PSALM 16: Pleasant Places

The Lord is my chosen portion and my cup; you hold my lot.  The lines have fallen for me in pleasant places; indeed, I have a beautiful inheritance.

Psalm 16:5-6

What a passage to meditate on as we consider Christ who has purchased into a redemption as Sons and Daughters, situated, held and welcomed into the family of God. Despite the destruction and decay of the world around us, the people of God have been born again to a living hope (1 Peter 1:3-9) of redemption (Romans 8:18-30) that will be brought to completion one Day (Jude 17-25). Our inheritance is that of Christ (Romans 8:17) to whom belongs all things (1 Corinthians 15:17) which we share in. When pursuits outside of what has been freely given to us in Christ steal our wanton affections, let our hearts long for Christ alone.

As Henry says, “Gracious persons, though they still covet more of God, never covet more than God; but, being satisfied of his loving-kindness, are abundantly satisfied with it: they envy not any their carnal mirth and delights. But so ignorant and foolish are we, that if left to ourselves, we shall forsake our own mercies for lying vanities.” As those who have been born again in Christ, we resist conformity to desires and passions that once defined us (1 Peter 1:14) and cling to what is true, good and beautiful in God, even when we struggle to see it. Let it be our hearts desire to want not more than God for there is no such thing that gives to us more than our loving Father! Instead, let it be our desire to find all our wanting in God who richly supplies all, exactly and precisely what we could ever need or want. Let our souls be satisfied with the richness of Him (Psalm 63:5).

This surely is a worthy pursuit. As Henry points out, once more, “… if our eyes are ever toward God, our hearts and tongues may ever rejoice in him. Death destroys the hope of man, but not the hope of a real Christian. Christ’s resurrection is an earnest of the believer’s resurrection. In this world sorrow is our lot, but in heaven there is joy, a fulness of joy; our pleasures here are for a moment, but those at God’s right hand are pleasures for evermore. Through this thy beloved Son, and our dear Saviour, thou wilt show us, O Lord, the path of life; thou wilt justify our souls now, and raise our bodies by thy power at the last day; when earthly sorrow shall end in heavenly joy, pain in everlasting happiness.” Let us see and know joy that is truly found in the Father alone. A pursuit of that which is not Christ begets despair, but in the hope of Christ Jesus, we are not left to this “lot” any longer; instead, we are brought by His blood into the overwhelming, soul-satisfying feast of His presence (Psalm 23:5). Let not our hearts want more.

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