Sovereign Grace Baptist Church

Free Grace Media

Of Princeton, New Jersey


AuthorClay Curtis
TitleThe Lesson From Christ's Suffering
Bible TextPsalm 55:1-23
Synopsis We learn what it is to cast our burden on the LORD by seeing how Christ cast his burden upon God his Father. Listen
Series Psalms 2011
Article Type Sermon Notes
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Word Format doc
Audio HI-FI Listen: The Lesson From Christ's Suffering (32 kbps)
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Length 41 min.

Series: Psalm 
Title: The Lesson from Christ’s Suffering 
Text: Ps 55: 1-23 
Date: January 9,2019 
Place: SGBC, NJ 
Psalm 55 is David’s prayer near the brook Kidron near the garden of Gethsemane the night he was pushed out of Jerusalem.  Absalom, David’s own son, had betrayed him by leading a rebellion against David to take his throne.  Ahithophel, David’s counselor, had also betrayed David, uniting with David’s enemies. 
2 Samuel 15:23: And all the country wept with a loud voice, and all the people passed over: the king also himself passed over the brook Kidron, and all the people passed over, toward the way of the wilderness…31: And one told David, saying, Ahithophel is among the conspirators with Absalom. And David said, O LORD, I pray thee, turn the counsel of Ahithophel into foolishness… 
2 Samuel 16: 5: And when king David came to Bahurim, behold, thence came out a man of the family of the house of Saul, whose name was Shimei, the son of Gera: he came forth, and cursed still as he came. 6: And he cast stones at David, and at all the servants of king David: and all the people and all the mighty men were on his right hand and on his left. 7: And thus said Shimei when he cursed, Come out, come out, thou bloody man, and thou man of Belial: 8: The LORD hath returned upon thee all the blood of the house of Saul, in whose stead thou hast reigned; and the LORD hath delivered the kingdom into the hand of Absalom thy son: and, behold, thou art taken in thy mischief, because thou art a bloody man. 9: Then said Abishai the son of Zeruiah unto the king, Why should this dead dog curse my lord the king? let me go over, I pray thee, and take off his head. 10: And the king said, What have I to do with you, ye sons of Zeruiah? so let him curse, because the LORD hath said unto him, Curse David. Who shall then say, Wherefore hast thou done so? 11: And David said to Abishai, and to all his servants, Behold, my son, which came forth of my bowels, seeketh my life: how much more now may this Benjamite do it? let him alone, and let him curse; for the LORD hath bidden him. 12: It may be that the LORD will look on mine affliction, and that the LORD will requite me good for his cursing this day. 13: And as David and his men went by the way, Shimei went along on the hill’s side over against him, and cursed as he went, and threw stones at him, and cast dust. 14  And the king, and all the people that were with him, came weary, and refreshed themselves there. 
They passed over the brook Kidron near the garden of Gethsemane, near where the anti-type of David, Christ Jesus, partook of that brook..  The brook Kidron was where they dumped the filth from the temple and Jerusalem.  Spiritually, symbolically, not literally, scripture says of Christ, 
Psalm 110: 7: He shall drink of the brook in the way: therefore shall he lift up the head. 
That filthy brook represents the great burden Christ bore for his people when he bore our sin and our curse.  Bearing sin which he hated and drinking the dregs of the cup of God’s wrath was to Christ like drinking of the brook Kidron to Christ. 
Matthew 26:42…O my Father, if this cup may not pass away from me, except I drink it, thy will be done. 
So as David crossed that very brook praying so we hear Christ’s prayer in Gethsemane near the same location.  That is why this is a  Maschil psalm: full of instruction for God’s saints.  One reason God causes his child to suffer is that the suffering child might teach his brethren what God taught him.  That is true of David writing this Psalm—but it is especially true concerning of Christ’s suffering.  Christ is the Firstborn among many brethren and Christ teaches us in this Psalm from the things he suffered 
Subject: The Lesson from Christ’s Suffering 
Psalm 55: 22: Cast thy burden upon the LORD, and he shall sustain thee: he shall never suffer the righteous to be moved.
If we can cast our burden upon the LORD then Christ has already begun to relieve our burden because we cannot do so except the Spirit enable us.  Who are “the righteous” he will not “suffer to be moved”.  The righteous is Christ and all those God trusted to Christ before the world was made.  The righteous are those Christ justified by his blood.  The righteous are those the Spirit of God has made to believe on Christ our Righteousness, who walk not after the flesh but after the Spirit.  God will not suffer the righteous to be moved because Christ justified us before the law of God 
But what is involved in casting our burden upon the LORD? 
Proposition: We learn what it is to cast our burden on the LORD by seeing how Christ cast his burden upon God his Father. 
Psalm 55: 1: Give ear to my prayer, O God; and hide not thyself from my supplication.  2: Attend unto me, and hear me: I mourn in my complaint, and make a noise;
In the garden of Gethsemane, Christ cast his burden on the LORD God by earnest prayer.  His prayer was always earnest prayer. But ours is only earnest when God hedges us about to behold our total inability.  Then we beg rather than make demands—"give ear to my prayer, O God; And hide not thyself from my supplication”  It means “O God, do not pass me by.”  Christ’s spirit in the Garden was “if it be thy will, O God, give ear to my  prayer and hide not thyself from my supplication.” 
Casting our burden upon the LORD in prayer does not mean that we pray pretty words—"Attend unto me, and hear me: I mourn in my complaint, and make a noise.”  David went in the way crying and praying as he went.  He was under such distress that all he could do was make a noise.  There were no pretty words that night as David went up Mt. Olive crying and praying.  It earnestness with which Christ prayed in the Garden of Gethsemane while he was in soul agony and sweat great drops of blood.  In this Psalm we hear Christ prayer that could not be uttered with words.
Brethren, at times we mourn so much that the only thing we can do is make a noise; our minds wander and our prayer is all over the place.  But scripture says, 
Romans 8: 26: The Spirit maketh intercession for us with groanings that cannot be uttered; 27: And he that searcheth the hearts knoweth what is the mind of the Spirit, because he maketh intercession for the saints according to the will of God. 
David asked God not to hide himself from him.  But when Christ bore the sin of his people, it was God’s will to justly hide himself from our Substitute—“My God, my God, why hast thou forsaken me?” (Ps 22:1).  Christ bore the heaviest burden anyone has ever borne—the sin and curse of all his people. 
Isaiah 53: 4: Surely he hath borne our griefs, and carried our sorrows: yet we did esteem him stricken, smitten of God and afflicted. 5: But he was wounded for our transgressions, he was bruised for our iniquities: the chastisement of our peace was upon him; and with his stripes we are healed. 6: All we like sheep have gone astray; we have turned every one to his own way; and the LORD hath laid on him the iniquity of us all. 
That is how Christ satisfied the justice of God on our behalf and purchased us with his own blood—"with his stripes we are healed” (Is 53: 5).  To be healed is to be complete in Christ!  To be healed is to have your sins separated from you as far as the east is from the west, God remembers them no more.
Therefore, brethren, though God may make you think he has hidden himself from you.  Yet, for the sake of his Son, God will never pass by one of his blood-bought, justified children.  Cast your burden on  him in earnest prayer for he hears our prayer even when we cannot utter words. 
Psalm 55: I mourn in my complaint, and make a noise; 3: Because of the voice of the enemy, because of the oppression of the wicked: for they cast iniquity upon me, and in wrath they hate me…
Christ cast his burden on the LORD his God by laying before him the cause of his suffering.  Notice the three things mentioned: One, with the voice they cast iniquity upon him—they falsely accused Christ; two, with the hands they performed wicked deeds—the oppression of the wicked; three, It all came from the sin-nature that is hatred against God—In wrath they hate me.  The serpent hates the Seed of woman.  And so does the carnal mind of men.  The greatest proof of man’s total depravity is Christ on the cross 
Brethren, the enemy who oppressed our Savior was not only the Jew and Gentile of his day, but you and I, his people.  Our sinful nature is enmity against God: therefore the only thing we can do in our flesh is speak and do wickedly.  Yet, while we considered him our enemy, Christ laid down his life for his elect and reconciled us to God.  Therefore, now that he has made us friends, we can be certain, he will save us from our burden. 
Romans 5: 6: For when we were yet without strength, in due time Christ died for the ungodly. 7: For scarcely for a righteous man will one die: yet peradventure for a good man some would even dare to die. 8: But God commendeth his love toward us, in that, while we were yet sinners, Christ died for us. 9: Much more then, being now justified by his blood, we shall be saved from wrath through him. 10: For if, when we were enemies, we were reconciled to God by the death of his Son, much more, being reconciled, we shall be saved by his life. (Ro 5:6-10). 

Brethren, cast your burden upon the LORD by coming to Christ in earnest prayer and laying out your cause before him.  He already saved us from the enemy of our flesh, he shall save us from every other enemy. 
Psalm 55: 4: My heart is sore pained within me: and the terrors of death are fallen upon me. 5: Fearfulness and trembling are come upon me, and horror hath overwhelmed me. 6: And I said, Oh that I had wings like a dove! for then would I fly away, and be at rest. 7: Lo, then would I wander far off, and remain in the wilderness. Selah. 8: I would hasten my escape from the windy storm and tempest.  6: I said, Oh that I had wings like a dove! for then would I fly away, and be at rest. 7: Lo, then would I wander far off, and remain in the wilderness. Selah. 8: I would hasten my escape from the windy storm and tempest.
Christ cast his burden upon the LORD God by laying bear his heart concerning his state.  David was deeply wounded in his innermost heart--why? His own son, Absalom, led the rebellion against him.  It would be the deepest hurt to spend your life bringing up your children, putting them before yourself, only to have them treat you like an enemy.  That is exactly what we did to God our everlasting Father and what we do now, when we knowingly, willingly rebel against Christ. 

Isaiah 1:2: Hear, O heavens, and give ear, O earth: for the LORD hath spoken, I have nourished and brought up children, and they have rebelled against me. 

That is our burden which Christ bore on the cross.  This is why “The terrors of death” fell upon Christ and “horror covered” him, why he sweat great drops of blood of Gethsemane 
David also confessed to God his true desire—"I said, Oh that I had wings like a dove! for then would I fly away, and be at rest. Lo, then would I wander far off, and remain in the wilderness. Selah. I w'ould hasten my escape from the windy storm and tempest.”  Most commentaries lay a lot of blame on David for this.  And we can be sure there was sin in David’s prayer.  But there was no sin when Christ prayed, “Father, if it be possible let this cup pass from me, nevertheless, not my will but thine be done.”
David is being honest with God.  That is what we do when we cast our burden upon the Lord.  But I can assure you if we were in our bare feet with David, wading through the sewer ditch Kidron up Mt Olivet, with all these enemies after us, being led by our own son, we would desire to escape, too.  No child of God desires to suffer storm and tempest; we desire peace and rest, not strife.  David did not want wings of an eagle to fight his enemies, he wanted wings of a dove to fly away.  He wanted to escape the storm and tempest 
But brethren, Christ did not fly away, he suffered the cross. And we cannot fly away from the storm and tempest, either. But our peace is in our inner state, not outward circumstances. God sends us suffering to teach us there is but one way of escape: 
1 Corinthians 10:13: There hath no temptation taken you but such as is common to man: but God is faithful, who will not suffer you to be tempted above that ye are able; but will with the temptation also make a way to escape, that ye may be able to bear it. 
Christ is that Way! When we confess our state to Christ, he said, “Him that cometh to Me, I will in no wise cast out.” He promises, “I will give you rest.”  Some believer might say, “But we have been rebellious children like Absalom!” Yes,  but our Everlasting Father put away that sin, along with all the rest.  What did the father do when he saw his prodigal son returning? 
Luke 15: 21: But when he was yet a great way off, his father saw him, and had compassion, and ran, and fell on his neck, and kissed him. 21: And the son said unto him, Father, I have sinned against heaven, and in thy sight, and am no more worthy to be called thy son. 22: But the father said to his servants, Bring forth the best robe, and put it on him; and put a ring on his hand, and shoes on his feet: 23: And bring hither the fatted calf, and kill it; and let us eat, and be merry: 24: For this my son was dead, and is alive again; he was lost, and is found. And they began to be merry. 
So it is when one sinner repents and comes to Christ casting our care on him..  Christ comforts us by reminding us that he swallowed up death in victory.  He covered us in his righteousness, so he will not let the terrors of death cover/overwhelm us.  Oh, cast your burden upon Christ!  He is the “way to escape, that ye may be able to bear [the burden].” See that!  He is able to give us peace in heart, even while the storms rages about us.  It is because our peace is not in our circumstances.  Our peace id Christ the Prince of peace. 
Psalm 55: 9: Destroy, O Lord, and divide their tongues: for I have seen violence and strife in the city. 10: Day and night they go about it upon the walls thereof: mischief also and sorrow are in the midst of it. 11: Wickedness is in the midst thereof: deceit and guile depart not from her streets. 12: For it was not an enemy that reproached me; then I could have borne it: neither was it he that hated me that did magnify himself against me; then I would have hid myself from him: 13: But it was thou, a man mine equal, my guide, and mine acquaintance. 14: We took sweet counsel together, and walked unto the house of God in company… 20: He hath put forth his hands against such as be at peace with him: he hath broken his covenant. 21: The words of his mouth were smoother than butter, but [all along] war was in his heart: his words were softer than oil, yet [all along] were they drawn swords.
Christ cast the burden of his enemies into the hands of the LORD.  He prayed “Destroy, O Lord, and divide their tongues.”  Do you see how Christ left it in his Father’s hands?  He did not attempt to make foolish the counsel of their tongues himself.  The perfect, faithful Servant asked the LORD to do so. 
Notice, David was betrayed by great subtilty—deceit and guile depart not from her streets.  For it was not an enemy that reproached me.”  It was  one very close and very dear to David: his own son Absalom; his own counselor, Ahithophel.  Our Redeemer was betrayed by one very near to him, Judas Iscariot.  I can bear reproach from an enemy—I expect it; I can bear one that hates me magnifying himself against me—I can avoid him; But one who professed to love me?; one with whom I walked to the house of God?; one I was at peace with? one who made a covenant promise to me?  Brethren, are we not Judas Iscariot by guile-nature?  We have been one with Christ from eternity, yet, we broke God’s covenant in deceit and guile when we broke the law.  Was it not—and is it not—as heartbreaking when we sin against Christ as when Judas did!   And to make it worse, Christ did not redeem Judas but he redeemed us!  Will we go on sinning against Christ? 
But what a Savior!  Though we have done this to him yet Christ teaches us to cast our burden on him.  Christ cast the burden on God his Father to divide his enemies against themselves—and God did it.
Mark 14:59: neither so did their witness agree together.
So let us leave our burden in Christ’s hand.  As we call on Christ to save us, remember what Christ has already accomplished for us on the cross?—Psalm 55: 18: He hath delivered my soul in peace from the battle that was against me: for there were many with me…23: But thou, O God, shalt bring them down into the pit of destruction: bloody and deceitful men shall not live out half their days; but I will trust in thee. 
We had many enemies within and without!  But by Christ trusting his Father on our behalf, by Christ perfecting our faith by his faithfulness, by Christ redeeming us with his own blood, there were more with us than with them.  Brethren, seeing Christ has already delivered our soul in peace so that our warfare is accomplished, remember, the battle is not yours but the Lord’s.  Leave your enemies in his hands. 
So finally, having heard Christ’s prayer in his agony, having seen how the Father answered him, here is the lesson that Christ teaches us his people through suffering—Psalm 55: 22: Cast thy burden upon the LORD—in earnest prayer, confessing the cause, confessing your state, leaving your enemies in his hands—and he shall sustain thee: he shall never suffer the righteous to be moved.