Last week I spoke of the fact that it is very easy to hold, or to assume by our actions, a false view of God. I think a large part of this problem, both for those inside and outside the church, can be due to a focus on specific life experiences or specific Biblical passages taken in isolation, rather than looking at them in light of all of God’s word. The recent Tsunami in Japan is a perfect example. The obvious question from a skeptic would be “Where was God?” Why would God allow such devastation? Why would He allow so many people to die, to be left homeless, to be struggling to feed themselves day to day? In a general sense the disaster is due to the curse of sin on our world, but as to the specifics, I have absolutely no idea.
It can be very easy to speculate in a situation like this as to the reasons God may have sent, or allowed, such a disaster. It could be due to idolatry, or rampant sin, or focus on material success over the things of God, or many other reasons. All those things are true about Japan. Yes, this could indeed be a judgment of God, as I’m sure some would claim. But if that is the case, why is Japan falling and the United States still standing? We should be careful in speculating on God’s intents and purposes, when we are as, or more, worthy of His judgment.
It is vital that our view of who God is does not ebb and flow with our lives or the current state of the country or the world. Though we change and the world changes, God does not. His character is consistent, whether or not we understand all His purposes, and what He causes or allows will always be consistent with that character. We should not choose to trust Him because His eternal will always makes sense to our finite minds. We should trust in Him because He has already, many times, demonstrated Himself to be trustworthy, both in our lives and in His word.
God is, was, and always will be trustworthy, and good. One of the wonderful aspects of Christian worship is the privilege of gathering with over believers to glorify God for who He is. A good worship song reminds us of who God is, and of our proper relation to Him. Psalm 145 is a very good worship song. My daughters’ school had an open house this last Sunday, and the whole school (it’s a very small school) recited Psalm 145 from memory at the end of their church’s Sunday evening service.
The chapter stuck in my head, and it is full of amazing truths about God’s character, so we will be using it as the suggested reading for this week. I hope the outline below is a blessing.
For the praise of His glory,
READ PSALM 145
Exalt God’s character
This chapter speaks of the glorious splendor of His majesty
It talks of the true God, the creator of everything that exists
The mere sight of the true God made all who saw His glory, from the holiest men in history to the world’s most powerful rulers, tremble and fall on their faces.
He is a good God, and a righteous God.
His righteousness is our problem, because He is righteous, and we are not.
It is that righteous God that you will stand before on the Day of Judgment, whether you believe in Him or not, to be judged for your actions in this life.
You may have heard of, or thought you have, accepted Jesus as your lord and savior
He may or may not be your savior. But He is your Lord whether you acknowledge Him as Lord or not
GO THROUGH GOD’S LAW TO BRING CONVICTION OF SIN
If we look at God’s law with an open mind and a tender conscience, we will quickly see how short we fall of His standard.
But the Bible also says the Lord is gracious and merciful, slow to anger and abounding in steadfast love
How do you know He is gracious and merciful? We still live! He would be justified in crushing us today just based on our thoughts for the last 24 hours. That is the righteous judgment we deserve.
God is not slow in keeping His promises of judgment, but He is patient. It may be that the only reason you still draw breath is because God is patiently waiting for you to repent and turn to Him.
He hears the cry of those who fear Him and saves them
Psalm 145 encourages us to speak of the might of His awesome deeds, and declare His greatness.
The greatest of God’s works is the redemption of man through the cross of Christ
We are all under a death sentence because of our sin against God
Jesus stepped in and paid the fine so your death sentence could be commuted.
God was not obligated to save us. He chose to, and spilled His own blood to do it, despite our rebellion. THAT is a good God!
The Bible says the Lord is near to all who call on Him in truth
Test yourself, see if you are in the faith, calling on Him in truth
Then do what the Bible says. Repent of your sins, and trust in Christ, who died that you might live.