Thursday, November 22, 2012


Dove (Photo credit: generalising)


The Dove On Distant Oaks

We come to Psalms 55,56 and 57

And we read in Psalm 55:6 I said, "Oh, that I had the wings of a dove!
I would fly away and be at rest

Psalm 56 is sung to the tune of "The Dove On Distant Oaks"

And in Psalm 57 we read 1 Have mercy on me, O God, have mercy on me,for in you my soul takes refuge.
I will take refuge in the shadow of your wings until the disaster has passed. Before we begin to Look into these Psalms and unwrap the word, lets commit this
time to the Lord first

Lord God In Jesus Name

We commit this time to you now, Lord you are the one who makes us Holy as you are Holy,
as you are set apart , you set us apart, as we are a Holy people being saved and set apart,
you are also making us into a Holy People,

As we are sanctified you are sanctifying us, as we have been saved we are being saved.

You are doing an ongoing work in us and we are confident that you who began a good
work in us will carry it through to completion.

Lord we ask you now to enter us through your Holy Spirit, let the Holy Spirit birth begin
today and every day, let the virgin womb begin.

Let the birth of Jesus begin in us each and every day

In Jesus name amen


I firstly want to look at the story of the prodigal son and many people can identify
with the story of the prodigal son and as we know rebellion is not far from any of

We know that the story is of a son who wants his unheritance straight away and cannot
wait until the proper time ! we can also identify with this ourselves and we have probably
fallen into the very same snare many times in our own lifes

Its very easy to want things to happen straight away and not want to wait until the proper time.

This can happen in relationships were where we do not want to wait and afterwards in hindsight
we can regret our decisions

Waiting on God requires patience and fruit and seeing and trusting that God our Father knows
better than we do

Its not easy to put our trust in someone and this requires wisdom and experience

We see the same story in life patterns and experiences time and time again where someone or even we have grown impatient or simply not wanted to wait and have leaped into something
without preparation and waiting on God

Here in the story of the Prodigal Son in Luke 15:11-32, we read and may well know about this
young man who could not wait until the right time

This story is not just for the young and not just for the young in faith either, this story for all
of us however old in faith or wise in years

And so the young man goes off and squanders his inheritance !!

I wonder how we use what we have been given ?

Although we have an inheritance we also partake in and inherit now as sons and daughters

We can't wait until we are out of this body and with the Lord !!

What an inheritance awaits, but we also inherit so many things now as sons and daughters and
we must ask the question "How do I use what I have been given ? "

Now I had no idea that Psalm 55 would lead me to type this about the prodigal son and I have
the scripture " do not cast your pearls before swine " come to mind

Sometimes we have this great inheritance of the gospel to preach and we must use this time and gift wisely, although we do not judge others unless the judgement falls on us....

We sometimes can be unwise
in spending our time and stewardship of our time in sharing and casting the gospel before those who will not listen, we can spend endless hours of debate and argument and Gods time casting the gospel before those whom simply will not listen .

Only to find we are in fact and can be strengthening their unbelief.

At times wisdom is forgotten and we continue to cast the gospel before those who will not listen, in the end
it is an error and only with God and with the Holy Spirits guidance can HE ever change the mindset or
bring a person to change and to salvation

Sometimes alas we may use the word of God with as a sledge hammer instead of waiting on the Dove

The Dove is a Dove of peace, He is a Gentleman, yes He can come with fire and He can come with
a mighty wind, He come come with the force of waves and with power, but He also comes in peace, in love,
in wisdom and He searches the hearts of people

We sometimes need to wait on the Dove, the dove may not come unless we are waiting

You know doves are very shy... they will fly away ... they will wait a distance

A few words can speak millions with the Spirit of God, but alas we can squander our time and gift while
others wait on God

Now the prodigal son as we know went to a distant land far away from His Father and although it must
have seemed as if His Father was far away in fact His Father was right there with him

He must have missed his Father, he must have felt the emptyness, he must have remembered what
he had before, we all know what its like to be away from someone we love

We can almost feel them near us and next to us, we remember them and they us

He watches us from a distance when in fact He is right there with us

Many quote the cliff richard song " From a distance " and some who are more matured in years
quote it as having the wrong theology, in fact that song is correct

He is watching us from a distance although He is right beside us and in us even though we might push
Him away in our hearts , like the prodigal son we race off to the world and the bright lights and we push Him

At times we can push the Dove away

This is why He watches from a distance although He is there and never leaves us

He is in all things and everywhere at the same time

Now the prodigal son squandered his time and money and when all was gone he remembered or
stopped pushing his Father away in his heart, he stopped feeding the swine which was earning little and
wasting his time and he went back to the Father

Many relate to this story especially with testimony of how they were saved

And we know that salvation is an ongoing process...

But now lets look to the older son and lets look to the heart

You might say the older son had actually left his Father years before that time, he was bound up in
serving his Father to try to get reward, he was trying to get acceptance and love by earning it

A divide had formed between him and his Father, you see the elder son had also walked away many years before,
except with the elder son it was in the heart rather than an action

The elder son was going through all the actions to appear good but actually had walked away and was squandering
his time and effort

Both were doing the same thing but the elder sons divide had gone unnoticed until a certain time

The younger prodigal had returned home and also the elder prodigal had returned home to his Father

You may well be in a family....but are you in a family ?

You see God can be that dove on the distant oak pushed away and waiting for you to invite Him back

He can be the Father of the two prodigal sons and the Father of a multitude who push Him away


The Dove on Distant Oaks

Now we turn to Psalm 55:1-16 and read

Psalm 55 (New International Version)

For the director of music. With stringed instruments. Amaskil of David. 1 Listen to my prayer, O God,do not ignore my plea;

2 hear me and answer me.My thoughts trouble me and I am distraught

3 at the voice of the enemy,at the stares of the wicked;for they bring down suffering upon me
and revile me in their anger.

4 My heart is in anguish within me;the terrors of death assail me.

5 Fear and trembling have beset me; horror has overwhelmed me.

6 I said, "Oh, that I had the wings of a dove! I would fly away and be at rest-

7 I would flee far away and stay in the desert; Selah

8 I would hurry to my place of shelter, far from the tempest and storm."

9 Confuse the wicked, O Lord, confound their speech, for I see violence and strife in the city.

10 Day and night they prowl about on its walls; malice and abuse are within it.

11 Destructive forces are at work in the city; threats and lies never leave its streets.

12 If an enemy were insulting me,I could endure it;if a foe were raising himself against me,
I could hide from him.

13 But it is you, a man like myself,my companion, my close friend,

14 with whom I once enjoyed sweet fellowship as we walked with the throng at the house of God.

15 Let death take my enemies by surprise; let them go down alive to the grave,
for evil finds lodging among them.

16 But I call to God, and the LORD saves me. ----------------------------------------------------------

Some see this Psalm as speaking about Judas's betrayal and as a Prophetic utterance in fact all scriptures
that speak of betrayal could be seen as referring to this.

But nonetheless we see that this Psalm was written when David was fleeing from Absalom and we know that
Absalom was Davids own son who had betrayed his father David and sought to take power and the throne

The wounds of a friend or family member can cut deeper than the external wounds of an unknown person

The trust that has been built up over time is cut through like a knife, the bridge that took so long to build
can be pulled down in a moment

During this week I felt God speaking about wounds long before I started to look at this message or even what
this Psalm might be about

And I felt God speaking about open wounds, I saw a wound that had been reopened time and time again

The wound had not healed and each time the wound was reopened God was able to bring healing to that wound

Over and over that deep wound was opened again to bring healing, time upon time.

This was God speaking to me, this week, lets continue with the message

You know healing is not always instant, sometimes God may heal in a second, we know that God can do
anything and that nothing is impossible for Him, but soemtimes Gods healing requires time, sometimes God
chooses to heal over time, sometimes we need to wait on God.

At times it may be because the person is holding onto the wound like the elder prodigal son, a wound can cause a divide

At times the giver of the wound may not even know about it or realise, at times the wound can be caused
by much darker and deeper motives

Sometimes we need to look deeper at what or who is behind it, but whatever and however the wound is
caused it can divide, wounds can divide relatonships

Sometimes healing instead of being instant can take many years, sometimes the wound is open and reopened time and time again and each time the Dove can bring healing to that wound, deeper and deeper
each time

Don't be afraid to let that wound open, don't be afraid to take that plaster off, sometimes only when the wound
is opened again can God bring more healing -------------------------------------------------

And so we know at this stage and time David had fled to the cave of Adullam

And lets refer briefly back to Psalm 55

6 I said, "Oh, that I had the wings of a dove! I would fly away and be at rest-

7 I would flee far away and stay in the desert; Selah

8 I would hurry to my place of shelter, far from the tempest and storm."

9 Confuse the wicked, O Lord, confound their speech, for I see violence and strife in the city.

10 Day and night they prowl about on its walls; malice and abuse are within it.

11 Destructive forces are at work in the city; threats and lies never leave its streets.

12 If an enemy were insulting me,I could endure it;if a foe were raising himself against me,
I could hide from him.


Repeat : 6 I said, "Oh, that I had the wings of a dove! I would fly away and be at rest-

David had fled to the cave of Adullam, he had fled on the wings of a Dove, he had hurried to
his shelter, his fortress on the wings of a Dove

I wonder why the Dove had flown away ?

What was the City in verse 9 ?

Could this be Gods very own people ?

Would the Dove fly away ? would God be at a distance ?

Here you are reminded of scriptures like , "He will never leave you nor forsake you "

"The Holy Spirit is always with you even to the ends of the earth "

And yet here in this City we see the Prodigal Sons...

We see the younger son who had walked away and decided to do his own thing.

The younger prodigal son who had sqaundered that which God had given to him .

Who would not listen to his Father, who had closed his ears and closed his eyes

Who would not wait on God or even listen to God, becasue he knew better

Who in rebellion had pushed God away

And we see the Elder prodigal son, those who had also pushed God away in their hearts

Those elder prodigal sons who had tried to earn their fathers love and acceptance who had
religiously gone about their bussiness and had forgotten about God in thier hearts

For they worshipped rituals and times and other false things in their hearts

They had done the same thing as the younger son and the wounds between had caused a divide

This City of Gods people had become a city whose hearts were far from God

You see many may have pointed the finger at David after all he had committed adultery surely ?

He had murdered a man, the husband of bathsheba ...he had done many terrible things.....

BUT his heart was right with God, his heart sought after God... he was a man after Gods won heart...

The City referred to here in Psalm 55 had a heart that was not right with God, this cities heart was far
from God, this city had pushed God away and God cried out again and again all through time and history

"Come back to me " This city had also committed adultery and had also see never judge a heart, only God
can judge a heart and here we see Gods judgement, here we see the righteous judge, only He knows
the heart of people.

You say "How did this city commit adultery and murder " ?

You see God looks at the inside and at this point you might refer to Hosea 1

So where and what was this city ?

And why had the Dove flown away ?

Lets go to Jeremiah 6 and you will see a cross reference in Psalm 55 next to verse 9,
that refers to Jeremiah 6,

Wow this is speaking to Gods own people here ?

The city is Jerusalem and God is saying " verse 2, O Jerusalem you are my beautiful
and delicate daughter - but I will destroy you.

Now lets go to verse 10

10To whom can I speak and give warning? Who will listen to me?

Their ears are closed so they cannot hear. The word of the Lord is offensive to them;

they find no pleasure in it.

11But I am full of the wrath of the Lord, and I cannot hold it in.

This city was corrupt, it was full of violence, the prodigal son would not listen, the prodigal
daughter would not come back, although the Father had waited and waited, she had pushed
her Father away, the dove was on the distant oak, waiting

Heed the warning o prodigal daughter, return to your King, the narrow path has a door opened
wide, will you come to the banquet ?

"Will you open your heart to the Dove ? "

"No " replies the prodigal daughter , "I will not come back"

" But you are wounding me" replies the Father .

"Do you realise the way you are going ? it is death and disaster ? "

"NO, replies the prodigal daughter, I will not come back"

"Then in your rebellion says the Lord, you have pushed me away and disaster will come upon you "


And so disaster befalls the the prodigal daughter of God..

O how God weeps and we see in Psalm 56:8 how God keeps track of all our sorrows, where He collects all
ours tears in a bottle and where He records each tear in His book.

And again we see the Psal is sung to the tune " The Dove on distant oaks "

We read that there are no tears in heaven and yet God weeps in heaven for the prodigal multitudes

Wounds can go two ways and we finish with Psalm 57, where David hides in the Cave of Adullam

He hides in the shelter, the haven , the fortress, the resting place, in His Lord, His God, His Father,

David had run to His Father. in His Adullam which means " Refuge "

Psalm 57:1

1 Have mercy on me, O God, have mercy on me, for in you my soul takes refuge.

I will take refuge in the shadow of your wings until the disaster has passed. David takes shelter in the shadow of His Wings, the Dove of peace is upon David

But what of the prodigal daughter ? the Dove waits on distant Oaks ...

Psalm 57:4 I am in the midst of lions; I lie among ravenous beasts—
men whose teeth are spears and arrows, whose tongues are sharp swords.

David is wounded but he waits on God, in Gods timing, he seeks Gods timing

The prodigal daughter ? she cannot wait, she will not listen

The Dove ? He waits on the distant Oak

God says " Come back my daughter - Let me heal you "

"Let separate you and make you Holy"

"Fly away with me and hide in my Refuge"

"Come away with me Do not be distant from me and push me away

I call to you now..come to me. Take refuge in the shadow of my wings and let me be your Cave Of Adullam"


Prayer with me now and say these words with me

Lord God in Jesus name I will not push you away any longer and I ask you too open those
wounds that a deeper work might be done , a work that will bring glory to your name.

Heal Lord and pour out that salt, purify that heart and bring healing to those wounds

Lord I will no longer push you away

Let the Dove come near and settle , let the Holy Spirit bring peace

Lord I run to you now in Jesus name amen