25 June 2017

WHO IS THIS KING OF GLORY


Psalm 24: 1-10

D L Moody said “Glory is such a fundamental quality of Heaven that the word “glory” itself is often used as a synonym for Heaven.” SO! Here we are faced with a Psalm that should melt our hearts with joy and adoration to the praise of His glorious name. Here we approach a psalm that oozes the glory of God. Here we approach this psalm and it reminds us why Jesus had to die for sinful man and woman. This psalm is a powerful reminder to who gets the glory in your life; the eternal Son of God. But this is also a psalm that should concern us for lost loved ones and remind us who can enter in Heaven’s Gate. As Jesus said “It is the Spirit who gives life; the flesh is no help at all. The words that I have spoken to you are spirit and life. But there are some of you who do not believe." (For Jesus knew from the beginning who those were who did not believe, and who it was who would betray him.) And he said, "This is why I told you that no one can come to me unless it is granted him by the Father." John 6:63-65. I want to start off asking you a couple of questions as we approach this Messianic Psalm

Who has the right to enter such a holy and glorious place?

Who has the right to speak to these gates?

No man has ever come to the gates and lives to tell about! Adam was banished from the garden because created man was defiled and sinful! Guards were put into place by God so that they could never enter in again and cause such destruction. “Therefore the LORD God sent him out from the garden of Eden to work the ground from which he was taken. He drove out the man, and at the east of the garden of Eden he placed the cherubim and a flaming sword that turned every way to guard the way to the tree of life.” Gen 3:23-24. This act of treason and rebellion has affected and reached each and every one of us. Mankind at this point apart from Christ has been banished from the eternal inheritance that God promised Adam.

THE BIBLE SAYS...

“Now the works of the flesh are evident: sexual immorality, impurity, sensuality, idolatry, sorcery, enmity, strife, jealousy, fits of anger, rivalries, dissensions, divisions, envy, drunkenness, orgies, and things like these. I warn you, as I warned you before, that those who do such things will not inherit the kingdom of God.Gal 5:19-20
  
“For you may be sure of this, that everyone who is sexually immoral or impure, or who is covetous (that is, an idolater), has no inheritance in the kingdom of Christ and God.” Eph 5:5
  
“But nothing unclean will ever enter it, nor anyone who does what is detestable or false, but only those who are written in the Lamb's book of life.” Rev 21:27
  
This should really burden our hearts or the concern for lost souls that are going to spend an eternity in Hell! Who can enter these gates and declare this command? There is only one man who is allowed to enter these gates! It’s not Abraham, Isaac, Jacob, David or the Prophets, not even the Apostles had a right to speak to these doors! No man can ever enter or approach such gates without being destroyed! Why? We are a fallen race, a fallen generations that is unclean! For “all have sinned and fallen short of the glory of God” Rom 3:23. Which means: we all have missed the mark of God’s perfection found in His holy Law and character. Remember Uzzah? When they escorted the Ark back to the tabernacle! Instead of carrying the Ark like they were supposed to found in the Letter of Numbers....they placed it on a cart. Seems innocent enough right? Wrong, what God commands is what God demands from His people. “And when Aaron and his sons have finished covering the sanctuary and all the furnishings of the sanctuary, as the camp sets out, after that the sons of Kohath shall come to carry these, but they must not touch the holy things, lest they die. These are the things of the tent of meeting that the sons of Kohath are to carry.” Num 4:15. You had to be a Levite priest. So what happens? The ox stumbled and the Ark was tilted and looked like it was about to fall over into the mud. What does Uzzah do? He touches and holds up the Ark which was God’s holy and glorious presence to His chosen people. We would imply this was a natural reaction anyone would do right? But what happened? This is what happened! “And when they came to the threshing floor of Chidon, Uzzah put out his hand to take hold of the ark, for the oxen stumbled. And the anger of the LORD was kindled against Uzzah, and he struck him down because he put out his hand to the ark, and he died there before God.” 1 Chron 13:9-10. God killed him on the spot! Why would He do that? An unlawful sinner touched the holies of holies.......the presence of God’s glory!

There is only one person able to enter these gates and live. HIS NAME IS JESUS CHRIST! The Saviour....the Messiah......The Son of God........The Lord....The King of glory. Look what He says to these ancient doors....the gates of Heaven! (v7) The Heavens must have been speechless or amazed that a man would dare speak to these doors with such authority and boldness! Look at the response by one brave soul who speaks up and says “Who is this King of glory” (v8a)Who dares speak to these doors that way?” I love the answer by Jesus! (v8b) Jesus Christ the God man...............Is our King who is strong and mighty! So strong and mighty He engages in War. Not just any war but the war against evil and the bondage of sin! Do you realize that Jesus singlehandedly defeated the enemy by Himself? He needed no one’s help....... He stood on the front lines when everyone retreated! This is why the young shepherd boy David, is a great picture of our Lord Jesus Christ when he defeated the giant Philistine! This man who spoke to these gates proclaimed that He was the King who has conquered all things by His sovereign power and might! He tells the gate keeper who spoke up that He is a mighty warrior who is the True King of glory
  
AMAZING PICTURE OF THIS IS PENNED BY JOHN! Rev 19:11:16 “Then I saw heaven opened, and behold, a white horse! The one sitting on it is called Faithful and True, and in righteousness He judges and makes war. His eyes are like a flame of fire, and on his head are many diadems, and he has a name written that no one knows but himself. He is clothed in a robe dipped in blood, and the name by which he is called is The Word of God. And the armies of heaven, arrayed in fine linen, white and pure, were following him on white horses. From his mouth comes a sharp sword with which to strike down the nations, and he will rule them with a rod of iron. He will tread the winepress of the fury of the wrath of God the Almighty. On his robe and on his thigh he has a name written, King of kings and Lord of lords.”
  
This is why He boldly proclaims once again these words (look at v9) And once again the gate keeper proclaims “What man dares to speak to these doors” (v10a) I love the answer the man, Jesus Christ gives (v10b). The Creator God is the King of glory and has come down to dwell in the midst of the city of men as a man........Jesus Christ!
This man who stands at the gates commands them to open those doors!  Why? He is Jesus Christ the God man. And for the first time a man enters in those gates......walks up to His Father with boldness and says “it is finished” and sits down and the Father looks at His son and says “it is finished in deed” Jesus sits on the throne in all His glory! The King of king’s sits on the throne is all His glory! Not just any King, but the One who created all things for His glory (v1-v2)

The One that said “let there be light”
The One who said “lets create man in Our image”
The One that said “it is was good”
The One who establishes everything by His authority and power.
  
Who has the right to speak to these gates?
  
What man can enter this place and live?

Look at (v3-v6) those who have clean hands and a pure heart! Those who are washed by the cleaning blood of Jesus Christ! Those who put their faith in trust in the finishing work on the Cross! Those who are have an outward expression of an inward change! Someone who has been transformed by the Gospel that saves. “Therefore, if anyone is in Christ, he is a new creation. The old has passed away; behold, the new has come.” 2 Cor 5:17
It’s Hands that are lifted up with affections set on things that are pure...lovely...holy and just....a practical holiness which is a mark of His precious grace. A heart that has their affections set on the things of God and glorifying Him. Remember what David said when he was faced with his dreadful sin “create in me a clean heart O God, and renew a right spirit within me.” Psalm 51:10. This is the true king of glory and we are allowed…..we have access to enter these gates through His Son Jesus Christ, and his shed blood for our sins. This is what the King of glory did for you and me! He made it possible for us to have clean hands and a pure heart! That’s what the Gospel delivers to sinners who put their trust in Jesus Christ alone. The mighty King who is our powerful and faithful warrior who has defeated the grave and Hell and all things for His GLORY! Though one man’s disobedience that spread to all of us has now has been paid for through one Man’s obedience though His death and resurrectionAnd those who rest in Christ alone are declared His son or daughter! That’s what this King did for me and you!
  
2Cor 6:17-18 says “Therefore go out from their midst, and be separate from them, says the Lord, and touch no unclean thing; then I will welcome you, and I will be a father to you, and you shall be sons and daughters to me, says the Lord Almighty."

This man Jesus Christ walked up to those gates and said “Let me in because the King is here” This is a beautiful picture of our Lord’s great ascent into Heaven. To realize that the King is seating on the throne in all His glory and He has made it possible for us (fallen sinful depraved people) to enter in through His precious Gospel! John Piper said “The ultimate good of the gospel is seeing and savouring the beauty and value of God. God’s wrath and our sin obstruct that vision and that pleasure. You can’t see and savour God as supremely satisfying while you are full of rebellion against Him and He is full of wrath against you. The removal of this wrath and this rebellion is what the gospel is for. The ultimate aim of the gospel is the display of God’s glory and the removal of every obstacle to our seeing it and savouring it as our highest treasure. “Behold Your God!” is the most gracious command and the best gift of the gospel. If we do not see Him and savour Him as our greatest fortune, we have not obeyed or believed the gospel." There is only one man who is capable and allowed to enter into the glory of Heaven and live to tell about it. His name is Jesus Christ the Son of man. And we can now enter in as well through His saving grace!
  
Charles Spurgeon said “Dear reader, it is possible that you are saying, “I shall never enter into Heaven of God, for I have neither clean hands nor a pure heart.” Look then to Christ, who has already climbed the holy hill. He has entered as the forerunner of those who trust Him. Follow His footsteps, and repose upon His merit. He rides triumphantly into Heaven, and you shall ride there too if you trust Him.”

The ascended Saviour is seated on the throne and He is calling out to the hillsides, alleys and streets, for people to come and enter into His rest. This is the only way you or I can enter into such a holy place. A place that is so glorious that words cannot express how beautiful He truly is. Jesus is the glorious representation for creation to see and look upon with adoration and praise! As the Hebrew writer penned “He is the radiance of the glory of God and the exact imprint of his nature, and he upholds the universe by the word of his power. After making purification for sins, he sat down at the right hand of the Majesty on high,” Heb 1:3. Take hold of this wonderful truth and worship Him for who He is! The one and only King of Glory. This King of heaven triumphed over Satan, sin, and death in His resurrection and ascension. Christ is still the King of glory today, and in heaven we will be greeted by a scene more glorious than anything we could imagine.

John’s vision of the risen and exalted Christ gives us a taste of what it will be like when we see Jesus. “Then I saw in the right hand of him who was seated on the throne a scroll written within and on the back, sealed with seven seals. And I saw a mighty angel proclaiming with a loud voice, "Who is worthy to open the scroll and break its seals?" And no one in heaven or on earth or under the earth was able to open the scroll or to look into it, and I began to weep loudly because no one was found worthy to open the scroll or to look into it. And one of the elders said to me, "Weep no more; behold, the Lion of the tribe of Judah, the Root of David, has conquered, so that he can open the scroll and its seven seals." And between the throne and the four living creatures and among the elders I saw a Lamb standing, as though it had been slain, with seven horns and with seven eyes, which are the seven spirits of God sent out into all the earth. And he went and took the scroll from the right hand of him who was seated on the throne. And when he had taken the scroll, the four living creatures and the twenty-four elders fell down before the Lamb, each holding a harp, and golden bowls full of incense, which are the prayers of the saints. And they sang a new song, saying, "Worthy are you to take the scroll and to open its seals, for you were slain, and by your blood you ransomed people for God from every tribe and language and people and nation, and you have made them a kingdom and priests to our God, and they shall reign on the earth." Then I looked, and I heard around the throne and the living creatures and the elders the voice of many angels, numbering myriads of myriads and thousands of thousands, saying with a loud voice, "Worthy is the Lamb who was slain, to receive power and wealth and wisdom and might and honor and glory and blessing!" And I heard every creature in heaven and on earth and under the earth and in the sea, and all that is in them, saying, "To him who sits on the throne and to the Lamb be blessing and honor and glory and might forever and ever!” And the four living creatures said, "Amen!" and the elders fell down and worshiped.” Rev 5:1-14

The house of the Lord. “God's house” is His Presence Himself. 
Psalm 22 tells of the Cross and His great sacrifice. 
Psalm 23 speaks about the Great Shepherd who goes before His sheep. 
And Psalm 24 reminds us of His Crowning glory over sin and death.

Can you say Amen to that?

18 June 2017

HOW LONG IS TOO LONG


Psalm 13:1-6

Do you ever wonder if the Lord has forgotten you?
Does it seem as if He’s not paying as much attention to you as He once did?
Do you ever get the feeling that God is so distant you begin to doubt that He cares?
Do you ever accuse God for your Christian life?

If so, remember that appearances can be deceiving. Regardless of how it looks right now, the Lord is not far from you. He may be giving you an opportunity to trust Him and for you to wait for His help rather than rely on your own resources. The Christian life for many is like a roller coaster ride! You have mountain top moments to despairing moments of panic, grief, and hopelessness. If you don’t that’s great! But we do have beloved brothers and sisters where this very real to them. Even a man after God’s own heart had moments of despair!

Look what David pens in this psalm 4 times David cries out “How Long” which literally means “until when” In the midst of David’s troubles he has tolerated them as long as he could. Now! It seemed as if they would never come to an end. Now, for some of us we don’t feel this way when we go through short term moment in our Christian life…but when things continue on and on and onSome of us begin to doubt where God is in all this. Has he abandoned me? At this moment David feels that his troubles will never come to an end. Is this you at times? Do you feel like David as he cries out or pours out His heart to God in the midst of despair? Let’s look at these four questions that David cried out to God with!

“How long, O LORD? Will you forget me forever?”(v1a)

We can see that David is in great despair and he feels that he’s been forgotten so long, and there appeared to be so little outlook of rescue. It seemed as if God is never going or would return and visit him with mercy and grace. The expression signifies David’s state of mind; he is on the verge of despair. “Despair” by definition is “the complete loss or absence of hope”

Despair leads to questioning God
Why, O LORD, do you stand far away? Why do you hide yourself in times of trouble? Ps 10:1

Despair leads to possible habitual sinning
"But they say, 'That is in vain! We will follow our own plans, and will every one act according to the stubbornness of his evil heart.” Jer 18:12

Despair leads to believers to believe the lies of Satan.
“And I said, "My strength and my hope Have perished from the LORD." Lam 3:18

We would say “No, not David” The same David that said “But David said to Saul, "Your servant used to keep sheep for his father. And when there came a lion, or a bear, and took a lamb from the flock, I went after him and struck him and delivered it out of his mouth. And if he arose against me, I caught him by his beard and struck him and killed him. Your servant has struck down both lions and bears, and this uncircumcised Philistine shall be like one of them, for he has defied the armies of the living God." And David said, "The LORD who delivered me from the paw of the lion and from the paw of the bear will deliver me from the hand of this Philistine."…" 1 Sam 17:34-37. This can’t be the David of the Bible who said “Surely goodness and love will follow me all the days of my life, and I will dwell in the house of the LORD forever. Psalm 23:6

This David? No, this Psalm must be written by a different David. Not my David, who has slain bears lions and a man some 9 feet tall. No, I refuse to believe that this is the David, the man after God’s own heart David. See the reality of this Psalm is shows that we are all susceptible to feel this way from time to time. For David, this feels was real and we can’t live in denial that this may be happening to you this morning. Satan wants nothing more than for you and me to doubt that a holy God loves us and a desires fellowship. God hasn’t abandoned you or me, He has never left. He hasn’t forgotten about what you’re going through or what lies ahead.

“How long will hide Your face from me?” (v1b)

What is David saying? What happened to our friendship and how long is going to last with you ignoring me. This word “hide” give us the impression that David is lamenting that God is angry or treating him as if he is His enemy. “Why do You hide Your face, And regard me as Your enemy?” Job 13:24. This is how we feel at times when we are in despairing moments. We would call this dark thoughts and uncontrollable emotions. It’s the idea that we no longer sense that God is blessing us and we tend to ponder on our failures and get into an emotional low. And when our emotions take over it’s always hard to get back to level ground. Do you feel this way when you feel God is being silent in your life? We can be our own worst enemy of God’s grace, by thinking this is how the God of the universe feels towards us. God doesn’t hide from anything! He is everywhere present David also penned these words “O LORD, you have searched me and known me! You know when I sit down and when I rise up; you discern my thoughts from afar. You search out my path and my lying down and are acquainted with all my ways. Even before a word is on my tongue, behold, O LORD, you know it altogether. You hem me in, behind and before, and lay your hand upon me. Such knowledge is too wonderful for me; it is high; I cannot attain it. Where shall I go from your Spirit? Or where shall I flee from your presence? If I ascend to heaven, you are there! If I make my bed in Sheol, you are there!” Psalm 139:1-8. God doesn’t make His decisions or act upon His will by emotion. God knows what He is doing in your life and in your present situation.

How long must I take counsel in my soul and have sorrow in heart all the day? (v2a)

David’s sorrow was every day; constantly. Is this you this morning? There was “no intermission” or “time out” to his troubles. Its’ one thing after another…..It’s kind of felt that way this week for me! I don’t know about youWith Terrie looking like he is on deaths door, personal conflict with my brother, to Arlene passing away and to hear the news of Don passing away Wednesday and the wickedness of people around the globe……can be overwhelming! Especially if you have littles who don’t understand the concept of death and why God does what He does when it pertains to life and death. For David The sorrow in his heart seems to have been not merely by troubles from without, but also that which sprang from the painful attempt to form plans for his own relief. Plans which seemed to be in vain, especially if it didn’t involve the LORD. We do that at times we take our eyes of Christ and we begin to look horizontal at our problems and our life at that moment feels like its spinning out of control. And it leaves us asking questions we should never ponder! “Is God punishing me for what I did then?” I confessed my sins and believed He forgave me. But maybe He is bringing it up again and putting me on hold because of it.” There are extreme times where people think “God has abandoned them forever.” This psalm reminds us that we are vulnerable and fragile in this life, especially when we allow our emotions to govern our life.

How long shall my emery be exalted over me? (v2b)

How long will my enemies feel that they have won the battle and will boast it over me? Don’t you feel that way at times when you see who gets the praises from our world system? When you are mistreated by other and it seems the whole world is against you. When Elijah told God that it would be better for him to die than to live, it was not only the desperate emotional letdown following his victory that had affected him. There was also a presence of his enemies“There he came to a cave and lodged in it. And behold, the word of the LORD came to him, and he said to him, "What are you doing here, Elijah?" He said, "I have been very jealous for the LORD, the God of hosts. For the people of Israel have forsaken your covenant, thrown down your altars, and killed your prophets with the sword, and I, even I only, am left, and they seek my life, to take it away." 1 Kings 19:9-10. In the same way David knew what it was to be pursued by his relentless enemy King Saul and anyone else who betrayed David. This is why he said “How long will my enemies triumph over me?” Most of us at this time in our lives could say we don’t have that problem with someone who want us dead, like David or Elijah. This is not an issue for us humanly speaking, but we do have a spiritual enemy who is worse than any human enemy imaginable. Peter warned us about this person “Humble yourselves, therefore, under the mighty hand of God so that at the proper time he may exalt you, casting all your anxieties on him, because he cares for you. Be sober-minded; be watchful. Your adversary the devil prowls around like a roaring lion, seeking someone to devour.” 1 Peter 5:6-8. Martin Lloyd Jones said “The Devil is the adversary of our souls. He can use our temperaments and our physical condition. He so deals with us that we allow our temperament to control and govern us, instead of keeping temperament where it should be kept. There is no end to the ways the Devil produces spiritual depression. We must always bear him in mind.”
Satan is a great deceiver in making you think God has abandoned you.

You might be thinking to yourself how does God get the glory in all of this? These 4 questions expose the heart of David and show us his feelings to what is happening in his life. We see that David knows exactly where to go when he allows his feeling to get the best of him. His original confidence had been in God only, and not in himself. This is where we find hope, grace and not allowing our emotions to dictate our circumstance. This is the answer to David’s despair, your despair. BUT! This is a big but as David concludes this Psalm in (v5-6) “But I have” this is where we see David turn his focus onto the one who can deliver him from whatever is before him. What we learn from this transition is David psalm is this! Despite how we feel, despite how David felt he turned to God in his darkest hour. This is prime example we should never rely on our feelings when we are faced with troubled times. We hear so many times people contradict scripture saying “The Lord told me to …..?

For example!
The Lord told me to divorce this person.
The Lord told me it’s ok to abort my child.
The Lord told me I should sue my neighbor.
The Lord told me it was ok to keep the money I found in the parking lot.
The Lord told me it’s ok to be a Sens fan.

The point is this! We need to be careful how we handle the word of truth and we are to be very discerning when it comes to our emotional driven choices we make. Remember we can easily deceive ourselves remember what Jeremiah said! “The heart is deceitful above all things, and desperately sick; who can understand it? “I the LORD search the heart and test the mind, to give every man according to his ways, according to the fruit of his deeds." Jer 17:9-10. The idea for this transition in David’s psalm is a reminder for you and me to always keep looking vertical not horizontal or within you. What David is saying here is “I have trusted in the mercy of God; I still trust, and I will trust forever.” What was David’s turning point? Prayer and turning his eyes vertical to the only one who can give us peace and rest.

Does God seem far away from you? It’s your opportunity to learn what David learned—that the Lord never leaves you. He sustains all who put their trust in Him. He who abandons himself to God will never be abandoned by God. In the pain and struggle of living without answers, we can always find comfort in our heavenly Father. The believer’s desires often turn to impatience, and days seem like weeks or years when the soul is cast down. And just because God’s face is hidden, it doesn’t mean His heart has forgotten you or your situation. If we hold to God by faith, we will at the same time be assured that victory is coming and that, after all, God has dealt generously with us.

Remember!
“He who abandons himself to God
will never be abandoned by God.”

This is what David is reminding us about this morning! No matter what you are going though God will always get the glory in….. sustain you, restoring you, and reminding you of His goodness and grace.

11 June 2017

LIVING FOR AN AUDIENCE OF ONE



Psalm 115:1-8

Who are you trying to please? Think about that question as we dive into this Psalm this morning. Think about the implications that the Psalmists is trying to tell you and me when it comes to who gets the glory in this life and throughout eternity. But first! What is the glory of God defined? As John Piper says “Defining the glory of God is impossible.” John is right, but let’s try anyways with our finite minds and understanding. The glory of God is the beauty of His spirit. It is not an visual beauty or a material beauty, but it is the beauty that stems from His character, from all that He is.

The glory of God is described as the supreme purpose for redemption “In Him also we have obtained an inheritance, being predestined according to the purpose of Him who works all things according to the counsel of His will, that we who first trusted in Christ should be to the praise of His glory. In Him you also trusted, after you heard the word of truth, the gospel of your salvation; in whom also, having believed, you were sealed with the Holy Spirit of promise, who is the guarantee of our inheritance until the redemption of the purchased possession, to the praise of His glory.” Eph 1:11-14

The glory of God is described in His Lordship that everyone (the saved and unsaved) will confess that He is glorious. “and that every tongue should confess that Jesus Christ is Lord, to the glory of God the Father.” Phil 2:11

The glory of God is described as great “Yes, they shall sing of the ways of the LORD, For great is the glory of the LORD.” Psalm 138:5

The glory of God is described in His workings. “The heavens declare the glory of God, and the sky above proclaims his handiwork.” Psalm 19:1

The glory of God is exhibited in the Lord Jesus Christ. “And the Word became flesh and dwelt among us, and we have seen his glory, glory as of the only Son from the Father, full of grace and truth.” John 1:11
  
And we see the glory of God described twice in the opening remarks of this Psalm. “Not to us, O LORD, not to us.” (v1) What is the psalmist saying? Well it’s pretty simple to understand, God is the one who gets the glory, not you or I. It will be well to remember that this psalm was sung at the Passover, and therefore it bears relationship to the deliverance from Egypt. “Not unto us,” would seem to indicate a very serious desire to renounce any glory which they might at any time have proudly appropriated to themselves….you can include yourself it that as wellThis sets the foundation that God would at any cost to them, magnify his own name.

Let me explain!

When we achieve something or do something well at work, in the home or in school….God gets the glory! 
When we were saved by His grace….God gets the glory! 
When you and I deserve the wrath of God for our sin and God pulls you from the depths of Hell…..God gets the glory!
When you do ministry and serve the local church or your community…..God gets the glory! 
When you endure hardships and face trial and temptations and find victory over them….God gets the glory! 
When you stumble and fall in sin and become broken through repentance and restoration….God gets the glory! 
When you are sick and scared but are able to find comfort and rest…..God gets the glory! 
When you are faced with death and loss and you have a peace that overcomes the situation….God gets the glory! 
When you feel the peer pressures of this world but find a way to flee and resist…..God gets the glory.

Do you see a pattern to what I’m saying and what the psalmist proclaims to the nation of Israel? God gets the glory. He gets the glory in your pain and suffering to the joy of a beautiful sunset. To even answer a simple request by my daughter on Monday when we went to see grandma. God gets the glory…..we don’t have a right to boast or show off because what that does is steal the glory away from a holy God who gives us His steadfast love and faithfulness.
  
He gets the glory for this reason. “Our God is in the Heavens; He does all that He pleases.” (v3) What is the palmist saying? Again pretty clear understanding here. God is in Heaven and He rules over everything from His throne. What does that look like? Isaiah 6 gives us a vivid picture of His Lordship and sovereignty in Heaven. “In the year that King Uzziah died I saw the Lord sitting upon a throne, high and lifted up; and the train of his robe filled the temple. Above him stood the seraphim. Each had six wings: with two he covered his face, and with two he covered his feet, and with two he flew. And one called to another and said: "Holy, holy, holy is the LORD of hosts; the whole earth is full of his glory!" And the foundations of the thresholds shook at the voice of him who called, and the house was filled with smoke.” Isaiah 6:1-4
  
Knowing all this humbles the true believer and causes our hearts to be filled with anguish over the lost people of Israel and for those who are close to us and our neighbors. Anguish means “anxious of body, mind, spirit, with grief and remorse for people around us. This is how I feel for loved ones and people I know who are going to Hell apart from God’s grace. This how the palmist feels when writing this Psalm (v4-v8) Since God is the one from who glory comes, He will not allow the proclamation that glory comes from man or from the idols of man or from nature. We were created for Him, to glorify Him with our lives on earth and in Heaven.
  
This is one of the problems in this Psalm that they love self and create idols for themselves. (v4-v8) This is the mistake many people continue to make: trusting in earthly things, earthly relationships, their own powers or talents or beauty, or the goodness they see in others. Everyone who has ever lived has committed this error at one time or another. We have all “exchanged” the glory of God in favor of the “glory of man.” Romans 1:21-25 says “For although they knew God, they did not honor him as God or give thanks to him, but they became futile in their thinking, and their foolish hearts were darkened. Claiming to be wise, they became fools, and exchanged the glory of the immortal God for images resembling mortal man and birds and animals and creeping things. Therefore God gave them up in the lusts of their hearts to impurity, to the dishonoring of their bodies among themselves, because they exchanged the truth about God for a lie and worshiped and served the creature rather than the Creator, who is blessed forever! Amen.” Romans 1:21-25. Our lives are created for His glory, not the other way around. When I preach, shepherd, serve and pray is for His glory and to elevate Him up not to elevate my ministry. When I love my wife and treat her as Christ did the church, I do it to please God and to give Him glory over my marriage. When I love my children by demonstrating Christ, I do this to please God and give Him glory for my precious children to sanctify us and protect my gifts of life. When I counsel, teach and live my private life, it’s for His glory that I’m able to do anything. When I walk, talk, smell, taste and live is all for Him and His glory, because He is the one I’m living for.

See! We are not to promote oneself or one another to the point where we steal and rob God of His glorious position in our lives. When we do things in the church and outside the church it isn’t to get noticed or have pats on the back it’s for God to get the glory and people need to see that. It’s not about impressing one another and finding our worth in the view or the response of man. It is to be found in God and God alone “Sola Deo Gloria” Latin for “to God be the glory”

What does that look like? There was a story about a young piano player who had his first recital. Before he went on stage, his maestro gave him strict instructions. The old man would be sitting in the balcony alone as the young man played. And he was to keep playing until he saw his mentor stand up. That would be his indication that the maestro was pleased with his performance. The young man went on stage and played his first song. The audience clapped enthusiastically. He played another song. The applauded again. But he kept playing. Another song. Then another. He was not playing to win the applause of the crowd. He knew his teacher was sitting in the balcony. So he continued to play until his master stood and applauded. His teacher’s approval was all that mattered.

Who are you trying to please? This psalm reminds us of who is in control of this world and who gets the glory whether we like it or not. Are we trying to impress one another or are we trying to elevate God to where He belongs. “Our God is in Heaven……to your name be the glory!”




Auido of Sermon correction!

Was referring to  Bernie Sanders comments on Christianity- Not Sen Chuck Schumer