Summary: Let’s get this straight from the start- who is in charge of all this? This earth? And what is His will for it?
"Swing wide you heavenly gates". Psalm 24. WBC 28.05.06am
Inspiration is a funny thing. Something clicks… it’s like the Lord runs a highlighter through it- and you just know you should preach on it
It just didn’t feel right to preach on JOS 3:5 Joshua told the people, "Consecrate yourselves, for tomorrow the LORD will do amazing things among you."
- but when I visited this passage I just KNEW I had to preach on it to you
o even though in ways it speaks of the same things
" setting yourself apart
" expecting God to act
(the only trouble is- I feel I should preach on this down at River Park on the Saturday morning- so you might get a double dose, or a variant!)
READ Ps 24
THE EARTH IS THE LORD’S
Basically let’s get it straight from the start who is in charge, here. Who is boss. Lord. Who owns this, made it all. And what His priorities are.
- "the earth is the LORD’S and everything in it. He founded it,. Made it. The world, and all who live in it"
o It’s HIS- and He LOVES it because it’s His. Loves every person -ALL who live in it
He is over it all. Transcendent. ABOVE it all.
- R.C. Sproul tells us
transcendence means literally, "to climb across." It is defined as "exceeding the usual limits." When we speak of the transcendence of God we are talking about that sense in which God is above and beyond us. He is higher than the world. He has absolute power over the world. The world has no power over Him. Transcendence describes God in His consuming majesty, His exalted loftiness. He is an infinite cut above everything else. [The Holiness of God p. 55]
Contributed by: Bruce Goettsche on www.sermoncentral.com
…. He may be over it all. Transcendent. Above it all.
- but He is intimately concerned with it
- as you are with something that is part of you… something you made…your children, even
- (in fact, we know He loves it so much He visited it)
"The earth is the Lord’s"
- there is no doubt about this. No room for negotiation
It may be occupied territory
- (hence why we pray "your kingdom come!"- that He may be recognised as King and His will may be done in all of it)
- but HE is the Lord. In charge. The omnipotent, powerful one..
- it’s HIS
o and He loves it and He wants it back
WHO MAY ASCEND THE HILL OF THE LORD
And the most incredible thing is- this transcendent, glorious, creator God can be known by people personally, intimately
- and He wants to be!
- He is to be found!
o Not on our terms and conditions (like someone that fits into your pocket)
" You can’t just breeze in
o But in His way - in His times and places, and through His ’means’
" People can ’ascend the hill of the Lord and stand in the holy place’. The presence of the transcendent One
And, of course, that ’means’ is Jesus. His Son. God in the flesh. He is ’the ladder to heaven’ (like in Jacob’s dream)
- And when someone is cleansed by His saving blood they can ascend
But here’s the thing- He wants those who already know Him to ascend to His presence, as well
- to consecrate themselves …set themselves apart… and come up the mountain to His presence to seek Him…
"such is the generation of those who seek your face, O God of Jacob"
- "consecrate yourselves. Set yourselves apart as holy and come and seek my face"
And you know what happens when you enter God’s presence… start seeking His FACE (Him, personally, for who He is)
- He starts showing you where He wants to move His HAND… ’bare His holy arm’ (as it says lots of times in Is)
- Where He wants to act
- He starts showing you His HEART…
You find yourself feeling like He does… find yourself praying… crying His prayers, His will for others
- asking that this world and everything in it will own Him as King. Recognise Him. Receive Him. Choose Him as Lord
"SWING WIDE YOU HEAVENLY GATES!"
I think that’s what happens here.
- David is touched by God’s transcendence. Sees God’s holiness and power. He sets himself apart and seeks God’s face.
- …. Is touched by His immanent presence
o > and finds Himself crying out for His city. Jerusalem
o "Lift up your heads O you gates- swing wide you ancient gates
o that the King may come in! That all may know THIS
"Open up" "wake up!" "make way!"
And actually- it becomes quite militant! When you get God’s heart