From Earthly to Heavenly

From Earthly to Heavenly
(Psalms 120-134)
Taught by:  Carolyn Sissom
Sunday a.m. and p.m. June 29, 2008
The Psalms were written to be sung,  read, taught and preached by the ministers of the Gospel, and to be used devotionally by God’s people everywhere.  The order of worship is of the Tabernacle of David which is the Mt. Zion order. 
This includes singers, instruments, recording, Thanking, Praise, rejoicing and joy, clapping, shouting, dancing, lifting up hands, worship-access-bowing, seeking the Lord, spiritual sacrifices and Amen (in Blessing).
The Tabernacle of David has been restored in the New Testament church.
There are five books of the Psalms.  Psalms 120-134 are called the ascent Psalms or Songs of Degrees.  These were sung by pilgrims on their way to Jerusalem for the Feasts.  These were all written by David at the time of David’s bringing up the Ark of the Covenant from the house of Obed-Edom. 
There are 15 of these psalms.  The obvious principles of growth, movement, progression, maturity, change, formation, development, restoration, repentance, and transfiguration are evident.
We are being conformed to the image of Jesus Christ.  We are ascending into the higher realms of the Spirit.  We are returning to the dominion in Eden.  We are returning to the bosom of the Father.  We are being changed.  We are saved and are being saved (delivered).  We are growing in the grace and knowledge of Jesus Christ.  We are ascending into Zion and the full authority of His throne.  We are ascending into the Hill of the Lord.  We are becoming just like Jesus!
There were 15 steps up into the Temple described by Ezekiel in his prophecy of the gospel church (40: 6, 22-31).  These are the steps ascended by the priests.  The principles here are the stability and permanency of the Temple concept, and also the Melchisedec Priesthood which parallels the Zadok Priesthood in Ezekiel.
The first seven of the Psalms of Ascent can be likened to the seven steps up in to the Most Holy Place in the Temple of Solomon and the steps up to Solomon’s throne. (1 Kg. 10: 19-20)  This also applies to the seven principles of 11 Peter 1: 4-9:  “That by these you might be partakers of the divine nature, having escaped the corruption that is in the world through lust…add to your faith virtue; and to virtue knowledge; and to knowledge temperance; and to temperance patience; and to patience Godliness; and to Godliness brotherly kindness; and to brotherly kindness love.  For if these things be in yourand abound, they make you that you shall neither be barren nor unfruitful in the knowledge of our Lord Jesus Christ.”
We can compare it to the seven churches of Rev. 2-3 as the seven steps of the throne of Rev. 3:21:  “To him that overcomes will I grant to sit with me in my throne, even as I also overcame, and am set down with my father in his throne.  He that has an ear let him hear what the Spirit says unto the churches.”  We can also compare it to the seven days of creation and the water pots of John 2, plus many other teachings.
Psalm 120:  Deliverance from the confusion of a deceitful tongue; renunciation and separation from Babylon, self and vanity of the world.  It is the first step.  This is a prayer for protection by one who lived among a deceitful and treacherous people far away from Zion.  It shows the suffering of the Godly, and notes the whiplash of wagging tongues.   This is the man of deceit, the troublers, the false tongue is the spirit of antichrist – the man of sin, the son of perdition; this is the carnal mind and the Jacob nature that must meet God face to face.   The present circumstances of the singer are absence from the presence of the Lord.  He is living among a people whose motives and activities are contrary to his deepest convictions and desires.   Jesus is here revealed as the deliverer.  “Deliver my soul, O lord, from lying lips, and from a deceitful tongue.  What shall be given unto you? Or what shall be done unto you, thou false tongue?” Sharp arrows of the mighty with coals of Juniper describes His sons, who are words of truth and light (64: 3-7)   Meshech and the tents of Kedar figuratively describe the distance of his home from the abode and center of peace.  “My soul has long dwelt with him who hates peace, but when I speak, they are for war.”  Jesus is peace.  War is the carnal nature.
Psalm 121:  Preservation –Jesus the Keeper and Preserver.  He is the Keeper of Israel.  This song is the truth of preservation from the weight of sin to a weightless state of trusting Him.  It was sung while the mountains of Israel were still in view.  It is the Song of God, the guardian.
This agrees with the Keeping Power of the Lord Jesus Christ.  It is the Drawing Power of God and His keeping power.
“I will lift up mine eyes unto the hills, from whence comes my help.  My help comes from the Lord, which made heaven and earth.  He will not suffer your foot to be moved; he that keeps you will not slumber.  Behold, He that keeps Israel shall neither slumber nor sleep.  The Lord is your keeper; the Lord is your shade upon your right hand.  The sun shall not smite you by day or the moon by night.  The last two verses is Jesus the Preserver.  “The Lord shall preserve your going out and you’re coming in from this time forth, and even forevermore.”
Psalm 122:  The Peace of Jerusalem or peace within God’s habitation.  These songs were sung when the people had entered the gates and were standing in the city.  The Habitation of Peace, points to the Church, New Jerusalem, Mt. Zion, the City of our God.  There is the joy of arrival, bonds of unity and vision of peace.  This is the spiritual peace of God that passes all understanding so that we are no longer affected by circumstances.  ‘I was glad when they said unto me; Let us go into the house of the Lord.  Our feet shall stand within your gates O Jerusalem.  Jerusalem is built as a city that is compact together.  Whiter the tribes go up, the tribes of the Lord, unto the testimony of Israel, to give thanks unto the name of the Lord.  For there are set thrones of judgments, the thrones of the house of David.
“Pray for the peace of Jerusalem:  they shall prosper that love you.  Peace be within your walls, and prosperity within your palaces.  For my brethren and companions sakes, I will now say Peace be within you.  Because of the house of the Lord our God I will seek your good.”
Psalm 123:  Jesus is the one who dwells in the heavens.  It is patience in vision; Psalm of the eyes; (eyes of hope) and the Passover Lamb.  It is also a cry for mercy in distress.  Not seeking the support of the world (or self), but the hand of the Father. 
“Unto you do I lift up my eyes, O you that dwells in the heavens.  Behold as the eyes of servants look unto the hand of their masters, and the eyes of a maiden unto the hand of her mistress; so our eyes wait upon the Lord our God, until that he has mercy upon us.  Have mercy upon us, O lord, have mercy upon us:  for we are exceedingly filled with contempt.  Our soul is exceedingly filled with the scorning of those that are at ease and with the contempt of the proud.  (Contempt is the fruit of pride).  This is the insults of those who are not ascending.     This passage reveals submission, patience, and constancy. 
Psalm 124:  The Bird who escaped:  From carnal to spiritual; from kingdom of darkness to Kingdom of Son.  Not carnal weapons or warfare, but the Lord Himself- total dependence upon the Lord.  This Psalm may have been written after the revolt of Absalom (11 Sam. 19)  and reveals the principle of dependence on Jehovah.  It is a song to God, the Rescuer.  The Lord preserves all those who ascend  into Zion (his Holy Hill).  The ascent  is dangerous.  This is the failure of earthly armor.
“if it has not been the Lord who was on our side, now may Israel say; If it had been the Lord who was on our side, when men rose up against us; Then they had swallowed us up quick, when their wrath was kindled against us: Then the waters had overwhelmed us, the stream had gone over our soul:  Then the proud waters had gone over our soul.  Blessed be the Lord, who has not given us as a pretty to their teeth.  Our soul is escaped as a bird out of the snare of the fowlers: the snare is broken, and we are escaped.  Our help is in the name of the Lord, who made heaven and earth.”
Psalm 125:  The One who is round about His people. Trust with resultant confidence.  This Song of the safety of the Believer was sung while the pilgrims walked through the city of Jerusalem, and reveals the principle of trust.  The commitment of  trust brings confidence!  This Hymn of trust tells of the reward of the righteous and the punishment of the wicked.
In the previous Psalm we look back to that from which we have escaped; in this Psalm, we look forward to the fullness of that to which we go.  God here is the Guardian of the Right.  He is the stability of Zion and of Israel.
They that trust in the Lord shall be as mount Zion, which cannot be removed, but abides forever.  As the mountains are round about Jerusalem, so the Lord is round about his people from henceforth even forever.  For the rod of the wicked shall not rest upon the lot of the righteous; lest the righteous put forth their hand unto iniquity.  Do good, O Lord, unto those that be good, and to them that are upright in their hearts.  As for such as turn aside unto their crooked ways, the Lord shall lead them forth with the workers of iniquity: but peace shall be upon Israel.”
“No evil power shall be allowed to hold sway over the land allotted to the righteous.” – Harrison
Psalm 126:  The One who sowed in Tears -  Joy in communion – From the Lord’s turning to the turning of Zion; sowing to reaping – Looking at the death of flesh’s hard shell, release of life from within.  This is the Psalm of Joy after sorrow and reveals the principle of joy in communion.  This is a Song of Thanksgiving for return from captivity.  It is also knows as the Psalm of laughter and tears.  It is joy relived and Joy reclaimed.
“When the Lord turned again the captivity of Zion, we were like them that dream.  Then was our mouth filled with laughter, and our tongue with singing: then said they among the heathen, the Lord has done great things for them.  The Lord  has done great things for us; whereof we are glad.  Turn again our captivity, O Lord as the streams in the south.  They that sow in tears shall reap in joy.  He that goes forth and weeps bearing precious seed, shall doubtless come again with rejoicing, bringing his sheaves with him.”
Psalm 127:  -Jesus is the one who builds the house – The Builder’s Psalm – total commitment of works.- from tearing down to building up from self-labor to the Lord’s inheritance – Looking at the house and household of God- Usefulness.    This Psalm was of or by Solomon.  The Hebrew word for Son is “Ben” and also means “build.”  Note the parallel of the Temple-building and family-building. It is the song of the futility of human effort without God.  There are seven designations here for God’s sons:  1. House; 2. City; 3. Beloved; 4. Heritage; 5. Fruit; 6. Reward; 7. Arrows.  “Except the Lord build the house, they labor in vain that build it; except the Lord keep the city, the watchman wakes but in vain. It is vain for you to rise up early to sit up late, to eat the bread of sorrows; for so he gives his beloved sleep.  Lo, children are a heritage of the Lord, and the fruit of the womb is his reward.  As arrows are in the hand of a mighty man; so are children of the youth.  Happy is the man that has his quiver full of them:  they shall not be ashamed, but they shall speak with the enemies at the gate.”
Psalm 128:  The One with a fruitful Wife – Fear of God and consequent blessings – Maturity- from futility to fruitfulness – not in carnality but in the fear of the Lord – walking and working in power of the Spirit, fruitfulness of a Spirit-filled life.
This is a picture of the house of Psalm 127 fully built, and reveals a principle of the Fear of God and its consequent blessing.  It is a family hymn to be sung by a happy household who have met to praise the Lord.  It is the Psalm for those who are about to marry.  It pictures the Lord Jesus and his Bride (the Church) and Sons (the Overcomer) in the peace of the Kingdom!
This is the marriage song.  This reveals the relation between the prosperity of the family and that of the city.  It is a man before God, the family circle and the wider horizon.  This is the Beatitudes in the Psalms.
“Blessed is everyone that fears the Lord; that walks in his ways.  For you shall eat the labor of your hands: happy shall you be and it shall be well with you.  Your wife shall be as a fruitful vine the sides of your house: your children like olive plants round about your table.  Behold, that thus shall the man be blessed that fears the Lord.   The Lord shall bless you out of Zion: and you shall see the good of Jerusalem all the days of your life.  Yes, you shall see your children’s children, and peace upon Israel.”

Psalm 129:  The One whose back was plowed – victory over affliction – the Life of the Spirit vs. the Life of the flesh- not in emptiness of passing frailties, but in fullness of His eternal blessings.  This is the Psalm of patience in adversity, and reveals the principle of our victory.  It is the song of an older and more tried individual, and is full of allusions t husbandry.  It is also Israel’s prayer of the overthrow of her enemies, and reveals the Lord, Israel’s preserver.  This is a prayer for the downfall of all who have crushed God’s people.  It is an imprecatory prayer of the scarred survivor and the price of hatred.
“Many a time have they afflicted me from my youth, may Israel now say:  Many a time have they afflicted me from my youth: yet they have not prevailed against me.  The plowers plowed upon my back: they made long their furrows.  The Lord is righteous: he has cut asunder the cords of the wicked.  Let them all be confounded and turned back that hate Zion.  Let them be as the grass upon the housetops, which withers before it grows up:  Wherewith the mower fills not his hand; not he that binds sheaves his bosom.  Neither do they which go by say, “The blessing of the Lord be upon you; we bless you in the name of the Lord.
Psalm 130:  The One who is Plenteous Redemption – Looking up from the depths of the soul looking at His apparent withdrawal from darkness of night to morning. – Without Him life does not go on; rest which comes from waiting.  This is waiting for redemption.  This is the cry and the wait for the Faithful Redeemer.
‘Out of the depths have I cried unto you, O Lord.  Lord hear my voice: let your ears be attentive to the voice of my supplications.  If you, Lord should mark iniquities, O lord, who shall stand?  But there is forgiveness with you, that you may be feared.  I wait for the Lord, my soul does wait, and in his word do I hope  my soul waits for the Lord more than they that watch for the morning:  I say, more than they that watch for the morning.  Let Israel hope in the Lord; for with the Lord there is mercy, and with him is plenteous redemption.  And he shall redeem Israel from all his iniquities.”
Psalm 131:  The Child weaned of His Mother- This is his Song of Humility, and reveals the principle of humility, lowliness, and meekness.  It is the Song of Childlike Trust in God, and speaks of the Lord, Israel’s Hope.  A Psalm of simple trust. -The humble child – the weaned child – from haughtiness to humbleness – not a hope in His blessings, but in Him – not in questioning why but rust the Who. (Weaning of Isaac)
Lord my heart is not haughty, not mine eyes lofty; neither do I exercise myself in great matters, or in things too high for me.  Surely I have behaved and quieted myself as a child that is weaned of his mother; my soul is even as a weaned child.  Let Israel hope in the Lord from henceforth and forever.”
Psalm 132:  The Fruit of David’s Body – Union with God – Determination motivated by desire- Looking at the Lord’s Heart – from a divided heart to a whole heart – not in trying to build Him a house, but in allowing our house to become His – God rests in man. This is the Psalm of Messiah, David’s Son, Enthroned.  This was written in commemoration of the Day the Ark was brought up to Jerusalem.  This Psalm is messianic and prophetic.  The Song of the ascending of the Ark into Zion – David’s oath to God – the procession to Zion – God’s oath to David – His presence in Zion
“Lord remember David, and all his afflictions:  How he swore unto the Lord, and vowed unto the mighty God of Jacob; Surely I will not come into the tabernacle of my house, not go up into my bed; I will not give sleep to my eyes, or slumber to my eyelids, until I find out a place for the Lord, an habitation for the might God of Jacob.  Lo, we heard of it at Ephratah: we found it in the fields of the wood.  We will go into his tabernacles:  we will  worship at His  footstool.  Arise, O Lord, into your rest; you ,and  the ark of your strength.  Let your priests be clothed with righteousness; and let your saints shout for joy.  For your servant David’s sake turn not way the face of your anointed.  The Lord has sworn in truth unto David; he will not turn from it; of the fruit of your body will I set upon your throne. If your children will keep my covenant and my testimony that I shall teach them, their children shall also sit upon your throne for evermore.  For the Lord has chosen Zion; he has desired it for his habitation.  This is my rest forever; here will I dwell; for I have desired it.  I will abundantly bless her provision; I will satisfy her poor with bread.  I will also clothe her priests with salvation: and her saints shall shout aloud for joy.  There will I make the horn of David to bud: I have ordained a lamp for my anointed.  His enemies will I clothe with shame:  but upon himself shall his crown flourish”

Psalm 133:  The Anointed High Priest – Unity, anointing, and blessing – Looking at the Lord’s Body – From oneness within to harmony without from duplicity to singleness (oneness) – Ministering unto the Lord. – The Song of One Great Household, and the Communion of the Saints.  The Psalm of brotherly love and fraternal harmony.  At last the pilgrims are in the city.  In finding Jehovah they have found each other!  A new social order has been created.  It is like Oil (joy and richness of experience) and Dew (freshness and renewal of all life).  And the source of this blessing is Jehovah Himself.
“Behold, how good and how pleasant is if for brethren to dwell together in unity!  It is like the precious ointment upon the head, that ran down upon the beard, even Aaron’s beard; that went down to the skirts of his garments; As the dew of Hermon, and as the dew that descended upon the mountains of Zion: for there the Lord commanded the blessing, even life forevermore.”
Psalm 134:  The Lord that made heaven and earth – Praise and worship – perfected ministry – constant blessing of God is flowing out of Zion, the place of His habitation – Looking at the servants of the Lord (ministry) – From longing for peace (120) to the union with the God of peace (134); from prayer to worship. The Psalm of the Temple-Night-Watchers reveals the principle of perfected ministry in praise and worship.  It is the Song of Blessed Worship.  This is the last of the Psalms of Ascent and breathes the spirit of rest.  This Song of Unceasing Praise of the servants in Zion and the Lord’s blessing out of Zion.
“Behold, bless you the Lord, all you servants of the Lord, which by night stand in the house of the Lord.  Lift up your hands in the sanctuary, and bless the Lord.  The Lord that made heaven and earth bless you out of Zion

Carolyn Sissom, Pastor
Eastgate Ministries, Inc.

Scripture quotes from KJV.  Text from Principles of Present Trust by:  Kelly Varner.  Comments are my own.
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