International School of The Bible
Psalm 65 helps us to close this year and bring in the new year.
"You crown the year with your bounty, and your carts overflow with abundance" (Psalm 65:11).
In Ps. 65:3a David is thinking about his failures, his sins and transgressions when he says, "When we were overwhelmed by sins..."
Then David breaks out in praise to God when he realizes the forgiveness of God. "…you forgave our transgressions" (Ps 65:3b). " Praise awaits you, O God, in Zion; to you our vows will be fulfilled" (Ps 65:1).
What David realizes in verse 4 transcends all of his negative feelings about life and about himself. He realizes that he was chosen to come into the presence of God.
"Blessed are those you choose and bring near to live in your courts! We are filled with the good things of your house, of your holy temple" (Ps 65:4).
Just to live in God’s presence day in and day out is what makes life worthwhile. Other things are fine, but they are extras. Contentment is just being chosen by Him to come into a time of fellowship.
In Ps 65:5-13 David rehearses the majesty of God.
Then comes the promise for the New Year.
"You crown the year with your bounty, and your carts overflow with abundance" (Ps 65:11).
This reminds me of 1 Timothy chapter 6 that talks about "great gain."
" But godliness with contentment is great gain. For we brought nothing into the world, and we can take nothing out of it. But if we have food and clothing, we will be content with that" (1 Timothy 6:6-8).
This says that when we add godliness, or a godly lifestyle, to our contentment, that we should expect great gain.
It this a paradox?
Can we experience contentment with food and clothing, and at the same time anticipate the increase of bounty and abundant overflow described in Psalm 65, and the great gain spoken of in 1 Timothy?
I do not think it is a paradox.
The Amplified Bible defines contentment as "that sense of inward sufficiency." Inward sufficiency comes (only) from God’s presence. God’s presence always produces the knowledge that He loves us. That brings contentment!
I submit that God wants great gain for all of us in all areas of our lives. But He does not want our contentment to depend upon receiving something from Him. In other words, the abundance and great gain should not be something that we MUST have.
If we find that we MUST have that thing or those circumstances that God can bring to us, then we are in the wrong spirit. Our expectation for gain should be as it was for Jesus, who although He was God in the flesh, made Himself a servant. His gain was always for the nourishment of others.
The gain we anticipate is for His glory, for His service and for serving others. We can live without it, but God wants us to be the channel of blessing for His Kingdom.
" Others, like seed sown on good soil, hear the word, accept it, and produce a crop--thirty, sixty or even a hundred times what was sown" (Mark 4:20).
May your life be blessed with this verse for the new year. "You crown the year with your bounty, and your carts overflow with abundance." (Psalm 65:11).
Larry Chkoreff - December 28, 1999
"1 Praise awaits you, O God, in Zion; to you our vows will be fulfilled.
2 O you who hear prayer, to you all men will come.
3 When we were overwhelmed by sins, you forgave our transgressions.
4 Blessed are those you choose and bring near to live in your courts! We are filled with the good things of your house, of your holy temple.
5 You answer us with awesome deeds of righteousness, O God our Saviour, the hope of all the ends of the earth and of the farthest seas,
6 who formed the mountains by your power, having armed yourself with strength,
7 who stilled the roaring of the seas, the roaring of their waves, and the turmoil of the nations.
8 Those living far away fear your wonders; where morning dawns and evening fades you call forth songs of joy.
9 You care for the land and water it; you enrich it abundantly. The streams of God are filled with water to provide the people with corn, for so you have ordained it.
10 You drench its furrows and level its ridges; you soften it with showers and bless its crops.
11 You crown the year with your bounty, and your carts overflow with abundance.
12 The grasslands of the desert overflow; the hills are clothed with gladness.
13 The meadows are covered with flocks and the valleys are mantled with corn; they shout for joy and sing."