Posted by: Maggie | November 8, 2007

Love-And-Faithfulness

We are talking about “faithfulness” in the 10 weeks series this week (www.rayengland.wordpress.com) , so in my 90 Day readings, the word “faithfulness” has stuck out like a sore thumb as I’ve read the Psalms.  I’ve realized a few things…

  • Faithfulness is OFTEN mentioned in conjunction with the word LOVE.  In fact, seldom does the writer mention love without mentioning faithfulness.  I would imagine this correlation and coupling accounts for the reason we hear marriage counselors say that couples need security in marriage Ifaithfulness) to say that they experience “love”.  This correlation may also account for the reason unfaithfulness lends itself to lack of feelings of love in a marriage.  A person finds someone else, and all of a sudden “I just don’t love my spouse any more.  The feelings are not there.”  That is because “love and faithfulness meet/live together.” (Psalm 85:10).  Love needs the expressions of faithful loving-care to be realized.  The “fruit of the Spirit”– “one whole ball of wax”.  “Faith without works is dead”.  Love without works is also dead.  The expressions and faithful commitment make love the treasure that it is.
  • Faithful love is shown in times of tough love, discipline, and testing. 
  • Generational evidences of God’s faithfulness holds up our faith more than we know.  The Psalmist kept point to God’s faithfulness to deliver the Isrealites from the hands of the Egyptians through the Red Sea.  It didn’t even hold up the faith of the Israelites!  But, centuries later, it holds up the faith of the Psalmists in times of deepest depression and struggle.  It didn’t get their Israelites through some food cravings.  But, it carries the Psalmist in the darkest nights.  Generations…we need a legacy for faithfulness to be proven to us.  Oh, how dear the Bible is to us for this reason!

Last night, I glanced at the NIV Study Bible Commentary Notes briefly and I found such a treat.  It said: “literally rendered:  love-and-faithfulness”.  Those two words are sewn together at the hip!  It makes such sense!  I loved it! It’s like the word “lovingkindness”…the expression of love is so central to the love that they just made it one big happy word

Faithfulness is crucial.  It builds our faith.  It builds our trust.  In the darkest of nights.  We believe.  Why?  Because God is faithful.  Not because things look God.  Not because we perceive or understand God “The Lord knows the thoughts of man; he knows that they are futile” (Psalm 94:11). 

God is faithful because he is faithful.  We may undergo discipline as the Psalmists did, for the sins of our country, for our own need for correction, to prove something in the heavenlies, as with Job.  Most of these seem to NOT understand the reason for it at the time.  They were just things that needed to be done.  While God loves us, but we cannot understand his purposes or plans.  But, we can trust his faithful-love.  I wonder how often my “understanding issues” have gotten in the way of his deep faithful-love for me?

The Psalmists commitment to joy and praise was ABOVE their understanding, not due to their understanding of what God was doing.  We read “Give me understanding, that I may obey your law”, but that was to help them obey, not to help them praise.  They praised because of what they knew of God already. 

From the conglomeration of all the Psalms I[‘m learning these things afresh:  Love from God is NOT a feeling of blessing all the time.  Love is NOT being away from trouble.  Love is NOT being on the mountain-top with God where you feel warm and bubbly.  Love is NOT always being in a position of favor with men.  God’s faithful-love-and-care doesn’t depend on our emotional state, understanding, or circumstances.  God’s heart for us is steadfast, even when we as a people (nation), or as individuals, are being disciplined…even if we don’t know why.  God’s love is the love of a parent, a tough-love, at times.  He loves us so much that it can hurt!  But, it hurts Him even more than it does us, I’ll just bet.   

A few places in scripture where love and faithfulness are seen hanging out together:

  1. Psalm 89:8
    O LORD God Almighty, who is like you? You are mighty, O LORD, and your faithfulness surrounds you.
    Psalm 89:7-9 (in Context) Psalm 89 (Whole Chapter)
  2. Psalm 117:2
    For great is his love toward us, and the faithfulness of the LORD endures forever. Praise the LORD.
    Psalm 117:1-2 (in Context) Psalm 117 (Whole Chapter)
  3. Exodus 34:6
    And he passed in front of Moses, proclaiming, “The LORD, the LORD, the compassionate and gracious God, slow to anger, abounding in love and faithfulness,
    Exodus 34:5-7 (in Context) Exodus 34 (Whole Chapter)
  4. Deuteronomy 7:9
    Know therefore that the LORD your God is God; he is the faithful God, keeping his covenant of love to a thousand generations of those who love him and keep his commands.
  5. Psalm 119:75
    I know, O LORD, that your laws are righteous, and in faithfulness you have afflicted me.
    Psalm 119:74-76 (in Context) Psalm 119 (Whole Chapter)
  6. Proverbs 20:28
    Love and faithfulness keep a king safe; through love his throne is made secure.
    Proverbs 20:27-29 (in Context) Proverbs 20 (Whole Chapter)
  7. Psalm 85:10
    Love and faithfulness meet together; righteousness and peace kiss each other.
    Psalm 85:9-11 (in Context) Psalm 85 (Whole Chapter)
  8. Psalm 89:14
    Righteousness and justice are the foundation of your throne; love and faithfulness go before you.
    Psalm 89:13-15 (in Context) Psalm 89 (Whole Chapter)
  9. Psalm 86:15
    But you, O Lord, are a compassionate and gracious God, slow to anger, abounding in love and faithfulness.
    Psalm 86:14-16 (in Context) Psalm 86 (Whole Chapter)
  10. Galatians 5:22
    But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness,
    Galatians 5:21-23 (in Context) Galatians 5 (Whole Chapter)
  11. Psalm 61:7
    May he be enthroned in God’s presence forever; appoint your love and faithfulness to protect him.
    Psalm 61:6-8 (in Context) Psalm 61 (Whole Chapter)
  12. Psalm 36:5
    Your love, O LORD, reaches to the heavens, your faithfulness to the skies.
    Psalm 36:4-6 (in Context) Psalm 36 (Whole Chapter)
  13. Psalm 88:11
    Is your love declared in the grave, your faithfulness in Destruction ?
    Psalm 88:10-12 (in Context) Psalm 88 (Whole Chapter)
  14. Psalm 57:10
    For great is your love, reaching to the heavens; your faithfulness reaches to the skies.
    Psalm 57:9-11 (in Context) Psalm 57 (Whole Chapter)
  15. Psalm 89:33
    but I will not take my love from him, nor will I ever betray my faithfulness.
    Psalm 89:32-34 (in Context) Psalm 89 (Whole Chapter)
  16. Psalm 108:4
    For great is your love, higher than the heavens; your faithfulness reaches to the skies.
    Psalm 108:3-5 (in Context) Psalm 108 (Whole Chapter)
  17. Psalm 117:2
    For great is his love toward us, and the faithfulness of the LORD endures forever. Praise the LORD.
    Psalm 117:1-2 (in Context) Psalm 117 (Whole Chapter)
  18. Psalm 92:2
    to proclaim your love in the morning and your faithfulness at night,
    Psalm 92:1-3 (in Context) Psalm 92 (Whole Chapter)
  19. Psalm 89:2
    I will declare that your love stands firm forever, that you established your faithfulness in heaven itself.
    Psalm 89:1-3 (in Context) Psalm 89 (Whole Chapter)
  20. Psalm 89:49
    O Lord, where is your former great love, which in your faithfulness you swore to David?
    Psalm 89:48-50 (in Context) Psalm 89 (Whole Chapter)
  21. Proverbs 16:6
    Through love and faithfulness sin is atoned for; through the fear of the LORD a man avoids evil.
    Proverbs 16:5-7 (in Context) Proverbs 16 (Whole Chapter)
  22. Psalm 100:5
    For the LORD is good and his love endures forever; his faithfulness continues through all generations.
    Psalm 100:4-5 (in Context) Psalm 100 (Whole Chapter)
  23. Psalm 98:3
    He has remembered his love and his faithfulness to the house of Israel; all the ends of the earth have seen the salvation of our God.
    Psalm 98:2-4 (in Context) Psalm 98 (Whole Chapter)
  24. Isaiah 61:8
    “For I, the LORD, love justice; I hate robbery and iniquity. In my faithfulness I will reward them and make an everlasting covenant with them.
    Isaiah 61:7-9 (in Context) Isaiah 61 (Whole Chapter)
  25. Psalm 89:1
    [ A maskil of Ethan the Ezrahite. ] I will sing of the LORD’s great love forever; with my mouth I will make your faithfulness known through all generations.
    Psalm 89:1-3 (in Context) Psalm 89 (Whole Chapter)
  26. Proverbs 3:3
    Let love and faithfulness never leave you; bind them around your neck, write them on the tablet of your heart.
    Proverbs 3:2-4 (in Context) Proverbs 3 (Whole Chapter)
  27. Proverbs 14:22
    Do not those who plot evil go astray? But those who plan what is good find love and faithfulness.
    Proverbs 14:21-23 (in Context) Proverbs 14 (Whole Chapter)
  28. Psalm 115:1
    Not to us, O LORD, not to us but to your name be the glory, because of your love and faithfulness.
    Psalm 115:1-3 (in Context) Psalm 115 (Whole Chapter)
  29. Isaiah 16:5
    In love a throne will be established; in faithfulness a man will sit on it— one from the house of David— one who in judging seeks justice and speeds the cause of righteousness.
    Isaiah 16:4-6 (in Context) Isaiah 16 (Whole Chapter)
  30. Psalm 40:10
    I do not hide your righteousness in my heart; I speak of your faithfulness and salvation. I do not conceal your love and your truth from the great assembly.
    Psalm 40:9-11 (in Context) Psalm 40 (Whole Chapter)
  31. Psalm 57:3
    He sends from heaven and saves me, rebuking those who hotly pursue me; Selah God sends his love and his faithfulness.
    Psalm 57:2-4 (in Context) Psalm 57 (Whole Chapter)
  32. Psalm 138:2
    I will bow down toward your holy temple and will praise your name for your love and your faithfulness, for you have exalted above all things your name and your word.
    Psalm 138:1-3 (in Context) Psalm 138 (Whole Chapter)
  33. Hosea 4:1
    [ The Charge Against Israel ] Hear the word of the LORD, you Israelites, because the LORD has a charge to bring against you who live in the land: “There is no faithfulness, no love, no acknowledgment of God in the land.
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Responses

  1. I pray that these scriptures will comfort you in this time of your life which feels like a mountain that will not be moved, be strong and know God is with you..


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