The Goal of ‘Early Seekers’ Psalm 63:2-3

Text: “To see Thy power and Thy glory, so as I have seen Thee in the sanctuary.”

Psalm 63:2.

          “For the law was given by Moses, but grace and truth came by Jesus Christ.  No man hath seen God at any time; the only begotten Son, which is in the bosom of the Father, He hath declared Him.”

John 1:17-18.

Good morning, God-seeing Christian!  No man can look upon the face of the Almighty Lord God Jehovah and live! WHY is this so?  Because the Lord God Almighty is an absolutely Holy Lord God, Creator of all things, and sin cannot survive in His Holy Presence.  I liken it to a human being walking into the range of an atomic reactor without a lead/protective suit to shield him/her from the deadly atomic rays.  Such a person would disintegrate immediately, be vaporised instantly by the powerful radiance of atomic fission.

Likewise, sinners cannot abide in the Presence of Almighty Lord God without the God-given ‘covering’ of the precious Blood of the Lord Jesus Christ – God in bodily form.  Praise and all glory to His gracious Name!

“Blessed (blessed with all blessings) is he/she whose transgression is forgiven, whose sin is covered.  (Psalm 32:1)

In the Book of Exodus, we have the account of Moses seeking to see God’s face, and the answer the Lord God gave him – and gives us by this account.

As an assurance, Moses asked the Lord: “And he (Moses) said, I beseech Thee, show me Thy glory.”  (Exodus 33:18)

“And He (the Lord) said, Thou canst not see My face: for there shall no man see Me, and live.  And the Lord said, Behold, there is a place by Me, and thou shalt stand upon a rock (Christ Jesus?): and it shall come to pass, while My glory passeth by, that I will put thee in a cleft of the rock, and will cover thee with My hand while I pass by: and I will take away mine hand, and thou shalt see My back parts: but my face shall not be seen.” (Exodus 33:20-23)

“He that despised Moses’ law died without mercy under two or three witnesses: Of how much sorer punishment, suppose ye, shall he be thought worthy, who hath trodden underfoot the Son of God, and hath counted the Blood of the covenant, wherewith he was sanctified, an unholy thing, and hath done despite unto the Spirit of grace?  For we know Him that hath said, Vengeance belongeth unto Me, I will recompense, saith the Lord.  And again, The Lord shall judge His people. It is a fearful (terrible) thing to fall into the hands of the Living God.”  (Hebrews 10:28-31)

Without the covering of the precious sinless, and shed, Blood of Christ Jesus – “…Our God is a consuming fire.”  (Hebrews 12:29)

Therefore, you and I, born again, Bible-believing Christians, can indeed come into the Lord God’s Holy Presence – to worship and adore Him, to praise Him with thanksgiving; and to petition Him for our needs and the needs of others, in the Name of the Lord Jesus Christ.  What a privilege to be a ‘God-seeing Christian’!  Hallelujah!  Thanks be to God!

Verse 2.  “To see Thy power and Thy glory, so as I have seen Thee in the sanctuary.  Our misery is that we thirst so little for these sublime things and so much for the mocking trifles of time and sense.  The sight of God was enough for David, but nothing short of that would content him.”  (C.H. Spurgeon, Treasury of David, page 274)

The goal of early-seeking Christians is to constantly see the power and glory of the Lord God Who has quickened us to believe and receive Christ’s great Eternal Salvation, and to worship and adore Him in all His Divine Holiness.

We do this, of course, by His Sovereign grace alone, it is an utter God-given privilege, and must never be taken for granted for a moment by all who believe.  We must seek to enter God’s Holy Presence with the correct attitude of reverence and awe, for we are approaching a Lord God Who is a ‘…consuming fire…’ to all who harbour sin on our hearts and minds.

“It is, or should be, the desire of every Christian to see and enjoy more and more of the glory of God.  A view of the Divine glory crucifies our lusts and puts the corruptions of our heart to death.”  (John Angell James1785-1859)

When Moses, in the chapters in Exodus previously referred, was blessed with a glimpse of the Lord God’s hinder parts from the cleft in the rock – God’s glory was etched upon Moses’ face for a time following.  So much so that Moses had to wear a face-covering to conceal the Holy glow from the tribes of Israel – in case it frightened them.

“And when Aaron and all the children of Israel saw Moses, behold (look and fully understand) the skin of his face shone; and they were afraid of him.”  (Exodus 34:30)

“And till Moses had done speaking with them, he put a vail on his face.”  (Exodus 34:33)

When we spend quality time in the Presence of the Living Lord God Jehovah – in prayer, in fellowship with Him, in praising Him, and worshipping Him from our hearts – the Divine glow of Spiritual health and strength is easily noticed by others.  Our light is clear for all observers to see that we belong to Christ Jesus.

“Let your light so shine before men, that they may see your good works, and glorify your Father which is in Heaven.”  (Matthew 5:16)

When you and I rise each morning, our first thought should be the Lord God, and the joy of being able to come into His Holy Presence, hidden and clothed in Christ Jesus.

It is the daily goal of early-seekers to see God, to hear what God has to say concerning the new day; to spend some time in His Word, and thereby, in His Holy Presence; to receive our Spirit-given instructions on how to go about our day.  Doing so, our faces will shine with the reflection of His Holiness, graciousness, and love.  We should be Christ-reflectors to others.

Verse 3. “Because Thy lovingkindness is better than life. To dwell with God is better than life at its best; life at ease, in a palace, in health, in honour, in wealth, in pleasure; yea, a thousand lives are not equal to the Eternal life which abides in Jehovah’s smile.” (C.H. Spurgeon, Treasury of David, page 275)

“Divine favour is better than life; yea, it is better than many lives put together…No man sets so high a price upon the sun as he that hath long lain in a dark dungeon.” (Thomas Brooks 1608-1680)

Thought: Those that seek God early, see His power and glory, and shine in the light of Jesus, and into the lives of sinners still living in the darkness of their sins.

Psalm 63: A Psalm for ‘Early-Seekers’ Psalm 63:1

Text: “O God, Thou art my God; early will I seek Thee: my soul thirsteth for Thee, my flesh longeth for Thee in a dry and thirsty land, where no water is.”

Psalm 63:1.

Good morning, ‘Early-seeking Christian!  As one who regrets not having sought Christ Jesus until the age of 32 – at which time complete ruin of my life was obvious to all – I give thanks to know that there are many who have sought Salvation in Christ Jesus at an early age, and succeeded, by His grace, to not only have soul’s Eternal redemption, but redemption of an entire life spent in sweet fellowship with our gracious and generous Lord God.  Praise His Name!

Brother Spurgeon, in his great literary volume, ‘The Treasury of David’, notes the following: “Title: ‘A Psalm of David, when he was in the wilderness of Judah’. This was probably written while David was fleeing from Absalom; certainly, at the time he wrote it he was king (verse 11), and hard pressed by those who sought his life.  The distinguishing word of this Psalm is ‘Early’.  When the bed is softest, we are most tempted to rise at lazy hours, but when comfort is gone, and the couch is hard, if we rise the earlier to seek the Lord, we have much for which to thank the wilderness.”  (C.H. Spurgeon, Treasury of David, page 274)

Throughout the years of our Christian lives, we shall have many ‘wilderness experiences’ – times when we feel isolated, marginalised, or fighting an uphill Spiritual battle against the increased apostasy of ‘the church’ worldwide and international; against increased blatant Sodomy and loose living; against doctrinal ignorance within the professing church, and doctrinal ridicule from without.  We, like king David, will endure the ‘wilderness experience’.

Elijah the prophet of God experienced such barren times of ‘wilderness experience’, so much so that, sheltering under a juniper tree, he cried out unto the Lord God: “…I have been very jealous for the Lord God of hosts: for the children of Israel have forsaken Thy covenant, thrown down Thine altars, and slain Thy prophets with the sword; and I, even I only, am left; and they seek my life, to take it away.”  (1 Kings 19:10)

At times of such ‘wilderness experiences’, we are utterly compelled to become ‘early seekers’ after the Lord God’s Presence – for there is no other one that can sustain and strengthen us with Spiritual might within, and make us strong to persevere in ‘…the faith once delivered unto the saints…’ (Jude 3)

“There are Psalms proper for a wilderness; and we have reason to thank God it is the wilderness of Judah we are in, not the wilderness of sin.”  (Matthew Henry 1662-1714)

“Yea, and all that will live godly in Christ Jesus shall suffer persecution.  But evil men and seducers shall wax worse and worse, deceiving and being deceived.  But continue thou in the things which thou hast learned and hast been assured of, knowing of whom thou hast learned them; and that from a child thou hast known the Holy Scriptures, which are able to make thee wise unto Salvation through faith which is in Christ Jesus.”  (2 Timothy 3:12-15)

When David was comfortable upon the roof top of his house in Jerusalem, he gazed down upon the beautiful Bathsheba, lusted after her, committed adultery, then, when Bathsheba got pregnant with his child, conspired with Joab, the captain of Israel’s host, to set up Bathsheba’s husband, the faithful Uriah the Hittite, for to be killed in battle.  David’s comfort led to David’s lust, adultery, deception, conspiracy to murder Uriah, and down and down into a wilderness of gross sin against God and against a faithful servant of Jehovah. 

What price will the stagnant comfort of the professing Christian church cost today? Please, Lord God, send Thy true church a discomfiting – a ‘wilderness experience’, that it might seek Thee once again!  Turn our hearts, oh Lord, that we might repent and draw close to Thee!

“Hagar saw God in the wilderness and called it by the name derived from that vision Beer-lahai-roi (i.e., “the well of him that liveth and seeth me,") (Genesis 16:13-14) Moses saw God in the wilderness (Exodus 3:1-4); Elijah saw God in the wilderness (1 Kings 19:4-18).  David saw God in the wilderness.  The Christian church will see God in the wilderness (Revelation 12:6-14).  Every devout soul which has loved to see God in His house will be refreshed by visions of God in the wilderness of solitude, sorrow, sickness, and death.” (Christopher Wordsworth,1807-1885)

You and I, dear genuine Bible-believing Christian, also need to have ‘wilderness experiences’, for it is in such circumstances, brought about, or permitted by the Lord God, that we learn to draw close to Christ and the Cross afresh, and seek His Divine help.

Verse 1. “O God, Thou art my God; or, O God, Thou art my Mighty One. The last Psalm left the echo of power wringing in the ear, and it is here remembered.”  (C.H. Spurgeon, Treasury of David, page 274)

Verse 1. “O God. This is a serious word; pity it should ever be used as a by-word.”  (Matthew Henry 1662-1714)

I believe there will be special punishments in Hell for those that have taken God’s Holy Name in vain, and taught their children, by the continual hearing, to likewise blaspheme that precious and sacred Name.  Those that disregard the very Name of Christ Jesus, shall die without pity and spend a Christ-rejecter’s Eternity in Hell suffering the consequences.

“Wherefore God also hath highly exalted Him, and given Him a Name which is above every name: that at the Name of Jesus every knee should bow…”  (Philippians 2:9)

“Thou shalt not take the Name of the Lord thy God in vain; for the Lord will not hold him/her guiltless that taketh His Name in vain.”  (Exodus 20:7)

Verse 1. “Early will I seek Thee. Possession breeds desire. Full assurance is no hindrance to diligence but is the mainspring of it. How can I seek another man’s God? But it is with ardent desire that I seek after Him Whom I know to be my own.  Observe the eagerness implied in the time mentioned; he will not wait for noon or the cool eventide; he is up at cockcrowing to meet his God.”  (C.H. Spurgeon, Treasury of David, page 274)

“Seek ye the Lord while He may be found, call ye upon Him while He is near: let the wicked forsake his way, and the unrighteous man his thoughts: and let him return unto the Lord, and He will have mercy upon him; and to our God, for He will abundantly pardon.” (Isaiah 55:6-7)

Verse 1. “My soul thirsteth for Thee.  Thirst is an insatiable longing after that which is one of the most essential supports of life; there is no reasoning with it, no forgetting it, no despising it, no overcoming it by stoical indifference.  Thirst will be heard; the whole man must yield to its power; even thus it is with that Divine desire which the grace of God creates in regenerate (born again) men/women.”  (C.H. Spurgeon, Treasury of David, page 274)

Thought: So much Spiritual nourishment contained in one verse of God’s Word!  Now, let us ask our own hearts/minds – do I have the Divinely created thirst to seek it early?

6. Head & Heart Christian ‘Waiters’ Psalm 62:11-12

Text: “I have heard of Thee by the hearing of the ear: but now mine eye seeth Thee.  Wherefore (a conclusion) I abhor myself, and repent in dust and ashes.”

Job 42:5-6.

          “Therefore also NOW, saith the Lord, turn ye even to Me with all your heart, and with fasting, and with weeping, and with mourning: and rend your heart, and not your garments, and turn unto the Lord your God: for He is gracious and merciful, slow to anger, and of great kindness, and repenteth Him of the evil.  Who knoweth if He will return and repent, and leave a blessing behind Him; even a meat offering and a drink offering unto the Lord your God?”

Joel 2:12-14.

Good morning, Christian ‘waiter’ in time of apparent Global plague!  In all my 75 years upon this earth, thirty-two as a sinful, unsaved worldling; and forty-three years as a redeemed, born-again Christian - Pastor, Missionary, and Bible Expositor/Teacher – I have NEVER seen a more serious and deadly plague, virus, pestilence (whatever you wish to call it!) sweeping across the Christ-rejecting, God-dishonouring nations of this entire planet.

Corona virus, or Covid 19 plague, seems to be causing widespread fatalities in every nation in the world today.  Humanistic societies, including Britain, which has apostatized, abandoned Bible-based Protestantism – and all other non-Christian nations steeped in gross ‘religious dread, superstition’, and idol worship – have found no answer to the spread and effects of what looks like a truly terrible unseen killer disease. It is clear to see that the Lord God is demanding our full attention; is demanding a global repentance from Christ-rejecting, Sodomy, and sin.

“For nation shall rise against nation, and kingdom against kingdom: and there shall be famines (food banks?), and pestilences (Covid 19?), and earthquakes, in divers places.  All these are beginning of sorrows.”  (Matthew 24:7-8)

End times Scriptures are being fulfilled before our very eyes – yet the hearts of nations remain hard as steel against the Holy Christ of God.  Beware of His wrath to come!

“The planet is locked in containment. Barring lifestyle diseases, no other disease or infection has ever caught the grip of the globe in contemporary time — 176 countries, and over 200,000 patients spread in every continent, except Antarctica.

“Rich or poor, some 3 billion people are virtually in containment as 112 countries have closed their borders. We are in the midst of what is called the containment stage in the global protocol to fight a so-called pandemic.

“But the invisible foe — COVID-19 — reported to have escaped our radar. It is apparently spreading faster than anyone had expected.

“Between the period Down To Earth did its last cover story on corona virus in February, and now writing this unprecedented second cover closing on March 20 (2020), cases outside China — the origin of the pandemic — are reported to have increased by 15-fold.

“Our helplessness to control this first non-flu pandemic of the 21st century has resulted in panic and hysteria. Health experts are no more hopeful of containment because we still don’t know the real number of cases from poor and developing countries that are ill-equipped to screen and count such cases.

“We still don’t know how and when it transferred into a human host from an animal. But we know for sure now that it is a prolific jumper from human to human. Taking a clue from the Spanish Flu pandemic of 1918, we, the social animals, have been prescribed with social distancing — measurable to 3 feet — as the best way forward to delay transmission of COVID-19, not to stop it. 

“Corona virus is not new to us, but COVID-19 is. It is the third new human corona virus of the century. And its characteristics are not in line with this family of virus.

“Corona viruses were supposed to have evolved in humans just to widen their spread, thus, not to kill but just to sicken us. But that is not happening.

“COVID-19 has already killed more than the earlier two such infections together — SARS and MERS. When it infects also, the symptoms are not according to observed patterns. They are mild enough not to be noticed and, in many cases, even absent after being diagnosed… 

 “Marc Lipsitch, a professor of epidemiology with Harvard University, USA, says: “I think the likely outcome is that it will ultimately not be containable.” After China’s quarantining 100 million people in and around the epicentre, Hunan, COVID-19 spread to the rest of the world much faster. On March 6, we had 100,000 cases, which doubled by March 18.”  (Richard Mahapatra  of Down To Earth (online) Monday 30 March 2020)

God’s Word teaches us that: “…The curse causeless shall not come.  A whip for the horse, a bridle for the ass, and a rod for the fool’s back.”  (Proverbs 26:2-3)

Yet, amidst all God’s chastening of the Christ-rejecting nations – including the United Kingdom – His grace continues to be shown wonderfully to ‘His people’, His redeemed elect.  As in the days of Moses, when Egypt and the wilful, ungodly Pharaoh were being plagued by the Living Lord God – His own chosen people were not affected to the same lethal degree as the disobedient idol-worshippers were!  

The Lord, in His Sovereign power, knows how to deliver ‘His people’, from the plagues He Himself sends upon the disobedient, or permits in His will.

Verse 11.  “Twice have I heard this. He hears twice in the best sense who hears with his heart as well as his/her ears.”  (C.H.Spurgeon, Treasury of David, page 273)

Verse 11. “…Power belongeth unto God. God is much displeased, even with His own children, when His power is questioned by them…”Is the Lord’s hand waxen short?” (Numbers 11:23) (William Wisheart)

The Lord God sent 10 horrific plagues upon Pharaoh and the Egyptians in the day of Moses, to show His Sovereign power over all the so-called Egyptian ‘gods’ they worshipped.  I believe the Lord God has either sent, or permitted, this Covid 19 global plague for the same reason – to confound the 21st Century nations for their setting up of countless ‘idols’; leaving the worship of Almighty God, Jehovah; and rejecting His dear Son’s Salvation, made at Calvary’s Cross.

Thought:  Verse 12. “…For Thou renderest to every man according to his work.”  We have sown unbelief, and rejection of Christ, the Holy Bible, and godly Government – now we must reap the whirlwind of God’s hot displeasure.  Repent, and receive His mercy!

5. Trust Not: Vanity, Flesh, Nor Riches! Psalm 62:9-10

Text: “Trust not in oppression, and become not vain in robbery: if riches increase, set not your heart upon them.”

Psalm 62:10.

Good morning, Spiritually strong Christian ‘waiter’!  You and I are Spiritually strong, when at all times we confess to the Lord God that we are so utterly weak in the flesh.  When we humble ourselves before the Almighty Lord God as we should, it is His strength that fully sustains our warfare for Christ in this sinful world.  Hallelujah!  In Christ, we have Victory!

“And lest I should be exalted above all measure through the revelations, there was given to me a thorn in the flesh, the messenger of Satan to buffet me, lest I should be exalted above measure.  For this thing I besought the Lord thrice, that it might depart from me. And He (The Lord God) said unto me, My grace is sufficient for thee: for My strength is made perfect in weakness.  Most gladly therefore will I rather glory in my infirmities, that the power of Christ may rest upon me.”  (2 Corinthians 12:7-10)

Strong Christian ‘waiters’ are strong in the power of the Holy Ghost alone, we have no Supernatural power of our own, merely a natural fleshy power that is of no use to the Lord in seeking to do Spiritual warfare with the world, the flesh, and the Devil.  If we are not endued with power from Above, we can do nothing in Christ’s service as those who seek to ‘wait’ upon the souls of other sinners with the Gospel of God’s free and Sovereign grace.

“But ye shall receive power, after that the Holy Ghost is come upon you: and ye shall be witnesses (‘waiters’) unto Me, both in Jerusalem, and in al Judaea, and in Samaria, and unto the uttermost part of the earth.” (Acts 1:8)

The promises and instructions from God’s Word are just as totally relevant to true Christian believers today as they were when the Lord breathed them into the hearts/minds of His people in Old and New Testament times.  Claim God’s promises back to Him in fervent prayer.  He will hear and grant your petitions, yet at all times according to His own Sovereign will and Eternal purpose.  Wow!  What a gracious Lord God and Saviour we have in Christ Jesus!

“For all the promises of God IN HIM (Christ Jesus) are yea, and in Him Amen, unto the glory of God by us.”  (2 Corinthians 1:20)

What this verse of Holy Scripture is clearly teaching us today is that, IF we are ‘…in Him…’, in Christ Jesus, then all God’s promises in our Bibles are ‘…Yea (or Yes)’ when we ask the Lord God for them in the correct motivation – to honour Christ Jesus our Saviour and Lord, and to further His Kingdom upon earth to His Glory.  Are YOU and I asking today?

“Ask, and it shall be given you; seek, and ye shall find; knock, and it shall be opened unto you: for everyone that asketh (asks, and continues to ask) receiveth (receives, and continues to receive); and he that seeketh findeth; and to him that knocketh it shall be opened… How much more shall your Father which is in Heaven give good things to them that ask Him?”  (Matthew 7:7-11)

Therefore, on the subject of Christian trust, it is clear for us to see that, if we do NOT trust the Lord, we will not ask anything from Him; if we do not ask anything from Him, it proves to ourselves that we still do not trust Him and need to revisit the validity of our Eternal Salvation to check if we are truly ‘born again’, Spiritually regenerated, children of God.

Trust Not Vanity:  All that is not the Lord God, is not to be fully trusted.  All any less than trusting in the Lord God is sheer vanity – useless trusting in the undependable vanities of sinful flesh, riches, or natural oppression.  Trusting in God alone requires saving faith.

“In a word, trust in God is that high act of exercise of faith whereby the soul, looking upon God and casting itself on His goodness, power, promises, faithfulness, and providence, is lifted up above carnal fears and discouragements; above perplexing doubts and disquietments; either for the obtaining and continuance of that which is good, or for the preventing or removing of that which is evil.  (Thomas Lye, 1621-1684, in ‘The Morning Exercise at Cripplegate’)

If we, as would-be Christian ‘waiters’, are to be in any small manner successful in our service to Christ and to other souls for Christ – we have to be living in a manner that PLEASES the Lord God.  Our own children receive more from us when they are living in a manner that is pleasing unto us as parents – there is little difference when desiring to have our petitions before the Lord God Almighty, we have to be trying to live in obedience to His will, and this takes the vital exercise of true Christian FAITH.

“Now faith is the substance of things hoped for, the evidence of things not seen… But without faith it is impossible to please Him: for he/she that cometh to God must believe that He is (that God actually exists!), and that He is a rewarder of them that diligently seek Him.”  (Hebrews 11:1;6)

“Trust in Him at all times, ye people, pour out your hearts before Him: God is a Refuge for us.”  (Psalm 62:8)

Trust in God: “According to our love, so is our faith and trust in God; and according to our trust, such is our freedom at the throne of grace.  Trust in Him and pour out your hearts before Him; pour them out like water, in joyful tears.  For when the stone in the heart is melted by mercy, the eyes will issue like a fountain of tears.”  (Samuel Lee 1625-1691)

Trust Not in Flesh:  I, personally, love the line in the Christian Hymn ‘Stand Up For Jesus’, which teaches us who sing it, ‘The arm of flesh will fail you, ye dare not trust your own…’.  There are no truer words, dear Christian friend, if, like the author, you have lived a life that has called for and saw much violence – prior to being graciously saved by King Jesus.  So often we are sorely tempted to try to promptly subdue aggressors and those seeking to torment our souls by Satanic oppressions.  Yet, as soon as we would succumb to such fleshy measures to subdue our tormentors – our Christian witness for the Master suffers ridicule.  No!  Trusting in our own flesh to work out problems with worldlings is a definite mistake.  The Sovereign Lord God Jehovah has His own way of dealing with those who oppress ‘His people’, and God is NOT MOCKED.  “Vengeance is Mine, I will repay, saith the Lord.” (Romans 12:19)

Trust Not in Riches: Verse 10. “…If riches increase, set not your heart upon them. To bow an immortal spirit to the constant contemplation of fading possessions is extreme folly.  Shall those who call the Lord their glory, glory in yellow earth?  Shall the image and superscription of Caesar deprive them of communion with Him Who is the image of the invisible God?  As we must not rest in men, so neither must we repose in money.  Gain and fame are only so much foam of the sea.”  (C.H. Spurgeon, Treasury of David, page 273)

Thought:  Christian ‘waiters’ can only be strong and fruitful if we are fully trusting in the Lord God alone to empower us, direct us, protect us, and to make us prevail.