16O LORD, truly I am thy servant; I am thy servant, and the son of thine handmaid: thou hast loosed my bonds.
17I will offer to thee the sacrifice of thanksgiving, and will call upon the name of the LORD.
18I will pay my vows unto the LORD now in the presence of all his people.
19In the courts of the LORD's house, in the midst of thee, O Jerusalem. Praise ye the LORD.
(Psalm 116:16-19, King James Version)
Servant of God
Our Psalmist ends this beautiful Psalm with a reminder that he belongs to the Lord. God has loved and protected him even from the fangs of death, and his response is a vow of fealty to the Lord God. In the eyes of all (in the courts of the LORD's house) he will openly pay his vows unto the Lord.
It is a little more difficult for us to relate to the great sense of thanksgiving and appreciation the writer felt toward God as he was gripped by danger, even unto death. Most of us go about our lives from day to day with little thought of the frailty of our bodies, much less thinking of the great forces of evil poised to remove us from this earth.
Yet there are some even now who live in war zones or countries where religious persecution is rampant, who can definitely understand exactly the sentiments of this Psalmist. Each day is a gift of life given to them by the Lord God. With grateful hearts they gladly pay their vows in the courts of the Lord.
As we look at the unrest in the Mideast, we are reminded that there is so much more to life than the vain emptiness we often sense in the lives of those around us. Living in countries where there is very little religious persecution, we tend to take our faith, and our God for granted.
How soon all of that could change; the Mideast boils with turmoil between Israel and her muslim neighbors. Countries that were once allies are slowly turning away from the small country of Israel. Even the United States seems to be turning away from this little country. We may very well see, again, the amazing power of God as He protects those who have long been His beloved people.
It is a reminder that we who are Gentiles have been grafted into God's olive tree. We who name the name of Christ must faithfully pray that those who are of Jewish descent would turn their hearts to the Lord Jesus Christ. Their ethnicity will not save them; salvation only comes through the Lord Jesus Christ.
May we, as the people of God, pay our vows in the courts of the Lord. May we rise up and faithfully proclaim our love for God, our Father, and for the Lord Jesus Christ who gave His life that we might have life through Him. As the servant of God, let us turn our face to Him, for He is our only hope, our only joy, and truly our only peace.
God Bless You,