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1691. How Majestic Is Your Name

The Daily Platform / Bob Jones University
The Truth Network Radio
January 22, 2024 6:00 pm

1691. How Majestic Is Your Name

The Daily Platform / Bob Jones University

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January 22, 2024 6:00 pm

Dr. Alan Benson begins a series about the doctrine of man called “Fearfully and Wonderfully Made.” The scripture passage is from Psalm 8.

The post 1691. How Majestic Is Your Name appeared first on THE DAILY PLATFORM.

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Welcome to The Daily Platform from Bob Jones University in Greenville, South Carolina. Today, we're beginning a study of the doctrine of man called, Fearfully Unwonderfully Made. Today's message will be preached by Dr. Alan Benson. Take your Bibles and turn with me, if you would, to the 8th Psalm.

The 8th Psalm. We are going to begin our next doctrinal series. And again, I remind you that part of what we're doing in these doctrinal series is actually helping to demonstrate for you the essential doctrine that we affirm every day when we quote our creed. We quote and talk about the inspiration of the scriptures and we talk about Christ and who he is. And one of them is that we talk about the fact that man was created by the direct act of God. And so we're going to actually talk about theologically what is known as the doctrine of man or anthropology. And you might wonder, OK, that's interesting.

What is that all about? Why would that impact me? Well, actually, it is interesting because secular humanism is having an incredible impact in particular on Western society. And the primary way today that it is doing that is actually through what has become now a direct assault on the issue of personhood. This week, we had a worldview collective that focused on toxic masculinity. Do you realize that actually in the marketplace of ideas today, one of the things that is being discussed is the whole idea of toxic humanity, that the worst thing that could ever have happened to the planet is you and me.

That if left to itself, the animals would never bring about global warming. And thus, there's this whole discussion of the value of people. And what has happened is we have humanity, particularly in the Western world, that is in an identity crisis. Issues involving the very essence of what it means to be human have moved into the broad market marketplace of open debate and have actually caught many believers off guard.

Unprepared to scripturally answer issues of gender and life and marriage and sexuality and even being. Because we've actually not concretely thought through what is man. The whiteboard in my office has written this question, what is man? I don't encourage you to Google that, but there are some interesting answers.

There was a series of articles written. One is, what is a man? And the other is, what is a woman? Now, this is deep philosophical contemplation. Can you imagine 50 years ago, 100 years ago, somebody saying, I am going to write cutting edge philosophical information that is actually going to raise incredible debate in the marketplace.

Really, what are you going to write on? What is a man and what is a woman? The fact that those exist demonstrates for us that this is a real issue in the marketplace. In fact, in the introduction to that series, the editor wrote this before he could write about what was a man and what was a woman. He wrote this, among many of the most pressing ethical issues of our day is deep confusion over what it means to be human.

From questions over abortion and racism to technology and sexuality, human anthropology lies at the heart of contemporary cultural debate. In light of the ongoing sexual crises seen through our society, certain realities that once seemed common sense to most are being challenged in what is a failed quest to define our own existence and live independent of God's created order. So turn with me, if you would, to Psalm 8. David writes, O Lord, our Lord, how excellent is thy name in all the earth, who has set thy glory above the heavens. Out of the mouth of babes and sucklings hast thou ordained strength because of thine enemies, that thou mightest still the enemy and the avenger. When I consider the heavens, the work of thy fingers, the moon and the stars which thou hast ordained, what is man? That thou art mindful of him and the son of man that thou visitest him for thou hast made him a little lower than the angels and has crowned him with glory and honor. Thou madest him to have dominion over the works of thy hands. Thou hast put all things under his feet, all sheep and oxen, yea, and the beasts of the field, the fowl of the air and the fish of the sea, and whatsoever passes through the paths of the seas. O Lord, our Lord, how excellent is thy name in all the earth. As we spend these next weeks moving through this series, one of the things I want us to see is that without question, God's Word speaks authoritatively to the issues of what is man in a wonderful way. It addresses our creation as image bearers of God and points out to us without apology that God himself created man in his image on purpose with a purpose. And I hope that as we move through this series, not only will we answer your questions, I hope that we embolden your faith, that you feel more equipped to enter the marketplace of ideas with confidence in what God says about what it means to be human.

I hope as we go through this series that it will be devotional to you in application because there are some of you sitting here wondering, what is my purpose in life and does it even matter? There are some of you sitting here struggling with your identity, struggling with who am I and do I have any value, I can't do this and I can't do that and I don't look like this and I don't look like that and I don't come from there and I'll never be able to do that. And because of all of those issues, you wonder, not just does life matter, you wonder, do you matter? There are some of you sitting here and you actually have the opposite view.

You have an over-inflated sense of your value. You see, in the middle of Psalm 8 when David asks this question, what is man that you are mindful of him and the son of man that you visit him and says that you have made him a little lower than the angels. Here in this statement, at the core of this series, you will find two incredible truths about anthropology and one of them is humbling and one of them is honoring. The humbling thought is in light of who God is and all that he made, I am so small. The other is this, someone made me with a purpose, for a purpose.

It's humbling and it's honoring. As we work through this series, we'll talk about the nature of man, the image of God in man, the distinction between man and beast, we'll talk then about the fall of man and what the impact was so that we understand some of what we're wrestling with. We'll then also contemplate the redemption of man and thus the need for a God-man. Then in light of understanding all of that, we're going to focus on what is then man's responsibility and we'll look at beauty and the image bearer and we'll look at created with the capacity to learn and why I should steward learning. And then the dominion mandate, looking then at work as worship and I think it'll give us a sense of the beauty of God in his creative splendor and give us a sense of understanding with all what it means to be fearfully and wonderfully made.

As we start that journey today, I want us to see that in Psalm 8 it begins and it ends with the same statement and both of them are about God and in the middle is the fact that he made us. And what I want us to see is that we are man that is made. We use that little expression, maybe not so much anymore because technology has changed, but it used to be that when you looked at something really valuable and something then that maybe wasn't as valuable, you always looked at them and you said, oh, okay, well that's man-made. And then the thing that wasn't man-made had incredible value.

It's not so much the same today. So I'm making a play on that word because there are people that actually believe that we are just the product of natural processes and because of that we have no more inherent value than anything else that exists. And if you get nothing else out of this message, I want you to see that God makes it incredibly clear that that isn't true. God in all that he created not only created a pinnacle that he said, this one is made in my image for a purpose, he actually said, I am making everything else for him to steward for my glory.

A unique creation and a unique place in creation. Friend, you're sitting here today, I want you to hear as we begin this series, the God that we'll see in Psalm 8 made you and that matters. And because he made you and that matters, you matter. Not only then do you matter, what you do matters.

And that is really what this series is going to be all about. So today I want us to focus on this simple idea that you are made, made in the image of God, made for the glory of God. And so today as we contemplate this Psalm, I want us to see some truths that are inherent in this and they are these two.

God is worthy of all worship. Because of his greatness displayed in all of creation. And his graciousness displayed in the creation of man.

As you contemplate how you live, what you do, your choices, your pathways, your relationships, all that takes place in the course of life. I want us to see in this Psalm, this hymn, an incredibly constructed hymn, that these things are true and ought to reverberate through our hearts as we make everyday choices in life. That my God who made me is worthy of all worship because of his greatness displayed in all of creation. And in particular his graciousness displayed in creating me.

So we have to move quickly. God is worthy of all worship. I want you to see that here in a couple of ways. The majesty of his name, he's identified here with two names. And when you look at them together, one would be his covenant name. The name you and I would know as the I Am seen in the New Testament or as Yahweh, the self-existent one.

The other one is the name where we get the idea of Lord or Sovereign. And both are used here when we talk about how excellent is thy name in all the earth who has set thy glory above the heavens. Here is a God that clearly is not his creation. He is a self-existent one. He didn't have to create and he doesn't need his creation. And yet we see him also name himself in such a way that he has intentionally entered into and invested himself in that creation. Why is God worthy of praise? Because he is different than everything else. And he made everything else.

There's a sense of right entitlement there, of ownership there. That everything that is made, God made, and everything that he made belongs to him. Remembering then that you are made. We see it not just because of the majesty of his name, but the majesty of his nature. We look at who our God is. As you look through this passage, and we won't take the time, but you see many of his attributes laid out for us by way of illustration. You see his omnipotence. You see his omnipresence. You see his transcendence. And yet in the middle of that, you have this question that echoes, if that's who this God is, why in the world is he interested in man? And thus you begin to see his communicable attributes.

Things about God that are part of the nature of man that he communicated to us. He's a God who cares, who is loving, who is loyal. And so, why is God worthy of all worship?

Because there's none like him. But understand that God's greatness is displayed in creation. Have you ever asked yourself, I believe in creation, but why did God create? Did God have to create? You see if God had to create, he would be less than God because he had a need. So there's a purpose in why God created.

And I would tell you that that purpose is, that in his sovereign plan, he through making himself known, allows us to enter into rightful worship for his glory. In other words, God made all things, and after making all things he made man. And in the all things he made it so that man would know him. God made this world and all that is in it, so that man made in his image could have a relationship with him.

We know that then through the fall that relationship was shattered. And so what did God do? We'll answer that at the end. That God's greatness is displayed in creation. And we see that in two ways. Notice the incredible display in humans.

What is man that thou art mindful of him and the son of man that thou visitest him? Have you ever thought about the complexity of the human body? Have you thought about the complexity of the human mind? Think as you sit here right now. Where you're sitting thinking, man, I wish I could go do other things or be other places or be.

Think about all that is taking place right now in your brain. It's stunning to think about how our bodies work. I think we're all familiar now with the story of the Buffalo Bills player. Who in almost a seemingly freak accident and all that happens in a professional football game.

He goes and makes what is seemingly a simple tackle but when he does he gets hit in the chest. And the response to that in a matter of just mere seconds is that his heart stops. You say, wow, how does that happen? There are no doubt physiological explanations for some of how that happens. But think about it. Why is your heart taking the next beat?

What are the batteries that keep it beating? You are fearfully and wonderfully made. And in light of who your God is, your heart doesn't take a single beat by accident. Think about how he made man and what we are like but the immense display in the heavens. Have any of you the last couple of nights before we returned to South Carolina winter looked up at the sky? Anybody noticed two nights ago there was this little sliver of a moon but the sky was so clear that you could see the outline of the rest of the moon. Recently we were up in the mountains of North Carolina and it was a really clear night and we walked outside.

It was one of those nights where where we were was so dark and the sky was so clear that we could see again the Little Dipper. I haven't actually looked at it in years. But young people consider not just the details of the created order. The beauty that is there but but think of the ongoing processes that a universe like this is held in order so that on a planet like ours life could exist.

Who does that? There is a person and he is worthy of all of our worship. I want us to see the interesting defense he talks here about out of the mouths of babes and sucklings and theologians debate over why would he use that. Out of the mouth of babes and sucklings hast thou ordained strength because of thine enemies that thou mightest still the enemy and the Avenger. One theologian I think accurately captures the idea that here is man with a form of simplicity.

That recognizes that there is a God that understands that in the simple statements of childlike faith there is a ready acceptance that there is a God. There's more to it than that but in a sense it is a picture of of pure unmitigated expressions of faith. That's expressions used other place throughout the scriptures and we won't have the time this morning to go into all of that. But I want you to see next than the graciousness of God displayed in creating man and with this we will finish. What is man that thou art mindful of him and I want you to see in verse five. Thou hast made him a little lower than the angels and has crowned him with glory and honor. Thou mayest him to have dominion over the works of thy hands thou hast put all things under his feet.

And thus he talks about the created order sheep and oxen beasts of the field foul of the air fish of the sea the things that pass through the seas are all there. Somehow in relationship to a man that God made with a purpose. Without going into all the details of that for the sake of time this morning what I want you to get from this is that in the making of man God has a purpose for everything in the world. In the dominion mandate what we do in God's world is a matter of why God made me. The choices you make in life are not atheistic. They're not to be made as though there isn't a God I compartmentalize my life I do a God thing and I do life. They are not to be made in a sense agnostically that I live as though really I don't know what God wants and I don't know who God is and I don't know what God thinks.

In fact just the opposite is true. Understanding my humanness and that I am made and that I am made in a world by a God that made it all actually drives us to contemplate how should I be living this life. I want to take you to one more passage as we close because there is one more passage that references this. So take your Bibles and go with me toward the end of the New Testament. And I want us to look at Hebrews chapter 2.

Hebrews 2 verse 5 says this for unto the angels hath he not put in subjection the world to come whereof we speak but one in a certain place testified saying Psalm 8 what is man that thou art mindful of him or the son of man that thou visitest him thou made us to him a little lower than the angels thou crownest him with glory and honor and did set him over the works of thy hands that was put all things in subjection under his feet for in that he put all in subjection under him. And he left nothing that is not put under him but now we see not yet all things put under him. Life is broken. And because life is broken it actually makes us go back and say well I know God said that but life doesn't work that way so maybe maybe this whole man made thing and made in the image of God and how I'm supposed to live life.

Maybe that isn't true. The fall has made a mess of God's world. In fact you and I live in a rebel world. But notice what the psalmist says he says this but we see Jesus who was made a little lower than the angels for the suffering of death crowned with glory and honor that he by the grace of God should taste death for every man for it became him for whom are all things and by whom are all things in bringing many sons unto glory to make the captain of their salvation perfect through suffering. You know what we do live in a broken world.

We don't see creation in the order that God had it in pre fall. We are broken so we don't live actually as image bearers the way we should and we struggle because of that with who am I and where do I belong and what is my identity and what is my purpose and how should I live and I want to before we leave this opening message to drive home this truth. We will never rightly understand anthropology and who man is unless you first come to Christ. You see God graciously displayed himself for us in sending his own son made of a woman made under the law to redeem those who are under the law. And he redemptively died in your place and my place he vicariously took the wrath of God for you as your substitute so that you might be rightly related to the God who made you as we talk about what is man and what is our purpose and how should we live.

I want you today to leave here with this underlying thought I made why what for and as you begin to explore that I want you to run to Christ. God I can only fully understand this if I in my fallenness and rightly related to you because of your son. You will never understand and fully appreciate what it means to be human until you are saved. And then as you're saved you need to grow in that knowledge, and I hope that that's what we'll do this semester as we deepen our understanding. And as we heighten our commitment to God's truth. Let's pray father. Thank you for making us. Thank you that though we fell away from you you loved us enough to send your son made like us to redeem us. Help us this semester to answer the ethical dilemmas of life with your truth. Lord I pray that it wouldn't be something merely objective to us, but it would be subjective that this would be about how I live and the choices that I make because I am made fearfully and wonderfully. In Jesus name we pray. Amen. We've been listening to a sermon preached at Bob Jones University by Dr. Alan Benson. Listen again tomorrow as we continue the series fearfully and wonderfully made on The Daily Platform.
Whisper: medium.en / 2024-01-22 19:47:29 / 2024-01-22 19:56:22 / 9

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