Updated: Jul 19
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15 The eyes of Yahweh are upon the righteous, *
and his ears are open to their cry.
16 The face of Yahweh is against those who do evil, *
to root out the remembrance of them from the earth.
17 The righteous cry, and Yahweh hears them *
and delivers them from all their troubles.
18 Yahweh is near to the brokenhearted *
and will save those whose spirits are crushed.
19 Many are the troubles of the righteous, *
but Yahweh will deliver him out of them all.
20 He will keep safe all his bones; *
not one of them shall be broken.
21 Evil shall slay the wicked, *
and those who hate the righteous will be punished.
22 Yahweh ransoms the life of his servants, *
and none will be punished who trust in him.
This is the accompanying Psalm for the Track 2 Old Testament reading from Joshua 24, when Joshua convened a meeting of the Israelites in Shechem, telling them the Tabernacle would become fixed at that location, therefore all Israelites were free to choose what gods or God they would serve. Joshua said his “house” would serve Yahweh and the others added their commitment to do the same, saying the true tabernacle of Yahweh is in the soul, within the flesh of the servant-wife. If chosen, this pair will be read before the Ephesians reading, where Paul wrote, “Pray in the Spirit at all times in every prayer and supplication. To that end keep alert and always persevere in supplication for all the saints.” All will accompany the Gospel reading from John, where Jesus asked his twelve apostles, “Do you also wish to go away?” and Peter responded, “Lord, to whom can we go? You have the words of eternal life. We have come to believe and know that you are the Holy One of God.”
This is the third Sunday in a row where Psalm 34 has been presented in sections. Today, verses 15 – 22 are sung openly. In the translation presented above, you will note that I have restored the proper name written, “Yahweh,” in the six places where the English translation has presented a generic “Lord.” David did not write songs that were inspired divinely by some generic “lord,” as a generic “lord” can be the same as a lust for wisdom that comes without a soul needing to marry Yahweh. Solomon sold his soul to Satan, refusing to submit his self-will to a “lord” that would not promise to serve him above all others. This Psalm has been attached to the Joshua reading because Joshua and the Israelites chose “Yahweh,” rather than some other “lord.”
In verse fifteen, the first half places focus on “the eyes of Yahweh are upon the righteous”. This can sound as if Yahweh is watching the righteous from heaven. That is the wrong way of reading these words, as they mean “the righteous” wear the face of Yahweh, because their souls have married Him. Therefore, “the righteous” are able to see with “the eyes of Yahweh.” It is impossible for any human being to truly be “righteous” without this presence within, guiding all actions, so having the ability to see the traps and lures of wickedness are part of one’s being.
When the second half of verse fifteen sings, “and his ears are open to their cry,” this again must be seen as from a perspective of Yahweh being joined with one’s soul. There is no physical presence of Yahweh, other than those who have joined with His Spirit. All prayers are heard by Yahweh, because the prayer aligns one’s soul to that union. The reality is Yahweh’s “ears” are those of the prayer’s source, which is not normally an audible prayer, as much as a thought. The conversation heard in one’s mind is then where the “ears of Yahweh” are found. When prayers are only “cries” [from “shavah,” meaning “cries for help”], one has been led to seek Yahweh because of sins, meaning one is not “righteous” or “just.” However, because the “eyes of Yahweh” are on the “righteous,” Yahweh will lead His ministers to those in need, by knowing who is seeking to become a bridesmaid to Him.
Verse sixteen then affirms this, by literally singing, “the face of Yahweh is set against evil.” This says all His priests and servants who are His brides and wear His “face” [“paneh”], so they become the antithesis of “evil.” Their presence on earth is to lead others away from “evil,” and to also wear “the face of Yahweh.” Thus, the second half of the verse sings the reason Yahweh sends out His priests, which is “to cut off from the earth the remembrance of them.” This states a forgiveness of sins. From a soul’s marriage to Yahweh all past sins in the material world will be forgotten, wiped clean.
Verse seventeen then repeats the second half of verse fifteen, singing an instruction for those who do evil, “cry out and Yahweh hears.” The assumption that it is the righteous who are “crying for help” is wrong, as those souls that have become in union with Yahweh’s Spirit no longer experience “troubles” and “distress.” While all His servants will attract evil to them, and evil acts will be turned against those who wear the “face of Yahweh,” they will not be making pleas to make it all go away. Therefore, David was singing about those who have offered prayers for help, who then receive that help in the form of the righteous. When they arrive, it then becomes time to receive Yahweh in marriage and have one’s “troubles” erased, through divine “deliverance” within one’s being.
When verse eighteen is shown to sing, “Yahweh is near to the brokenhearted and will save those whose spirits are crushed,” the implication is Yahweh desires to rescue the downtrodden. The problem with that view is it glories being downtrodden, and says little about the presence of Yahweh keeping that situation from reoccurring. The truth is the Hebrew uses words that divide “brokenhearted” into separate words that are joined together, as “lə·niš·bə·rê- lêḇ.” The language written literally says, “near Yahweh to those who have broken heart.” This says a soul ‘engaged’ to marry Yahweh has brought Him “near” [“qarob”], but not yet drawn the two together as one in divine union. The wedding does not take place until after a soul “has broken his or her inner self” from controlling their flesh. This makes “brokenhearted” not be a state of inner misery, but instead be a soul's rejection of outer influences that tempt it away from Yahweh, making Him be distant [rather than near].
This then sings [in the second half of the verse] about “those who have a contrite spirit,” where that “crushed” [a NRSV translation of “contrite”] is the influences of sin. A renewed “spirit” of commitment has come, demonstrated by a desire to be one with Yahweh [not married to some “lord” of addiction]. The proof of one's commitment then leads to the “salvation” [from “yasha”] or “deliverance” from death that is brought about by the sins of the flesh. It is deliverance from reincarnation [or worse], so eternal life for the soul is gained.
Verse nineteen then sings [NRSV], “Many are the troubles of the righteous, but Yahweh will deliver him out of them all.” This, again, is not a statement about the righteous after they have become so, with holy matrimony having taken place, between their souls and Yahweh’s Spirit. The meaning of “righteous” [from “tsaddiq”] are to be seen as “blameless, innocent, right and just.” Those are not “afflictions” [a better translation of “ra’,” not “troubles”], which come from doing “bad” and “evil” things” [the true translation of “ra’”]. The “many evils” is then the possible number of “lords” that can possess a body of flesh and lead it away from Yahweh. The meaning of “many evils” is then the strength one’s soul must display, which can only come from the truth of love and a deep desire to stop sinning and gain eternal life. To gain a “righteous” state of being, every other god must be turned away by one’s soul, knowing Yahweh is nearby. By displaying the courage of love in resisting evil, Yahweh will then be the hand that sweeps in and removes all temptations from having affect.
When verse twenty is shown to sing, “He will keep safe all his bones; not one of them shall be broken,” the word translated as “bones” needs to be understood. The Hebrew word “‘aṣ·mō·ṯāw” is written, as “his bones,” which pulls from the root word “etsem.” According to Strong’s, “etsem” means “bone, substance, self,” with Strong’s Exhaustive Concordance adding: “body, bone, life, selfsame, strength, very.” The figurative usage implies “the substance, i.e. (as pronoun) Selfsame.” When that meaning is seen, it becomes David prophesying the question that Yahweh would present to the prophet Ezekiel, “Mortal, can these bones live?” The answer to that question is now sung by David’s words as being, "Yahweh will keep safe all who are the selfsame as Yahweh.” That says Yahweh will preserve all souls who have become His “bones” on earth.
When the second half literally sings, “one of them not is broken,” the intent of “shabar” [“to break, break in pieces” – Strong’s] says no soul married to Yahweh will ever divorce Him and leave His protection. The word written that translates as “will keep safe” is “šō·mêr,” which means “he keeps, watches, preserves,” or “he guards.” There, the intent means Yahweh has absolute control once His Spirit possesses a soul [i.e.: a bone]. In this way, the soul of David never broke free of Yahweh when he sinned and ruined his legacy as king. David’s sin was really no different than the sins of Adam and wife [the woman we love to call Eve]. Those sins were necessary for Yahweh’s plan to progress; so, no bones were broken in the portrayal of those sins.
When verse twenty-one sings, “Evil shall slay the wicked, and those who hate the righteous will be punished,” the first half must be seen as stating how all breakage of souls [bones] comes from the lords of “evil” [“rā·‘āh,” from “ra’”]. Those “lords” lead souls to be slaves of their flesh, which then leads them into lives of “wickedness” [“rā·šā‘,” from “rasah,” meaning “wicked, criminal”]. Those souls will become “broken bones” because their “same selves” [a self should always be read as a soul] will have married Satan [the premier “Lord” that is not Yahweh]. Those sold souls will then be the ones “who hate the righteous,” and thereby persecute them. Those souls will receive the ultimate breakage from receiving “condemnation” [“ye’·šā·mū,” from “asham”] from Yahweh, upon their souls’ releases from their dead bodies of flesh.
The last verse in this song, number twenty-two, then sings, “redeems Yahweh the soul of his servants , and none shall be condemned , of those who trust him”. This sings the truth of redemption, from souls married to Yahweh having gained eternal life after death. The use of “servants” [from “ebed” – “a slave, servant”] means marriage to Yahweh does not bring a life of luxury, where doing nothing more than sitting in a pew and listening to orations of hot air by hired hands, is the chore of putting up with no sin in one’s life. A “servant” is a minister who goes into the world as an extension of Yahweh [His bones that live]. As David served Yahweh, so too did the Israelites under David serve Yahweh. Those who will find eternal life for their souls will be those who marry Yahweh and do His bidding, lovingly and willingly.
As the accompanying Psalm to the Old Testament reading from Joshua, where the focus is clearly on deciding to serve Yahweh or whatever gods your soul chooses, the lesson of this choice must be seen as wearing the face of Yahweh against those in the world, who number “many,” that are married to Satan and his worldly “lords.” No ministry can ever commence before one’s soul has made the commitment "to have and to hold" the presence of Yahweh "from this day forward," forever. The death of the physical body does not end a relationship that is spiritual; and, the servants of Yahweh will lead other souls to that same commitment, rather than mislead others as agents of evil.