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(Click or hover over the above Scripture reference link to read the passage.)
Psalm 19:1-6 describe what is called “general revelation.” This is how God has revealed himself to everyone. These verses tell us that the sky declares God’s glory and proclaims the work of his hands. That the sun, moon, and stars are literally talking. Literally saying, “God is awesome! God made this! God is God!” That when we look at the majesty of the stars or the brilliance of the sun, it is obvious that God is God. It is obvious that these things couldn’t never be matched by humans and could never have just appeared randomly. My Psalm 8 devotional talks about the disadvantage we have today versus people from ancient times in being able to see God in this way.
I love reading Psalm 19:1-6 out loud while staring up at the starry sky. I love the transcendence of the stars and the beauty and brilliance of the sun. They make me feel small and God huge, and remind me that I am his. That he loves me and I’m a part of his family. They remind me of the thin veil between the natural and supernatural.
Psalm 19:7-11 shifts toward “special revelation.” This is how God has uniquely and specifically revealed himself through the Bible. (Jesus coming to earth is another form of special revelation, as is the Holy Spirit’s activity among us today) The psalmist rejoices in the perfect law of God. How these Scriptures refresh the soul. How they are trustworthy and give wisdom. They are right and give joy to the heart. They are radiant and give light to the eyes. They are firm and righteous. They are more precious than gold and sweeter than honey!
You can see from the psalmist’s language here that the Scriptures are also straight from God. They are not of this world, but are a special way God has inserted himself into our world. He has revealed who he is to us and showed us the path to following him. The path of life, joy, peace, and freedom. We can come up with our own path or we can follow God’s revealed path.
Psalm 19:12-14 conclude with a beautiful prayer regarding our lives and sin. Those who follow Jesus don’t want to sin. We understand that sin brings destruction, decay, and death and that God’s commands bring life. We commit to trusting God and his commands, even when it feels like our way would be better. We obey God’s commands because we love him and we know he loves us. The psalmist prays an incredibly honest prayer in verses 12-14. Instead of trying to hide his sins in a secret place where he thinks God won’t find them, he does the opposite. He turns his soul inside out. He asks God to inspect his soul and show him where any hidden sins are hiding out. He asks for forgiveness for the sins he’s committing without even knowing it. I can relate to this! I am so thankful that God’s grace covers the depth of my depravity. Covers all of my selfish engines and appetites that drive me. I want God to know about these things. I want to feed off of his love and grace, not these selfish and destructive engines. The psalmist also doesn’t want to be ruled by willful sins. He knows that when he chooses sin, sin becomes his slave master. His final verse is such a perfect prayer of worship. He wants his words and his heart to be pleasing to God–like a continuous, fragrant offering to the one he serves and loves.
Sin enslaves. God’s commands and grace bring freedom and life.
Worship God today through his beautiful creation. Don’t take that beautiful sunset for granted. Try to wrap your mind around the amount of galaxies in existence.
Worship God today through his Scriptures. His beautiful love story. His commands and truth.
Worship God today through the words of your mouth and the meditation of your heart.
Prayer for the day: God thank you for leaving us the beautiful works of your hands to enjoy and be in awe of. Forgive me for when I take it all for granted. Forgive me when I ask for a sign, when you have placed unlimited signs in my life already that I walk past every day. Thank you for your revealed will in the Bible. Thank you for showing me the path of life. I turn my soul inside out for you to examine. I ask you to reveal my hidden faults and to keep me from willful sins. Give me the courage to talk to others in community about these things. To have others who can help shine your light into the dark places of my soul. That I would experience your grace in this way. I worship you with my words. I worship you with the meditations of my heart.
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- Ep. 69: Pastor Jack and Becky Sytsema on being in a mixed orientation marriage and how the Church should treat LGBTQ+ people - August 8, 2022
- Ep. 68: Thoughts on Hillsong Exposed, The Rise and Fall of Mars Hill, & Willow Creek - July 19, 2022
- The Flip Side Ep. 67: Jack Sytsema shares about being a gay / same sex attracted pastor in a mixed orientation marriage - June 25, 2022