From my January 2009 Sermon at HCF ABQ……
A High View of God – Part 2
3 For the Lord is a great God, And a great King above all gods, 4 In whose hand are the depths of the earth; The peaks of the mountains are His also. 5 The sea is His, for it was He who made it; And His hands formed the dry land. 6 Come, let us worship and bow down; Let us kneel before the Lord our Maker. NASB
Acts 17:26-27 – 26 and He made from one, every nation of mankind to live on all the face of the earth, – This is to say that God is the One who created all the nations with a very definite intended purpose. He is the One who confounded the language at
having determined their appointed times, and the boundaries of their habitation, – God is the One who raises nations up and tears them down. He “appoints the times” of their prosperity and the times of their demise. He determines how much land they will posses and where there dominion shall stretch….“the boundaries of their habitation”….
27 that they should seek God, if perhaps they might grope for Him and find Him, though He is not far from each one of us; – Why did God make mankind to live upon the earth and establish their times and boundaries? That “they should seek Him”….”that they might grope for Him and find Him”…learn here the great ignorance, foolishness and unrighteousness of the nations of mankind…when they ought to contemplate his wisdom and all His works, and thus come to a knowledge of his existence and character…..each one having the opportunity to come to know Him…..instead have gone after all other gods and rejected the true and living God….
9. Romans 1:20-22 – 20 For since the creation of the world His invisible attributes, His eternal power and divine nature, have been clearly seen, being understood through what has been made, so that they are without excuse. 21 For even though they knew God, they did not honor Him as God, or give thanks; but they became futile in their speculations, and their foolish heart was darkened. NASB
In contrast then, to fallen mankind, it is imperative for us who would “follow Jesus” to pursue Him and lay hold of Him….This then we state as a Core Value for Christian people…..To know God and to love Him is the all-consuming passion of our lives. There will be no rivals in God’s kingdom for His esteem and devotion. This is why Jesus states in Matt 22:36 that the great and foremost commandment is, “you shall love the Lord your God with all your heart, and with all your soul, and with all your mind, and with all your strength.” This means that we are to love God with everything that is within us. It means we are to devote to Him everything we own and every part of our life.
· with all your heart – this speaks of our emotions, our inner being is to be wholly devoted to God with strong affection
· with all your soul – This means, to love God more than our life, to be willing to give up your life to him, and to devote it all to his service; to live for him in all we do, and to be willing to die at his command.
· with all your mind – We are to love God with our intellect, with all the powers of our mind, bringing our memory, thought, imagination, reason,judgment, and all our mental powers, as willing subjects to bow at God’s feet in adoration and love. To love His Word and His Gospel more than we do the vain thoughts of our own minds, the entertainment, comedy and communications of the world, and to give firstfruits of our time unto the meditation and worship of God.
· with all your strength – with all the faculties of soul and body. To labor and toil for his glory, and to make that the great object of ALL our efforts.
Therefore if we value God because He is supremely valuable, then we must love Him with a wholehearted devotion which manifests the true love that we do have for Him. Good Christian, can we look at your life and see the evidence of your love for God? Or is something in your life competing with Him for your love and devotion? Only when we come to love God with our whole being will we be truly satisfied. Only then will we be content and fulfilled! This is the purpose for which we were made.
10. Deuteronomy 10:12-14 – 12 “And now, Israel, what does the LORD your God require from you, but to fear the LORD your God, to walk in all His ways and love Him, and to serve the LORD your God with all your heart and with all your soul, 13 and to keep the LORD’S commandments and His statutes which I am commanding you today for your good? NASB
Acts 17:28-29 – 28 for in Him we live and move and exist, as even some of your own poets have said, ‘For we also are His offspring.’ 29 “Being then the offspring of God, we ought not to think that the Divine Nature is like gold or silver or stone, an image formed by the art and thought of man. – God is the Father of all Creation. He is the Sustainer of all of Life! He is the one who gives us life and breath and all things! He has made us to glorify and enjoy Him, to know Him and to love Him….for we “are His offspring”…. We were created in His image so that we could experience His excellency as God, and enjoy His eternal goodness and mercy!
And so we seek to constantly build up the Church by preaching and teaching relentlessly about who God is and what He is like….so we would have a Core Value like this ……The continual proclamation of His character and nature is a fundamental element in our worship.
As we have discussed, we have a very high view of God. Therefore it only follows naturally that we must learn of Him. Because God is incomprehensible in so many ways, it is a constant endeavor to learn of all the glorious attributes of God. God is glorious. His glory consists in the overwhelming and overflowing beauty which stems from the sum total of all His attributes working together in perfect harmony. God is perfect in His holiness, justice, wisdom, power, grace, mercy, and love. God is so magnificent, so awesome, so wonderfully mysterious that it will take us many ages and ages to experience the glory of His riches. His resources and His attributes are inexhaustibly vast.
Ephesians 2:7 – 7 in order that in the ages to come He might show the surpassing riches of His grace in kindness toward us in Christ Jesus. NASB
As we have seen, this is our great duty, it is to know and to love and to worship God. Therefore we press on into a greater knowledge and understanding of His being, His character and His nature, we seek to know who God is and what He is like. As this knowledge becomes more and more clear to us, we then have a further understanding of His purposes and ways, and gain deeper insight into who we are, why we exist, and how we can glorify God. Clear knowledge of God from the Bible is the kindling that sustains the fires of affection for God. It causes us to be raptured away into the glory of God and His wonderful being and to worship Him. God’s greatness can hardly be comprehended but we are told again and again in scripture to tell of His wonderful greatness to the generations after us.
11. Psalms 145:1-5 – I will extol Thee, my God, O King; And I will bless Thy name forever and ever. 2 Every day I will bless Thee, And I will praise Thy name forever and ever. 3 Great is the LORD, and highly to be praised; And His greatness is unsearchable. 4 One generation shall praise Thy works to another, And shall declare Thy mighty acts. 5 On the glorious splendor of Thy majesty, And on Thy wonderful works, I will meditate. NASB
To make God the center of our preaching and our corporate worship is to say that we are “God- centered.” This of course would be in contrast to being “man-centered” which would be humanism….and to worship the creature rather than the Creator…..
Acts 17:30-31 – 30 “Therefore having overlooked the times of ignorance, God is now declaring to men that all everywhere should repent, 31 because He has fixed a day in which He will judge the world in righteousness through a Man whom He has appointed, having furnished proof to all men by raising Him from the dead.” – Here the Gospel call of repentance is announced and the fearful Day of the Judgment of God through Jesus Christ is proclaimed. In times past God has overlooked the foolishness and ignorance of the nations in rejecting the knowledge of Himself….but no longer….now He has come and manifested Himself through our Lord Jesus, and made His person, His ways, and His purposes crystal clear for all to see. Moreover, He has commanded repentance and warned that He is coming in judgment and given a refuge through the Cross for all to come and be forgiven, washed and made worthy to stand in His presence. God is now “summing up all things in Christ” and bringing the History of the world to a climactic end as He destroy evil, death and hell forever…and creates a new heavens and a new earth, in which His people will lie down in peace forever and ever, world with out end….
And so the Great God of Heaven and Earth is to be worshipped….so we would express this as a Core Value for all Christian people….In fact this is the definition of worship, to ascribe worth to God and to see, comprehend, experience and exalt the glory of God – To worship is to “ascribe worth to something.” It is to honor OR lift up and exalt something above ourselves and to savor and cherish its nature and virtues. Since God is the paragon of all virtue, then to “see and comprehend” His virtue is to ascribe worth to the MOST WORTHY things. Because God is the most worthy and highest, the most transcendent and glorious of all, then the truest and highest form of worship is to ascribe greatness and glory to God.
Psalms 96:4-6 – 4 For great is the LORD and most worthy of praise; he is to be feared above all gods. 5 For all the gods of the nations are idols, but the LORD made the heavens. 6 Splendor and majesty are before him; strength and glory are in his sanctuary. 7 Ascribe to the LORD, O families of the peoples, Ascribe to the LORD glory and strength. 8 Ascribe to the LORD the glory of His name; Bring an offering, and come into His courts. 9 Worship the LORD in holy attire; Tremble before Him, all the earth. NASB
Consider then the “experience” of the glory of God in worship. When we are able to comprehend the glory of God by understanding the great truths about His person and nature, and delight in Him, then we are able to experience the wonder of His mysterious and incomprehensible nature. As the Spirit of God brings illumination to the Word of God, bringing understanding to the God’s character and nature, His ways and means, and the purposes of God, we experience the “unveiling” or “revelation” of God and “partake in the divine nature.”
2 Peter 1:2-4 – 2 Grace and peace be multiplied to you in the knowledge of God and of Jesus our Lord; 3 seeing that His divine power has granted to us everything pertaining to life and godliness, through the true knowledge of Him who called us by His own glory and excellence. 4 For by these He has granted to us His precious and magnificent promises, in order that by them you might become partakers of the divine nature, having escaped the corruption that is in the world by lust. NASB
One great benefit of true worship is the transforming process it carries out upon us. As we ascribe worth to God and we value and truly treasure His attributes, we become like Him. We become like what we value and worship. Because these are the things that we value, if we truly value them in our hearts, then our sincere desire to possess these values will motivate us to treasure and cherish them and this will transform us into His image as the Scripture clearly teaches…..
12. 2 Corinthians 3:18 – 18 But we all, with unveiled face beholding as in a mirror the glory of the Lord, are being transformed into the same image from glory to glory, just as from the Lord, the Spirit. NASB
Conclusion: Therefore, on the basis of the fact that God is the highest and most worthy of all, and that the truest form of worship is to see and comprehend and delight in His person and truth, we seek to always “exalt Him” or “lift Him up.” We seek to have a “High View of God.”……
This Sermon can be heard on audio here:
HCF Core Values
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