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February 3, 2021 3:00 am
Throughout our lives. There are less each of us continue learning. But we have to be paying attention. We have to recognize when those teachable moments occur and then we have to put what we've learned into practice today on Truth for Life. Alister bag unpacks the kind of lessons that come from our heavenly father were in part one of a message called I will instruct you. Father, we have sung your praise and now we seek your wisdom, the wisdom that comes down from heaven that is first of all pure and peaceful and open to reason.
Granda minds that will think clearly hearts that are opened by the touch of your gracious hand and lives that are ready to put into practice that which you instruct us in were desperately in need of your help and we come humbly to seek it in Jesus name, amen. I think this is the fifth study now in Psalm 32 we planned at least when I started out I was going to do a sermon on Psalm 32 and it's not a testimony to my ability. Certainly that is taken us know five studies and we won't finish yet, but I hope it's proved at least helpful for those of you have been following the course along we have noted that David is announcing the distinction in the very significant and clear distinction between the heaviness that he experienced when he played the part of the cover-up artist when he sought to hide from himself and from God when he did everything wrong and tried to run away and recognize that frankly he was just a complete mess and that heaviness of God's hand upon him was in direct contrast to the happiness that he then declares is being discovered in knowing the living God.
As a result of God's wonderful forgiveness of our sins and there is a sense in which we could look at Psalm 32 simply in terms of the contrast between that heaviness and happiness.
I also reflected upon it and wrote down a number of words that seem to trace a line through it at the story so far is of David's transgression and fight.
He mentions that in verse one happy is the one whose transgressions are forgiven and the transgression that is on removed reveals itself in depression. In verses three and four. My bones wasted away and then the depression is alleviated by confession I confess my sins to you.
I acknowledge my sins and then I confession there is liberation freedom and as he sees all that is his in God. He recognizes that it is God who is the source of his protection and verse seven.
You are my hiding place, you will protect me from trouble and then between verse seven and verse eight there is a voice change, and God speaks in verse eight, and we move into the realm of instruction instruction. I think sometimes those words are helpful if they're not you just forget all about them. But it seems to me that there is some form of progression through the Sam transgression, depression, confession, liberation, protection, and now the instruction that he requires verses eight and nine are essentially the Lord's reply to David's words. I just read them again. I will instruct you and teach you in the way you should go.
I will counsel you and watch over you. Do not be like the horse or the mule, which have no understanding must be controlled by bit and bridle, or they will not come to you, David is here making this wonderful discovery and it is truly a wonderful discovery that God is not only able to deal with his past but God is also willing to direct his future bears saying again doesn't he is reminded that God deals with his past and direct's. His future if you pay attention to people's conversation.
As I'm sure you do, you will have noted, as I have noted that not only in the realm of athletics and particularly professional golf but also in just about every aspect of life. It is difficult to go through a week without somebody telling you that they are just living in the moment. I am just in the moment. Or I was in real time and that kind of phraseology has become part of our common everyday interchange. It's not surprising because the quest to live in the moment is mitigated by the past and the future both in good ways and in bad ways.
Good ways. There is so much in our past that is wonderful and happy and memorable photographs that are etched into our memory that will able to recall and enjoy that when we daydream we go into the past and bring up material which invades the present in the same way will able to look forward to the future, hoping for things the achievement of success. The completion of programs the meeting of friends.
The enjoyment of Thanksgiving. The arrival of Christmas and as we look into the future. So it has an impact on the present, but a far more disturbing level. I think most people would be prepared to acknowledge that their inability to deal with the 60 seconds. They are now experiencing is more often than not tied to the fact that when they go backwards.
It is to recrimination and to regret and to disappointment and failure, and indeed, one of the questions of their lives is is there any way is there anyone who can legitimately deal with my past and are looking forward.
Is there anyone who can help me with my fears. Fears about my health and about my future and about my family and about my retirement and about my eternal destiny. Ultimately, so if you've had any of those thoughts. I think you're simply representative of what is generally the case, and therefore I hope you will be held at least in that respect by what we find. Before us this morning. David introduced to the fact that God not only deals with his past but directs his future. He doesn't simply to come up out of a miry pit out of the clay, as in Psalm 40 and said his feet upon a rock. But he establishes his going list as the King James version. That's how it finishes. Psalm 40 verse two he set my feet on a rock and establish my going the whole notion of forward momentum of the propulsion that takes is on is quite common for someone who is recently accepted God's offer of forgiveness. Someone who has recently come to understand who Jesus is and what he's done and is become a believer has been converted has become a follower of Jesus for them to ask the question what happens next. Is there any kind of course of instruction. The answer of course is yes and wonderfully, as this age verse makes clear, not only is there a course of instruction which is very comprehensive but it is God himself who promises to do the teaching and is God who promises to do the teaching has provided far as the course notes and all that we have for the course is provided for us in the Bible that he has given to us and this God.
This instructor is the one who takes a very personal interest in the welfare of his children. I will counsel you and watch over you. One of the great hullabaloo is in contemporary education at the postgraduate level, at least of the Masters level as some of you will have found to your great shame and disappointment is that you decided to sign up for postgraduate study and you thought that this would take you to all new level of intellectual advance only to get in the class and discover that some of the people were teaching you actually just as dimwitted as yourself and were only in the class about two weeks ahead of you and the professor going off to write a book somewhere and he didn't trust it into some well-meaning soul who is going to teach this particular course is that I wish I never spend the money. I thought I was going to be instructed by the main person and I thing is a legitimate expectation, I think, incidentally, and in passing your pay careful attention to every institution that Britt fails to provide the promise here is not that God passes it off to some lackey now that he gives it away to some inferior being noise here is I will instruct you and teach you in the way you should go. I will counsel you and I will watch over you simply doesn't do that directly. David is it through the Bible. He does it through pastors and teachers, and so long he uses means of course he does. But here's the issue I or any other individual may do my best to exegete this passage I may study it learned hopefully get it is right as I can and convey it to you may listen to that end of the cerebral level you may process the information, but unless God is your teacher in that and through that then everything that happens happens in a completely superficial level. It is when you are listening to the Bible taught by a mere individual that a divine dialogue takes place with your soul whereby you recognize at a deep-seated level that something is taking place in this interaction that cannot now purely be explained in terms of the verbiage of the one addressing this by that at the very core of our being. There is an instruction taking place and we feel as though we are instructed by the very one who wrote the book into pages. We are looking that is what God pledges to his servant to do and he does to ours who also serve Spurgeon get it wonderfully when he says he who made you his child will put you to school and teach you until you shall know the Lord Jesus as the way the truth and the life it's impossible to travel on any day without meeting somebody who's on a course. You notice that you sit down on the plane.
So what are you doing I'm on a course going to coffee shop. What was the big book I want to course everyone's on a course don't feel left out if you're a follower of Jesus, you are on a course and here it is not a golf course and instruction course look at the verbs instruct teach counsel watch over.
Now let's look at this under four headings are for words concerning this instruction, let's notice. First of all, that it is vital. Secondly, that it is practical. Thirdly, that it is personal and fourthly, that it is rational will never get to for. We may get to three but why worry first of all this instruction is vital. It is vital instruction we can say that about all instruction can.
Not every piece of information that comes our way is vital maybe extraneous.
Do you know this. Have you learned that you know this or the next thing sums as well. No I didn't but it doesn't really make a difference to me getting up in the morning or going through my life. But when we come to the instruction of their saint. Indeed, the indication of God's instruction to us in his word it is vital and it is vital for three particular classes of person number one, it is vital for the beginner for the beginner. We all have to begin somewhere and at the outset of any journey we usually know very little. As one of the difficult things in the humbling things about being a car becoming a Christian when you're mature you have actually establish yourself in society. You have perhaps done well and you are known for your intellectual prowess are for your athletic ability or whatever else it might be. And now you've come to an understanding of the need for the forgiveness of your sins and you discover the joy of this forgiveness and you being ushered into all new world that you never knew before and there is a language that you have never learned you find yourself surrounded by individuals who seem to know so much more than you will be alarmed by that everybody experiences that would become infants, spiritual infants, we are infants in the matters of divinity, an old word from an earlier even. But we just know so very little about God and God's ways and dealings and consequently we know so very little about ourselves before we ever trusted in Jesus that we viewed ourselves in a certain way. Reviewed other people in a different way and I reviewed Jesus in a different way. But all of that has changed in front you might want to just have it reinforced for you by turning from moment to to our second Corinthians chapter 5 and in two Corinthians 5 we have what is a classic verse. If anyone is in Christ is a new creation the old is gone, the new has come. If we were asked to explain how the evidence of transformation is revealed, we might mention all kinds of things.
Interestingly, in the context in which verse 17 falls in two Corinthians 5 Paul is pointing out that the big change in the person who has been changed is in essentially the way the new things the way they view things and we understand this by recognizing his identification of what now is so that and effectively. We know what was not. Let me just show you those who are not new creations. Verse 12 take pride in what is seen okay, they're all about externals, they're all about the outside. Secondly, in verse 15. They live for themselves.
Thirdly, in verse 16.
They regard Jesus from a worldly point of view. Okay, before a person comes to trust in Jesus, they take pride in what is seen.
They live for themselves and they regard Jesus from a worldly point of view, but when a person is in Christ, and becomes a new creation.
These three things are altered and the believer has an altogether different view of Jesus of other people, and of himself or herself. That's one of the ways we identified if either will eventually become Christians because we look at people we say. I wonder if she's a Christian. We never thought that before. It was never in it was never a question we didn't know anything about being a Christian we thought everyone was a Christian, or we find ourselves listening to the television and somebody says something about Jesus and besmirch is the name of Jesus we find ourselves saying that pains me to hear Jesus spoken about light. That's an indication of the change before it was commonplace. What's different. We have been changed and the change in the insight reveals itself on the outside note, unless we are able to go to the Bible to the instruction manual then were never going to know that kind of thing by nature, we viewed ourselves in one way and by grace we see ourselves completely differently and when we begin the Christian journey. We are so unaware of the who God is, were really unaware of ourselves and what we are like our vulnerability to temptation and the dangers were just frankly, a bunch of babies and we need to be suckled by the milk of God's word. As Peter says when he writes to his followers the instruction that is vital force of all for the beginner.
Secondly, it is vital for the confused for the confused. You probably heard somebody remark or you really shouldn't pay much attention to me. I only know enough to be dangerous, which, if you have an electrician working in your house, you probably don't wondered go out and leave him alone if that's his introduction to that phrase reminds me of our son in one occasion when he had cut his hand open with a with a bottle and he went for stitches somewhere here in the chagrin Valley and they had him lying on the bed and he had to live his hand flat on it on a little tray as the doctor came to him as a young looking Dr. and our our son looked up as he came towards him and he said to the doctor you've amassed one of these up and quick as a flash, the doctor said I never did one of these before. We don't want that kind of thing when it comes to our discovery of the details of the Christian faith. The Bible acknowledges that we are foolish people.
We are wayward lights.
Why verse 90 which will never come this morning is right there.
Do not be like the horse or mule some pretty straightforward statement is that I think many of you be tempted to take verse eight and Annex it I will instruct you and teach you in the way you should go. I will counsel you and watch over you. I'm sure somebody can put a lovely melody line to that, you know, I will instruct you and teach you in the way you should go's a nice cozy thought is not close the right to the June fork. Do not be like the horse are the mill which have no understand is not a nice way to treat people as I say give me less in class the horse. He stopped the mill stuff would you listen to same like a horse or a mule where horses and mules like we'll talk about that later I'm still researching it by the fact is, they're not particularly irrational. That's why you have to nudge him and squeeze him and Bannerman who come and do all what mom and do all those things and we are by nature confused people. The Galatians were confused. That's why Paul writes to Mrs. you foolish Galatians, are you getting confused all over again. Paul writes to Timothy and he tells them you need to understand that there will be people in your congregation who are swayed by all kinds of evil desires will be always learning and never able to acknowledge the truth to get that always learning, never able to acknowledge the truth.
That's one of the saddest aspects of pastoral ministry incident to have people under your tutelage in your care who by a certain point on the road, ought to be teachers, but they're not and he constantly like children drift from one idea to another and their great need is the instruction which God provides listening to Truth for Life message from Alister big titled I will instruct part of the series based on Psalm 32 called the missing piece. If you listen regularly to Truth for Life. You have come to trust that what you will hear each day is clear relevant Bible teaching. That's because we believe that the Scripture is the very word of God that it's truth is unchanging and it's without error. It's our passion to proclaim it as far and as wide as possible, but we could not do that without the generous support of an important group of people. We refer to as truth partners. True partners are people just like you who commit to praying regularly and do monthly giving to support this program. If you been encouraged and strengthened by what you hear on Truth for Life.
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Each of these readings are on the topic of Jesus death and resurrection and are perfect for setting your thoughts on the meaning of the cross as we prepare our hearts for the celebration of the resurrection. Request your copy of the book when you sign up to become a true partner or when you give a one time donation to support the ministry of Truth for Life. Visit firstname.lastname@example.org/true partner or click the image you see on the mobile app or you can give us a call number is 888587884 and if you prefer to mail your donation along with the request for the book right to truthfully PO Box 39, 8000, Cleveland, OH 44139 ask for the book ocean Bob Lapine join us tomorrow as Alister concludes his message called I will instruct you by explaining the instruction God gives to help guide our Bible teaching of Alister big is furnished by truth for lying morning is for living