Summary: The psalmist asked: "What is man that you are mindful of him?" This sermon asks, what is man that God should even want to spend time with him?
OPEN: Recently, President Elect George W. Bush has been going through the process of having Congress approve his cabinet selections.
During John F. Kennedy’s presidency, there was one member of his cabinet who had a unique relationship with the President: the Attorney General was his brother Robert. Robert Kennedy was reported to have greeted new lawyers entering the Department with the following message:
“This may appear to be a large organization, but when you do something well, I’ll hear about it and it will go on your record. I want you to recall that I was recently a lowly worker in the Justice Department myself, but that I now serve as Attorney General, due to perseverance,long hours, hard work, and the fact that my brother became President of the United States… not necessarily in that order.”
APPLY: It helps to be related.
One of the key messages of the Bible (from beginning to end) has been: We’re created in God’s image.
That gives a unique relationship with God. And because of that relationship, God places immense value on you and me.
In Genesis One, God created the Light and said: "That’s good"
He created the sun, moon and stars and said: "That’s good"
He created the vegetation and said: "That’s good"
He created the animals and said: "That’s good"
But on the 6th day, after having created man and giving him dominion over all the works that He had created, God said: "That’s VERY good." Or in other words: "That’s REAL good."
In Psalm 8:4-9 we read the question: "What is man that you are mindful of him, the son of man that you care for him? You made him a little lower than the heavenly beings and crowned him with glory and honor. You made him ruler over the works of your hands; you put everything under his feet: all flocks and herds, and the beasts of the field, the birds of the air, and the fish of the sea, all that swim the paths of the seas. O LORD, our Lord, how majestic is your name in all the earth!"
And then in John 3:16 "For God so loved the world… gave His only begotten Son…
ILLUS: One author noted this and commented: "God is crazy about you. If God had a refrigerator, your picture would be on it. If God had a wallet, your photo would be in it. He sends you flowers every spring, and a sunrise every morning.
Whenever you want to talk, He listens. He could have chosen to live anywhere in the universe, but He chose to live in Your heart. Face it, God is crazy about you."
I. The psalmist though, does ask an interesting question: "What is man that God is mindful of him?"
That’s an interesting question. But, why would the Psalmist even bother to ask it?
Well… it’s because sometimes we’re not all that attractive. We sin. We fall short. We say things and do things and think things that, at times, makes it so we can’t even stand ourselves.
We may even subconsciously think… ”If my spouse (or my kids, my friends) knew what I’ve done or thought… they wouldn’t have had anything to do with me… SO, why would God want to???
And yet the Bible tells us God is crazy about us. There are times when that just doesn’t make sense to us.
II. Now hold that thought for a minute - and let’s look again at our text: Genesis 3:8-9
Some Bible scholars suspect that God’s walking in the Garden was a normal, routine event (notice, Adam & Eve "recognized" the sound - they’d heard it before).
Now, why would God bother to walk in the Garden on a regular basis? He had a glorious throne room filled with a multitude of awesome angelic beings. And if He wasn’t spending time there, there was an entire face of the planet earth with its manifold wonders that would have been worthwhile to visit.
BUT here’s God routinely returning to walk in the Garden… Why? There’s only one answer that seems reasonable: God came to the garden to be with Adam & Eve. He came to walk with them and talk with them.
ILLUS: The writer of the Hymn called "In the Garden" must have had this in mind as he wrote:
" And He walks with me and He talks with me
and He tells me I am His own.
And the joy we share as we tarry there,
none other has ever known."
God’s desire - from the beginning of creation was to walk with us.
Psalm 89:15 "Blessed are those who… walk in the light of your presence, O LORD."
Genesis 6:9 "Noah was a righteous man, blameless among the people of his time, and he walked with God"