God’s Glory Revealed (Psalm 19)

2016-Week 8There we stood at 10,000 feet elevation at the end of the trail, having hiked through snow, in the Rocky Mountain National Park in the middle of June. There is only one word that can accurately describe that experience. WOW! Words cannot describe the beauty of the landscape. I am sure each and every one of us has had a similar moment. The moment where the thought that comes to mind is, “only God could have made that.” With this in mind, let us look at Psalm 19. This Psalm is broken down into three sections. The first section looks at Creation (vs 1-6), the second section looks at the Law (vs 7-11), and the third section is David’s response (vs 12-14).

God’s Glory Revealed through Creation (vs 1-6)

Psalm 19 begins by looking at creation. The first thing to note is, God created the world and the universe. Creation is a testimony of God’s power and glory. Verse 2 tells us that day and night God’s glory is revealed. All we have to do is look up at the sun during the day or the moon and stars at night to see it. Verses 3-4 illustrate that everyone in the world can see God’s glory and power. Creation speaks a universal language that demonstrates that there is a God whom every person has responsibility to (Romans 1:18-20). Verses 5-6 give us another picture of the creation (sun) worshiping its Creator. To those of us on earth, the sun is a wonderful thing. It gives us light, warmth, and without it we would cease to exist. God’s glory is revealed to all it shines upon. Thankfully, this passage does not leave us with the knowledge that there is a God whom we are responsible to and not give us a solution on what to do about it.

God’s Glory Revealed through the Law (vs 7-11)

When this psalm was written, the law was known as the Torah. Torah means “instruction” or “direction.” The law paints a picture of who God is and the desire He has for mankind. This passage gives statements of truth about the law and is followed by effects the law has upon man. The statements of truth about the law are: perfect, reliable, right, pure, clean, and true (vs 7-10). The following is a summary of the effects the law has upon man.

Because God’s law is…

  • Perfect, without error, flawless, it has the ability to change people (vs 7).
  • Reliable, sure, trustworthy, we can have confidence that it will not change. The Bible is absolute truth (vs 7).
  • Right, straight, just, it gives practical guidance for every day decisions (vs 8).
  • Pure, clean, it can only lead us in a manner worthy of God. It cannot lead us to sin. It also leads us to having a reverence for God and His Word (vs 8-9).
  • True, dependable, reliable, we need to listen to what God has to say about mankind and our condition. All of His evaluations of us are accurate (vs 9).

The psalmist concludes this section by illustrating that God’s law is desirable. His word is a treasure. It is very satisfying, for it is sweeter than the honeycomb (vs 10). God’s Word is powerful. He uses it to teach us about who we are, who He is, how we ought to live our lives, and how seriously He deals with sin. His Word is life changing. It gives us hope, wisdom, and strength for each and every day.

David’s Response (vs 12-14)

David responds by examining himself. When we think of God being the creator of the universe and creator of mankind. It goes to show how finite each of us are. It is a wonderful thing that God has revealed His glory to us through creation and His Law. David recognizes that in comparing himself with God he is not able to live rightly on his own. Therefore, he prays for deliverance (vs 14). The good news is that each and every one of us is able to receive the same deliverance through the death, burial, and resurrection of Jesus Christ, no matter what you are going through, what sin you are struggling with, or if you need to have a deeper relationship with the Lord. We all need to meditate on God’s Word and who He is so that we are able to see more clearly the sin in our own lives in order to seek deliverance. Each and every day when we see the sun, moon, and the stars, it is a clear reminder that He is the God who created all things and that He has redeemed us by the death of His Son and gives us His Word in order that we may know how we ought to live.

Reflection Questions

  • What is your response to God as Creator and His Law?
  • What statements of the law do you need to meditate on more?
  • How often do you examine yourself? Do you need to do it more?

This week’s devotional was written by Ethan Thomas. Ethan is a graduate from Crossroads Bible College, where he received a B.S. in Biblical Counseling and a B.S. in Management & Ethics. He is happily married to his wife, Grace. He currently leads worship and is actively involved in other ministries at Tri-County Bible Church in Rensselaer, Indiana.

Responding to Spiritual Dryness, Part 2 (Psalm 42)

WW2015-wk19Last week we observed how we, as Christians, deal with periods and seasons of spiritual dryness and depression. We saw, first and foremost, our response to such despair and discouragement drives us to our need for God. While questions will arise and remain, it is crucial to remember God’s character and acts and respond in pouring out our souls to Him and thirsting for His presence. Yet, we not only respond to God in these moments. Psalm 42 demonstrates we also respond to ourselves. We deal with inward and outward problems. In verses 3 and 10, the psalmist reveals he is facing internal struggles and external scorn. Apparently whatever the psalmist was facing, there were those people who taunted him and caused him exceeding pain with their questioning of God and of the psalmist. These mockers took what they thought was a great opportunity to poke fun at this man’s faith and to add to his depression. Praise be to God, though, that the response to ourselves does not stop there. Verses 5 and 11 say, “Why are you cast down, O my soul, and why are you in turmoil within me? Hope in God; for I shall again praise him, my salvation and my God.” The second response we see in relation to ourselves is we talk to ourselves. Moreover, we not only talk to ourselves; we preach to our own souls. The question posed is given an answer in “Hope in God”. For the psalmist, he is not completely there. He is not out of the gutter of being downcast. But he has hope still. He looks ahead to praising God. And why? Because God is His God and His salvation. So, brothers and sisters in Christ, when we face the difficult times in our life, we have a sure hope because of the sure One. Our God has saved us through the person and work of Jesus Christ and we received this all by grace. When we understand God is our salvation and we respond in repentance and faith, we rest in the reality we have hope in Him. God is not just our God when everything is going well. The God of the good times is the same God of the difficult times. That is why we hope, because of who we hope in. Preach that to your own soul.

Reflection Time:

  • How can you make a practice of preaching to your own soul the truth “hope in God” this week?