Psa. 118:1 ¶ Oh, give thanks to the Lord, for He is good!

For His mercy endures forever.

Luther said that this was his favorite Psalm. That is saying a lot, he wrote several volumes of books displaying his love for all of the Psalms. This one was special. It seems that the Lord used this Psalm to encourage Luther during his three years of exile, being hidden away from the pope and church officials who were determined to get rid of Luther. This proved again the message of Luther’s life. That God speaks to us today, He speaks to us from His written word.

Have you ever been in a really tight spot? Maybe one of those times when there is just no way out? That’s often when God’s word speaks to us most clearly and His written word becomes more significant in our lives. The word of the Lord in this Psalm sustained Luther and encouraged him to finish his course with joy. Listen to Luther’s own description of this precious passage, you will see how important it was to him.
“This is my Psalm, my chosen Psalm. I love them all; I love all holy Scripture, which is my consolation and my life. But this Psalm is nearest my heart, and I have a peculiar right to call it mine. It has saved me from many a pressing danger, from which nor emperor, nor kings, nor sages, nor saints, could have saved me. It is my friend; dearer to me than all the honors and power of the earth… But it may be objected, that this Psalm is common to all; no one has a right to call it his own. Yes; but Christ is also common to all, and yet Christ is mine. I am not jealous of my property; I would divide it with the whole world… And would to God that all men would claim the Psalm as especially theirs! It would be the most touching quarrel, the most agreeable to God—a quarrel of union and perfect charity.”
It is in the written word that Jesus Himself becomes alive and precious to us. There was more than just words in a book with Luther in his hiding place. Jesus Himself was there forming a profound relationship in Luther’s life. Don’t be too disturbed if you are in one of those tight spots. Open up the book and you too will realize you are not alone.

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