Greetings Project Ezra! This week’s chapter is Psalm 50. We used this chapter as part of a larger reading quite a while ago, but I ran across it in my reading yesterday, and it is so rich in truth and so relevant that I felt we needed to use it again. Psalm 50 talks about a God that is quite different than the god that is worshipped by most people. Though each person’s salvation is ultimately between them and God, if you spend any time witnessing in public you will find countless people who a very small, weak, impotent, and apathetic view of God. They need to be reminded of who the true God is, and this chapter does that well.
The first few verses describe a God of power. This is not a God sitting on the sidelines, but the creator and sustainer of the universe. He is mighty, righteous, and beautiful beyond our imaginations. He is a mighty tempest and a devouring fire, and is far beyond our control. And this powerful, majestic being is also our judge, who will call us to account for our sin. None can deliver out of his hands.
The true God is not the foolish, blind god those who would call themselves “religious” are hoping for and expecting, whether they realize it or not. He doesn’t need animal sacrifices. Every beast, every bird, and everything else that moves on the earth is his. He doesn’t want empty ceremonies. He wants a sacrifice of thanksgiving from those who will keep their vows, call upon his mercy and glorify him. He says it is those who order their way rightly will see his salvation.
God also says, in so many words, that the evil and disobedient have no right to call themselves his children. They claim his covenant and recite his statutes, but revel in evil. They hate discipline and keep company with thieves and adulterers. If they go to church Sunday, they live like the devil Monday through Saturday. And they think, because God appears to be silent, because he doesn’t deal with their sin immediately, that he is accepting of their behavior.
So use this chapter to introduce people to the true God of the bible. Talk of his glory, of his majesty, of his might, of his sovereignty, and of his justice. Help people to see the truth of all that God is, rather than only the aspects of his character that appeal to them or appear to benefit them, and let them feel the weight of that and the fear of his true nature. Perhaps, by his grace, that truth will break their pride and draw them to repentance and faith.
For the praise of His glory,