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July 12, 2021 11:46 am
The rhythm of life is God's revelation in our response when you say that again the rhythm of life is God's revelation and our response. We assume that coming here this morning to some degree you're seeking God were seeking his impact in our lives before we could ever seek him first, seeks us is the great initiator. Christ came to seek and to save that which is lost. God has revealed himself to us.
We see from his word that he reveals he speaks to us through the beauty of his creation. The heavens declare his glory, the skies proclaim his handiwork. Psalm 19 says, Romans chapter 1 talks about how that we know of God's divine attributes, his divine nature and his power by the things that his he has created.
Who can look at it newborn baby and not be overwhelmed at the majesty and the magnificence and the grace of God.
We know him by the things that he has created.
We know God has revealed himself in Christ. In Hebrews chapter 11 it speaks that Christ is the radiance of God's glory and the exact imprint of his nature. He is the word spoken among us. And of course we hold in our hands today. His living and active word Hebrews chapter 4 talks of the Bible and says that it's sharper than any two-edged sword, cutting to the very heart and we know that his word is alive God reveals to us. He speaks to us through his creation. He speaks to us through Christ and through his word. Not only does he reveal himself to us, but he opens our eyes and our hearts to recognize him and not just to recognize him, but to have a relationship with us, God is seeking us. The Bible says the father is seeking true worshipers receive the Bible in different places relationship with the Lord, explain. Think of the way that a follower of Christ is explained. Therefore, if anyone is in Christ, he is a new creation. The description many times in the Bible that the follower is in Christ and also Christ in us the whole of glory. We see many times in the Bible the word abide such a beautiful word that tells us that were to live in Christ were to abide with him. John chapter 8 says that those who abide in his word are truly his disciples. Think of many places in the Bible were even uses the word continually. Psalmist says in Psalm 34 is this appraisal continually be on my lips. Psalm 73.
It says the Lord is continually with me. He is with us. He will never leave us and never forsake us. So we have this relationship where God is speaking to us and we respond that impacts every moment of our lives.
Yet somehow I think and I'm sure you would agree.
Certainly, at times, and perhaps way too often we ascribe to that in theory but in practice our lives might be very different. We put we push our relationship with the Lord, to the periphery of our lives.
Yes, we come to worship and we think of God we acknowledge him in the mountain tops and the peaks of life or in the valleys or for wisdom when we come to crossroads, but when it comes to the moment by moment, day by day, we neglect the privilege and the responsibility that we have to live in communion with him our pursuits, our struggles or circumstances. Our focus can go off of off of the ward onto ourselves and onto other things, the Psalm that were get a look at today I feel is a great guide for us. It gives us a great picture in just a moment to read this together and as we do.
I would ask you to think and recognize in this Psalm. What the psalmist is saying or reviewing about God and also what he is saying. Modeling commanding about our response to God.
God reveals and we respond.
Let's stand and these words are good to be on the screen. Let's take partakers great privilege we have of reading God's word together.
Let's read aloud I give you thanks all Lord with my whole heart before the gods I sing your praise. I bow down toward your holy temple and give thanks to your name for your steadfast love and your faithfulness for you have exalted above all things, your name and your word on the day I called, you answered me, my strength of soul, you increase all the kings of the earth shall give you thanks so Lord, for they have heard of the words of your mouth initial seeing of the ways of the Lord for great is the glory of the Lord for the Lord is high. He regards the lowly but the Harding he knows from afar, though I walk in the midst of trouble you preserve my life.
You stretch out your hand against the wrath of my enemies in your right hand delivered to me.
The Lord will fulfill his purpose for me. Your steadfast love the Lord endures forever. Do not forsake the work of your hands meant.
Please be seated.
When we see about God in these verses in this song. Our philosophy of worship rightly says that we worship God because of who he is and what he has done, we worship God for who he is and what he has done. Of course we know who is by what he is done in the storm look at some of these attributes of God that are brought out. First of all, inverse, at the very beginning.
Says in verse two is steadfast love and his faithfulness in verse eight, is steadfast love endures forever.
So here we have the love of God describe for us as it is many many times in Scripture as steadfast and here as in other places as enduring. God's love for us is perfect.
It is steadfast it cannot be shaken, it will not change its enduring it will never run out on us.
He is steadfast his love endures forever were told here and other places in Scripture. We also see that God is faithful. We know that his mercies are new every morning great is his faithfulness like Brooke saying so well for us. His promises will never fail.
He is a faithful God. We also hear and see here. Maybe not spoken directly, but certainly implied inverse for all the kings of the earth will give you thanks for they have heard of the words of your mouth, we see the sovereignty of God Bible tells us that the king's heart is in his hand and then one day every knee will bow and every tongue will confess that Jesus Christ is Lord he is sovereign says hereto that he is glorious great is the glory of the Lord in verse five down in verse seven and verse eight. It speaks of his right hand. Assign a symbol of his strength and of his mites. As we look at this Psalm we see that God is loving and that he is faithful and he is sovereign and that he is glorious and that he is mighty.
That's who he is. We know who he is by what he has done and look in this Psalm at the great works of the Lord.
There are several that are mentioned as we work through this Psalm. First of all, inverse to it says I you have exalted above all things, your name and your word.
God has exalted above all things.
His name and his word, a reminder to us of the priority word of God. The enemy subtly can creep into the church into the body of Christ and move the word of God to the periphery so they were always seeking may be a new experience or a new project but we only refer to the word in times of trouble, like we treat user manual or its assembly instructions that when we get ourselves in and need her help, then we look at it. God has said, of course, as we know and how thankful we are for a church that I believe practices this that he is exalted his word above all, he has exalted his name and his word receipt hereto in the next verse in verse three on the day that I called, you answered me. God is a God who answers prayer psalmist years praying David he is. He had his recounting that he called out for deliverance, deliverance for his enemies in the Lord answered, truly the basis for the whole song on the deliverance that the psalmist has experience. Therefore, he is rejoicing an obvious application to us that all of our life is to be lived evidence and expression of the Lord's deliverance for us. God is a God who answers prayer. Verse three also, it says my strength of soul, you increase God strengthens our souls were told to be strong and to take courage is a certain discipline and obedience involved in that, but it is God working within us and working through us. Listen to the words of this Psalm Psalm 73 says nevertheless I am continually with you, you hold my right hand there again is God's presence with us at all time.
You guide me with your counsel. Afterwards you'll receive me to glory, whom it might happen but you and there is nothing on earth that I desire besides you my flesh in my heart may fail God is the strength of my heart and my portion forever. God is the strength of our heart and the psalmist had experience that he had Lord had strengthened his soul and I think it's a great benefit in a great promise to us today. Maybe some of us have a tired soul little weary soul Laura a troubled soul. God will increase the strength of our soul. He increases strength of soul. What else he does jumping down to verse six for though the Lord is high. He regards the lowly but the Harding he knows from afar, God resists the proud, and he lavishly pours out his grace on the humble on the lowly first Peter chapter 5 says, clothe yourselves, all of you with humility toward one another, for God opposes the proud grace to the humble humble your submit yourselves therefore under the mighty of hand of God, so that at the proper time. He may exalt the Lord has exalted his name and his word, he answers our prayer. He infuses strength into our souls.
He resists the privately pours out grace to the lowly. I think a couple of other couple other actions of God. Look in his presence in the time of trouble in verse seven, though I walked in the midst of trouble you preserve my life. You stretch out your hand against the wrath of my enemies.
Your right hand delivers me. We have the promise of the Lord's protection.
His presence with us. He preserves our life, regardless of circumstances, we know that ultimately we have the promise followers of Christ at the promise of eternal life. He preserves our life and one or more actions of God.
Here in verse eight. This is the Lord will fulfill his purpose for me again your steadfast love Lord endures forever. Beautiful promise. God will fulfill his purposes for me.
Ephesians chapter 2 verse 10 says that we are his workmanship, created in Christ Jesus to do good works are not only is God speaking to us and revealing himself to us is in us, and he is working in us and he has a plan and a purpose for each one of us. He fulfills his purposes.
Philippians 1 verse six says that he who began a good work in us will carry it on completion to the day of Christ God is faithful to fulfill his purposes for us began our worship this morning with up the great hymn of praise to the Lord, the Almighty.
One of the verses that we, things of praise to the Lord, who doth prosper thy work and defend the surely his goodness and mercy here daily attend the ponder a new what the Almighty can do if with his love, he befriends the ponder a new what the Almighty can do prosper thy work God has purposes for us and I think that gives us obviously great meaning and great joy in life and this is another one of these areas will renew to make sure that we are being guided by God's word is submit ourselves before as we take it in each day and don't let the world or anyone else define what success and what meaningfulness is for us the great desire of all time did to be noticed to be significant to get ahead. Perhaps comforts her riches. Whatever these desires that can replace the Lord to become know God has designed works for us and sometimes those caring for a loved one or this might be something that's done not to be noticed by the world to be rewarded by God and his faithfulness. He has purposes for each one of us every one of us here is workmanship, created to do good works to his glory set his principles here of God's great attributes of his love and his faithfulness is sovereignty is power. These wonderful demonstrations of those attributes and how that he answers prayer that he exalts his word that he preserves our lives in trouble that he has purposes for each one of us that he regards the lowly that he condescends in grace were great and gracious God we serve. What's our response which the response of the psalmist. There are several examples here that are great guide for us first. Humility in verse verse six it says the Lord is high. He regards the lowly the Harding he knows from afar humility.
The primary foundational Christian virtue for salvation and for growth and serving in Christ for small humbling ourselves before the cross or model, of course, is the Lord Jesus himself says in Philippians chapter 2, who humbled himself and became obedient to death, even death on a cross, he humbled himself in verse five let this mind. Her attitude be in you. Each of us as was in Christ. This attitude of humility in its foundation for salvation is in it.
We say, complete surrender. There's nothing we can do to build up our salvation to please God is all of grace we say that we have sinned, we ask for his forgiveness and it's not by our works of righteousness that we are saved by through his washing through his grace humbling ourselves at the foot of the cross were out of town last week. Desiree sang that beautiful song. I come to the cross, seeking mercy and grace, where he died in our place humble ourselves before the cross was not only for salvation but for every day of our lives, humbling ourselves before the Lord. This is a powerful principal is a God resists the rejects the proud, he gives grace to the humble.
Andrew Murray Rota is written a great book Christian classic called humility had recommended to any of you didn't. We redisclose here on humility the life of those who are saved must be marked by an all pervading humility. Without this there can be no true abiding in God's presence or experience of his favor in the power of his spirit. Without this, no abiding faith or love or joy, or strength. Humility is the only soil in which virtue takes root humility is not so much a virtue along with the others but it is the root of all because it alone takes the right attitude before God and allows him as God to do all the prime priority. The essential of humility in our lives.
Our response to God's revelation to who is to be to humble ourselves before him.
Look at some of these other responses. Some 138 verse one says I will give you thanks with my whole heart.
The response of course of giving thanks see this through out the Bible.
Another fundamental attitude and action so many times were commanded to be thankful.
Notice here that it says were to give thanks with all of our heart wholeheartedly for smaller principle of giving thanks this is bigger than just feeling appreciation is in it. Bible says in all circumstances we are to give thanks and sometimes that's an act of surrendering of worship to give thanks in a circumstance that we certainly would not in ourselves desire to give thanks to him. Psalm 75 verse one says we give thanks to you all. God we recount wondrous deeds we recount wondrous deeds. I think we all know how much attention is giving is given to a recount and so we have received word recount its specific in its focus to psych in Psalm 103.
Not to forget his benefits, like the old hymn Count your blessings and name them one by one, giving thanks. Remembering what the Lord has done and of course here in a few moments of his beautiful ordinances great privilege for we will remember the Lord's death until he comes the give thanks for the bread.
Give thanks for the wine we give thanks wholeheartedly to the Lord throughout the Old Testament, the children of Israel there giving thanks for their redemption. The Lord brought them out of bondage delivered them and brought them into the of land of rest picture leading toward our story as followers of Christ that he redeems us from the bondage of sin and of the enemy to live deliver us and this is something we should always be deeply thankful for giving thanks this is a deeper level II there is in it than just the same things which we should be polite. Somebody opens the door holds the door for us to say thank you. This giving thanks eat dessert foundational thankfulness from our soul. Give thanks again. I had the privilege this week of visiting with family in in Ohio because mom is in assisted living up there.
We had been able to see her since the pandemic spent a lot of time on FaceTime but had not been able to be there in person until this past week so it's great to be there with his mom and other family and just coming home. I had a couple of reflections nice to have a road trip to dismantle a time when the road into to think a couple of her front reflections about one that put a picture appearance may not look like much to you, but this is the courthouse in the Dina County in the Dina Ohio the courthouse in the Dina Ohio see it's the old courthouse. This is there's a newer one now.
One of things that begin sharing our story in our life is that for each one of us, our father passed away right around the time that we were born left.
My father passed away 106 unsold from a couple of illnesses because father passed away when three weeks before she was born with leukemia and so are both of her mom's were widows at 22, 23 years old, but in both of our lives.
God brought a wonderful man into our families who became Odyssey husband to her mom's and became a gadget to take a picture down but I remember I remember vividly what are my first remember memories in life. Maybe second to my mom and dad's wedding was the day when we went to the Dina County Courthouse and my dad adopted me and great great picture and I think this message is weakened and every time with Eric.
I walked pass a bill and I think it means more because it's a picture to me of of a work of grace in my life.
I share with my wife have a dad would would come in and I God had provided that and adopt us.
Give us a new name. Except this into the family choose us and then it's a picture of course more broadly of God's grace in our lives. I think we all felt many may not have the benefit of such a wonderful picture in their childhood. Those of us who are followers of Christ all have these foundational markers in our lives of God's faithfulness thinking even as we are visiting family in Ohio passing the church where Vicki and I met and were married in remember enough that region where children were born in this all these great blessings, remembering these events.
Specifically, as a foundation for thankfulness in our lives. It creates this foundation of gratefulness and were to give thanks in all circumstances, and I think we have those we remind ourselves of our salvation of God's work in our lives of his faithfulness of what he's done the pores over then into a daily thankfulness where our focus shifts from what we don't have in the does the little things that aggravate us in our lives are even bigger things to give thanks for what we do have give thanks and again momentarily here will remember the Lord's table, the greatest gift that we have all received.
Be humble before the Lord gave thanks wholeheartedly further on here in Psalm 138 it says before the gods I seeing your praise verse one before the gods I seeing your praise God's little G meaning.
Obviously it's the pagan gods or the gods of this world. God otherworldly people in the psalmist is saying, I will sing your praise before the world. I will sing your praise before their gods and we have this principle here responding to God in singing and is passive worship and one who gets it. Serve with you, weekend and week out in this priority of singing.
I wanted to talk about this a little bit this morning. First of all, is one of, thank you for the way they sing band on here. The front row ready for this message.
Hearing the body singing is an incredible privilege.
I don't think there's any sound like it and how much more we appreciated after he was 15 or 16 months with masks in the distancing.
Just so great. There is the sound is incredible. The experience of singing before the Lord, the priority of singing. Why do we sing in church. Why is it such a big deal will couple reasons. Keith Getty wrote a book called sing and we've reposted the ministry to get a spacing many other songs.
Fantastic ministry and thinking you printed out really well in that book 3C visa number one, were created to sing number two are commanded to sing number three were compelled to sing God created us to sing his creation sayings Bible uses the imagery that the mountains will break forth praise, even creation.
Since we join that song of creation, especially those of us who are redeemed or created to sing and to give him glory were also commanded to sing hundreds of times in the Bible we are told to sing. Psalm one $0.47 tells us to sing four times in the first verse alone.
We see this repeated God has told us to sing in the New Testament. He gives the purpose for that in the church a primary purpose in Colossians 3 and Ephesians 5 horses were to sing to teach and admonish one another, singing with thankfulness in our hearts.
There is a foundational attitude again as we encourage one another so we have the benefit of singing as it just releases our praise to the Lord glorifies him. And it strengthens those around us. Men were compelled to sing. How can I keep from singing the old hymn says, as we grow in our joy.
God want God's word working in us.
Our focus on him, how can we keep from singing, think again. You are saying last week, 10,000 reasons to sing and to give him praise singing glorifies God. It strengthens the body and I was sad grateful to work with our tech ministry in our musicians and I hope this comes across in practice probably spend a lot of attention with and so thankful to have all the instruments and all the voices that can present solos and wonderful instrumental pieces. All of these blessings which are so very thankful for the main entrée if you will of our music is congregation singing. There is nothing like it and I would encourage you to sing sing out. I know that for some events not familiar.
Maybe you haven't sung. It is not used, or maybe new to the church and is not really sing anywhere encourage you sing out practicing in the car sing when you're alone and sing when we come together, sing try to leave. An example of this.
You know, I thought of the example of happy birthday. I think I can ever recall a situation in my life when I've been at a birthday party and somebody was just standing there with her arms folded, refusing to sing no we sing happy birthday of the family with the front. Everybody sings and some does something went wrong, octave. Some people are not singing somebody trying to throw in a harmony that you think of widely doing that in our always, we have all these things, but the point is we sing because were together and were sing because were trying to honor someone were trying to wish them a happy birthday. How much greater leaves the family of God come together. Should we sing together to the one that were celebrating God of the universe, so using happy birthday as a starting point for your singing. Bring expand that and just maximize the beauty of singing together and again that's an encouragement to something that I think is already a tremendous privilege here, but more and more may refill this room with praise glorious singing to God says that even evangelize us lost in this psalmist is before the gods I will sing your praise before the world to sing your praise and prescribing 14 talks about the body of Christ worshiping the unbeliever comes in and sees that balls down and worship is worship sconces. Surely God is among so sing sing praise. I will sing praises. The psalmist also in verse two he says I will bow down toward your holy temple. Another response keep bowing down and giving thanks and these are wrapped up in these other attitudes that principle of humility in a bowing before the Lord and in his temple. The direction of our lives lived to his glory and the intentional times we bow for him to to glorify bow down and worship. Think important sedition foundational where that singing or giving thanks for humility is it's all about our hearts is in it.
We saying it's not it's not just from the neck up receiving from our heart and from our soul bow down and submission are not. This is a physical action, but it's the posture of our soul bowing before him intentional in our praise, expressing a heart of worship. And thanks giving, says here to enter just a couple others. Even though role in verse two or three here verse three on the day I called you answered me in the principal bowing down continued on into this principle of praying back to the psalmist calling out to God to deliver him for deliverance in the for daily guidance. First Thessalonians 5 has it were to pray without ceasing should be our first response in all situations. So the psalmist. He takes time to bow down towards the Lord's temple and we should we take time. We hope and trust every day to pray for specific needs and for in specific elements, but there's also the ongoing as we interact with God's becomes a center of our lives that were responding to him by talking to my bringing our prayer requests to him one more principle here in verse eight says the Lord will fulfill his purpose for me and we talked about that how the Lord has purposes and so I think the reaction our response to that is to continue on in faithfulness to walk in faithfulness and serving Christ. Continue on discovering and fulfilling God's purposes for each of us. We can spend so much time regretting yesterday wishing we are taken a different turn preoccupied with tomorrow. Wishing we were a different circumstance today when God has us right where we are and our focus is to serve, to serve him faithfully walking in his strengths is what even if we walk in the midst of trouble and serving him.
So these are some not an exact exhaustive list, of course, that some principles for us in our response to God that we would humble ourselves before him would give thanks that we would sing praise that we would bow down and pray that we would fulfill his purposes. God in his Majesty's great attributes of who he is and what he has done. Reflecting on the spending time in his word and then living a life that responds, resuming a God centered life giving our priority to a God centered life to principles and just observations enclosing with this personal doing fuel in the Solomon came to sense the joy that is flowing through it never talked about joy. But as we look to the Lord as we lean on him as we make him the priority in our lives and our relationship with him.
That overflows into joy. We see that here giving thanks so these don't become just tasks on a checklist force that eventually will run out of steam or a New Year's resolution that will die by your February 1 is these things become abounding parts of our lives joy that we have and then to always a reminder, the picture of Christ inviting us and helping us times I think we can see or be challenged. Even in the word to things that we need to do better and it just becomes overwhelming… I can add that to my life and remind me that the turning to Christ as an instant thing focusing on him, his commands are not burdensome. I love the picture in Matthew 1128 for the Lord himself says come to me all you that are weary and burdened, I will give you rest. Take my yoke upon you and learn from me, for I am gentle and lowly of heart, that is a savior with open arms that invites us to a daily, moment by moment relationship with him live a God centered life and then that even he takes the yoke upon him.
He is as we've already talked about beginning and fulfilling that work that's within us. We saying this morning never once every step. Breathing in his grace evermore breathing out his praise may not be the song in the theme of our lives, focusing on God. His word is revelation to us and spending a life responding to him and this doesn't take us away from other people and allows us to engage in see them more fully and serve them even as he would have us to live a life that is centered on God. He reveals we response to him was pray together in a moment here will receive Communion father we come before you and thanking you for these reminders of your faithful God that your loving that you are always with us at your sovereign your all-powerful, your mighty yet you're so gracious you've condescended to the lowly father. We confess to we get our eyes off of you to chase our own pursuits and reminded of how short life can be so father we pray that you help us today to look to you to set our minds on the things that are above to live a life of thanks and praise to your glory. We pray that you would fulfill your purposes and each of us in the name of Christ. We pray, amen