Correspondence: "Ye are Gods";Circumcision; 1 Cor. 3:21-22; Psa. 88 and 22

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Answer: It means judges or great men. In John 10, they found fault with the Lord for saying He was the Son of God. He silenced them by quoting that men are called gods in Scripture, which cannot be broken. And why should they say of Him, whom the Father had set apart, and sent into the world, “Thou blasphemest, because I said, I am the Son of God.” Look at My works, they are the Father’s, as My words had been the words of the Father. But they hated Him and tried to take Him. In vain; His hour was not yet come. He escaped out of their hands.
Question: What does circumcision mean for Christians? D. C.
Answer: Circumcision in the Old Testament was a mark of subjection put upon the flesh of Jehovah’s people; it signified death. Its teaching for us is, that as men in the flesh, we are put to death in the death of Christ (Col. 2:1111In whom also ye are circumcised with the circumcision made without hands, in putting off the body of the sins of the flesh by the circumcision of Christ: (Colossians 2:11)), “In whom also ye are circumcised with the circumcision made without hands, in putting off the body of the flesh by the circumcision of Christ.” In His death on the cross as men in the flesh, we have been put to death before God.
Answer: The Christians in Corinth were carnal; they followed men (1:12, 13; 3:1-6). The Apostle tells them all these teachers were for their benefit. They are to take all as the Lord’s ordering for their good. And so of the world; they had it from God, the Lord. Life was from Him; death, it was His servant for them; things present were His ordering for them; things to come were just what He would send. All was settled and sure, for they were Christ’s and Christ was God’s.
Question: Are Psalm 88 and 22 similar? Does the 91st follow the 88th, as the 23rd follows the 22nd? H. C. W.
Answer: Psalm 22 is the experience of the Lord while making atonement for sin. Atonement is completed (Verse 22), and Christ is seen in resurrection declaring the Father’s name to His brethren (John 20:1717Jesus saith unto her, Touch me not; for I am not yet ascended to my Father: but go to my brethren, and say unto them, I ascend unto my Father, and your Father; and to my God, and your God. (John 20:17); Heb. 2:1212Saying, I will declare thy name unto my brethren, in the midst of the church will I sing praise unto thee. (Hebrews 2:12)). In the Psalm, it is Israel and the nations; it is blessing to the ends of the earth. And the Psalm closes with, “He hath done this.”
Psalm 23. Jehovah is the Shepherd caring for the sheep.
Psalm 24 is His coming in glory into His kingdom, and the character of the godly who receive the blessing of Jehovah, and righteousness from the God of his salvation.
Psalm 88 has some expressions of suffering, similar to the Lord’s sufferings under the judgment of God, but the soul in Psalm 88 speaks under the sense of God’s wrath lying hard upon him in his lifetime. It is the experience of a godly Israelite under the broken law, without the knowledge of Christ’s redemption. The Psalm closes leaving him in darkness. A dreadful state truly, yet there is faith, for he calls on Jehovah, God of his salvation. It is Israel in their trouble before deliverance comes.
It was only on the cross, when bearing our sins, that Jesus was forsaken of God. He bore our sins in His own body on the tree. All His lifetime He walked in the sunshine of His Father’s approval, though outwardly a man of sorrows. If we apply any language like this to Christ, we must think of Him on the cross at the time. We need to be careful how we apply the Psalms to Him personally.
Even Psalm 69 is not the atoning sufferings of Christ, but the godly man suffering for righteousness’ sake, and for Jehovah’s sake, suffering from his persecutors for his godliness, and while specially applicable to Christ on the cross, it is also true of others who suffer in the same way. His prayer is unto Jehovah and is accepted (Verse 18), and judgment comes to the persecutors.
Psalm 91 is specially Jesus as the Messiah, but also takes in others as far as they walk in His steps.
Verse 2. (Jesus) Messiah claims this, “I will say of Jehovah, He is My refuge and My fortress: My God; in Him will I trust.”
Verses 3-8 is the Holy Spirit’s voice speaking to the Messiah.
Verses 9-13 is Israel’s voice also speaking to Him in the same way.
Verses 14-16 are Jehovah’s words to that faithful and true One.
The Lord Jesus was perfect in all His ways. He needed no chastening. All we believers need it. In applying this Psalm to ourselves, we must mark the difference, and submit to needed chastening.
The Lord, in grace, resigned this place of exemption from suffering, to walk in a lowly, suffering path, rejected and despised of men, a man of sorrows and acquainted with grief, but all His sufferings were in fellowship with God, and only on the cross He suffered for sin, our sins. We, too, suffer now with Christ in a world whose ruler is Satan.