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God Says - "Bring On The Fatted Calf!"
Recently, have you felt as though you had been "shut up into the hand of the enemy"? Do you find yourself in the midst of trouble...in a narrow gorge with nowhere to go...greatly straitened by your circumstances...in the jaws of affliction...hedged up with sorrow and pain...or at a loss? Then this message is for you. Receive comfort from the Holy Spirit and encouragement from your Father in heaven Who knows your name... sees you when you fall...and is mindful of where you are at this very moment. The Good News is - Jesus is preparing a "feast" for you - yes, right in the midst of your enemies!
"Sweet is pleasure after pain. Enlargement is the more delightful after a season of pinching poverty and sorrowful confinement."
- Charles Spurgeon
"Past favor is a ground of hope for the future."
- Jamieson, Fausset & Brown Commentary
In Psalm 4:1, David spoke these words - "...when I was in distress..." How many can relate to what he is talking about here? He has your attention, doesn't he? Simply because there is not a human on the face of the earth that cannot say that at one time in their life, they came "face-to-face" with this "d" word. Every one would have to agree that at some time in their life, they experienced pressure, confinement, or trouble. Who has not encountered being caught between a "rock and a hard place"? Or felt squeezed into a situation with no escape in sight?
In Psalm 18, he spoke of "many waters"(verse 16)..."my strong enemy"(verse 17)...and "the day of my calamity"(verse 18). It sounds life-threatening, doesn't it? Yet, who has not witnessed difficulties like David described?
In Psalm 31, he spoke of being "shut up into the hand of the enemy"(verse 8) - experiencing "trouble"(verse 9)...your "life...spent with grief... and years with sighing"(verse 10)...failing "strength"(verse 10)...being "forgotten"(verse 12)...and being "slandered" (Verse 13). In Psalm 118, he added that his enemies thrust sore at him hoping that he would fall(verse 13).
These were the plans and assignments of Satan against God's servant.
However, the story doesn't end there - for David also relates of God's Mighty Intervention on his behalf.
In Psalm 4;1, we read - "Hear me when I call, O God of my righteousness: Thou hast enlarged me when I was in distress..."
In Psalm 18:19, we read - "He brought me forth also into a large place; He delivered me, because He delighted in me."
In Psalm 18:36, we read - "Thou hast enlarged my steps under me, that my feet did not slip."
In Psalm 31:8, we read - "And hast not shut me up into the hand of the enemy: Thou hast set my feet in a large room."
In Psalm 118:5, we read - "I called upon the LORD in distress: the LORD answered me, and set me in a large place. "
In opposition to the "distress," relief was afforded to David by God. He dashed down the rocks and broke down the barriers that hemmed him in. He freed, rescued, and helped him out of danger. He cleared the way for him - giving him a wide place for his steps. He brought him into a broad place where he could once again move freely. David found that he had space and freedom on every side. God did more for him than he could ever ask or dream.
Job 36:16 offers a similar account of what David was describing - "Even so would He have removed thee out of the strait into a broad place, where there is no straitness; and that which should be set on thy table should be full of fatness." God is shown to be able to take His servants from the narrow and pent-up way where it is impossible to move and bring them into a wide and open path. He is able to deliver out of the jaws of affliction and trouble and translate into a state of ease and freedom. The "broad place" "where there is no straitness" is the total opposite of the "strait." It is a place of prosperity - an open area or a wide place that is not cramped or fenced up. The "strait" is where one finds poverty and affliction. The "broad place" is the place where one discovers a plentiful table - covered with all of God's richest blessings.
"Thou hast enlarged me when I was in distress..."
"He brought me forth also into a large place..."
Thou hast enlarged my steps under me..."
"Thou hast set my feet in a large room."
"...the LORD...set me in a large room."
In this "large room" is a table filled with the "fatness of His house"(Psalm 36:8) - a "feast of fat things"(Isaiah 25:6). And it is prepared right "in the presence of the enemy"(Psalm 23:5).
The devil may be right at the door, yet God "prepares a table" - yes, right in the midst of the most trying circumstances. Since he can no longer prevent it, the enemy is compelled to look on and witness the proof of God's favor for His servant. Delightful provisions are poured out like showers from heaven. Every want is supplied...every craving gratified...and every capacity of his is filled. No desire is left unsatisfied. What an occasion of joy this is as the saint of God goes from poverty and "straitness" to the abundance of provision and sumptuousness. He is overshadowed with the riches and abundance of his God.
It's a time when God says -
"Bring on the fatted calf!"
Remember David's words that were quoted at the beginning of this message?
"...when I was in distress..."
Just as He did for David, God is going to bring you out of your "distress" and "enlarge" you. He is going to translate you from poverty to prosperity. He is going to bring you into a "large place" where there will no longer be demonic hindrances, restraints, or obstructions. In that "large room," you will "feast" on God's provision - His "fatted calf" prepared just for you.
You are really going to enjoy this feast. Why?
Because - "Sweet is pleasure after pain. Enlargement is the more delightful after a season of pinching poverty and sorrowful confinement."
Enjoy it! It's coming!
May God Bless His Word.