Summary: God will not be manipulated
September 22, 2019
God Does Not Play “Let’s Make A Deal”!
Sermon Prayer: “Heavenly Father, I stand before Your people, to deliver Your message. Though the words are mine and I prepared this message, I pray that this message is Your message in its entirety. I pray your blessing and anointing on the message, its delivery, its reception - and most of all, its application in our lives.” Amen
“Do not fret because of evildoers, nor be envious of the workers of iniquity.
For they shall soon be cut down like the grass, And wither as the green herb.
Trust in the LORD, and do good; Dwell in the land, and feed on His faithfulness.
Delight yourself also in the LORD, And He shall give you the desires of your heart.
Commit your way to the LORD, trust also in Him, And He shall bring it to pass.
He shall bring forth your righteousness as the light, And your justice as the noonday.
Rest in the LORD and wait patiently for Him; Do not fret because of him who prospers in his way, because of the man who brings wicked schemes to pass.
Cease from anger and forsake wrath; Do not fret—it only causes harm.
For evildoers shall be cut off; But those who wait on the LORD, they shall inherit the earth.” (Psalm 37:1-9)
As I read this passage over and over, I began to think ‘the psalmist’ has really given us something to chew on, that is take it to heart as opposed to just reading and agreeing. We do that sometimes in bible reading, don’t we?
We can sum it up by simply saying: “Don’t concentrate on the wicked, evildoers even though they may prosper. TRUST in the LORD, where there is security.”
Isn’t that what you get out of verse 3? Most of us, cannot help ourselves from questioning just why many evildoers so prosper so well, while so many devout practicing Christians suffer poverty. I am always so impressed when I am privileged to be in the presence of one who does suffer in poverty and yet abounds in faith AND faithfulness. We see here the contrast in physical poverty versus spiritual poverty.
I was reading something Dr. Donald Williams said in his commentary on this reading that truly amplifies God’s sovereignty. Dr. Williams says, “As the righteous delight in Yahweh, the desires of their hearts will be given to them. This does not mean that our selfish desires will be granted, although God promises to care materially for His people. It does mean that as we delight in the Lord, He will change us, and the desires of our hearts will be in conformity to His will.” That pretty well clarifies why I could never win The Publishers Clearing House Giveaway it just is not the will of God.
When we pray the words of “The Lord’s Prayer”: “Thy will be done!” That is where, when and why we should acknowledge whether our will is truly to do His will.
That brings to mind something that I always share about asking forgiveness for sin, I cannot honestly say that I do not want to sin. Can you? Rather, I can say that I do not want TO WANT to sin, but if I honestly don’t want to sin, then why do I? Why do you? It is absolutely because we want to. Maybe we can’t help ourselves from wanting to BUT…..
If it is God’s will to bless us materially, so be it. If we want to go outside of His will for material blessings, we are inching toward that category that verse 1 refers to as
“The lions may grow weak and hungry, but those who seek the LORD lack no good thing.” (Psalm 34:10 NIV)
“Rest in the LORD, and wait patiently for Him” (v 7) “Be still and know that I am God” (Psalm 46:10)
We know without a doubt that we can trust God, don’t we? Our problem with being patient and waiting on God is within ourselves. We have grown up in a hedonistic, materialistic world of instant gratification. We learn early on that crying and pestering family for attention and our wants is quickly rewarded. We rarely outgrow the root of that mindset it just manifests in different ways. Can you honestly disagree with that?
So, with that in mind, how easy is it for us to begin to think of ways that we might influence God to grant our wishes - some selfish and some quite necessary (or so we think)?
Have you ever entertained the thought that if you were just good enough or just did a few more good things for others that it would be a trade off and God would grant your desires? Come on now, most of us have at one time or another. It just doesn’t work that way. God is the SUPREME SOVEREIGN of all creation. He is “omniscient”, He knows all about our thoughts and intentions. God will not be manipulated so you can have your way. It is one thing to establish and maintain a life of doing good and doing good for others for HIS SAKE and for HIS GLORY and quite another as a means to attain some personal edge with Him.