Psalms 33:16-17 says, “There is no king saved by the multitude of an host: a mighty man is not delivered by much strength. An horse is a vain thing for safety: neither shall he deliver any by his great strength.” In the previous verses of Psalms the Bible taught that God judges nations. The nation which has Jesus as its LORD shall be blessed. The reason that any organization or individual turns away from the LORD is pride. Proverbs 16:18 says, “Pride goeth before destruction, and an haughty spirit before a fall.” To be unrepentant of sin is to be prideful. To not trust in the promises of God is to be prideful. First Samuel 16:7 says, “man looketh on the outward appearance, but the LORD looketh on the heart.”
There is a saying, ‘power corrupts and absolute power corrupts absolutely’. Those who do not rely upon Jesus as their strength will instead rely upon themselves and their own strength. God is all powerful. Man is weak and sinful. In the end the strength of man will fail in this life because life is a spiritual warfare. Without Jesus you cannot be truly victorious in life. Proverbs 21:31 says, “The horse is prepared against the day of battle: but safety is of the LORD.”
God is all powerful. It is God that will determine the outcome in any physical and spiritual circumstance. This is the reason to always trust in Jesus. If you turn to Jesus from your sins, you will always have spiritual victory. And if you turn to Jesus in your physical circumstances then you know that God will deliver you if it is His will. And if it is not His will to deliver you from your physical circumstances, then He will give you the grace to endure.
A nation should build up a strong military to be able to defend itself against other nations. To tear down one’s military is a foolish thing to do. However, having a strong military is not enough to ensure victory and safety. Blessed is the nation whose God is the LORD.
Psalms 33:16-17 says, “There is no king saved by the multitude of an host: a mighty man is not delivered by much strength. An horse is a vain thing for safety: neither shall he deliver any by his great strength.” Men tend to rely upon their own strength and their own ability. What a wicked influence Hollywood has had on our society because they have failed completely to emphasize this principle and instead have emphasized and even glorified the strength of man and the ability of man to overcome through his own efforts. What a horrible influence such humanistic philosophy is. You should use your own strength and ability, but in the end the victory is of the LORD and not of the strength of man. Philippians 4:13 says, “I can do all things through Christ which strengtheneth me.” In other words any situation that you find yourself in, physically and spiritually, you can endure or overcome if you trust in Jesus. Jesus said in Luke 18:27, “The things which are impossible with men are possible with God.”
When any nation and when the leader of any country starts thinking he is saved by the multitude of a host, when any man thinks he can be delivered in his own strength and not in the strength of Jesus, then that man or that country is headed for trouble. This is the warning of these verses in Psalms to any man or nation. Use your strength but do not forget to rely upon Jesus because there is no king saved by the multitude of an host.
The next verse in Psalms 33 explains this further. Psalms 33:18 says, “Behold, the eye of the LORD is upon them that fear him, upon them that hope in his mercy.” The word “fear” means awe. A President of the United States coined the phrase, “we have nothing to fear but fear itself.” The truth is all men fear something. The problem is not that men fear but that they fear the wrong things. Men ought to fear God. Jesus saith in Matthew 10:28, “And fear not them which kill the body, but are not able to kill the soul: but rather fear him which is able to destroy both soul and body in hell.”
To fear God does mean to fear the possible consequences for sin. It is the same principle as the fear of punishment that comes from breaking laws in a country. If you do wrong, there are going to be consequences. If we would fear the possible consequences that God gives out to men for sin and for unrepentant sin, that fear of God would help to keep us from sin and keep us in the mercy of God. To not fear God is to be prideful. To not fear God is to rely upon your own strength. This is, after all, one of the reasons some men repent of their sins and turn to Jesus for salvation: the fear of the eternal judgment of God.
Proverbs 15:3 says, “The eyes of the LORD are in every place, beholding the evil and the good.” Even though God is involved in every detail of life, there is a difference between a saved person and an unsaved person. The difference is being saved or not saved. To be saved means to have the righteousness of Christ. To be saved means to be a joint-heir with Christ. To be saved means to be in the eternal mercy of God. To be saved means to be part of the people of God. To be saved means to be “God’s inheritance.”
First Peter 3:12 says, “For the eyes of the LORD are over the righteous, and his ears are open unto their prayers: but the face of the LORD is against them that do evil.” The fear of the Lord is the beginning of wisdom. To repent of your sins and turn to Jesus Christ for salvation is the beginning of the fear of the LORD. A person who is not saved has no true fear of God.
Psalms 33:18 says, “The eye of the LORD is upon them that fear him.” In other words, even though the grace of God and the mercy of God is offered too all, those who are positionally ‘in Christ’ by faith receive a special attention from Jesus that those who are not saved do not receive. This should be obvious just by saying “saved” or “unsaved.” A saved person is God’s child. A lost person is not. The opportunity for grace and mercy is there for lost people if they repent of their sins and turn to Jesus, but those who have turned to Jesus have God’s attention and God’s involvement in their lives in a very special and intimate way that the lost people of this world do not have. This is why for the most part the way that God works in this world is through the believers. This may explain the reason some countries in this world suffer so much war and famine and economic destitution. Blessed is the nation whose God is the LORD, it says in Psalms 33:12. Even Sodom and Gomorrah received the opportunity for more mercy because of one righteous person, “Abraham.”
Psalms 33:18 says, “Behold, the eye of the LORD is upon them that fear him, upon them that hope in his mercy.” Notice the last half of this verse, “upon them that hope in his mercy.” The fear of the LORD and the mercy God go together. God’s mercy is revealed in the person of Jesus Christ His Son who died on the cross for the sins of the world. To fear the judgment of God is a good thing. The fear of the LORD brings sinners from the gates of hell to the gates of Heaven by causing them to repent and turn to Jesus. To fear God’s anger and the consequences of sin is a good thing. If you truly fear God, then you will hope in His mercy which is found in Jesus Christ.
John 3:16 says, “For God so loved the world, that he gave his only begotten Son, that whosoever believeth in him should not perish, but have everlasting life.” Does God have mercy on the unsaved? Yes. If he did not, they would all be cast into hell right now for their unrepentance. God is long-suffering. The mercy of God leads men to repent of their sins. However, there is a difference between an unsaved person and a saved person. Those who are saved have entered into the eternal mercy and grace of God. They have entered into God’s eternal will and plan for mankind: that man might be conformed into the image of Christ and walk in fellowship and friendship with God the Father through Jesus the Son.
The eye of the LORD is upon them that fear him. Most men seek to hide from God by rejecting the truth and opposing the truth. It is better to have the eye of the LORD upon you. It is better to fear God and to hope in His mercy which is given through the blood of Jesus Christ.
Psalms 33:19 says, “To deliver their soul form death, and to keep them alive in famine.” This verse in Psalms lists for us the two greatest characteristics in a country during a time of war and during a time of God’s judgment upon a nation: death and famine. Because the mercy of God is so great, even when a nation is judged, individuals in that nation can still receive the mercy of God if they repent of their sins and trust in Jesus. No matter how bad things get in this life you should always remember that Jesus can deliver you even from death and famine.
Of course, spiritual death and spiritual famine is much worse than physical death and famine. Those who are saved by grace through faith in Jesus Christ have their souls delivered from death and are guaranteed that God will feed them spiritually with His everlasting Word. Psalms 37:23-28 says, “The steps of a good man are ordered by the LORD: and he delighteth in his way. Though he fall, he shall not be utterly cast down: for the LORD upholdeth him with his hand. I have been young, and now am old; yet have I not seen the righteous forsaken, nor his seed begging bread. He is ever merciful, and lendeth; and his seed is blessed. Depart from evil, and do good; and dwell for evermore. For the LORD loveth judgment, and forsaketh not his saints; they are preserved for ever: but the seed of the wicked shall be cut off.”
If you trust in Jesus Christ, He will take care of your needs both physically and spiritually. But this promise is not guaranteed to the unbeliever. What a blessing it is to fear the LORD and to hope in His mercy. “The eye of the LORD is upon them that fear him, upon them that hope in his mercy.”
Copyright; 2012 by Charles
F. (Rick) Creech
All Rights Reserved