Desolation and deliverance!

Desolation is often the result of man’s wickedness. Photo by
AJITH S on Unsplash.


Please read Psalms 46 and 47.

Upon reading these two Psalms on May 3rd, as part of my daily devotional Bible readings, my heart rejoiced afresh to read of God’s revelation of events that will take place at the end of the age when the Saviour returns.

Many commentators have attempted to apply these two Psalms to events in Israel’s past. That is not so. C H Spurgeon, in his ‘Treasury of David’ commentary has the following comment on verse 7 of Psalm 47:

‘For God is the King of all the earth’.  The Jews of our Saviour’s time resented this truth, but had their hearts been right they would have rejoiced in it.  They would have kept their God to themselves, and not even have allowed the Gentile dogs to eat the crumbs from under his table.  Alas! how selfishness turns honey into wormwood.  Jehovah is not the God of the Jews only, all the nations of the earth are, through the Messiah, yet to own him Lord.’ (The Treasury of David). He obviously saw a reference to the ‘future’ in these Psalms.

Three verses

Three verses in particular indicate that it is future events that are spoken of here.

“Be still, and know that I am God: I will be exalted among the heathen, I will be exalted in the earth,”Psalm 46:10.

“For the LORD most high is terrible; he is a great King over all the earth,” Psalm 47:2.

“For God is the King of all the earth: sing ye praises with understanding,” Psalm 47:7.

These verses refer to that event set forth in Revelation 11:15.

“And the seventh angel sounded; and there were great voices in heaven, saying, The kingdoms of this world are become the kingdoms of our Lord, and of his Christ; and he shall reign for ever and ever.”

It may be argued that the Lord is presently ‘King’ over all the earth. That is correct in a sense but it pleases God in His wisdom to ALLOW sinful man to live in defiance of His rule. BUT there is a day coming when the Lord will take to Himself the power and authority that are His and bring mankind UNDER His rule!


There is a number of indications of when the events spoken of take place!

This is set down very clearly.

1. It is at a time of great and unusual terrestrial and celestial occurrences. The Psalm 46 particularly refers to most unusual occurrences in the natural world.

“Therefore will not we fear, though the earth be removed, and though the mountains be carried into the midst of the sea; Though the waters thereof roar and be troubled, though the mountains shake with the swelling thereof. Selah,” Psalm 46:2-3.

The saviour referred to such phenomena as taking place just prior to His return in glory and great power.

“Jerusalem shall be trodden down of the Gentiles, until the times of the Gentiles be fulfilled. And there shall be signs in the sun, and in the moon, and in the stars; and upon the earth distress of nations, with perplexity; the sea and the waves roaring; men’s hearts failing them for fear, and for looking after those things which are coming on the earth: for the powers of heaven shall be shaken,” Luke 21:24-26. Hebrews 12 speaks of a time when the Lord will shake the earth and the heavens. “Whose voice then shook the earth: but now he hath promised, saying, Yet once more I shake not the earth only, but also heaven,”  verse 26.

The end of this age, which I believe is what the Psalm 46 is referring to,  will indeed see much distress, perplexity and fear amongst men at what the Lord is doing!

2. It is that time oft referred to, when men shall rise in unrestrained rebellion against God. “The heathen raged, the kingdoms were moved,” verse 6. This is a parallel of Psalm 2:1-3 and is what the apostle Paul refers to 1 and 2 Timothy.

“Now the Spirit speaketh expressly, that in the latter times some shall depart from the faith, giving heed to seducing spirits, and doctrines of devils; speaking lies in hypocrisy; having their conscience seared with a hot iron; forbidding to marry, and commanding to abstain from meats, which God hath created to be received with thanksgiving of them which believe and know the truth,” 1 Timothy 4:1-3.

“This know also, that in the last days perilous times shall come. For men shall be lovers of their own selves, covetous, boasters, proud, blasphemers, disobedient to parents, unthankful, unholy, without natural affection, trucebreakers, false accusers, incontinent, fierce, despisers of those that are good, traitors, heady, highminded, lovers of pleasures more than lovers of God; having a form of godliness, but denying the power thereof: from such turn away,” 2 Timothy 3:1-5.

We are seeing this already, or at least those with a believing discerning spirit when it comes to Bible prophecy, are observing the advance of the last apostasy.

These things tell us of the nearing of Christ’s return.

3. It is a time when the Lord is reconciled to the Jewish nation. “God is our refuge and strength, a very present help in trouble. Therefore will not we fear, though the earth be removed, and though the mountains be carried into the midst of the sea,” verses 1-2. “God is in the midst of her; she shall not be moved: God shall help her, and that right early,” verse 5. “The LORD of hosts is with us; the God of Jacob is our refuge. Selah,” verse 7. “Be still, and know that I am God: I will be exalted among the heathen, I will be exalted in the earth. The LORD of hosts is with us; the God of Jacob is our refuge. Selah,” verses 10-11.

There is a gathering taking place of the Jew back to his native land but the nation is still in unbelief. But that will change. That change will come at the return of Christ. It is then that a ’spiritual gathering’ will take place and the Lord will make Himself known once again to His ancient people. “And I will pour upon the house of David, and upon the inhabitants of Jerusalem, the spirit of grace and of supplications: and they shall look upon me whom they have pierced, and they shall mourn for him, as one mourneth for his only son, and shall be in bitterness for him, as one that is in bitterness for his firstborn. . . . . In that day there shall be a fountain opened to the house of David and to the inhabitants of Jerusalem for sin and for uncleanness,” Zechariah 12:10, 13:1.


We live in a day when the very thought of God and His coming to judge the wicked ways of men is publicly laughed at and those who hold to such views are openly mocked and derided! Yet here is a prophetic picture of those very events. Prophecy is ‘history written before it happens’!

It is a day when God shall break His silence and open His mouth in response to man’s defiance. “The heathen raged, the kingdoms were moved: he uttered his voice, the earth melted,” Psalms 46:6.

Once God spoke in ‘creation’, Genesis 1:1: Psalm 33:6. “Through faith we understand that the worlds were framed by the word of God, so that things which are seen were not made of things which do appear,” Hebrews 11:3.

Soon He will speak in ‘judgment’. “Come, behold the works of the LORD, what desolations he hath made in the earth. He maketh wars to cease unto the end of the earth; he breaketh the bow, and cutteth the spear in sunder; he burneth the chariot in the fire,” Psalm 46:8-9.


1. All the earth will experience His rule.“For the LORD most high is terrible; he is a great King over all the earth,” Psalm 47:2. “God reigneth over the heathen: God sitteth upon the throne of his holiness,” Psalm 47:8.

2. There will be a subduing of the nations. God is gone up with a shout, the LORD with the sound of a trumpet,” Psalm 46:5. This is the trumpet of war and victory. “And I saw heaven opened, and behold a white horse; and he that sat upon him was called Faithful and True, and in righteousness he doth judge and make war,” Revelation 19:11.

3. Under Christ’s ‘Kingship’ Israel will be sovereign amongst the nations. “He shall subdue the people under us, and the nations under our feet. He shall choose our inheritance for us, the excellency of Jacob whom he loved. Selah, . . . God reigneth over the heathen: God sitteth upon the throne of his holiness. The princes of the people are gathered together, even the people of the God of Abraham: for the shields of the earth belong unto God: he is greatly exalted,” Psalm 47:3-4, 8-9.

The many prophecies of the dominance of Israel over the nations, never seen as yet, will come to pass during the Millennial Reign of Christ. Jerusalem will become the CITY from which the Lord Jesus shall reign.

“The word that Isaiah the son of Amoz saw concerning Judah and Jerusalem. And it shall come to pass in the last days, that the mountain of the LORD’S house shall be established in the top of the mountains, and shall be exalted above the hills; and all nations shall flow unto it. And many people shall go and say, Come ye, and let us go up to the mountain of the LORD, to the house of the God of Jacob; and he will teach us of his ways, and we will walk in his paths: for out of Zion shall go forth the law, and the word of the LORD from Jerusalem. And he shall judge among the nations, and shall rebuke many people: and they shall beat their swords into plowshares, and their spears into pruninghooks: nation shall not lift up sword against nation, neither shall they learn war any more. O house of Jacob, come ye, and let us walk in the light of the LORD,” Isaiah 2:1-5.

“And it shall come to pass, that every one that is left of all the nations which came against Jerusalem shall even go up from year to year to worship the King, the LORD of hosts, and to keep the feast of tabernacles. And it shall be, that whoso will not come up of all the families of the earth unto Jerusalem to worship the King, the LORD of hosts, even upon them shall be no rain. And if the family of Egypt go not up, and come not, that have no rain; there shall be the plague, wherewith the LORD will smite the heathen that come not up to keep the feast of tabernacles. This shall be the punishment of Egypt, and the punishment of all nations that come not up to keep the feast of tabernacles. In that day shall there be upon the bells of the horses, HOLINESS UNTO THE LORD; and the pots in the LORD’S house shall be like the bowls before the altar. Yea, every pot in Jerusalem and in Judah shall be holiness unto the LORD of hosts: and all they that sacrifice shall come and take of them, and seethe therein: and in that day there shall be no more the Canaanite in the house of the LORD of hosts,” Zechariah 14:16-21.

In a wonderful way, the Gentile believers will share in the reign of Christ. “And the kingdom and dominion, and the greatness of the kingdom under the whole heaven, shall be given to the people of the saints of the most High, whose kingdom is an everlasting kingdom, and all dominions shall serve and obey him,” Daniel 7:27.

“And I saw thrones, and they sat upon them, and judgment was given unto them: and I saw the souls of them that were beheaded for the witness of Jesus, and for the word of God, and which had not worshipped the beast, neither his image, neither had received his mark upon their foreheads, or in their hands; and they lived and reigned with Christ a thousand years. But the rest of the dead lived not again until the thousand years were finished. This is the first resurrection,” Revelation 20:4-5.

4. During the thousand-year reign of Christ, the earth will enjoy a time of ‘restitution’ to a state similar to that in which it was before Adam’s fall and will become a place of joy and peace. That which the ‘United Nations’ and all the peace movements and peace conferences and peace agreements and treaties could never achieve, Christ will bring about when He returns. He is, after all, the ‘Prince of Peace. “For unto us a child is born, unto us a son is given: and the government shall be upon his shoulder: and his name shall be called Wonderful, Counsellor, The mighty God, The everlasting Father, The Prince of Peace. Of the increase of his government and peace there shall be no end, upon the throne of David, and upon his kingdom, to order it, and to establish it with judgment and with justice from henceforth even for ever. The zeal of the LORD of hosts will perform this,” Isaiah 9:6-7.

“He maketh wars to cease unto the end of the earth; he breaketh the bow, and cutteth the spear in sunder; he burneth the chariot in the fire,” Psalm 46:9.

“Repent ye therefore, and be converted, that your sins may be blotted out, when the times of refreshing shall come from the presence of the Lord; and he shall send Jesus Christ, which before was preached unto you: whom the heaven must receive until the times of restitution of all things, which God hath spoken by the mouth of all his holy prophets since the world began,” Acts 3:19-21.

“And if children, then heirs; heirs of God, and joint-heirs with Christ; if so be that we suffer with him, that we may be also glorified together. For I reckon that the sufferings of this present time are not worthy to be compared with the glory which shall be revealed in us. For the earnest expectation of the creature waiteth for the manifestation of the sons of God. For the creature was made subject to vanity, not willingly, but by reason of him who hath subjected the same in hope, because the creature itself also shall be delivered from the bondage of corruption into the glorious liberty of the children of God,” Romans 8:17-21.


Yes, the very creatures of the earth will be brought back from their present savage state to that in which they had been created when Adam was able to gather them before him and name them. “And out of the ground the LORD God formed every beast of the field, and every fowl of the air; and brought them unto Adam to see what he would call them: and whatsoever Adam called every living creature, that was the name thereof,” Genesis 2:19.

So it shall be again!

“The wolf also shall dwell with the lamb, and the leopard shall lie down with the kid; and the calf and the young lion and the fatling together; and a little child shall lead them. And the cow and the bear shall feed; their young ones shall lie down together: and the lion shall eat straw like the ox. And the sucking child shall play on the hole of the asp, and the weaned child shall put his hand on the cockatrice’ den,” Isaiah 11:6-8.

“The wolf and the lamb shall feed together, and the lion shall eat straw like the bullock: and dust shall be the serpent’s meat. They shall not hurt nor destroy in all my holy mountain, saith the LORD,” Isaiah 65:25.

This is the wonderful picture presented to the people of God in prophecy and of which we have something in these two psalms.

Do not allow the devil and his agents to rob you of the joy of viewing and believing and happily anticipating the future glories which Christ has planned for His people.

Rev Ivan Foster (Rtd)
Wednesday, May 8th, 2024