Sunday Morning Podcast December 19, 2021. Bro. Dave Goble. Pastor
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We have a very different Christmas story this morning, and a very special one! I’m going to ask you to turn to Psalms 72, for our text. Along the way you’ll get what I mean. Then we’re going to read in Matthew of the New Testament. I love the 72nd chapter of Psalms and the message it brings. I’m encouraged this morning in the Majesty of God! Not all in the world can understand this, but each one of us need to understand God’s Majesty. For we can have a personal relationship with God. That’s why the way I describe it, is that God becomes close and personal, and not small and far away! My son when small, used to get migraine headaches, and it affected his vision. Things would seem small and far away to him. I also think that spiritually one can describe God, sometimes, as small and far away. When people look at God as small and far away, what happens is, symbols have substituted for reality. And then the symbols is what one begins to worship. It could be an icon in a church building, an idea, it could be a routine in a church service being conducted. When God becomes small and far away, the symbols take the place or replace a personal experience with Him. I like to think that one of things we have the opportunity to do as a Christian, is make God close and personal, and not small and far away. Religious symbols are not as important to us. What is more important to us, is a relationship as if it were another person! If you’re married, your wife or husband is not a symbol. When you began to treat them as a symbol, they’ll let you know! They want to be seen and have you acknowledge their presence. They want to feel and be close to your presence. And God is the same way! In order for that to happen, there needs to be a change in our heart. This 72nd chapter of Psalms, is a prayer written that ended here, ..as so was his life. It is often thought this was a prayer re his son Solomon, and to and for Israel, to acknowledge Solomon as the new king.
TEXT: PSALMS 72:1-20
1 (A Psalm for Solomon.) Give the king thy judgments, O God, and thy righteousness unto the king’s son.
2 He shall judge the people with righteousness, and thy poor with judgement.
3 The mountains shall bring people people, and the little hills, by righteousness.
4 He shall judge the poor of the people, he shall save the children of the needy, and shall break in pieces the oppressor.
5 They shall fear thee as long as the sun and moon endure, throughout all generations.
It’s lofty and poetic language that David is praying, that God would bless Solomon’s reign. And Solomon would be larger than life.
6 He shall come down like rain upon the mown grass: as showers that water the earth.
7 In his days shall the righteous flourish; and abundance of peace so long as the moon endureth.
8 He shall have dominion also from sea to sea, and from the river unto the ends of the earth.
9 They that dwell in the wilderness shall bow before him; and his enemies shall lick the dust.
10 The kings of Tarshish and of the isles shall bring presents: the kings of Sheba and Seba shall offer gifts.
11 Yea, all kings shall fall down before him: all nations shall serve him.
12 For he shall deliver the needy when he crieth; the poor also, and him that hath no helper.
13 He shall spare the poor and needy, and shall save the souls of the needy.
14 He shall redeem their soul from deceit and violence: and precious shall their blood be in his sight.
15 And he shall live, and to him shall be given of the gold of Sheba: prayer also shall be made for him continually; and daily shall be he be praised.
16 There shall be an handful of corn in the earth upon the top of the mountains; the fruit thereof shall shake like Lebanon: and they of the city shall flourish like grass of the earth.
And now he switches from a prayer for his son, and more to a declaration and he says;
17 His name shall endure for ever: his name shall be continued as long as the sun: and men shall be blessed in him: all nations shall call him blessed.
18 Blessed be the LORD God, the God of Israel, who only doeth wonderous things.
19 And blessed be his glorious name for ever: and let the whole earth be filled with his glory; Amen, and Amen.
20 The prayers of David the son of Jesse are ended.
So if we were to say, that Psalm were only about David’s son Solomon, their are parts of this prayer that could be assigned to a human being, but there are other parts of this prayer that no human being could fulfil. “14 He shall redeem their soul from deceit and violence: and precious shall their blood be in his sight.” First point here: That’s not something Solomon could do for his subjects! Any more than the sacrifices in the temple could cleanse the people once and for all, from sin. This is more than just a prayer from a father about, or for his son, that his son’s reign would be magnified, and that it would be glorious upon the earth. You can see how a king’s mind could work here. In the city of David, as it is said, which is just below the temple mount in Israel, the city occupies a kind of a ridge, down from the temple mount, and on either side of this ridge, houses were built, and this is where the ancient city of Jerusalem was, high up on this ridge was the palace where the king lived. King David while his army were at war, had a view of the city, as a protector, with a privileged place, a fine and elite house, could look over the more common houses of the city below and at Bathsheba bathing. The king had privileges, and a mentality that ordinary people didn’t have. His every need was provided; people served him. Seems nice, right? So when he prayed this prayer, it was a grandiose one, to assign these characteristics to Solomon, in a poetic manner. Not that this was how Solomon was, but a prayer for this idealism to be provided him. An ideal of a king. I’m drawing this picture to be assigned to somebody else, where it is not an ideal, but a reality ! For a human, and not God, this was quite lofty. Can you see that? Now we come to the birth or nativity of Jesus. And this is why the Messiah has come to the world. Here it is speaking of Mary;
Matthew 1: 21 And she shall bring forth a son, and thou shalt call his name JESUS: for he shall save his people from their sins.
Jesus means God saves us (from our sins). That’s the reason why Jesus was specifically born! Not that He would only come to the world, for healing, prophecy, etc.(although He did all that). But also that God came into the world by His Sovereign Will, He provided us a way to be saved from our sins. Christianity has trouble with this idea, that God came to save His people ‘from’ their sins. Difficult for them to figure out. One part of Christianity wants to assign that part to a God that is small and faraway. It doesn’t seem possible to them to be saved from our sins. But there’s another idea to this, that God is not small and far away, but close and present. When you believe this in a real way you can begin then to understand how God can save you from your sins. If He is kept small and far away, all sorts of other things take the place of God, and “from our sins” seems no longer necessary. The word “from” in the Greek means or depicts a separation. It does not mean, “present yet.” “From” does not mean “in.”. When this is taught, it’s like your in a soup of sin, that God comes to save, but not really out and from them. The misconception that somehow God comes to save us while still in this “soup.” No deliverance completely. That’s not what Matt 1:21 is saying. Jesus came to separate us from sin. More than just a fix it! But separated, a deliverance from sin!
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