Beloved, we have been given a stewardship. You see, I lived under dictatorships.
I lived under socialism. I didn't have a choice. But God placed a choice in your hands and in mine.
It is a privilege that I would literally plead with you that you wake up and realize it. And the psalmist is saying, those who confess God must also obey Him. Jesus said, if you love me, obey my commandments. You can't say you love Jesus and you live your life in utter disobedience to His word.
The two just can't go together. Living a life of obedience today on Leading the Way with Pastor and International Bible Teacher Dr. Michael Youssef. Growing up in Egypt, added to years passionately studying God's word, provides Dr. Youssef incredible insights into these words of warning in the Bible. Today, journey with Dr. Youssef into the Old Testament Book of Psalms for a look at the kingship of God. Please do remember that Leading the Way is listener supported, relying on God's provision through your generous giving to help ministry teams worldwide fulfill the call of God.
Learn ways to stand with Dr. Youssef at ltw.org. Now though, please turn with us to Psalm 93, if you're not driving, as Dr. Michael Youssef begins a challenging message of truth. There are louder and louder voices in our culture today that are protesting or denying altogether the biblical foundation upon which the nation is built. Many are rewriting history and we see it in the textbooks, schools. Others are falsely accused Christians of wanting to turn America into a theocracy.
Theo, Greek word for God, and therefore it means the rule of God. And you often hear them in the media say that these Christians who want to turn America into a Christian theocracy, these Christians who are trying to impose their morality on society, those Christians who are trying to bring about an Islamic Taliban style civil order. I don't know of a single thoughtful Christians who ever declared that we want a theocracy. Theocracy is only going to be in heaven. But the problem is that when a lie is repeated often, after a while people will believe it as the truth. Lenin, the founder of the modern communist movement who knows all about lying, said that a lie told often enough becomes the truth. When people ask me, Michael, do you want to Christianize America?
I say absolutely not. I want to Christianize the world. Amen. So that's what the Great Commission is all about. To proclaim the gospel of Jesus Christ to every creature and pray that they will accept God's invitation and receive Jesus as the Messiah and Lord of all. And if they do that, and when they do that, the end results, law abiding, loving, caring community.
And who doesn't want that? By Christianizing, we often mean that people live their lives under the rule of God and his word. People live according to the spirit of Jesus. People live in liberty and in justice and in loving their neighbors as themselves. In fact, that is the very ideal that the founding fathers built this nation on.
That doesn't mean perfection. They were not naive enough to think that they can achieve perfection here on earth. They knew it only would be possible in heaven.
Hear me right, please. What distinguishes between Christians, and I'm talking about true genuine Christians and non-Christians, is that the Christians believe that God rules and reigns over their lives. That God and his word are their ultimate authority. That God is their supreme governor over their lives.
That God is the one who must be obeyed above all else. And our call in life as true believers in the Lord Jesus Christ, as true Christians, the call of God upon our life is to show the world, show the people how wonderful that rule of God in our lives is. What blessedness can come when God rules supreme in our lives. What unspeakable joy that his reign and rule brings to us. We need to testify and show the world what contentment and what peace obeying him and obeying his word produces in us. That we need to show the world what true love can come out of surrender to his authority, out of surrender to the will of God in our lives. Now those who are running around lying and saying Christians want to legislate morality, they really are creating smokescreen.
They really are. And they're creating smokescreen in order that they may impose their view of morality. And those who are running around saying the separation of church and state, what they're really saying is that the state is their church.
But here's the truth. The reason for America's greatness and the reason why millions of people line up to come to the United States of America. The reason why people risk limb and life to come to America is because America experienced the blessings that come from the settlers acknowledging the rule of God in their hearts. Christianity is the most important component of America's greatness. America's first constitution was the Mayflower Compact in the name of God, amen. And even as late as 1955, President Eisenhower said the following, without God there can be no American form of government or an American way of life. Thus the founding fathers of America saw it and thus with God's help it will continue to be.
My God give us leaders like that again. I want you to turn with me please to Psalm 93. The Lord reigns. He is robed in majesty.
The Lord is robed in majesty and His arm with strength. The world is firmly established that cannot be moved. Your throne was established long ago.
You are from eternity. The seas have lifted up, oh Lord, the seas have lifted up their voice. The seas have lifted up their pounding waves. Mightier than the thunder of the great waters, mightier than the breaks of the sea, the Lord on high is mighty.
Your statutes stand firm. Holiness adorns your house for endless days, oh Lord. Father in the name of Jesus, will you open our spiritual eyes that we may see the wonderful truth from your word, for the glory is yours forever and ever.
Amen. Psalm 93 declares the kingship of Yahweh. Psalm 93 tells us that God is exalted in three ways. First, the triumph of God's rule, verses one and two. Secondly, the turmoil of those who oppose God's rule, verses three and four. And verse five, thirdly, the truth about God's rule. First, there is the triumph of God's rule.
Look at verse one. The Lord reigns. Whether we like it or not, He reigns. Whether the atheists like it or not, He reigns.
Whether the government likes it or not, He reigns. He is closed or robed, as your translation says, with majesty. The Lord is closed or robed with strength. You see, most people still want to think today of the weak and meek Jesus, the helpless Jesus. They want to think of the baby Jesus as if He was a baby forever. They want to think of a milk toast Jesus, a helpless Jesus. And yet the Bible said that we know Him after the flesh no more.
What does that mean? It means that that very Jesus who had nowhere to lay His head during His earthly life, it now reigns in splendor and in majesty over the rim of the universe. That the very Jesus who died on the cross to redeem everyone who would believe in Him now at the seat of power and at the seat of splendor over the entire universe. The very Jesus who was mocked and bled to death and died for us is now sitting on the throne of the entire universe. That same Jesus who was dragged around from court to palace like a common criminal by evil men now possesses all authority, all power, all grandeur, all splendor over the whole universe, whether they can see it or not. So much so that the disciple whom the Lord Jesus loves, John, when he was privileged and he tells us in the book of Revelation to see the majesty and the splendor of the resurrected glorified Jesus, he fell on his face and he couldn't even look up. And when Isaiah saw the Lord's majesty and splendor in Isaiah chapter 6, he becomes speechless and all he could say is woe to me, woe to me, woe to me. I am ruined for I am a man of unclean lips and I live among people of unclean lips and my eyes have seen the King, the Lord Almighty. I often wonder if God just reveal a tiny glimpse of his splendor. I tell you, we be ashes. We could never ever survive seeing a tiny glimpse of his splendor.
Let me give you a Michael Yusef interpretation, not translation, but interpretation of Isaiah 6 in the vernacular of today. We are people who are full of our own self-importance. We are done for because we are forever bragging about what we can do. We are finished because we are forever blowing bubbles about what we have done. We are forever prideful of our accomplishments.
We are forever arrogant and ready to take credit for what only God could have done. And when I saw the absolute splendor and majesty and power and authority of the Lord, I fell on my face and I thought, what a bunch of hot air we are. But not our King of Kings. He is robed in majesty and splendor and no one can dislodge that from him. For his power is from everlasting to everlasting. His authority is from age to age. His splendor is from all eternity. His strength is immutable.
His throne is established and cannot be moved. And the world cannot be changed without his saying so. You know, I genuinely deeply in my heart feel pain and sorrow for anyone who rejects the authority of Jesus Christ over their life.
I really do. For in a day of judgment, those very people who have rejected him will stand in terror and fear, while those of us who loved him will reign and rule with him. Those of us who loved his authority over us, those of us who loved his commandments, those of us who loved his word, those of us who loved his decrees, they will rejoice with great joy. Beloved, listen to me. No human nature is immutable. No human being is permanent. No human being is unchangeable. Only Jesus, King Jesus, is immutable and permanent and unchanging.
In fact, Jude in his epistle described those who are full of themselves, those who think that they are gods, all those Hollywood celebrities, those who worship themselves, their own ideas, their own opinions, their own feelings, their own what they think is right. He describes them as clouds without rain blown along with the wind, as autumn trees without fruit uprooted, as wild waves of the sea foaming with shame, as wandering stars for whom the blackest darkness has been reserved forever. Ah, but God is unchangeable. The splendor of his majesty is unshakable. The authority of his throne is forever.
His reign and his rule is immutable. He is yesterday, today, and forever. He is the alpha and the omega. He is the beginning and the end. He is the one before whom all angels prostrate, crying out saying holy, holy, holy Lord God almighty, for he was and is and is to come.
Amen. People may ignore him. There are some cute preachers around who try to bring him down to their level and treat him like the bellhop. There are false teachers who try to cut him down to size, but the Word of God said your throne was established long ago.
You are from eternity. The triumph of God's rule. Secondly, the turmoil of those who oppose him or those who even try to ignore him. I want you to look closely at verses three and four because they're not what you may think they mean. And I'm going to back up what I'm going to tell you first by scripture. In Isaiah chapter 17 and in Jeremiah chapter 6, again in Jeremiah chapter 50, they all give us an image in the Old Testament of the waves of the sea and what the waves are. They tell us that those who rebel against God's rule are like the raging of the waves of the sea.
They sound like roaring sea. And the psalmist is saying the same thing here. Look at verses three and four again.
He gives us a picture of those who reject the authority of God's Word, who reject the rule of God over their lives as the sea with all of its mighty mass of waters, with constant unrest of its wave, churning, churning, churning. You see them on television. They're angry. They might smile with their teeth, but they are angry on the inside. They're ceaseless. They're pounding against the rock, constantly pounding, pounding.
They're continuous foaming against the firmament. Those who are at enmity with the rule of God, those who have rejected the authority of Jesus Christ in their lives, those who refuse the supremacy of the King of Kings, they are like the roaring of the ocean whose power is mere noise and temporary. Isaiah 17, 12 says, oh, the raging of many nations. They rage like the raging sea.
Oh, the uproar of the peoples. They roar like the roaring of great waters. See, the way God sees them, it's just noise. They noise. He longs for them to repent and live under his authority, but they just noise.
It's like an ant trying to kill an elephant raging with anger against God. God says they will die and disappear. They'll become relics of history. Oh, but our Lord is forever. Those who belong to him will live with him forever. Atheists and agnostics and those into dead religions can look at their turmoil and they would say, where is God? Why doesn't he do something about this evil?
It's an interesting phenomena, is it not? It's almost fashionable today to blame somebody else for our troubles. Blame somebody else. Never take responsibility.
That's an indictment on our culture today. How can a loving God not do something about this turmoil in the world? Well, God did something. He came from heaven.
He died on a cross and he rose from the dead and he invited everyone to come under his rule and he said only his rule over people's hearts can bring peace. Just think with me for a moment. You got a piece of machinery and it's broken. You already have thrown out the designer's manual and then you complain.
That's what they're doing. They throw out the designer's manual and say, why doesn't God do something? You throw out the designer's manual. You refuse the blueprints. The triumph of God's rule. The turmoil of God's enemies. Thirdly, the truth of God's rule.
Look at verse five. Your statues stand firm. Holiness adorns your house for endless days, oh Lord. There's never been a time we've faced such a clear choice as we do today. The rule of God or the rule of Satan. The reign of the word of God or the reign of terror of man. The authority of heaven or the power of hell. The choice is clear.
Psalm 119 two says, blessed are they who keep his statue and seek him with all their hearts. Beloved, we have been given a stewardship. You see, I lived under dictatorships. I lived under socialism. I didn't have a choice, but God placed a choice in your hands and in mine.
It is a privilege that I would literally plead with you that you wake up and realize it. And the Psalmist is saying, those who confess God must also obey him. Jesus said, if you love me, obey my commandments. You can't say you love Jesus and you live your life in utter disobedience to his word.
The two just can't go together. Today in America, 80% of the population confess that they're Christians and yet they do not own that confession. Statistics after statistics show that most churchgoing Christians do not know the very essence of the Christian faith. Recently, the Pew research revealed that even atheists and agnostics know more about the Christian faith than those who claim to be Christians.
If that should not make you weep over America, I don't know what. But what does all that mean? It means these folks, of course, only paying lip service to the term Christian, because the Bible is very clear. No one can truly be a Christian person without submitting to the authority of Christ as savior, but also as Lord. Do we obey him perfectly? Do I obey him perfectly? Of course not.
I fail more than I can count. But it's a desire to live under his Lordship in obedience that God honors. It's one thing to say, yes, Jesus is Lord. And it's quite another to live under his Lordship in obedience and his word. And obedience doesn't come naturally. I just chuckle when people say, well, I'm a follower of Jesus Christ.
I got news for you. I can follow Jesus Christ on my own strength. It is his power that he gives us to help us live in obedience.
And if you've never claimed that you can today. When Saul of Tarsus had an encounter with the risen Christ on the road to Damascus before he became the apostle Paul, he asked one question. What would you have me do, Lord? And the Psalmist is saying that everything associated with God must be holy. And that is why here holiness means to us is unconditional surrender in obedience to the Lord and his word.
Are you going to surrender to Jesus Christ or are you going to continue living your life your way? And if you're tired of living your life your way, and if you're tired of failing, then come to him who can give you victory. Challenging words from pastor and International Bible teacher Dr. Michael Yousaf.
Did today's message prompt spiritual questions? Maybe you'd like to talk to one of our pastoral team members. If so, begin by filling out a quick contact form at ltw.org slash Jesus.
We would love to speak with you. No matter how hard these days may be, no matter how trying those times may become, no matter how challenging the situation is, don't ever give up on the gospel truth. Learn the keys to spiritual endurance, overcome spiritual burnout and train up the next generation to stand firm on biblical truth with Dr. Yousaf's new book, never give up at the end of his life imprisoned in a Roman dungeon. The Apostle Paul urged his young disciple Timothy, never give up on prayer, never give up on biblical truth, never give up on the faith that was once for all entrusted to the saints. In his brand new book, never give up, Dr. Michael Yousaf unpacks Paul's rich words of encouragement found in second Timothy, words that will help you endure, flourish and thrive in the midst of doubt, danger and despair. Don't be ashamed of the word of God.
Don't dilute it to the point of unrecognition. In this encouraging book, Dr. Yousaf unveils four unique aspects of what it means to never give up biblical truth, a timely message as Christians around the world face mounting pressure to compromise their faith and abandon their biblical values. Dr. Yousaf also shares personal examples from his life and ministry of how he found the strength to stand for Christ amid the pressure to compromise.
Pre-order your copy today for your gift of any amount and receive two bonus resources exclusively from Leading the Way. Be empowered to live for Christ in difficult times and learn how to leave a lasting legacy of faith for the next generation. Whatever the future may bring, don't surrender. Don't be intimidated. Never give up on biblical truth. Pre-order your copy of Dr. Yousaf's newest book, Never Give Up, by giving a gift of any amount. Contact us today. Well, it's time to say goodbye. Thank you for being with us today and do plan to join Dr. Michael Yousaf for the next Leading the Way when he passionately proclaims uncompromising truth. This program is furnished by Leading the Way with Dr. Michael Yousaf.
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