Summary: Psalms' description of God
What is God Like? Psalm 8+ September 18, 2016
Turn with me this morning to Psalm 8. We’re going to be looking at a number of scriptures this morning, and if you had difficulty keeping up, just look at the screen. We’ll have most of the scriptures up there.
There is an old poem some of you may have heard about the blind men and the elephant. It goes like this: Read poem
What is that poem trying to state? That many times we look at God through our personal perspective and we miss a lot of the other perspectives of God. Now let me clearly state - I am not saying that there are other ways to heaven or other ways of salvation. Scripture is very clear about that - Acts 4:12 - Salvation is found in no-one else, for there is no other name under heaven given to men by which we must be saved.” But the point I want to start out with today is that we can’t put God in a box. Instead of coming to the scriptures to prove what we believe to be true about God, we want to come to the scripture and see what God says about Himself. Because the scriptures are the record of God revealing Himself to man.
And the answer of what is true is not what WE believe, but is what GOD says. And the first thing we see to be true of God is that
1. God is GREAT - God is so far beyond our comprehension. And that’s where the problem comes in. We try to understand and explain One who is far beyond our comprehension. When we start thinking we are something pretty special, all we need to do is look around us at the universe we live in, and we are reminded how insignificant we are. If I take a flashlight and turn it on, a beam of light comes out, traveling at 186, 282 miles a second. In one second it has gone a distance equivalent to going around the circumference of the earth four times - in just one second. That’s how fast light travels! In one year, that beam of light could have gone around the earth 240 million times. (galaxy pix) But to reach some of the galaxies that astronomers look at through their telescopes, it would take 10 billion years for that beam of light at its racing speed to reach there. That’s how big our universe is. And we understand through scripture that our God is the one who has set all of those stars in place.
That brings us to Psalm 8:3 which tells us, When I consider your heavens, the work of your fingers, the moon and the stars, which you have set in place, what is man that you are mindful of him, the son of man that you care for him? This great and vast universe that we live in was completely orchestrated and designed by our great God. That’s how great He is! The Psalmist says in Psalm 147, Praise the LORD. How good it is to sing praises to our God, how pleasant and fitting to praise him! . . . He determines the number of the stars and calls them each by name. Great is our Lord and mighty in power; his understanding has no limit.
Just in our solar system alone, The Milky Way, there are estimated to be 400 Billion stars, and ours is just one of many, many galaxies. And yet scripture tells us that our God is so great that He created all of them by simply speaking the word, He knows each one distinctly, and He knows its name.
And while our God is so very great, yet He is a God of intricate detail. When you think about all the micro-organisms that live in just one drop of water, we see the masterful detail that God places into his creation. Look at the tip of your finger, and all the intricate patterns on your fingertips -- billions of people in the world, and yet each fingerprint is unique. Think about snowflakes - not one of them is the same. The first thing scripture declares to us about God is that God is Great! And the more that we take time to consider our creation, the more easily we admit that our God is great. But something that seems to go against the greatness of God is that
2. God CARES about us - when we think of how great our God is, it is overwhelming for us to consider that the God who made the trillions upon trillions of stars would care about us - small and insignificant that we are, but He does. In the $10 terms of theologians and philosophers, God is both transcendent and immanent. Which are simply big words to say that He is beyond our world, yet close at hand; He is so far above us, but He is so very close to us. Isaiah 40 says this about Him: He sits enthroned above the circle of the earth, and its people are like grasshoppers. He stretches out the heavens like a canopy, and spreads them out like a tent to live in. He brings princes to naught and reduces the rulers of this world to nothing. No sooner are they planted, no sooner are they sown, no sooner do they take root in the ground, than he blows on them and they wither, and a whirlwind sweeps them away like chaff. “To whom will you compare me? Or who is my equal?” says the Holy One. Lift your eyes and look to the heavens: Who created all these? He who brings out the starry host one by one, and calls them each by name.