Peter. He knew Judas’s heart, he knew what was coming. Judas betrayed Jesus by selling him for 20 pieces of silver. You know what 20 pieces of silver equated to at the time? I thought this was interesting. It was the price of a slave. They didn’t pay a huge amount for a great teacher, they paid the price of a slave. Which is how Jesus came, as a servant. “He lifted his heel against me.” This is a picture here of a horse. Anyone ever dealt with horses? I never wanted to get too close behind the horse, because you know what happens sometimes when you’re behind the horse? They can kick and hurt you. And that’s the idea here. And in fact, here it’s not only kicking you, but kicking you when you’re down. This is equally true for David. He was betrayed in a relationship. He had a close ally, a guy named Ahithophel. Ahithophel was his counselor. David trusted him. 2 Samuel 16 and 17 explains how when Absalon took power, David’s counselor, went with the new team, he gave up on David. Ahithophel gave Absalom counsel on how to capture and destroy David. God helped David to get away and later Ahithophel, just like Judas, hanged himself when David was coming back into power. I suppose even he knew his days might be numbered. David had trusted him. But Ahithophel lifted up his heel against his king. So what would a friend do here? You don’t kick them, right. Especially you don’t kick them when they’re down. You stand with them through thick and thin. Proverbs 17:17 says, a friend loves at all times and a brother is born for adversity.

Verse ten, David changes gears and moves from his enemies back to God. This is so important right here. We can so focus on our enemies and what’s said about us, the slander and all the muck and the dirt and the grime, and we just focus on that. But David is able to take his mind and focus on God. And you have to change your focus too. If you’re down and you’re focused on your sins, on all the terrible stuff that’s going on around you, turn your eyes on Jesus. He says, verse ten, “But you, O Lord, be gracious to me and raise me up, that I may repay them!” We need a hand to get up. Even if friends were to help us, it’s not enough sometimes. It takes God’s help to lift you, to lift you out of the pit. Friends can’t forgive your sins. He asked the second time for grace. He asked the first time in verse four. But now he has listened to all the hate spewed from his enemies and he’s down and discouraged. But he knows where to go. He goes to Jehovah. Many commentators speak about the Messianic overtones of this whole passage. And we already spoke about Judas in the previous verse. But the experience of Jesus and David and their enemies, they run parallel. Certainly Jesus had many enemies who hated him and spoke out against him. They whispered and plotted behind his back to kill him. Certainly Satan was leading the charge to execute God’s Son. And he believed that he had killed Jesus. And he had won, but only for a short time. He had incited Judas to betray Jesus. As I looked at that verse in Luke, I was surprised by something I’d never seen before this. It doesn’t say that he influenced Judas’s heart or put this evil thought there. It says Satan entered into Judas, that struck me, satanic inhabitants to betray Jesus. He betrayed Jesus to the chief priests and religious leaders, Luke 22:1. Now back to our passage, verse 10. “But you, O Lord, be gracious to me and raise me up.” Even here, you see David speaking in his prayer and you see the Messiah who was raised from the dead by the Father. His resurrection was God’s seal of approval of Jesus work on the cross. It was perfect. He stamped it. It’s finished. He had offered himself as a perfect human sacrifice. His death met the righteous requirements of the law and satisfied the justice of God. Allowing us access to come to Jesus for healing and forgiveness. We can come to the throne of grace, to find grace and mercy to help, in the time we need to. We’ve got access for healing and forgiveness as we confess and turn from our sins to follow him. And it says God raised him up, verse 10. Praise God.

Now there is one phrase in verse ten that nobody says has messianic overtones. The last part of the verse says, “that I may repay them!” Do you know what David’s saying? I’m going to go after them! I’m going to get them! Wait a minute. That sounds a little vindictive, don’t you think? Unles you understand who is saying this. It’s David and he’s the king. That’s right. Boice says, David’s words have a vindictive ring which is startling and seems inconsistent with David’s conduct toward his enemies. It’s a different standard than Jesus, who prayed on the cross for his enemies. Jesus prayed, forgive them for they don’t know what they’re doing, while on the cross, Luke 23:34. But here’s the difference between David and the average Christian. David was king of Israel, David is conscious of his divine appointment as king by God. He prayed to be restored to power, to punish traitors as they deserved. While a private citizen like us, we would leave the vengeance to Jehovah. There’s the difference.

Verse 11, “By this I know that you delight in me, my enemy will not shout in triumph over me.” David has moved from face down in the dirt to confidence in God. David says, I know! He’s certain that God loves him. David has been in many situations where he was on the losing side. We talked a little bit about that earlier. Can you think of some times where he was the underdog? What about David and Goliath? Then what about David and Saul? He was a shepherd and a musician in the court of the king who’s trying to put a spear into him. And then there’s Absalon. When nearly the whole country sided with Absalon. How’s David going to get away from that? They’re all out to get him. But God rescued David, consistently every time. And he will do it again. David is confident. Do you know that God loves you? Do you know that? 1 John 5:13 says, “I write these things to you who believe in the name of the Son of God that you may know that you have eternal life.” You can be confident with David, that if you’ve trusted in Jesus Christ and His sacrifice for your sins on the cross, that his blood is infinitely powerful. Any sin that you have, any sin, even murder, adultery, there’s no sin so great that the blood of Jesus Christ will not cleanse it away completely. If you don’t know him, come speak to us. We’d be happy to talk with you. If you know him, walk with confidence. You’ll be with Him forever.

Verse 11b, “My enemy will not shout in triumph over me.” None of David’s enemies, even Satan, could proclaim the victory. They were sure they had him. He’s a dead man. He’s going down. Who’s our accuser? Satan is the accuser of the brothers and sisters. He does it daily. And he would love to bring some accusation against you, against me, that would sink us, destroy our ministry. But God loves you. He delights in you, the enemy will not be able to claim the victory over you. God will say to Satan, This one right here. That one right there. They’re mine. They’re cleansed by the blood. They’re forgiven. You can’t bring accusation against them. He or she has perfect righteousness because Jesus gave them his perfect life, freely given, to all who believe in Jesus. It’s not as if we never sin, but it’s just as if we never did anything wrong. Can you fathom that? That one I have to think about again and again. And I still can’t fathom the truth that’s there, that we are righteous before God. But it’s not because of us. It’s because of what Jesus did for us. Satan, you can’t touch them.

Verse 12, “But you’ve upheld me because of my integrity and set me in your presence forever.” As I read this verse, I thought it sounded a little proud. But as I thought about it, we do have integrity. And we can call it our integrity. But we’re not really responsible for it, are we? I have integrity, an ability to walk in truth and righteousness, because the Holy Spirit empowers that in my life. He lives within me. And it’s not just true today or tomorrow, but according to this, it’s going to be true every day. As God sets us in His presence forever. Charles Spurgeon says this, Your power enables me to rise above the reach of slander. He’s talking about David now, and he’s had all these slanderous and terrible things that’s been said about him. Spurgeon contines, Your power enables me to rise above that, to put that behind me, by living in purity and righteousness. Our innocence and consistency are the result of divine upholding. The Lord should be praised every day that we may be preserved from gross sin, because we can fall in a moment. Our integrity is comparative as well as dependent. We must therefore be humbled, while we are grateful. He rejoiced that he lived under the divine surveillance, tended for, cared for and smiled upon by his Lord, and yet more, that it would be so world without end. To stand before an earthly king is considered to be an honor. But what must it be, to be a perpetual resident in the Palace of the King, eternal, immortal, invisible?

So the book ends with this doxology, verse 13, “Blessed be the Lord, the God of Israel, from everlasting to everlasting! Amen and Amen.” Notice this chapter begins and ends with a blessing. Verse one of this chapter was a blessing. And now this last verse is a blessing as well. Blessed is he who considers the poor, first verse in this psalm and then Blessed be the Lord, here in the last verse. We are blessed as we follow God’s way. The psalmist blesses the Lord. God is the ultimate blesser, he provides every blessing and he deserves to be blessed more than any. He’s blessed as we follow his instructions and live for Him. We can’t add to the blessedness of God, but we can pour out our grateful thoughts and praises. These he accepts. We expect gifts of flowers from our children or grandchildren or great grandchildren. Have you ever gotten a gift of flowers from your child? Have you done that? I have a grandchild. (Fellowship is shown two pictures of his granddaughter) She actually has a toad in this first picture. She likes all kinds of reptiles. I don’t know where she gets that. But she’s got a great smile. And in this other picture, she brought us flowers. You can see there are dandelions, a black eyed Susan and some other things. I don’t know what they are. Maybe you do. She picked these carefully, placed them in a vase to be displayed because we’re plant lovers. Did you know that? I say that with sarcasm because you know what? We have a brown thumb! I kill things, very quickly, from the plant world. And so they don’t do well with us. But in this case, we took great care. We love these flowers. And we will carefully display them. Because our granddaughter carefully chose them. She picked them out and wanted to display them. We carefully placed them on the table, knowing that they’ll die in a few days. And we can throw them out. Our praise, like the flowers, are a modest attempt to show God our love through praise. The one difference is kid’s flowers die in a short time, but God inhabits the praises of his people. I believe our praises will last, from everlasting to everlasting! Like David, no matter how much adversity we suffer, whether we’re sick or depressed or afflicted by enemies, God is ruler over it! He is our sovereign, we can trust him. Trust Him with your situation, to be a help to those who are down. God’s mercy lifts the weak. That’s actually the title of this message which I forgot to tell you in the beginning. God’s mercy lifts the weak.

Let’s pray. Lord, we’re thankful that you are merciful to us. We know that we’re sinful. Where would we be without? We would be lost, we would be down and out and unable to come back. We’re thankful for grace and mercy that comes through your Son, the Lord Jesus Christ. We’re thankful that he gives us instruction here about how to help those who are down. We pray that you’d help us. Help us to be a friend, help us to love people around us, help us to point them to the best and most extensive and complete help that’s available in you. Thank you that we can be healed that we can be forgiven that we can be lifted up by your mercy. We thank you, In Jesus name, amen.

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