O Death, Where Is Your Sting? 

Therefore my heart is glad, and my glory rejoices; my flesh also will rest in hope. 10 For You will not leave my soul in Sheol, nor will You allow Your Holy One to see corruption. 11 You shame the counsel of the poor, but the Lord is his refuge. — Psalm 14:9-11 

Does your heart rejoice when you contemplate upon the Lord? David’s did, and his faith was strengthened and his heart was made glad. His contemplation resulted in joy and hope and trust. It’s the Lord who is David’s strength, and he shall not be moved. Therefore, his heart is glad, and he is able to rejoice. 

When he mentions that his “flesh will rest in hope,” he refers to his death. He takes comfort in the fact that he knows his soul won’t be left in “Sheol,” the grave. Then, David gives us one of the great Messianic verses in the psalms and establishes for us why this is his great hope: “You will not allow your Holy One to see corruption.” 

What does this mean to David, and also to us? There are several incredible scriptures that help to put this all together. In John 11, we read that Lazarus had been dead within the tomb for four days when Jesus raised him, bringing him out of the grave with his life restored. Jesus himself was in the grave for the same number of days that Jonah was in the belly of the great fish (Jonah 1:17). The book of Daniel gives us an amazing prophecy: “And after sixty-two weeks, Messiah shall be cut off, but not for himself.; and the people of the prince who is to come shall destroy the city and the sanctuary . . . ” (Daniel 9:26; emphasis added). 

Putting this all together: David prophesied the death and resurrection of Christ; Jonah was an Old Testament “picture” of that remarkable event; Daniel also prophesied the Messiah being “cut off,” i.e., put to death—not for what He had done, but for others. And then He proved Himself to be the Messiah by rising from the dead and appearing before many. 

What is the message here? We can have complete confidence that death has been conquered by Jesus Christ on our behalf. Is this good news? It’s incredibly good news! Eternal life—to live forever with the Lord and with believers from all the ages—how wonderful is that! If we can truly grasp what this means, we will gladly submit to God as our Lord and Master. We’ll also discover that we have a new love for the truths of God and for the people of God. We can live in faith in who God is and that He is with us, no matter what life may bring. 

Even though now we struggle with sorrows and sickness and fears and difficult people, the true source of our joy doesn’t come from anything on this earth. David’s heart was glad and rejoiced because he knew—he KNEW—that something far better than this life lay ahead for him: fullness of joy and pleasures forevermore! Are you able to have that same outlook? “Seek and you shall find . . . ” is what the Scriptures tell us. Even so, come quickly, Lord Jesus! 

Excerpt from “Beside Still Waters” now available on Amazon.

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