We live in a narrow world. God, however, is deep. He is the fountain of life. His loving kindness reaches to the heavens. His wisdom is like the depths of the sea. (Psalm 36:6-10; Proverbs 4:14-19)
Sermon # 11532
7:30 PM on 8/29/2018
The Plunkett’s are going back. Are they here? Thank you for coming this summer. Beautiful family living in the Far East and doing a great job. We also have a brother from China, Luke, who just flew in. He literally got off the plane. He came for Bible college. Isn’t that amazing that someone comes from far away to go to Bible school. The new brothers and sisters here for Bible college: Rachel, Josiah from Tennessee, this couple and Ruthie living in Albania. Great to be in the house of God tonight. Thank you God for your Spirit. Give us a great service tonight. Have a prayer with your neighbor for a few minutes.
Ps. 36, pleasures at his right hand. Praise God. We’ll have a good message tonight. Just believe that. This portion emphasizing the goodness, the grace, the love of God.
vs. 6. Judgments are a great deep. That phrase is important. I remember reading a sermon by Charles Spurgeon on this verse. Why does a child die at the age of 7 and someone else lives to be 77? Why does a good business man who is honest with a lot of integrity and his business fails? Why does it happen that P. Shibley who is listening tonight with his family in his home in Belair and we turned and waved the other night. We love him and his family so much. Why would he fall from a 12 foot ladder and nearly die? His neighbor came and knelt down and prayed for him. His life saved, halleluiah. We can’t imagine it being any other way. God’s judgments are a great deep. Surgeon is saying things happen in our lives that are tough and hard for us. An 18 year old boy in our neighborhood was just killed as he was driving home at 1 in the morning. That has happened in our church family with some families we love so much. We can’t imagine the pain of that. A great deep. Why does it say that? It’s not shallow. Some people at the door call me Pastor “Shallow.” Very good message, Pastor “Shallow!” It’s deep because we can’t figure it out, because we can’t go there ourselves. Deep because there are treasures in the deep. This is a good thought for us tonight.
That was an awesome message Paul gave. Our spiritual family when God is pouring out a blessing we can’t say we are better than other people. I don’t feel that. I don’t feel like I’m better than other people. But I can say, we can boast in the Lord for what the Lord has given us. Some people feel they are on the outside of that blessing. That’s a dangerous place to be. Some have been in our Footsteps and new people in our church and I’ve asked them how did you come? They said I drove passed this church 10 years. Why didn’t you come in before now? Because I felt you people are much better than I am. Your cars, – which are from 20 years old! – your families, your dedication, commitment, carrying your Bibles. Whatever they are perceiving but it’s not true. We are people starving who found bread. We are saying please take the bread. All it is is believing in Christ. We are nobody any different. Couple points I want to share tonight more heart to heart.
vs. 6. You preserve man and beast. There is a video called “The Privileged Planet.” You can get a four minute trailer for free. Scientifically they are giving scientists 20 unique factors about this planet: the weight, the speed of the spin, the distance from a star, magnetic field, atmosphere, amount of water that is here. They say it’s so narrow. The elements needed for live are so narrow it’s virtually impossible. It’s a great video. I was at Hopkins listening to a doctor give a message when Ravi Zachariah was there and people say why do I have this disease? This isn’t right. The doctor said we shouldn’t be saying why do I have this disease. We should be saying why can I stand upright? Why is my heart beating? Why is my heart alive? It’s a narrow world. God preserves man and beast. He makes it happen. If there is a car accident, you have to say it’s the providence of God. He allowed it. He’s in every nanosecond. No accidents in the universe. It’s his judgments and ways passed finding out. He has allowed us to suffer. He has allowed us to ask the question. He has allowed us to be hurt, to have pain. I said my body is like a house and every once in a while something falls off. A piece of trim just dropped. It’s on the lawn. How did that fall off? Our houses are falling apart. People get older and the house falls apart because it’s God’s last word saying, how are you doing? Please trust in me, believe in me. God is humiliating us and bringing us to fear God. Our theme recently. Fearing, respecting God. Like a rattle snake. Ben Wileczek said he was playing with a rattle snake in Tennessee. He was worked up and took a while to calm down. How fast that snake can strike. God has made a rattle snake. God has sent a message about fearing things, poison, and heights. P. Shibley! Fit right in there!
Ps. 36:6 for any creature to be alive, very narrow set , very intricate, highly intense elements for a snake to live and a man to live and a fish to live. God is everywhere. God is everywhere. He fills the earth. He is in everything. Have you taken time and said humbly before God, thank you Lord. I’m alive. These trees are clapping their hands. I love children because they believe these things. Children know there is more to life than what we see. The Spirit of God wants to lead in worship.
The highest form is to listen to the word as we listen to Ps. 36. Highest form of worship is respectful concentration on the presence of God. Anointing of God is our teaching. It will have many manifestations. Sometimes so precious we will remember it for a long time.
vs. 7. How excellent is your HESED, – means grace. Mingling of law and mercy, of order and God’s good hand. It’s a word of kind consideration and love. He loves Israel but he’s so angry with the sins of Israel. Where is the bill of your divorcement? He can’t stop loving Israel. I have not beheld iniquity in Jacob. I love Israel with an everlasting love. I give mercy to sinners, restore their souls, forgiven them many times, and give more grace. I am a God that is rich. We get blinded by our troubles in life.
vs. 7. Maybe look at the cross and think of the horizontal part as wings.
Under the shadow of your wings, Luke 19 as a hen, a brood of chicks under the wings. In the secret place of the Most High here we are resting and trusting. When these tragic things happen, we must learn to suffer well. There is suffering that is wasted, that produces bitterness in the hearts of people. Many of our sisters and brothers fell into difficult times and their faith failed. They got so upset their world was not going as they thought it should. They failed or frustrated grace. They couldn’t believe God would allow this to happen to them. Hurt by their circumstances. Broken by what happened to them. So many amazing people. If your lovingkindness could sustain me, if the Spirit of grace could uphold me inside, we can suffer well. If we can fear you. We can say Lord it hurts. Maybe you are chastening me but it says it’s for good. I can’t see anything good coming out of my pain but the judgments are deep. Sailing on the ocean. It’s better to sail in deep water than shallow. If sailing in shallow water, you can hit a rock and hit the bottom. If you are sailing in deep water, you can do better. Let me take you to a place you wouldn’t go yourself. Let me teach you how to live by every word that comes from me. I have words, a way for you. It’s not your way.
vs. 8. Fatness of your house meaning fatness in the Bible is often associated with spiritual blessing. Making my bones fat, the marrow in the bone. The marrow makes the red blood cells. The bones being fat. In the sacrifices made to God, the fat burns fast. It ignites and the fire is enflamed by the fat. The fat is feeding the fire. I want to be satisfied with the fatness of your house. This is the church. I will dwell in the house of the Lord forever.
Ps 84 says even the sparrows are living in your house. The psalmist saw little birds coming in the house. I’d rather be a doorkeeper than live in the tents of wicked. I’d be satisfied with the fatness of your house. I think it also means people. There is a richness here. We are not better than anybody. We are visited by God and in that visitation, there is something satisfying. We are enriched by it, growing on it, feeding on it.
Prov 4, I have this fascination with Nazi Germany. I can’t help but read about it and think about it. Hitler stayed up at night till 4 in the morning. He would be up all night talking. People with him were generally bored with him as time went on. They were in a lot of trouble and realized it. This man was an evil man of huge magnitude.
Verse 14. This is what I was thinking: there is an attraction, something that happens with people and evil men. It does happen. There is something that happens in the soul. There is an attraction to evil men. I want to say that and ask you to think about it. I could be a Spirit filled believer, a man of God or woman of God like you folks are tonight listening to the word and satisfied with the fatness of God’s house and be hurt and upset by something that happens in my life and maybe it happens again. Another bankruptcy or disappointment with a girlfriend. It can be my heart changes. In my heart, I end up being attracted to people who are fun to be with and saying things fresh to me and exciting. Maybe mysterious. I have an attraction to it. Maybe it’s something with what they are saying. Maybe it’s the adventure of what is evil. It happens.
vs. 15. Here’s the thing about Hitler.
They sleep not except they have done mischief, vs. 16. They murder, fight in gangs. A young man attracted to a gang where doing drugs and killing people. How can that be? It is there. There is something about it. It wouldn’t be written here. He says avoid it. Pass from it. I know you are not generally in that category. An evil woman is a narrow ditch and a man falls into it. He’s not getting out. That’s amazing. I know some of the things I repeat. I want to say it again. I met a man in Europe who had a prostitute and had given her $10,000 and it was taken out of his bank account and his wife found out about it. $10,000 is a lot of money to a woman doing this. How can that happen? It’s vulgar. Sorry about sharing it in a way. I’m trying to say something. I don’t expect anyone here to be in that category but every one of us are in a category with a sin nature and there is some magnetism. Don’t even open the door. Many vices. The world may make fun of us but it protects me. It’s a margin. If my heart is satisfied by the fatness of his house, it will keep me.
vs. 18-19, Ps 36:8, life. That’s a good word. Fountain of life. Find it. Know it. Fountain of life. A fountain is always moving. It’s a fountain of life. The physical body is always moving. Our body cells are dying. Every cell dies except the neurons. They are the same. The cells are reproducing. Our body is like a fountain. It’s living and dying and living and dying. Changing. They said in 7 years, not one cell is the same as 7 years earlier. They are gone. Aways changing and reproducing. In the spiritual life, this Christ we have is not static. He is moving. He is life. A fountain of life. This is where we escape the evil in the world. The magnetism of the human soul for the evil. You walk away long before you fall into it. Long before you are in the trap. After my feet are in the snare, God delivers me. Before I get in any area, I’m out of there. If it happens before because I’m warned, and then if it happens I’m in and caught, God is able to deliver me out of the snare. Hopefully.
P. Boice used to live in Prague and tell the story of the Christmas fish, the carp. They would bring it home but didn’t want to kill it so they put it in the bathtub and would wait for Christmas coming in a couple days. Some families got sympathetically attached to the fish. Sometimes people would go with the plastic bag and the fish and go down by the river and let it go. That’s like me. I was nearly destroyed but God delivered me when I was caught in the snare. He delivered me out of the trouble. He delivered me out of the grave, out of myself, my fears, my failures, and my condemnation. He has delivered us and saved us.
Ps. 36:9, when you are in a dark place and you look far away, a candle can be seen 7 miles away. I’ll go towards that light and I see more light. Halleluiah. I don’t need much just a principle to live by. The light could be far away.
When we lived in Hungary, we said our mission is we would be able to see our light all the way to Vladivostok and people there would hear about a church in Budapest on fire for God. We had a brother who went to Mongolia on a train, on a mission. He heard that and believed it. It’s beautiful.
Have they heard about the Baltimore church any other place in the world? Anybody heard about your kindness, meekness, and love? Your joy? How you live in your house, your faith? How the troubles you went through. Judgments are very deep but you are in it. You sail with God. God’s grace is sufficient. He upholds us, anoints us refreshes us. Has anyone seen a light on a hill top, a city on a hill, the reality of the living God in the midst of a world in trouble and suffering? Yes, Lord. That’s it.
vs. 10. Can almost weep with that. Someday, I want to preach about Elijah cursing the 42 young men when he was walking out of the city. Children it says in the King James. It’s more adolescent teens, 42 of them. Elijah they called bald head. Go up thou bald head. He turned and cursed them and two bears came out of the woods. It says bears tore them. It doesn’t mean killed them. It means wounded them. It was a gang of 42 young men that were dangerous. They were a threat to Elijah. They were mocking, arrogant, young people. They were dangerous to Elijah. It’s a difficult story to explain. We could have all kinds of objects to the story but calm down and think about it. What is the meaning of the story? God was with Elijah, protected Elijah, and God honored Elijah.
We need to be careful what we say and do to God’s people. We are not people who are cursing or mocking. We are living before God. We are respecting the people God has in this world. You be careful what you say about them and your attitude. That is a work of evil. There is a magnitude to the evil. Something about it cynical and evil attitude and laughing about it. The story is there in the Bible. Don’t mess with Elijah. No problem with God protecting Elijah. Lord, continue your LK for us. Help us in life.
Lead us that we would not become bitter and angry and frustrated. Teach us prayer and make us worshippers of you. We have so much to be thankful for in this life. Even worldwide there are places in the world who look to our church and other churches saying that’s a light on a hill.
The testimony of the reality of God’s goodness… many representing that tonight. Years later, we are getting more light. We are not better than anyone else but we got something going on that we enjoy. That’s beautiful.
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