Summary: In Psalm 139:7-10 we learn about the vertical and the horzontial presence of God.
1. Please open your bibles to Psalm 139:7-10.
3. Let’s read Psalm 139:7-10, “ 7 Where can I go from Your Spirit? Or where can I flee from Your presence? 8 If I ascend into heaven, You are there; If I make my bed in hell, behold, You are there. 9 If I take the wings of the morning, And dwell in the uttermost parts of the sea, 10 Even there Your hand shall lead me, And Your right hand shall hold me.”
4. We will begin a discussion of the omnipresence of God starting with verse eight.
I. FIRST, PSALM 139:8 TEACHES ABOUT THE VERTICAL OMNIPRESENCE OF GOD.
1. Verse eight teaches that it would not make any difference how high up into or above the heavens one might go, God is already there. The same verse teaches that it would not make any difference how deep into the earth or below the earth one might go, God is already there.
2. Let’s read Psalm 139:8, “If I ascend into heaven, You are there; If I make my bed in hell, behold, You are there.”
3. Another way of saying what we have just read is to say that if we were to travel to another galaxy or to another universe God would already be there.
4. The word “hell” in the phrase: “if I make my bed in hell” comes from a Hebrew word that refers to the place of the dead.
(1) Sometimes the word refers to the grave of the dead.
(2) Sometimes the word refers to the realm of the departed spirits. When it is used that way it has reference to the same place we read about in Luke 16. In Luke 16 the same place is called by the Greek word hades.
1) In Luke 16:19&ff Jesus refers to the realm of the departed spirits being divided by a great gulf. On one side of the great gulf are the unrighteous. Those on this side of the gulf are experiencing punishment.
2) On the other side of the great gulf are the righteous. Those in this compartment of hades are experiencing blessings. Both groups are waiting for the final judgment day.
5. If one were to have fallen into a crevice that was 22 miles deep after the earthquake in Chile God’s presence would be there. Remember the epic center of that strong 8.8 earthquake was 22 miles deep. February or March of 2010.
6. Recently someone fell off into the mouth of a volcano. However, deep that person may have fallen the presence of God would have been there. February or March of 2010.
7. Psalm 139:8 teaches that God’s presence will always exist wherever we go vertically!
II. SECOND, LOOK AT PSALM 139:9. THIS VERSE TEACHES THAT WHEREVER ONE MIGHT GO HORZONTIALLY, GOD’S PRESENCE WILL ALREADY BE THERE.
1. Let’s read Psalms 139:9, “If I take the wings of the morning, And dwell in the uttermost parts of the sea”.
(1) These two phrases bring to our mind the sunrise in the east and then our traveling with the swift rays of the morning sun through the day to the far west sunset beyond the sea.
(2) Whatever distance we would travel from the east to the west would not take us anywhere that God’s presence would not exist.
2. Turn to Jonah 1:17. Hold your place for a few moments. Do you remember how Jonah tried to escape the presence of God by boarding a ship and go the opposite direction from where God wanted him to go?
(1) Where did Jonah try to go to, instead of going to Nineveh?
(2) Tarshish was far west from Nineveh. Tarshish would have been in what we now know as Spain.
(3) Do you think that Jonah might have breathed a sigh of relief when the ship sailed away from Joppa and the land of Israel and headed in the opposite direction of Nineveh?
(4) Do you think Jonah might have thought that God was limited to being only in the country of Israel? That Israel was really the only place that God’s people lived?
(5) Did Jonah soon find out that the presence of God was upon the waves of the sea?
(6) Did Jonah soon find out that the presence of God was in the depth of the sea and also in the belly of the great fish?
3. One of the major lessons taught in the book of Jonah is that God can not be localized in a city or a nation or country.
(1) Because Israel is called the Holy Lands does that make Israel more sacred that other countries? Does that mean that there is more of the presence of God in Israel than the presence of God in other lands and countries?