O for a thousand tongues to sing, my great Redeemer's praise, Thou the wisdom of my God and King, Thou triumphs of His grace. This is LeSaire Bradley, Jr., welcoming you to another broadcast of the Baptist Bible Hour. As we continue our study in Psalm 119, we're now looking at verses 113 through 128, subject, Walking in the Light. As you know, we depend on our listeners for support to keep these programs on the air.
If you can help us, you can go to our website at BaptistBibleHour.org and make a donation there. And then there's evil compromise. Literally this passage, when he says, I hate vain thoughts, in the original language conveys the idea of hating a double-minded man. I hate that which is evil. I don't want to walk with those who are double-minded.
I don't want to be double-minded myself. In the book of 1 Kings, chapter 18 of the 21st verse, Elijah spoke to the people saying, How long halt ye between two opinions? He said, If God be God, it's time to serve Him. If Baal is your God, serve Him. This business of trying to say, I'm going to serve God and serve Baal at the same time, that's not going to work. How long halt ye between two opinions?
This is time for your clear commitment to be demonstrated. And so, we must be careful that we are not halting between two opinions. Evil doers, the workers of iniquity, and God's commandments are the exact opposite.
They're against each other. You can't travel two roads at the same time. There's a narrow road that leads to life. There's a broad road that leads to destruction. David says, I hate that which is evil.
I hate vain thoughts. Furthermore, that hatred for that which is evil should involve evil teachings as well. Why would Christians, those believing that Jesus Christ is their Lord and Savior, those who believe that the Bible is breathed out by God, it's His Word, it's authoritative, it's His truth, turn to the writing of philosophers who didn't even believe in God to find their guidance for life?
Men like Freud and Rogers who didn't even believe in God, yet tried to write and give advice about human conduct as to how man thinks and what makes him tick. Who knows more about a human being than the sovereign God that made him? And where else can we go to find the valuable information that we so desperately need but to His Word? Those teachings must be rejected. I hate vain thoughts, but, he says, I love thy law. And certainly when we're talking about evil teachings, we're talking about any teaching that would deny the truth about God and about our Lord and Savior, Jesus Christ. John used very explicit language in his first epistle. 1 John chapter 2 verse 22 says, Who is a liar but he that denieth that Jesus is the Christ? He is an antichrist that denieth the Father and the Son. So if somebody comes to you and says, I'm a Christian, but I've got some insight that you don't have because I've got another book here that will explain the Bible. And as the discussion goes, you soon find that while they're claimed to be a Christian, they do not believe that Jesus Christ was God in the flesh.
My brother Cate was in the hospital up in Dayton. I was waiting one morning to get in to see him, and I had a forty-five minute visit with two young men who were there on their mission as a part of their religion, feeling that was a requirement for them to spend two years of their life getting out, ministering to other people. They were very pleasant, very courteous.
In fact, after the conversation with them, my heart ached when I thought how sincere they were, and yet how sincerely wrong. Because they did not believe that Jesus Christ was God in the flesh. He was just a great man. Talked to a Muslim here locally that said, oh, Jesus was a wonderful teacher, great prophet, but he wasn't God. In fact, this man said he never claimed to be. Well, obviously all you've got to do is read how the Jews reacted to the statements made by Jesus, and you see they understood that's what he was saying, that Jesus said he was God. And John says that those who deny it have the spirit of Antichrist. And so we see that there is hatred for evil.
And that hatred must not just be for evil that we see around us, evil that we see in others, but the very evil that we find sometimes in our own human nature. Secondly, in this passage we see love for holiness. In verse 113 he says, I love thy law. In verse 114 he says, I hope in thy word. 115 he says, I will keep the commandments of my God. 116 he says, uphold me by thy word, that I may live. I want to live in our harmony with thy word, to thy glory. 119 he says, I love thy testimonies.
127, I love thy commandments above gold, yea, above thine gold. A love for holiness. Love for the word of God. I love thy word. I love thy word because it reveals the truth about thee, about God. Somebody comes along today and says, well, here's what I believe about it.
Here's what I understand God to be like. In fact, somebody was telling me the other day about a discussion with an individual who started out the conversation by saying, yes, I'm a Christian. Sure, I believe the Bible. But very quickly the conversation took a dramatic turn and the person says, well, I believe the parts of the Bible that are all about love, but anything else, I don't take that. It's only that which is about love. Well, there's a lot else in the Bible too. Certainly we rejoice in the fact that God is love.
But there's also a description in the Bible of God's wrath, that God is angry with the wicked every day and that God hates sin and the workers of iniquity and will punish sin. So how is it that a person develops such an idea that I have the right to pick and choose and decide which part of the Bible I want and which part I will reject? I like this part, so I'll take that, this other part I don't like, so I reject it. You know, it just shows the pride of the human heart to say I'm able to have that kind of insight. I can be my own authority. Or maybe you've talked to somebody and said, well, okay, that's what you believe. I know that's your opinion. And that may work for you, but that doesn't work for me. What's that got to do with it?
It doesn't matter whether it works for you or not. If it's something God says, that's truth. And you know, there's an attitude prevalent in many circles today that if you take a dogmatic stand that what you believe is right and consequently are saying what somebody else believes is wrong, that you're a detriment to society. The day may come that Christians will face some severe consequences just because they take a bold stand to say, here's what's right. I was reading a blog on the internet the other night about some of the issues on the ballot in this forthcoming election and somebody was talking about how Christians were destroying the state of Ohio. That there already were so many regulations and restrictions and they were trying to put more and it was going to get to the place that intelligent, well-educated young people that really wanted to have a lot of freedom couldn't even live in this state and it was about time for people to wake up before the Christians ran it in the ground.
Well, sometimes I've wondered if the Christians were having all that much impact really. So you can understand the thinking that some have as to how that could be carried to some pretty ultimate extremes in time to come. The Bible reveals the truth about God, who God is, His love but also His holiness and His majesty.
He reveals His will, the will of God is revealed in His Word. Somebody may claim, well, I think it's the will of God that I do this or do that or I prayed about it and that makes it alright but if God says in His Word this is wrong, it's still wrong. People don't like to be tied down to absolutes. Well, isn't this open for discussion?
Can't we negotiate? You see, you know, find that attitude with children many times a day. You know, the parent says, no, you can't do that. Well, why?
Well, the parent's really not obligated to give an explanation. This is the decision that's been made. This is the rule.
This is the way it's going to be. Well, can't we discuss that further? Can't we come at it from another direction here? Can't we, you know, surely there must be some way to alter and change this rule that's been set up. We don't like rules.
That's not new. Adam and Eve didn't do too well with just one rule, did they, in the Garden of Eden. And that rebellious spirit has been passed down to all of us. Little children don't like rules. Tell a little child, little toddler just beginning to kind of explore the world and find out what they can do and can't do and say, you know, don't touch that dish there on the coffee table. Well, if there's anything in the house he now wants to touch, it's that dish.
And you see some little kids that learned the lesson more quickly than others. Some you say, don't touch the dish, you have to say it two or three times in a stern voice, but they get the message. And then I've seen others, they got their hands smacked till you'd think the last thing in the world they'd think of doing now is touching that dish.
And just as soon as they got their hand back from having it smacked, the first thing they wanted to do was touch the dish. Well, you know, some of that rebellion is in us all, is it not? How many times you've determined about a particular issue, I'm going to do better, and I know I've been convicted. I know the Bible says I ought to do this, that, or the other, or I'm going to back away from this thing which is wrong. And just like the apostle said, you find that law that when you would do good, evil is present with you.
The Bible reveals to us the truth also about God's love and His grace and His mercy and how desperately we need that. So the psalmist prayed in verse 124, deal with thy servant according unto thy mercy and teach me thy statutes. A person doesn't understand that they need mercy unless they first understand something about the holiness of God. Because apart from understanding your shortcoming in your own sin, you're standing right up there as though, I'm entitled to something, I deserve something. But when you see that you're a violator of God's law, you're a sinner by nature, then you're praying, Lord, deal with me according to thy mercy, thy mercy. And then repeatedly in this 119th Psalm, we've seen a prayer for help. Psalmist was not self-confident. He wasn't feeling that I can handle it.
Whatever the issue is, whatever the temptation that comes, I can handle it. You think about the Apostle Peter, oh, you can't help but love the man when you read his experience, read about the close communion and fellowship he had with Jesus Christ. But Peter was not aware at times of his own frailties. And he promised, Lord, I'll be with you to the very end.
And he meant that. He took out his sword, but he was obviously aiming for more than the servant's ear. He would have taken off his head if he'd have had good aim, but he severed his ear and the Lord said, Peter, put up the sword.
I haven't come to fight. But this very man who was willing to fight with the sword in the presence of a little girl who said, aren't you one of the followers of Jesus, said, I don't know him, I don't know him. You may be startled by that, but when you think about the very tension that was in the air that night, the heated spirit that prevailed among the enemies of Jesus, their determination to put him to death.
And Peter at that moment was stricken with fear and he caved in and denied his Lord. I'll tell you, there's not one of us strong enough to stand in our cells against the day-to-day temptations to sin, against a time when we would be asked to deny the faith or have to be burned at the stake or whatever the consequence might be. And so it needs to be our continuous prayer that God will help us. And that's what the psalmist is doing. In verse 116, he says, uphold me according to thy word. Lord, I need to be held up. Verse 117, hold thou me up and I shall be safe. I must have thy help. Yes, he's constantly seeking the help of God.
He's praying. Verse 125, I am thy servant. Give me understanding that I may know thy testimonies.
Lord, I don't even understand them unless you bless me. I've got to have discernment. I've got to be able to make the right decisions, the right choices based on what I understand in your Word.
Great danger when one is walking in pride and self-confidence. And then in verse 128, he says, therefore I esteem all thy precepts concerning all things to be right and I hate every false way. This is showing respect for the Word of God, not picking and choosing, not saying, well this is a little difficult or I don't quite agree with this. I, he says, esteem all thy precepts. Can you say that? Whatever I find in the Word of God, that settles it.
There's no further discussion, no effort to try to get around it. I just have to take it. Yes, it may hit me hard. I may be deeply convicted. But Lord, I esteem all thy commandments. In other words, I'm going to acknowledge the fact that the mess that I've sometimes made by ignoring thy commandments, it's my own fault, my own sin. The confusion that has come as a result of the failure to follow thee, I'm going to view all the commandments of God as being correct.
Not any mistakes made, they're not overbearing their divine truth that are given us of God. And then the third category in these passages we see, honor for God. Verse 120, my flesh trembleth for fear of thee and I am afraid of thy judgments. My flesh trembleth for fear of thee. And I know that's a little different than the thinking that's so prevalent even among many evangelicals today, but about all you hear is, well, God loves you. God loves you no matter what. I want to tell you that God in His holiness is displeased when we disregard His commandments and when we fail to demonstrate that we hate every evil way and we walk in the same course that the world is traveling. Let's look at the book of Deuteronomy chapter 29, verse 16, For ye know how we have dwelt in the land of Egypt, and how we came through the nations which ye passed by? And ye have seen their abominations and their idols, wood and stone, silver and gold, which were among them, lest there should be among you man or woman or family or tribe, whose heart turneth away this day from the Lord our God, to go and serve the gods of these nations.
Lest there should be among you a root that beareth gall and wormwood. And it cometh to pass, when he heareth the words of this curse, that he blessed himself in his heart, saying, I shall have peace, though I walk in the imagination of mine heart to add drunkenness to thirst. Here's one that says, I'm influenced by this idol worship around me, and he says in his heart, I'll have peace, everything's going to be alright with me, though I walk in the imagination of my own heart.
Oh, how prevalent that is. Somebody says, with me it's going to be alright. They're not following the commandment of God, they're following their own vain imagination, but they somehow reason that they're going to be the exception. They'll not have to suffer any of the consequences of their actions, and that God will ignore it. But God is a holy God, and is to be feared and reverenced by his people. In the book of Zephaniah, we find reference to this as well. Just an abundance of scriptures, if we would take heed to them.
Strange how in this day and time, even among people who say, I believe the Bible, that often the basic things about God and his character and how he deals with us are ignored and distorted. Zephaniah chapter 3 verse 5, The just Lord is in the midst thereof. He will not do iniquity. Every morning doth he bring his judgments to light.
He faileth not, but the unjust knoweth no shame. I have cut off the nations, their towers are desolate. I made their streets waste that none passeth by.
Their cities are destroyed, so that there is no man that there is none inhabitant. I said, Surely thou wilt fear me, thou wilt receive instruction, so their dwelling should not be cut off. However, I punished them, but they rose early and corrupted all their doings. God said, I sent judgment and surely they'll repent.
But they didn't, and therefore they've corrupted all of their doings. We are to honor God, having respect for his divine authority, recognizing that what he does is right. In Psalm 119, the 118th verse, he says, Thou hast trodden down all them that err from thy statutes, for their deceit is falsehood. Now somebody might say, Well, my God wouldn't step on anybody. But God says, I have trodden down them that err from my statutes.
There must be respect for his divine authority. In the book of Leviticus chapter 10, we find that the sons of Aaron, Nadab and Abihu offered strange fire on the altar. And that may not seem like such a great offense to you, but it was an offense to God and God struck them dead. But Aaron demonstrated great respect for God's authority because it said Aaron held his peace. Aaron did not complain and say, God, this is unfair.
I can't believe you did this to my sons. And God slew them because of their rebellion, Aaron held his peace. We then, according to these passages, as we view the judgments of God, should fear him. You remember in our studies in the book of Habakkuk that when Habakkuk found out the judgment that God was getting ready to bring upon the people, he trembled and shook.
It was difficult for him to grasp it and to be able to understand all the terrible things that were coming. But in this day and time, you hear very few expressing real fear for the holy God of heaven. Finally, Hebrews chapter 12, verse 28, Wherefore we receiving a kingdom which cannot be moved, let us have grace, whereby we may serve God acceptably with reverence and godly fear, for our God is a consuming fire. See that's a New Testament passage, that we are to respect our God, our God is a consuming fire. Now somebody might say, well, where's the love of God in all of this? Well, I'll tell you one thing, when you come to understand more about his holiness and see your failures, you certainly come to appreciate the prayer of the psalmist when he's praying for mercy. You surely realize afresh your need of mercy.
If it's not for his mercy, if it's not for his grace, we all would perish. But may we be able to say with the psalmist, I hate vain thoughts, but I love by law, seeking to honor him in our daily walk to the praise of our Savior Jesus Christ. Thank you for listening today. I hope the message has been a blessing to you. We hope you will be back with us tomorrow at this same time. So we greet you then, this is LaSara Bradley Jr. bidding you goodbye and may God bless you. Praising my Savior all the day long, this is my story, this is my song. Praising my Savior all the day long.
Whisper: medium.en / 2022-11-27 23:20:30 / 2022-11-27 23:29:36 / 9