An Alphabetical Analysis
Volume 7 - Doctrinal Truth - Page 76 of 297
The R.V. reads, 'Neither shall my presence be heavy upon thee' instead
of 'thine hand' as in the A.V.
Ekeph is 'a burden', 'to put a load on a beast (of burden), so to bend,
to make bow down', and it has an Arabic equivalent that means to tie, to bind
on as a pack saddle.  It is allied with the Hebrew kaph which means 'the palm
of the hand', rarely the whole hand, hence the idea again of pressure.  It is
this word that is found in Job 13:21.  Elihu says much to illuminate the
necessary qualification of a Mediator between God and men, and only fulfilled
these qualifications in the measure of a type or shadow.  None but Emmanuel,
'God with us', could lay His hand upon 'both', nevertheless, as surely as Job
knew that His Kinsman Redeemer lived, so surely does Elihu exemplify in his
ministry the need of all men for Christ in His central capacity as 'The One
'The quality of mercy is not strained;
Though justice by thy plea, consider this
That, in the course of justice, none of us should see
salvation ... '.
We do not quote Shakespeare as we would quote the inspired Scriptures,
but it is evident that Shakespeare drew his inspiration from the Scriptures
when he penned these lines.  We rightly stress the glorious truth of
Justification by Faith.  We draw attention to the words of Romans 3:26 that
God is both 'Just and the Justifier' of the believer.  We glory in the
indefectible nature of salvation.  But we should remember, and remember every
day of our lives, that in these matters we have no rights, we can enforce no
claims; indeed, 'the quality of mercy' is that it cannot be a matter of claim
or right, it is 'not strained'.
Behind and before the Sacrifice that accomplishes our release, and
behind and before the righteous standing in which we are accepted, is the
sheer unenforced grace and sovereign mercy of God.  That Sacrifice which is
the basis of our redemption, was provided at infinite cost by the
God against Whom all had sinned.  What moved God to provide such a way of
deliverance?  One might say 'the need there was that His holiness should not
be compromised in the forgiveness of the sinner'.  True, but why should He
have concerned Himself about the forgiveness of the sinner?  One answer is
given in the Book.  Mercy, pity, compassion is seen at work, before the means
and the mode were adopted and provided.  Let us look for a moment at Psalm
51.  David knew that for murder, the law made no provision.
'Ye shall take no satisfaction for the life of a murderer, which is
guilty of death' (Num. 35:31).
Yet David prays:
'Deliver me from blood guiltiness, O God, Thou God of my salvation: and
my tongue shall sing aloud of Thy righteousness' (Psa. 51:14).
Here in these poignant words, is justification by faith apart from the
law, a prophetic glimpse of the salvation to be brought by the Son of God.