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February 16, 2022 7:00 am
You want to be a man, set apart for God, renew your dependence on Christ, consider his hatred of evil and turn from every known sin and let your prayers be against the wicked and for God's people welcome again to the truth pulpit with John Green, founding pastor of truth Community Church in Cincinnati, Ohio were done is teaching God's people. God's word. I bill right and today Don moves ahead in a series called, set apart God looking at what it means to live a life that is totally reliant upon and in submission to our heavenly father in every way. Open your Bible to Psalm five as God brings us the second half of this powerful lesson on the truthful second wings we continue on in this is not just that we are dependent in relationship to God. You see that we are distinct in our relationship to sin.
In verses four through six. David brings the holy character of God to bear on the sand and upon the sinners that are around him and sees himself in distinction from them is distinct from his world environment. He stands opposed to the world would verse four David says, for you are not a God who takes pleasure in wickedness. No evil dwells with you. The boastful shall not stand before your eyes. You hate all who do iniquity, you destroy those who speak falsehood. The Lord abhors the man of bloodshed and deceit and so what David is doing here is he is positioning himself against sin he is aligning himself with the character of God against sinners. He takes God's holiness and applies it to the world around him and affirms God's absolute hatred of evil. He says you don't take pleasure in wickedness God you hate all who do iniquity. You abhor the man of bloodshed and deceit. Look this aspect of the holiness of God. This reality about his character should provoke serious fear in the hearts of men look at the text with me. He says the boastful verse five shall not stand before you. You hate all who do iniquity, you destroy those who speak falsehood is not just that he banishes the why he destroys the one who speaks the beloved eternal hell is the final proof and will be the ultimate judgment of God on the people who commit iniquity.
We should not soften the edges of God's holiness and make him less holy and less opposed to wicked men than what Scripture reveals him to be God is not only aligned against sin. He is aligned against sinners. He is opposed to them the wrath of God abides upon those who do iniquity. Here's what you need to see David was not in the spirit of a Pharisee as he said these things about the sinners in verses four through six.
David is not self righteous here in Psalm five and you can see that by looking at verse seven. Look at it with me. He says, but as for me by your abundant lovingkindness. I will enter your house at your holy temple. I will bow in reference look at the text with me. Put your finger on verse seven and look at it with me. David says but as for me, he sets up.
I had an emphatic contrast, there like that. I like this. The two are separated from one another because God on set apart for you, but notice what he says in verse seven he says but as for me, here's where his reliance is, here's where his trust is.
Here's what distinguishes him as a man of God. He says it's by your abundant lovingkindness. I will enter the house. His reliance for favor with God is not upon his own obedience. His reliance is upon the mercy and the faithful, loyal love of his God. He says I'm I'm separate and distinct from them. Not because I'm righteous and myself, but because I am relying on your mercy. They are indifferent to your character. I am here, relying on your mercy, God, I'm here and I acknowledge my need of grace see the man set apart for God does not approach God with his head held high in pride but with his knees bent low in reference and with his heart, acknowledging its need for grace. David was a penitent mourner over sin. He is separate from sin, and he depends on grace in the presence of God. The label for this third point is a little bit awkward. I think it makes sense for you when we explain it. The man set apart for God's is dependent in relationship to God. He is distinct in relationship to sin.
Thirdly, he is discerning in relationship to men God.
Sin and man that is the rounds in which we find ourselves thinking through in order to be set apart for God as you come to verse eight in Psalm five David is now turning to his actual prayers.
He's he's laying forth the requests that he is asking God to grant to him and first, he prays for himself. Look at verse eight where he says, oh Lord lead me in your righteousness because of my photos make your way straight before me this is the parallelism of Hebrew poetry. David is saying the same thing into different ways, sing God lead me in your righteousness make your way straight before me what he saying is God I want to be set apart for you.
I want to live a righteous life that pleases you. And there are photos there is there is opposition, there are obstacles to me being able to to fulfill that desire. I lack the strength I lack the wisdom I lack the power to do that on my own and so God I appeal to the resources of your great omnipotence and I ask you to exercise your power to help me live this life that is set apart for you.
He's asking God to guide him away from the hands of his enemies and their sins to guide them away even from the sins of his own heart to help him overcome the obstacles that might hinder his life of obedience you see in this prayer that David realizes that he is vulnerable and he humbly seeks the protection of God as he seeks to live out his life as the anointed King of God's chosen people's incredible and so you see the humility of David in the desire of David God. I want to be set apart for you. It is urgent that my life be used for your purposes.
And so God please lead me in that very thing that I desire that which you have commanded me to do to live a life set apart for you and your righteousness. All God won't you please help me do what you've asked me to do what you commanded me to do. Give me strength and power to be that kind of man belovedů Ask you is that the prayer of your heart. Now right now is your under the authority of the teaching of the word of God is that your prayer, it ought to be. There is no excuse for us. If that's not the way that our mind and our heart is inclined, in light of what God has shown us through these first eight verses of Psalm five God lead me, make me a man like that that is the goal of godly living to be set apart. In other something that needs to be set at this point to join a couple of theological terms together. We are justified. We are declared righteous based on the merits of the Lord Jesus Christ. It's it's a declaration of God that he accepts us based on Christ and that all the demands of the law have been fulfilled on our behalf, and the merit in the obedience of Christ is credited to our account. That's justification we are declared right in the eyes of the law of God, and God accepts us based on the obedience and the shed blood of Christ. Well, there are a lot of teachers in the world today like to stop there and say okay that's all that matters. Matters.
That's not all that matters. God saved us by his grace and clean inside as a principle of grace, a dynamic principle of grace that is designed to change us so that we would be increasingly sanctified, set apart from this world, set apart from sin, set apart from our own wicked desires that we would be set apart for him to live for his glory.
It's the same principle that we've studied in Titus chapter 2 the Lord redeemed us to have a people for his own possession, zealous for good works. If you're not zealous for good works. If you're not zealous to be sanctified, set apart for God. You have every reason to go back to the very starting point and ask yourself, am I even a Christian or not. If you don't care about the godly life. There's no reason to think that God dwells in you. Now David prays for himself in verse eight. Now in verse nine and 10. He directs his prayer toward the enemies of God. Verses nine and 10 with me. He says there's nothing reliable in what they say their inward part is destruction itself.
Their throat is an open grave.
They flatter with their tongue hold them guilty.
Oh God, by their own devices, let them fall in the multitude of their transgressions thrust them out.
That's a very strong prayer and David is praying against evil men who speak wickedly. Their words expose what is true about their heart. Jesus said, in and out the gospel of Mark that that them out of the abundance of the heart. The man speaks, what's what we say is an expression of what comes out of our mouths when dirty words come out of your mouth. Your giving evidence of the fact that there are dirty things going on in your heart. And David says this is the mark of wicked men that that there marked by their marked by destruction. There is evil and bloodshed and deception that is woven into the very things that come out of their mouth all the organs of their speech, their throat, their tongue, their lives are devoted toward this wickedness and what is worse, he says they that the universe nine.
They flatter with their tongue try to cloak it all as though they were your friends. You had people like that in your life. Haven't you. I have people that that you know are bent on your destruction, would like nothing more than to trample over you so that they can accomplish their objectives and yet they cloak it in flattery say hey how you doing good to see. Wish you were Ted, but it's still good to see you now. David sees all of that in the midst of that in the midst of his contemplations his meditations. He says God vindicate your righteousness bring them down so that your righteousness may prevail, and here's what I want you to see about this beloved.
Remember were talking about a man set apart for God.
How does that look like what does that look like will.
Here's what you really got to understand people get all tied up in these prayers of imprecation God deal with the enemies God bring them down cast them down, destroying what you need to see and understand. Here is a David is not praying this way out of a sense of personal vengeance and Ed because he wants retribution because he wants revenge for wrongs done to him. It's not about him here in verse 10, it's not about David, do you see that well let me show you how you can know that for sure what he says at the end of verse 10 says Lord thrust them out for because here's why I want you to do this. So God, here's why I'm praying against these wicked men it's because they are rebellious against you, he is identified with the purposes of God. He set apart for the purposes of God.
And so when he prays that God would bring down these wicked men. It's not because of making life difficult for David is because they are rebelling against God himself and David has so subsumed he has so brought himself into line with the purposes and the character of God that he merely praise God vindicate your name vindicate your character against these wicked people because I can't bear to see their opposition to you. He is set apart from God and so naturally he opposes that which opposes God. Naturally, he lines up against those people who line up against God, that's the heart of David. Whenever you read David praying this way, you need to remember that as you read about the life of David in the Old Testament history books and and second Samuel, and in the book of Chronicles, you need to realize is you read that that on a personal level, David was one of the most magnanimous, forgiving man that you could have ever met. He he refused to raise his hand against King Saul. Even when he had opportunity and reason to do so. He refused to have the head cut off of shipmate who cursed him as he was fleeing Absalom, he says.
Who knows maybe maybe God speaking to me through him. B. He reached out to him the for the chef after Jonathan was gone and showed mercy to him within the chef.
All that to say that you haven't. David personally when his personal interests were at stake. He was a forgiving, gracious man. He was marked by that when it came to the enemies of God. He said God act because they are opposed to you and I want you to vindicate your name because I'm set apart for you, and so beloved as we contemplate our own relationship to the world around us we see that that there's there's just a short distinction that should be in our minds not only why not walk in the path of sinners all ask God to vindicate his name against them and thrust them down so that their rebellion could come to an end. Thirdly, David prayed for himself.
David is prayed for and against the enemies of God and how he prays in verse 11 is a praise for the people of God. He says to let all who take refuge in you be glad let them ever sing for joy and may you shelter them that those who love your name may exult in you. David identifies himself with the people of God and he's he's eager to see them know and enjoy the blessing of God are such a largeness to David's heart is not so wrapped up in himself that he forgets the enemies of God. He he asked God to deal with them and is not so consumed with the problems of the world that he can't think about the people of God and and pray for God to extend spiritual blessings to them. Oh God, help them to abound enjoy. Oh God, shelter, and protect them. Oh God work in their lives so that they would exult in you and be glad to man, set apart for God. He identifies with them he wants them to abound enjoy God has set apart these people for himself. David being set apart for God identifies himself also with them and prays for blessing upon them, so is he sees things clearly. God help me to walk God deal with your enemies. God bless your people I'm set apart for you accomplish your purposes and may accomplish your purposes against your enemies accomplish your purposes by blessing your people got him to set apart for you the desires of my heart and prayer express by asking you to do what you are already inclined to do and how can he do that how, on what basis is the prey that way and pray for the particularly for the people of God. Look at verse 12.
As we come to a close, here. David says, for it is you. Here's why pray this way, God is because of who you are. It is you who blesses the righteous man, oh Lord I'm asking you to do this because you are the only one who can bless your people with joy. No one else can do that got if you withhold your hand your people would not have this blessing. And so God I'm asking you to give to them what only you can do if you set them apart. I know it's because you want to bless them.
So please do that as I align myself with them and with your purposes and notice there's a word picture that he uses here that's very vivid. He says you surround him with favor as with a shield. God you surround the righteous man that man who loves you and and seeks after your purposes. God you surround that man with favor like a shield. In other words, what he saying here is that you protect them you you surround them with blessing. The word for shield that he uses here is not the smaller shield that would merely protect the vital organs. It refers to a full body shield a large shield that covered everything about the man. It's a picture of total protection of total provision surrounded with favor as a shield as surrounded is this large shield protects the entirety of the soldiers person in battle. Matthew Henry said.
He said the favor of God is to the saints.
A defense on every side while they keep themselves under the divine protection they are entirely safe and ought to be entirely satisfied in quote there you have a beloved in the words of that great Puritan expositor.
You see the benefit of being set apart for God.
We are entirely safe because we are under the providential protection and the guiding hand of the sovereign God is using us for his purposes to direct us to the end of eternal glory. Of course, were entirely safe. Of course we can be at peace under the hand of God like that. And we ought to be entirely satisfied to be in that position even though earthly sorrows hit us from time to time, the wife of Jonathan Edwards after he died she wrote to her daughter and said it was expressing her contentment with God and said, there I am in there. I long to be.
I want to be simply content in the presence of God.
Even though a divine stroke of affliction has come into my life's precious incident to think about this is ennobling.
This gives you a sense of the greatness of the call of the Christian life to be dependent in relationship to God to view him for who he is and to honor him accordingly to be distinct in relationship to sin not drinking in the iniquity of the world being separate from it and trusting in divine mercy to deliver you from it and to be discerning in relationship to man God guide my path into righteousness deal with your enemies, and thrust them down here with your people and bless them and build them up so you want God to use you to shake your world you want to be a man, set apart for him will renew your dependence on Christ, consider his hatred of evil and turn from every known sin and let your prayers be against the wicked and for God's people know what I like to see those of us approved community.
Those of us to gather together around his or let's be that kind of people. Let's be that kind of church that is set apart for God, and that actively pursues that let's just be that way and then let's watch and see what happens. That's done green wrapping up today's lesson title set apart for God. We hope you been encouraged in your faith today and friend if you'd like to find out more about our ministry. We invite you to visit the truth.
Pulpit.com. You'll find this message there, along with all of John's teaching available to you anytime again. Just go to the truth. Pulpit.com, and Alfred done green I feel right inviting you to join us next time.
As Don continues in his ministry of teaching God's people. God's work