Jehovah God is Greatest! Psalm 48:1-14

Text: “And the house which I build is great: for great is our God above all gods.”

2 Chronicles 2:5.

Good morning, Christian who serves the Great Lord God Jehovah!  No other gods, so-called, are worthy of the Name of our Lord God; none so Almighty in power; none so Holy in Persons; none so righteous in justice; none so utterly gracious in Eternal Salvation.  This is the great I AM, Lord God, who is our God revealed in Christ Jesus, and you and I know, nor acknowledge, no other God.  Hallelujah!  The Lord God Omnipotent reigneth!  Amen.

The First Commandment is: “Thou shalt have no other Gods before Me (Jehovah Lord God).”(Exodus 20:3)

Verse 1.  “Great is the Lord. How great Jehovah is, essentially, none can conceive: but we can all see that He is great in the deliverance of His people, great in their esteem who are delivered, and great in the hearts of those enemies whom He scatters by their own fears.  Instead of the mad cry of Ephesus, ‘Great is Diana,’ we bear the reasonable, demonstrable, self-evident testimony, ‘Great is Jehovah.’”  (Charles Haddon Spurgeon, Treasury of David, page 225)

Verse 2. “The joy of the whole earth is Mount Zion. Jerusalem was the world’s star; whatever light lingered on earth was borrowed from the oracles preserved by Israel.” (C.H. Spurgeon, Treasury of David, page 225)

Dictionary Definition: Oracle (noun) a medium or agency of Divine revelation; the place where such responses are given; the Jewish sanctuary; the Word of God...  (The Chambers Dictionary, page 1139)

The ‘prince of preachers’, Spurgeon, is here expounding from Scriptures the fact that ‘Mount Zion’, or Jerusalem, is the joy of the whole earth, because the oracles of God, or God’s revelation of Himself to mankind, was given there; that Christ, the Word of God, and the Light of the world, walked those streets; ministered in that land; was crucified outside that city’s walls for the sins of ‘His people’, and thereafter walked out of, and left behind an empty tomb of witness, that the Lord God Jehovah had made the way of Eternal Salvation for us, by His resurrection from the dead.  This is why the Psalmist, under Divine inspiration, describes ‘Mount Zion’, or Jerusalem, as ‘...the joy of the whole earth’.  Hallelujah!

Verse 5.  “They saw it, and so they marvelled. The potentates of the world saw the miracles of the Apostles, the courage and constancy of the martyrs, and the daily increase of the church, notwithstanding all their persecutions; they beheld with astonishment the rapid progress of the faith through the Roman Empire; they called upon their gods, but their gods could not help themselves; idolatry expired at the foot of the victorious Cross.”  (George Horne 1730-1792)

“The blood of the martyrs is the seed of the church.” Tertullian (160-225 AD)

Verse 6.  “Fear took hold upon them there... Can you and I just imagine for a moment, the intensity of human fear that ‘took hold’ on the onlookers of Christ’s Crucifixion that day on Mount Calvary?  They sat and watched the Lord Jesus suffering and dying on that cruel Cross; they heard with their own ears, the cry of Jesus, as He ‘...gave up the ghost...’ (John 19:30); they saw with their own eyes, the Roman soldier plunging his spear into the Master’s side, and evidenced His sinless Blood flowing out.  They experienced the very elements of earth and Heaven responding, by throwing ‘...darkness over all the land until the ninth hour...’ (Matthew 27:45)   I’ll bet, ‘Fear took hold upon them there...’!  The sins of God’s elect people had been laid upon Jesus, the Lamb of God which taketh away their sin; and He had suffered and died as our Divine Substitute, and taken our rightful place of punishment.

Verse 7. “Thou breakest the ships of Tarshish with an east wind. That same Jesus Christ, the Son of the Living Lord God, proved to all His power to command the very wind and the sea.  His cry of ‘...Peace, be still!’, rebuked the wind, ‘...and the wind ceased, and there was a great calm.’  (Mark 4:39-41)  ‘And they (the disciples) feared exceedingly, and said one to another, What manner of man is this, that even the wind and the sea obey Him?’ 

Verse 8.  “As we have heard, so have we seen..."  You and I, dear Christian, have heard and read in our Bibles, of the wonders of the Living Lord Jesus Christ, and how He has performed all manner of Supernatural miracles, especially the miracle of regeneration of dead human spirits.  Ezekiel’s vision of the Valley of Dried Bones is an illustrative example of what Christ has done for each of us who have been ‘born again’ of His Spirit. (Ezekiel 37:1-10)

Just like the ‘dried bones’ of Ezekiel’s vision, you and I heard the Gospel of Salvation in Christ and through His full Atonement Sacrifice at Calvary’s Cross.  By hearing God’s Word with our hearts, we received His vital gift of faith to believe and receive Christ as our Saviour and Lord.  From being ‘...dead in trespasses and sins...’, we received new life, and have been Spiritually regenerated to be children of God Himself – we are ‘born again’ of Him, and now stand upon new Spiritual feet, ‘...an exceeding great army...’! Hallelujah! (Ephesians 2:1-5) (John 3:3-8)

“So then faith cometh by hearing, and hearing by the Word of God.”  (Romans 10:17)

“For by grace ye are saved through faith; and that not of yourselves: it is the gift of God: not of works, lest any man should boast.”  (Ephesians 2:8-9)

Verses 8-14.  “We have here the good use and improvement which the people of God are taught to make of his late glorious and gracious appearances for them against their enemies, that they might work for their good.  Let our faith in the word of God be hereby confirmed. If we compare what God has done with what he has spoken, we shall find that, as we have heard, so have we seen (v. 8), and what we have seen obliges us to believe what we have heard.  As we have heard done in former providences, in the days of old, so have we seen done in our own days.”  (Matthew Henry (1662-1714) ‘Commentary on the whole Bible’.

Thought: Think for a mere moment of what our Lord God has done for us – and we cannot help but cry out from born again hearts, ‘Our Lord God, Jehovah, is greatest!’

Applaud Our God in Praise! Psalm 47:1-9

Text: “O clap your hands, all ye people; shout unto God with the voice of triumph.  For the Lord most high is terrible; He is a great King over all the earth.  He shall subdue the people under us, and the nations under our feet.”

Psalm 47:1-3.

Good morning, praising Christian!  There is a reason for genuine Christians to offer the Lord God our praise: He is God Almighty, the Creator of all things; and as such, He deserves only our most fervent praise and gratitude, and the most profound depths of our worshipful love.

Verse 1. “O clap your hands.  "When we approve of the acts, speeches, and appearances of mere mortals on a stage, in a public ceremony; at a planned venue or various gatherings – we show great honour and appreciation of what we have seen, heard, or enjoyed.  How infinitely much more should we clap our hands in worshipful approval, thanksgiving, and appreciation of the Creation, the Divine acts; and the very Presence of the Lord God Almighty Jehovah?  Hallelujah!  We applaud you from our very souls, wonderful Lord God!  Amen."(Dr C.K. McClinton, Ulster Christians, 2017)

Verse 1. “Clap your hands, all ye people.  The most natural and most enthusiastic tokens of exultation are to be used in view of the victories of the Lord and His universal reign.  Our joy in God may be demonstrative, and yet He will not censure it.  The joy is to extend to all nations; Israel may lead the van, but all the Gentiles are to follow in the march of triumph, for they have an equal share in that Kingdom where there is neither Greek nor Jew, but Christ is all and in all.”  (Charles Haddon Spurgeon, Treasury of David, page 223)

Verse 2.  “For the Lord (Jehovah) most high is terrible; He is a great King over all the earth.  Not only is our Lord God ‘a great King over all the earth' – He is, in fact, the Creator Lord God of all the earth!   Nothing exists outside of His Creative powers, grace, and realm.

“Neither is worshipped with men’s hands, as though He needed anything, seeing He giveth to all life, and breath, and all things; and hath made of one blood all nations of men for to dwell on all the face of the earth, and hath determined the times appointed, and the bounds of their habitation:...For in Him we live, and move, and have our being...” (Acts 17:25-28)

Verse 2. “For the Lord. (Or Jehovah), the Self-existent and only God; Most High, most great in power, lofty in dominion, eminent in wisdom, elevated in glory, is terrible.  Omnipotence, which is terrible to crush, is Almighty to protect.” (C.H. Spurgeon, Treasury of David, page 223)

Christian, you and I have been saved by, and should be seeking to faithfully serve, a high and Holy, and omnipotent, omniscient; ever-present Lord God.  Half-hearted, worship, praise and service just will not suffice!  Let us praise and worship our Lord God with sincere, fervent and holy hearts.  Praise the Lord O my soul!  All that is within me, bless His Name!

Verse 4. “He shall chose our inheritance for us.  We submit our will, our choice, our desire, wholly to Him.  Our heritage here and hereafter we leave o Him, let Him do with us as seemeth Him good.”  (C.H. Spurgeon, Treasury of David, page 223)

When we put all the faith that the Lord God has granted us in Him Who has freely granted us faith – we show obedience to Him, and grow in obedience to Him as we learn to depend on Him more and more day by day.  If we believe God is our Father and our Sovereign Saviour and Lord – then, come what may, we can begin to more fully trust Him to take care of us, or not to take care of us, as He alone sees fit.  A good God cannot do bad things to ‘His people’

“And we know that all things (good and not so good) work together for good to them that love God, to then who are the called according to His purpose.”  (Romans 8:28) 

Verse 5. “God is gone up with a shout.  The words are fully applicable to the ascension of the Redeemer.  We doubt not that angels and glorified spirits welcomed Him with acclamations.  He came not without song, shall we imagine that He returned in silence?” (C.H. Spurgeon, Treasury of David, page 224)

Verse 6. “Sing ye praises with understanding. It is to be feared from the slovenly way in which some make a noise in singing that they fancy any sound will do.  On the other hand, from the great attention paid by some to the mere music, we feel sadly sure that the sense has no effect upon them. 

“Is it not a sin to be tickling men’s ears with sounds when we profess to be adoring the Lord?  What has a sensuous delight in organs, anthems, etc., to do with devotion?  Do not men mistake physical effects for Spiritual impulses?  Do they not often offer to God strains far more calculated for human amusement than for Divine acceptance?  An understanding enlightened of the Holy Spirit is then, and then only, fully capable of offering worthy praise.” (C.H. Spurgeon, Treasury of David, page 224)

So many today tell us that they are making utterances in song and praise which they do not themselves understand.  Extreme Charismatic’s and their ilk, actually boast that the offer up worship, prayers, and praises in words and expressions which they themselves do not comprehend – they erroneously seek to declare that the Spirit of God is speaking/singing/praying through them!  What nonsense!  God the Spirit is Communication with a Capital C.!  Spiritual utterances, in this context, can in fact, be only mouthed by God the Spirit Himself!  You and I cannot praise, worship, or pray with the Spirit’s own Divine language!  To say that we can do so, is to place our puny selves in the position of God.

“Likewise the Spirit (Capital S.!) also helpeth our infirmities; for we know not what we should pray for as we ought: but the Spirit itself maketh intercession for us with groanings which cannot be uttered.  And He that searcheth the hearts knoweth what is the mind of the Spirit, because He maketh intercession for the saints according to the will of God.”  (Romans 8:26-27)

The Lord God will NEVER do things contrary to His own God-breathed Word!

Verse 8. “He sitteth upon the throne of His Holiness. Unmoved, He occupies an undisputed throne, Whose decrees, acts, and commands are Holiness itself.  What other throne is like this?  Never was it stained with injustice, or defiled with sin.”(C.H. Spurgeon, The Treasury of David, p.224)

Thought: Seated upon His throne today, He may well come again tomorrow! Be ready!

Stand Still, Christian! Psalm 46:9-11

Text: “Be still, and KNOW that I AM God: I will be exalted among the heathen, I will be exalted in the earth.  The Lord of Hosts is with us; the God of Jacob is our Refuge.”

Psalm 46:10-11.

Good morning, Standing Christian!  You and I are enabled to stand – in the face of the most frightening social, national, and international circumstances and events.  How do we stand?  We stand because of nothing that we could humanly do, say, or think – we stand because the Lord Jesus Christ has given us a full STANDING in the Eternal Salvation He alone can give.  Hallelujah!   What a Saviour we have in Christ the Lord!   

I, even I, am He that blotteth out thy transgressions for mine Own sake, and will NOT remember thy sins.  (Isaiah 43:25)

The Spiritually regenerate Christian believer has been granted a secure STANDING before our thrice Holy Lord God of utter wrath against all sin.  We are hidden ‘…in Christ Jesus…’ our Redeemer.  Thank you, Lord God!

Therefore (a conclusion) if any man (or woman) be in Christ, he/she is a new creature; old things are passed (or continually passing) away; behold (look), all things are become (or continually becoming) new.  And all things are of God Who hath reconciled us to Himself (the sinful to the Holy) by Christ Jesus…”  (2 Corinthians 5:17-18)

If we say that we have fellowship with Him (God), and walk in darkness, we lie, and do not the truth.  BUT if we walk in the light, as He is in the light, we have fellowship one with another, and the Blood of Jesus Christ His Son cleanseth (cleans and continues to cleanse) us from ALL sin.          (1 John 1:6-7)

Are you and I seeking to ‘…walk in the light…’ with God?  Then the precious Blood of Jesus Christ, Gods Son, cleanses us from All sin. 

Past, present and future sins are completely covered by the shedding of Christs sinless Blood.  Glory to God for such grace!  The sin penalty has been PAID. 

This is our STANDING before God’s Throne.  This is our STANDING in the Family of the Living Lord God!  We are granted this STANDING by our Sovereign God’s grace, through faith, it is the gift of God, not of works, lest any man, or woman, should boast.  Hallelujah! In Christ Jesus, and in Him Alone, we STAND.  God has caused mere dust of the earth to be able to STAND; and to stand in His Holy sight!  Wow!  What a standing we have in Christ!

“For by grace are ye saved through faith; and that not of yourselves: it is the gift of God: not of works, lest any man should boast. For we are His workmanship; CREATED in Christ Jesus unto good works, which God hath before ordained that we should walk in them.”  (Ephesians 2:8-10)

However, although we Christian believers have been given this gracious STANDING - freedom from all sin - in our family relationship through Christ Jesus.  We still have to deal with the issue of our daily, and almost inevitable sin committed in our naturally sinful STATE.  Fact!

If we say that we have no sin, we deceive ourselves, and the truth (Jesus Christ?) is not in us.  (1 John 1:8)

In our STATE as natural sinners we commit sin against God daily!  Be honest, Christian!

“…For there is no difference, for all have sinned and come short of the glory of God (Christs sinlessness).  (Romans 3:22-23)

While our daily sins do NOT affect our family STANDING in Christ Jesus - they most certainly affect our STATE, our fellowship with God and with others of ‘…like precious faith…’ in Christ.  We need to confess such sins continually in prayer to God.

If we confess our sins, he is faithful and just to forgive us our sins, and to cleanse us from ALL unrighteousness.  (1 John 1:9)  What a Saviour!  His forgiveness, ever given, enables us to maintain our sure standing in Christ Jesus forever.

Look again at our text for today!:  “Be still, and KNOW that I AM God: I will be exalted among the heathen, I will be exalted in the earth.  The Lord of Hosts is with us; the God of Jacob is our Refuge.”

Verse 10.  “Be still, and know that I am God. Hold off your hands, ye enemies!  Sit down and wait in patience, ye believers!  Acknowledge that Jehovah is God, ye who feel the terrors of His wrath!  Adore Him, and Him only, ye who partake in the protection of His grace.  Since none can worthily proclaim his nature, let ‘expressive silence muse His praise.’  The boasts of the ungodly and the timorous forebodings of the saints should certainly be hushed by a sight of what the Lord has done in the past ages.”  (C.H. Spurgeon, Treasury of David, page 222)

This is the Spiritual context in which you and I as ‘born again’, Spiritually regenerate Christians, are admonished to ‘Be still.’  When things get just too much for us to handle, manage, or endure – we are to ‘...stand still and see the Salvation of the Lord!’

“And Moses said unto the people, Fear ye not, stand still, and see the Salvation of the Lord, which He will show you today: for the Egyptians (worldlings) whom ye have seen today,, ye shall see them again no more for ever.  The Lord shall fight for you, and ye shall hold your peace.”  (Exodus 14:13-14)

Verse 10. “...And know that I AM God.”  The great Jehovah God told Moses that His Name was I AM – not I will be; nor I might yet be; nor perhaps I can be, no!  The Lord declared Himself to be the ever-present, Omnipotent; Omniscient, Lord God Almighty. Knowing who our God IS, at all times, gives you and I full confidence to be able to ‘Be still.’  Hallelujah!

Verse 10.  “The Lord of hosts IS with us.” Well can we hear the apostle Paul cry out the victory echo: “If God be for us, who can be against us?”  (Romans 8:31)  Praise His Name!

Thought: Knowing for a certainty of faith, that the Lord God is with us, and for us – we realise that He has granted us a very real STANDING before His throne of matchless grace.  Knowing we have this standing, in Christ, we can be forever still.