Sunday, June 4, 2017 Sermon Prep for Psalm 145
In learning to live the God-centered life, surely praise is our highest goal. Yet praise presents some hurdles for our human hearts. Our human emotions often lead us to think God isn’t acting for our good, or is punishing us, or doesn’t care. As we saw last week, we can deal with such feelings by rehearsing what we know to be true about God. Psalm 145 shows us a litany of what God has revealed about Himself. His greatness and goodness can lift us out of our limited perspective and into the light of Truth.
As you read through Psalm 145, look for all the attributes of the Glorious God David lays out. As you identify God’s nature and qualities, think about the contrast between who He is and who we are. How weak we are, how utterly dependent on Him. But how utterly trustworthy He is! David extols Him for His condescension toward frail humans. Take a moment and consider how kind and gentle He has been with you. How have you seen Him be kind to others you know? Do you feel like praising yet?
Spurgeon suggests that when we don’t have the desire in our human hearts to praise, that we decide based on what we know, not what we feel: “All before the day, all in the day, all following the day should constrain us to magnify our God every day, all the year round. “ It is a choice to praise. “I will—God helping me, I will.” We know from all of Scripture that God is good. The work of Christ is the pinnacle of goodness toward rebellious man. So we choose to praise, with the help of the Holy Spirit. As David says in this psalm, “I will.” God help us, we will too.
Though the fig tree should not blossom,
nor fruit be on the vines,
the produce of the olive fail
and the fields yield no food,
the flock be cut off from the fold
and there be no herd in the stalls,
yet I will rejoice in the Lord;
I will take joy in the God of my salvation.
Finally, take a look at how David refers to God in Psalm 145. Sometimes David is talking about God but often he is talking to Him as one would to a close friend. In modern English, this is harder to see. In the King James version, Thee and Thou directed toward God speak of intimacy, closeness. Take a look at your prayer life. If you had a more intimate ‘you’ and a formal ‘you’, which would you use toward God most of the time? Remember, in Christ, we are sons and daughters of the Father. “Let us then with confidence draw near to the throne of grace, that we may receive mercy and find grace to help in time of need,” Hebrews 4:16. So, in learning to pray through the model of the Psalms, we can go boldly to our Father and pour out our hearts to Him. And we will be able to do that for all time and all eternity! Let us praise our great, good, kind Father for all that He is and all He has done for us forever and ever!
“Blessed be the Lord for ever for having revealed to us his name, and blessed be that name as he has revealed it; yea, blessed be he above all that we can know, or think, or say. Our hearts revel in the delight of praising him. Our mouth, our mind, our lip, our life shall be our Lord’s throughout this mortal existence, and when time shall be no more.” –Charles Spurgeon.