Tuesday, November 22

Praising God Before Christian Students

Today, I had the privilege of bringing a devotional to the Christian Student's Union (CSU) at Genesee Community College (GCC) at the invitation of Jessica Parfitt, one of our young people. It was a true blessing to my heart to meet with these some 20 young folks and their leader. Per the norm, it was left up to the Spirit and me to speak on anything I wished. Never knowing if I'll ever "walk this way again," I was impressed to speak on the one subject which is above all other subjects, viz., God himself. It had to be brief, which for those who know me is quite a task especially given the gargantuan weight of the One with whom we have to do. Here is in brief what I said without any attempt to quote with exactness, just to relay in general my thoughts here in this post:

Quoting A. W. Tozer's The Knowledge of the Holy
The history of mankind will probably show that no people has ever risen above its religion, and man's spiritual history will positively demonstrate that no religion has ever been greater than its idea of god. Worship is pure of base as the worshiper entertain high or low thoughts of God.

It is my opinion that the Christian conception of God current in these middle years of the twentieth century is so decadent as to be utterly beneath the dignity of the Most High God and actually to constitute for professed believers something amounting to a moral calamity.
Just a cursory consideration and one would have to agree with Tozer in the sense that if God is God, then what we believe about Him must rank highest of all things. We looked then, as a starting place, at Psalm 113, which is a "Hallelujah" Psalm, one of praise to God, for that is what hallelujah means. If God is over all things - earth, heaven, hell, all peoples and this throughout all time - then the most important subject we can study is God, and the most important Person we ought to know rightly is God. Now, in every sense of the term this is a truism (something which is most evidently true without need of proof). Here is a little of Psalm 113 unpacked:

God is to be praised.

By whom? 
   By his servants (v. 1).

When and Where is He to be praised? 
   Eternally, lit. "from this time forth and forevermore."
   Everywhere, "from the rising of the sun to its setting."

Why is God to be praised?
   He is without peer. "He is above all nations."
   He is without limits. "He is glorious above the heavens." (v. 4)
   God is Superior, without equal. He looks down on the heavens and the earth (vv. 5-6). 
   He is merciful, and tender toward those in the "dust," and "ash heap" of life (v. 7). He demonstrates such mercy for those in the greatest of misery. They are in extreme misery and God shows extreme mercy.
   God shows rich grace by making those in such low position to be exalted like princes, and gives the barren woman a home (v. 8).

In short, God is great beyond explanation, yet not remote. He is near to all who call upon Him. He is concerned with every detail, and concerned inexhaustibly with the faithful. 

Indeed, God is to be praised.

I hope to see these young God-fearers again. 

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