The Strength of the Lord

"I will go in the strength of the LORD: I will make mention of thy righteousness, even of thine only." (Psalm 71:16)

Since God the Creator is omnipotent, if we can go in His strength, there would seem to be no limit to what could be accomplished. The book of Psalms, in particular, over and over again, testifies that God indeed is our strength. For example: "I will love thee, O LORD, my strength. The LORD is my rock, and my fortress, and my deliverer; my God, my strength, in whom I will trust; my buckler, and the horn of my salvation, and my high tower" (Psalm 18:1-2).

But how do we appropriate God's strength, and how is it manifested in our own lives? The answer is not what most would expect. "He delighteth not in the strength of the horse: he taketh not pleasure in the legs of a man. The LORD taketh pleasure in them that fear him, in those that hope in his mercy" (Psalm 147:10-11). "Not by might, nor by power, but by my Spirit, saith the LORD of hosts" (Zechariah 4:6).

Our text itself indicates that going in the strength of the Lord is essentially to "make mention of thy righteousness, even of thine only." Speaking of God's righteousness (not ours) in the fear of the Lord and the leading of the Spirit, hoping only in His mercy manifests the strength of the Lord.

Furthermore, "the joy of the LORD is your strength" (Nehemiah 8:10). And, finally, the apostle Paul, who surely exhibited the strength of God in his life as much as anyone ever did, testified that "he said unto me, My grace is sufficient for thee: for my strength is made perfect in weakness. Most gladly therefore will I rather glory in my infirmities, that the power of Christ may rest upon me" (2 Corinthians 12:9). His grace and His joy, shining through our own weakness, enable the man "whose strength is in thee" to "go from strength to strength" (Psalm 84:5, 7) in His service. HMM

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