Summary: Sermon showing the tremendous blessings of God
This majestic passage has often been referred to as a doxology, a literal explosion of praise to God for all that He has done. John Wick Bowman once called it “a hymn of salvation.” It relates how God laid the plans for man’s redemption and how those plans are being fulfilled in the hearts and lives of those first century Christians and will be realized also in the lives of all who have been and are responding since that early day. Paul begins by praising God for the spiritual benefits which are his and his fellow Christians because of their relationship to Christ. Blessed, as used here, means to “speak well of. Praise in other translations.” God alone is worthy to be praised/blessed because He is genuine and constant in His character and action. He alone is truly praiseworthy because there is no mixture in His motives and intention. God is the Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, who has made known to us the nature of God. The Supreme One is not an austere, arbitrary judge but the Eternal Father, loving, merciful, and tender in spirit like Christ. He desires to bless His people abundantly, with double blessings. God loves us so much that He does indeed send double blessings. Look at Ps 103:1-5 as it expresses praise to God for His care of the People of Israel at the time of their deliverance.
“Praise the LORD, O my soul; all my inmost being, praise his holy name. Praise the LORD, O my soul, and forget not all his benefits-- who forgives all your sins and heals all your diseases, who redeems your life from the pit and crowns you with love and compassion, who satisfies your desires with good things so that your youth is renewed like the eagle's.
What great and tremendous blessings! We are all undeserving of these blessings, yet He blesses us anyhow! Our heavenly Father is gracious, merciful, loving and tender. He is truly worthy of all praise, glory and honor. Let us look at just a few of His double blessings. I. HE FORGIVES AND FORGETS Eph 1:7 “In him we have redemption through his blood, the forgiveness of sins, in accordance with the riches of God's grace
Heb 10:17 “Their sins and their lawless acts I will remember no more.”
A. We are just the opposite. Something gets in our craw and look out! We hold on to resentments and broken promises, or insults and hurts, like there was no tomorrow. When was the last time you thought about the unresolved issues that you carry around on your back? The tragedy is that this only hurts and destroys our own souls. There is power in peace and forgiveness and you must do everything in your power to keep it. Jesus said, Pray for those who mistreat you” (Luke 6:28). People will hurt you in life. That goes without question or debate. All have issues and need emotional healing, but take the time to forgive and receive forgiveness. Need to ask forgiveness of others and/or release them from our scorecards before we come to ask God for anything else. I have known Christians who barely speak over something trivial, or a personality glitch. Now, it’s been so long some don’t even remember what it was, or perhaps now realize that it wasn’t worth ruining a relationship over. Bea has a relative who when they get angry at one person in the family takes it out on everyone and will not speak to anyone in family. Wonderful! Sounds like some Christians I know. Upset with one person so take it out on whole congregation or leave instead of resolving the issue at hand. How does that look to one another? More importantly how does that look to God. Thank God for his promise of restoration and renewal. Through Him we can move forward in forgiveness. “You are a forgiving God, gracious and compassionate; slow to anger and abounding in love” (Neh 9:17). B. Fortunately for us that God forgives and forgets. Yet, how often do we look to God as an angry old man who just puts up with us? How do you picture Him when you think about your sins? What do you think His expression is when you come to Him time after time?