Tuesday, October 07, 2008

The Greatest Job Ever

A Psalm of the Sons of Korah

The "Sons of Korah" were the Temple singers and are mentioned in 1Chron. 6:33-48. They were servants to the people in leading them in singing. They also served as gatekeepers and the bakers of sacrificial bread. Their total lives were lived in service to God by serving others. It is the greatest of vocations, the greatest of callings.

One of the songs that was in their hymnal is found in Psalm 84.

Psalm 84:1-12
(ESV) 1 To the choirmaster: according to The Gittith. A Psalm of the Sons of
Korah. How lovely is your dwelling place, O Lord of hosts! 2 My soul longs, yes,
faints for the courts of the Lord; my heart and flesh sing for joy to the living
God. 3 Even the sparrow finds a home, and the swallow a nest for herself, where
she may lay her young, at your altars, O Lord of hosts, my King and my God. 4
Blessed are those who dwell in your house, ever singing your praise! Selah 5
Blessed are those whose strength is in you, in whose heart are the highways to
Zion. 6 As they go through the Valley of Baca they make it a place of springs;
the early rain also covers it with pools. 7 They go from strength to strength;
each one appears before God in Zion. 8 O Lord God of hosts, hear my prayer; give
ear, O God of Jacob! Selah 9 Behold our shield, O God; look on the face of your
anointed! 10 For a day in your courts is better than a thousand elsewhere. I
would rather be a doorkeeper in the house of my God than dwell in the tents of
wickedness. 11 For the Lord God is a sun and shield; the Lord bestows favor and
honor. No good thing does he withhold from those who walk uprightly. 12 O Lord
of hosts, blessed is the one who trusts in you!

The writer observed the birds nests that were built in the church. Not something that we are accustomed to nor would we welcome in our comfortable sanctuaries. Nesting birds are noisy. And yet the writer said, even the birds build a home where they can lay their young at the feet of the altar of God. He saw in the birds a desire to be close to the creator. I understand that. I long to be close to the Creator as well. My favorite place to be is in His presence, uninterrupted from the noise of the world and the craziness of schedules.

One day soon Christ will return and those who have prepared their hearts will spend eternity in His courts. It will be perfect peace and I long for that day! My heart and flesh cry out for you the living God. Your Spirit's water for my soul.

Thursday, October 02, 2008

Do I Consider Myself "Unworthy"?

Matthew 8:8 (ESV) 8 But the centurion replied, "Lord, I am not worthy to have you come under my roof, but only say the word, and my servant will be healed.

I've preached close to 2500 sermons in my life in all kinds of places. I remember the one place that absolutely humbled me the most. It was at a Minister's Conference in Branson. I was a young preacher and had been asked to preach to an audience of preachers. They were almost entirely men who had been in the ministry much longer than I and had much more wisdom. I remember being scared to death because I was so inadequate for the task. I felt that anyone in that room was more qualified to bring that message than I was. I felt totally unworthy to be sharing anything with them.

Perhaps you have situations where you feel unworthy. Maybe you have friends that are more afluent than you are and you feel embarrassed to have them come to your house because it isn't as nice as they are used to. Or perhaps because of their standing in society you feel that you are unworthy of their time and attention.

In this passage Jesus meets a man who isn't Jewish but who is a leader in the army. This man is looked up to by those who serve under him and probably lived better than most people in his culture. He has servants at home to take care of the house and one of them is very sick. When Jesus offered to come to his house and heal the servant, the centurion stated that "he was not worthy to have you come under my roof." In the presence of Jesus, this man of importance recognized something about Jesus. His humility wasn't because of Jesus social status. Jesus didn't even own a home. It wasn't because of His commanding presence. Jesus was just "ordinary" in appearance. So what was this emotion and why did he feel it?

The centurion realized that Jesus was worthy to be worshiped, and anyone worthy of worship was much too special to "come down" to his level. In the presence of Jesus he felt small and unworthy of Jesus time. It wasn't a self-depracating kind of feeling. He truly recognized the holiness of the Master and how unholy he was.

So I ask myself this question: Do I feel unworthy? Do I really recognize the true holiness of the Lord? Do I see Him as "The King of Glory"? I often see Him as my "best friend" but do I see Him in His Glory? The beings in heaven all fall down at His feet and worship Him. He is the center of attention and object of worship in heaven. They know who He is and worship Him.

Today, I challenge you to think about who He is. Try to see Him in His Glory. Put Him in his rightful place on the throne of your life and worship Him. Allow Him to reveal Himself to you so that you may come to that place of "unworthiness". It was in this state that Jesus remarked of the centurion; "Truly, I tell you, with no one in Israel have I found such faith."

Worship Him today for He is worthy!