“For his anger endureth but a moment; in his favour is life: weeping may endure for a night, but joy cometh in the morning.”
In the verse above, we see an extremely important qualifier—for those who have the friendship of God (that is, for those who have a perfect heart toward Him), sorrow for them will be temporary …and… it will be followed by joy. Why? The person fears God! The fear of the Lord is the beginning…. It is one of the first essential elements we learn in our new nature and attitude toward God; it is a reflection of our discipleship.
For the true disciples of the Lord Jesus Christ, it is a very frightening thing to be on the opposite side of His grace, mercy, and peace for ANY length of time.
According to Hebrew history, the word ‘weeping’ in Psalm 30:5 comes from the idea of lodging a stranger or ‘wayfaring’ person overnight. It represents the sorrow, the discomfort, and the long moment of hardship the owner of the house will undergo to lodge the unexpected (and unknown) visitor; but it’s only for one night. In the morning, the relief and joy will come to the homeowner after the unknown person goes on their way.
From a spiritual perspective, the concept of ‘in the morning’ from our focal verse, typify relief and restoration after the Lord forgave and cleansed us from sin, and unrighteousness.
It might sound like a weak thing to measure ‘weeping’ with the ‘lodging’ of a stranger for a night, but the strength of ‘weeping’ is found in the endurance of the sufferer. In other words, to endure the discomfort of an unknown visitor for one night is parallel to one who endures godly sorrow from the guilt of sin or error they committed … it will soon pass away and the joy from God’s faithfulness to forgive, and to cleanse—after confession (that is, after full agreement with God, 1 John 1:9), will intimate the refreshment of the morning. In the New Testament it also refers to those who endure the chastening of the Lord … they/we become “partakers of His holiness” (Hebrews 12:5-10).
“For whom the Lord loveth he chasteneth, and scourgeth every son whom he receiveth.”
In a like manner, it is strange for God’s people not to sleep at night, because He giveth His beloved sleep (Psalm 127:2). But, when sleep is interrupted because of sin or error, the Lord is angry in that moment. Also, we may need to endure His anger through chastisement for an extended period so we will not return to THAT sin.
Thus, cometh the weeping and no sleep for the believer … the effect of God’s anger will be upon their/our conscience until we confess and forsake our sin—this will put us in full agreement with the Lord to be fully restored by the freshness of His faithfulness.
We know that David was a man after God’s own heart, though he sinned more than once. But he learned not to be a repeat offender.
We can feel the pain from the hurt we caused a loved one or friend. In the same light, when we disobey the Lord, it hurts Him and us … we failed to do as we know to do (or, our error was without knowledge). We really don’t know how much we need to suffer and endure for the transgression and disobedience we committed. But we do know there is a just recompense of reward for our wrongdoings (Hebrews 2:2; 1 Peter 2:20). Let’s thank God for His mercy! Amen?!
We must seek the Lord early while He may be found (as we are weeping for the night), and beg for His mercy so that our chastisement or scourging may be lighter than we deserve … it may endure for a night instead of a week, or month, or year…. However long, the chastening can be shorter (or longer) dependent upon how quick we respond with the right attitude once approached for our sin or error.
God’s Moment of Anger—
This particular Psalm 30:5, is a poetic description of God’s moment of anger. It is but for a moment, or the wink of the eye (so to speak). In the blink of time is God’s anger. During that period, His divine influence (through His mercy) is upon us to change our direction away from all aspects of sin, back toward Him.
Remember, God suffereth long and is kind (1 Corinthians 13:4); and though He is slow to anger, and full of compassion (Psalm 145:8) … HE DOES GET ANGRY! In fact, God is angry with the wicked every day (Psalm 7:11).
There are times when God appears to forsake His people, yet it will be but for a moment. He remembers His covenant, and however long the trials may seem to be … these trials will be but as the sorrows of the briefest point of duration.
- (Isaiah 54:7-8) For a small moment have I forsaken thee; but with great mercies will I gather thee. In a little wrath I hid my face from thee for a moment; but with everlasting kindness will I have mercy on thee, saith the LORD thy Redeemer.
- (2 Corinthians 4:17) For our light affliction, which is but for a moment, worketh for us a far more exceeding and eternal weight of glory…
The tears from weeping are not only from sin or error we commit against the Lord, the brethren, or our own conscience, but we also evince tears caused by suffering in the flesh (because we ceased from the practice of sin); suffering of false brethren (who are the enemies of the cross of Christ); suffering from the enemy (who is the wicked one); and so forth.
Consider the following references of tears that led to joy, repentance, or death:
- (Psalm 6:6-9) I am weary with my groaning; all the night make I my bed to swim; I water my couch with my tears. Mine eye is consumed because of grief; it waxeth old because of all mine enemies. Depart from me, all ye workers of iniquity; for the LORD hath heard the voice of my weeping. The LORD hath heard my supplication; the LORD will receive my prayer.
- (Psalm 56:8-11) Thou tellest my wanderings: put thou my tears into thy bottle: are they not in thy book? When I cry unto thee, then shall mine enemies turn back: this I know; for God is for me. In God will I praise his word: in the LORD will I praise his word. In God have I put my trust: I will not be afraid what man can do unto me.
- (Psalm 126:5-6) They that sow in tears shall reap in joy. He that goeth forth and weepeth, bearing precious seed, shall doubtless come again with rejoicing, bringing his sheaves with him.
- (John 16:20-22) Verily, verily, I say unto you, That ye shall weep and lament, but the world shall rejoice: and ye shall be sorrowful, but your sorrow shall be turned into joy. A woman when she is in travail hath sorrow, because her hour is come: but as soon as she is delivered of the child, she remembereth no more the anguish, for joy that a man is born into the world. And ye now therefore have sorrow: but I will see you again, and your heart shall rejoice, and your joy no man taketh from you.
- (Romans 2:4) Or despisest thou the riches of his goodness and forbearance and longsuffering; not knowing that the goodness of God leadeth thee to repentance?
- (2 Corinthians 7:9-10) Now I rejoice, not that ye were made sorry, but that ye sorrowed to repentance: for ye were made sorry after a godly manner, that ye might receive damage by us in nothing. For godly sorrow worketh repentance to salvation not to be repented of: but the sorrow of the world worketh death.
In the Old Testament, the concept of friendship toward God referred to one with a perfect heart toward Him …and… a close spiritual relationship with Him.
- In 2 Chronicles 20:7, Abraham was mentioned as God’s friend—it helped Jehoshaphat and the people of Judah and Jerusalem to trust the Lord to drive out the inhabitants of the land.
- In James 2:23, Abraham believed God and it was imputed unto him for righteousness; it earned him the title—the Friend of God.
- In James 2:24, we have a point of reference—by works a man is justified, and not by faith only. Abraham’s work of faith justified him.
- In Genesis 22:12, Abraham’s faith was at work through obedience. He was convinced of God’s ability to restore his son’s life after the proposed sacrifice.
Jesus said, “Ye are my friends, if ye do whatsoever I command you.”
Today’s Views of Anger—
In our society, a moment of anger have cost the lives of so many people:
- wars have begun and continue;
- social discriminations have continued;
- racial differences have always been mishandled;
- murder/suicide have been committed and increased;
- classroom peers fight over irrelevant intimate relationships;
- many students fight over other non-essential or juvenile matters;
- many kill each other to prove their cowardice, wimpish, spoiled nature;
- and the list is inexhaustible….
In each moment of anger there is constant violence with injuries or deaths.
But, when God is angry for a moment, He is NOT violent to any degree. Let’s strive to resemble His attitude—a moment of anger.
Morning: Etymology and Definitions in Scripture—
In the scriptures, ‘morning’ is linked with the compound root words ‘dawn’ (as the break of day), and ‘beef cattle’ (as used for plowing). Though ‘beef cattle’ is a peculiar noun for ‘morning’ to the Hebrew, the other root word ‘dawn’ is not.
Frequently, in narrative portions of the Old Testament, ‘morning’ denotes a time marker as in the expression, “Joshua rose early in the morning” (Joshua 3:1). Morning, when combined with evening may refer either to a full day (Genesis 1:5), or in phrases “from evening to morning” designate night time (Leviticus 24:3), or “from morning to evening” designate daytime (Exodus 18:13). Occasionally ‘morning’ refers to the ‘morrow’ … ‘tomorrow’ in English.
In Hebrew poetry, ‘morning’ is more often mentioned than evening. The voice of the worshiper will be heard in the morning, in praise (Psalm 59:16-17) or in petition (Psalm 88:13). The righteous are attentive to God in the morning through prayer and offerings (Psalm 5:3-4); by contrast the wicked are also active but with evil schemes (Micah 2:1; Isaiah 5:11).
Morning may also denote ‘early’ or ‘promptly’ as in “God will help her right early” (literally “at the turning of morning” (Psalm 46:5; 90:14; 101:8)), etc. On the other hand, the Lord “will early destroy all wicked doers” (Psalm 101:8).
Another reference of the ‘morning’ is in the New Testament, “the inward man is renewed day by day” (2 Corinthians 4:16). There will be fresh degrees of spiritual strength available—with purity, and consolation first thing each morning for the believer.
We have learned that, early from God’s perspective is not only measured by the time of day, but also by the perfect time to respond and move on our behalf. Thus, ‘early’ from God’s perspective is at the exact right moment to move swiftly. He is eternal. He is also on the other side of the end of time. He literally waits for time to catch up to what He said! “The works were finished from the foundation of the world…”
One insightful point of reference to help us is from the imagery in Isaiah 40:31. It refers to those who wait upon the Lord (i.e., those who wait ‘with’ the Lord) shall renew their strength. The idea is to understand what the will of the Lord is (Ephesians 5:17), then join Him, and wait with Him for time to catch up to what He said.
The following passages refers to the times God sets to help, defend, lift, release, or refresh His people:
- (Psalm 46:5) God is in the midst of her; she shall not be moved: God shall help her, and that right early.
- (Psalm 59:16) But I will sing of thy power; yea, I will sing aloud of thy mercy in the morning: for thou hast been my defence and refuge in the day of my trouble.
- (Psalm 143:8) Cause me to hear thy lovingkindness in the morning; for in thee do I trust: cause me to know the way wherein I should walk; for I lift up my soul unto thee.
- (Genesis 32:24) And Jacob was left alone; and there wrestled a man with him until the breaking of the day.
- (Hosea 6:3) Then shall we know, if we follow on to know the LORD: his going forth is prepared as the morning; and he shall come unto us as the rain, as the latter and former rain unto the earth.
We will end our discussion here. But, consider the following question about the one ‘morning’ to come called—The Day of Judgment.
Do you strive (by faith) to be received of the Lord with joy in a raptured state, and to be with Him in His kingdom forever? If so, continue to press toward the mark!
By all means, please do not be sent away and cast into the lake of fire and brimstone because the Lord said:
- He never knew you to obey His leadership;
- He never knew you to be one of His disciples;
- He never knew you to be baptized of the water;
- He never knew you to be baptized into His Spirit;
- He never knew you to love the brethren as He did;
- He never knew you to dwell in your heart by faith….
How you live today and tonight will determine your eternal state … in the morning.
Better be sure you know (YOUR STATE) … before you go!
In Christ We Do Remain
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