Be still and know…
Purpose: To convince a troubled audience that there is only one place in which we can find peace right now. Conclude with an invitation to God’s refuge and river.
Text:Ps 46 God is our refuge and strength, a very present help in trouble. 2 Therefore we will not fear, even though the earth be removed, and though the mountains be carried into the midst of the sea; 3 Though its waters roar and be troubled, though the mountains shake with its swelling. Selah.
4 There is a river whose streams shall make glad the city of God, the holy place of the tabernacle of the Most High. 5 God is in the midst of her, she shall not be moved; God shall help her, just at the break of dawn. 6 The nations raged, the kingdoms were moved; He uttered His voice, the earth melted. 7 The LORD of hosts is with us; the God of Jacob is our refuge. Selah
8 Come, behold the works of the LORD, who has made desolations in the earth. (SLIDE) 9 He makes wars cease to the end of the earth; He breaks the bow and cuts the spear in two; He burns the chariot in the fire.
10 Be still, and know that I am God; I will be exalted among the nations, I will be exalted in the earth!
11 The LORD of hosts is with us; the God of Jacob is our refuge. Selah
Intro: (SLIDE)After two years of being here at (Address) and not having had to face the prospect of funerals, suddenly we’re faced with a having one 2 weeks ago, and now 3 this week alone. Two of them were very sudden. One, a murder of a 22 year old young man The other, a 70 year old mother who wasn’t known to be ill. She simply didn’t wake up Tuesday morning. And all of this occurrs to the backdrop of September 11, anthrax scares, wars, and rumors of wars.If ever there was a time of trouble, this is certainly one. Without a doubt, we are living in a time of crisis, both personally and globally.
I. Characteristics of a Crisis
A. Fear escalates. Crisis produces the fear of
1. Fear is not of God
a. Perfect love casts out fear.
i. We need to come into an experience of
· Perfect love has you in mind.
· Perfect love has the wherewithal, not
just the desire to preserve you.
Þ Even if physical death prevails,
God’s perfect love calls
it “precious” and “gain,”
· Only God is capable of perfect love.
B. Crisis becomes a test of character
1. Crisis draws out the worst in people
a. Copycat syndrome rampant
b. “Retaliation” mindset can be taken out of
i. Osama “dead or alive” mentality as
translated by young people is
dangerous when taken out of context.
· Can reinforce carnal tendencies of
2. Crisis has a way of drawing out the best in
a. People draw together.
i. Two are better than one.
· Demonstrated compassion lightens the
· Unity breeds security
Þ Nations are joining together
Þ Locally, people are taking on a
mutually supportive role.
C. Crisis is for a season – no crisis has ever
1. We need to get through it, rather than settle
a. Keep a hopeful attitude that “this will
i. A fatalistic view is a faithless view
· “Without faith” we are not pleasing
2. God is a very present help.(v1), the need is
in the moment.
a. God is our refuge to get through it.
b. God is our strength to get through it
II. God is our refuge in the time of crisis
A. What is a refuge?
1. A place of safety that needs to be entered
into in order to be beneficial.
a. There are two sides to a refuge, inside
b. It doesn’t come to you, you must choose
to enter it.
c. We can choose to stay where we are.
i. “choose life”
2. There are “house rules” in the refuge of
i. It’s a holy place. Expectations that the
righteous live as such.
· To live like the world and expect God’s
refuge is foolishness.
· And yet, there is abundant grace for
those who humbly recognize the absolute
need for such.
III. God is our Strength in the midst of crisis. V1
A. With His perfect love comes His “perfect”
1. Such strength comes to those who concede
weakness. (2 cor 12:9)
a. 2 Corinthians 12:9 And He said to
me, "My grace is sufficient for you, for
My strength is made perfect in
2.No matter how formidable the threat, God is
a. 1 John 4:4 You are of God, little
children, and have overcome them, because
He who is in you is greater than he who
is in the world.
IV. The tempest and the River
A. Life will often seem like a tempest
1. Trouble all around Waves crashing, a
perilous, lonely journey
2. But God calls us to a River
3.In the middle of a tempest, take me to the
river (God’s), v4.
4. Contrasted to troubled, tempest tossed
waters, God’s river...
a. Is controlled. It’s pace, direction, and
destiny are controlled by God.
b. It’s found in a place within the refuge
or “city of God.”
i. A place where God dwells (the
tabernacle of the Most High)
· A place to be “made glad”
· In His presence is the fullness of
B. A river needs to flow in order to bring life
1. Whatever is touched by the flow
2. We’re not supposed to be victims of the
storm, we’re intended by God to be part of
His flowing, healing river.
a. Ezek 47:12 (speaks about a river flowing
from the temple of God) Along the bank
of the river, on this side and that,
will grow all kinds of trees used for
food; their leaves will not wither, and
their fruit will not fail. They will
bear fruit every month, because their
water flows from the sanctuary. Their
fruit will be for food, and their leaves
i. Not only be in the river, but be a
part of the banks that direct its’
flow to those in need.
ii. Lord, make us part of the river.
·John 7:37-39 38 He who believes in
Me, as the Scripture has said, out
of his heart will flow rivers of
living water." 39 But this He spoke
concerning the Spirit, whom those
believing in Him would receive; for
the Holy Spirit was not yet given,
because Jesus was not yet glorified.
· Wherever we (children of God) are,
there should be:
Þ Life giving water of the Spirit
Þ Fruit of the Spirit as byproduct
for those who are starved for
love, peace, joy, etc.
Þ Healing that comes as a
byproduct of the rivers flow for
those who have been wounded in
· Why? Because our water flows
from the sanctuary!
V. There will comes a point where God willsay “Enough”
A. v8 Come, behold the works of the LORD, who has
made desolations in the earth. 9 He makes
wars cease to the end of the earth; He
breaks the bow and cuts the spear in two; He
burns the chariot in the fire.
1. God knows the extent of what we can
a. Won’t give us more than that.
b. He always has the final say.
2. Therefore, be still….v10 says
a. v10 Be still, and know that I am God; I
will be exalted among the nations, I
will be exalted in the earth! 11 The
LORD of hosts is with us; the God of
Jacob is our refuge. Selah
b. God has the final say, and in the end….
i. He will be exalted!
3. So be still…
a. Phil 4:6-7 Be anxious for nothing, but
in everything by prayer and
supplication, with thanksgiving, let
your requests be made known to God; 7
and the peace of God, which surpasses
all understanding, will guard your
hearts and minds through Christ Jesus.
Conclusion: God is our refuge; the 0nly one that we can count upon. His refuge provides our safety. His river provides for our life. I invite you to enter in. John 14:27 27 Peace I leave with you, My peace I give to you; not as the world gives do I give to you. Let not your heart be troubled, neither let it be afraid.
-Salvation call , and call for those who need prayer of comfort. By faith, we enter in.