In the last post we examined what worship is (assigning ultimate value to something), how to worship (with all our heart, mind, strength and soul) and why (God is a sovereign or supreme king) and in this post we will see two more why’s. First, God is a Powerful Creator.
4 In his hand are the depths of the earth, and the mountain peaks belong to him.
5 The sea is his, for he made it, and his hands formed the dry land.
God created the depths of the earth’s molten core and the heights of Mount Everest. Every part of the earth and sea were created by God.
It’s a shame that in today’s culture that we even have to defend the fact that God is our creator. It should be so evident when you have a design it points to a designer.
Think about it, if you asked a friend, “What kind of phone is that, Samsung or Apple? If they said, “I had several pieces of metal in my pocket and they jingled around in there for about a week and then I pulled it out and it was this phone! The accidental by chance phone? I would look at them as if there’s something the matter with them! If you have another friend and asked, “Where did you get that car? And they said I was driving by the junkyard and there was a tornado and after the tornado passed there was this car ready to go!” Again, if it were my friend, I would think they’re out of their mind. Yet there are those that try to say that the living organisms we see, the laws of physics, the incredible design of life from the micro level to massive level of vast the universe (which have WAY more design than phones are cars) just happened by accident? And we’re supposed to accept that? I see great design in all the earth, its life and in our universe and I hope that you do too.
God is a powerful creator, but He’s also a personal creator.
6 Come, let us bow down in worship, let us kneel before the LORD our Maker;
7 for he is our God and we are the people of his pasture, the flock under his care.
God is not only a powerful creator who created the universe, He is a personal creator who created you.
The same hands that hold the universe together will hold you together.
The same God who created a beautiful world created a beautiful you.
Those are good reasons to worship God.
Lastly, God is a Righteous Judge.
As this Psalm ends it seems negative. Some commentators I read and listened to wished that they could add a positive ending to this psalm.
We go from worship to warning. We see God as creator to now God as judge.
Let’s look at it…
Today, if you hear his voice, 8 do not harden your hearts as you did at Meribah, as you did that day at Massah in the desert, 9 where your fathers tested and tried me, though they had seen what I did.
10 For forty years I was angry with that generation; I said, “They are a people whose hearts go astray, and they have not known my ways.” 11 So I declared on oath in my anger, “They shall never enter my rest.”
What’s going on here? This event mentioned took place in Exodus 17. God had delivered the people out of slavery in Egypt. They had seen 10 powerful plagues against the Egyptian gods, they saw God part the Red Sea, they had received quail and Daily Bread from heaven called Manna. They had seen the pillar of Fire to guide them, yet one day they didn’t have enough water. Instead of saying, “God, you have been faithful and have provided for us yo this point, we need some water.” They complained, they acted if God didn’t exist. They gave God an ultimatum, “give us water or we’re done with you.” Most were done and wanted to go back to Egypt again. “Meriba” means quarrelling in Hebrew, “Massah” means testing, both of which the people did to God.
This event is mentioned over 11 times in scripture: three times in Numbers, twice in Deuteronomy and 2 more times in Psalms (81 & 106) as a warning of how NOT to act. It’s easy to think, “This is Old Testament this doesn’t apply to us!” We are a New Testament people. Actually this event is also referred to in Hebrews 3 and 1 Corinthians 10. It does refer to us.
We all have two choices to make: we can either “hear” and respond to God, or secondly we can “harden our hearts” and not believe. “Today” is the day to believe. We’re not guaranteed tomorrow.
If we “harden our hearts,” it is revealed by complaining, testing God and a perpetual state of wandering leading to frustration and anger from God. We can have God’s rest or Gods anger, which will we choose?
I choose to listen to God.
This Psalm seems to end negative but to me it’s positive because of Christ.
It reminds me of the story of a little boy that was very handy with his hands and he was really good at building things. One day he created what he thought was his masterpiece. He made a beautiful sailboat that he was so proud of; he was so excited to take it down to the river to let it sail. He build it so well and it sailed so well that it quickly sailed out of his grasp. He ran as fast as he could along the riverbank but the little boat sailed away. He was heartbroken and I thought he’d lost his sailboat. A few weeks later when he was in town he saw his beloved sailboat there in the window of a store! He went into the store and told the store owner, “that’s my sail boat, I made it. May I have it back?” The store said, “No people say that all the time, if you want this sail boat, you have to pay the price.” The boy was sad because it would take him two weeks work to be able to buy back his sailboat. He quickly went home, got to work earning the money and eagerly came back two weeks later. He paid the listed price and as he was leaving was filled with emotion. He looked down at the sail boat and said, “My beloved boat, you are twice mine! Not only did I make you I also bought you!”
This is exactly what Jesus has done for each of us: he created us and then he bought us by dying on the cross for us.
Yes God is a righteous judge. But if you’ve ever had a ticket and had to go before a court to pay for your transgression, just imagine that you are getting out your cash, checkbook or credit card about to pay your fine, all of the sudden the judge stands up and says, “No put that away. I will pay your penalty myself.”
That is exactly what our righteous judge has done. We have transgressions but instead of being stuck to pay them all, Jesus paid them all! He paid for our transgressions himself by his death on the cross. We worship God because he is our Sovereign King he’s a Powerful and Personal Creator and he is a Righteous Judge who takes our judgment if we will allow him to.
Thank you Jesus