September 3, 2021
Scripture: The righteous flourish like the palm tree and grow like a cedar in Lebanon. They are planted in the house of the LORD; they flourish in the courts of our God. They still bear fruit in old age; they are ever full of sap and green, to declare that the LORD is upright; he is my rock, and there is no unrighteousness in him. Psalm 92:12-15 ESV
Observation: The psalmist here wants us to know that those who seek God’s righteousness will not be disappointed in old age. While he cites physical strength, we all know that godly men and women throughout history have succumbed to bodily decline, whether due to disease, trauma, or latent effects of past abuse or neglect. Indeed, Scripture tells us that Moses enjoyed good vision and strength until his last days (Deuteronomy 34:7) while David became feeble in old age (1 King 1:1). What then can we extract from this biblical principle? The promise of fruitfulness, of flourishing, in old age, points to our spiritual strength. Following a similar train of thought, the Apostle Paul assures the Corinthians: “Though our outer self is wasting away, our inner self is being renewed day by day” (2 Corinthians 4:16).
Takeaway: Whether Paul (who suffered much physical abuse at the hands of evil men) or modern-day examples like James Boice and Tim Keller (who battled with cancer late in life), we have ample testimony that the righteous will spiritually flourish in old age. So while our bodies will decline, we can continue to grow more robust fruit in God’s kingdom if we remain humble and teachable and earnestly cooperate with the Holy Spirit’s spiritual fitness program. 😉
Prayer: Father God, please grant us your grace to persevere the refining work of your Holy Spirit that we might spiritually flourish to our last breath. Amen.
Rev. Gordon Green, M.Div., M.A. Counseling