Tuesday, September 27, 2016

Give God The Glory

Psalm 115:1-18

“Not unto us, O LORD, not unto us, but unto thy name give glory, for thy mercy, and for thy truth's sake.” (Psalm 115:1)

People often brag about what they have accomplished and how successful they are.  They forget that if God had not created them and given them the mental and physical abilities they could not have succeeded.  They breathe air he provides, drink water he provides, eat food he causes to grow, and depend on the health and strength he has given them to use the materials he has created to do their business, using the brain he gave them.   Literally, anything humans accomplish are the result of what God has done.  We need to give him the credit for making us able to do what we do. 

“Wherefore should the heathen say, Where is now their God?  But our God is in the heavens: he hath done whatsoever he hath pleased.” (Psalm 115:2-3)

From time to time, groups like the Buddhists and Moslems tell Christians how terrible it must be the not have a place we can go to see where Christ is buried, or a special temple where we can say God lives.  Part of the problem is that they do not see God working in many who call themselves Christians.    Christ is not dead, so no tomb is needed, and no temple could contain him.  Acts 17: 24-25 says, “God that made the world and all things therein, seeing that he is Lord of heaven and earth, dwelleth not in temples made with hands; Neither is worshipped with men's hands, as though he needed any thing, seeing he giveth to all life, and breath, and all things;”  They feel sorry for Christians because the Christians have not told them how great their God is, and they equate him with the gods they worship.   

“Their idols are silver and gold, the work of men's hands.  They have mouths, but they speak not: eyes have they, but they see not: They have ears, but they hear not: noses have they, but they smell not: They have hands, but they handle not: feet have they, but they walk not: neither speak they through their throat.  They that make them are like unto them; so is every one that trusteth in them.” (Psalm 115:4-8)

The gods they worship are statues of people and animals made of gold or silver.  They have eyes, ears, noses, mouths, hands and feet that resemble those of the person or animal they depict, but those various parts are not functional.  They just look like the people who made them, but have even less power.  People who trust in them are stuck with no power to help them either. 

“O Israel, trust thou in the LORD: he is their help and their shield.  O house of Aaron, trust in the LORD: he is their help and their shield.  Ye that fear the LORD, trust in the LORD: he is their help and their shield.” (Psalm 115:9-13)

The leadership sets the example for the people.  The priests from Aaron’s family needed to set an example of trusting the Lord so the other people would learn to trust him.  God was able and willing to give them all the help and protection they needed. 

“The LORD hath been mindful of us: he will bless us; he will bless the house of Israel; he will bless the house of Aaron.  He will bless them that fear the LORD, both small and great.  The LORD shall increase you more and more, you and your children.  Ye are blessed of the LORD which made heaven and earth.  The heaven, even the heavens, are the Lord's: but the earth hath he given to the children of men.” (Psalm 115:12-16)

His people were constantly on God’s mind.  He would bless the entire nation, and he would bless the priests and anyone else who would fear God, regardless how influential they might be.  He would cause them to prosper and grow as well as their descendants.  They had already been and were being blessed by the creator of the universe.   It all belongs to God but he has given the earth to man to live and care for. 

“The dead praise not the LORD, neither any that go down into silence.  But we will bless the LORD from this time forth and for evermore. Praise the LORD.” (Psalm 115:17-18)

When they die the unbeliever’s bodies are go into the ground and their soul is cast into hell, where they endure constant suffering.  They do not praise God for where they are.  Those who trust God, on ther other hand, go to be with the Lord.  They will be singing his praises forever, because he provided a way to escape hell.  We praise the Lord because we know where we are going.

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