DELIGHT IN GOD’S WORD!
By Warren Coe
South Suburban Evangelical Free Church
1. In CS Lewis’ The Great Divorce, folks of hell are given a last chance to gain heaven. After arriving in glory they complain that the light is too bright, the grass is too hard and the people too big
● Lewis’ saints Solid Ones. Godless are terrified as Spirit coaxes the Ghost to join
● Ghost snarls, I wish I’d never been born, What are we born for?
● Spirit answers for infinite happiness, You can step out into it at any moment
2. Lewis’ view of the Christian life is a life of infinite happiness. Begin with the creation of the 1st man, God made life to be happy. Happiness is in DNA of human experience.
● Pascal, All men seek happiness. There are no exceptions.
● Jefferson, We hold these truths to be self-evident,—that all men are created equal; that they’re endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable rights; that among these are life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness
3. A sad irony in the pursuit of happiness is that most people are miserable. In the J.P. Sarte novel, The Nausea, he says I’ve discovered I am alive & it sickens me
● That’s how people feel. They change jobs, homes, spouse but still unhappy.
● Still we wonder, How can I be happy in a joy-killing world?
● The Answer is found in Psalm 1. Ps1 is a road map that leads to happiness; it shows the ways
4. It begins with the declaration, How blessed is man! Here is main theme of Ps1; happiness and blessing. V1 is a negative; telling us what not to do in finding happiness
● Then in V2 we have a positive; what to do to gain this life of blessing.
● It comes down to right attitude and right reaction to God’s Word.
● The blessed life can be experienced when God’s Word is central to our lives.
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1st, consider attitude of delight. The happy person delights in God’s Word!
I. DELIGHT IN GOD’S WORD IS A NECESSARY ATTITUDE FOR A HAPPY LIFE V2
1. Look at V2. Two types of people are contrasted; godly & ungodly. V1 describes the ungodly & warns us to stay away from them. V2 describes the godly & their focus.
● Godly are focused upon God’s Word. It their north star, compass & map.
● What attitude do they have towards this word? Delight, desire, longing
● Chief desire & hunger is to know & obey God’s Word. There is no burden or bother
2. Why does a Christian delight in God’s Word? Bible has at least four answers to this question?.
● 1st it is a supernatural book not religious book.
● 2nd, its life. Dt32:46,47 No idle word but life
● 3rd, its salvation. Bible not only defines salvation as point in time but also process. Jm1:21
● 4th, its power. Is55:11 resulting in great joy.
● 5th, it’s weapon, Ep6:17 More
3. The Bible is more than a history book; it’s the living and active Word of God. It quickens, converts, comforts, exhorts, heals and rebukes. Delight is right attitude toward Bible.
● Thomas a’ Kempis (a Catholic Guy), explains delight I have no rest, but in a nook with the book.
● Ps119:18 Open my eyes that I may behold wondrous things out of thy law
● Don’t have delight? Given & acquired; Indwelling Holy Spirit gives. We work at it.
Is God’s Word your delight? Then God promises you a happy life. Long for this Word!
II. MEDITATION UPON GOD’S WORD INSURES A HAPPY LIFE. V2
1. We are serious about joy around here—part of the Christian vision. If delighting in God’s Word is the attitude necessary for a happy life then meditation is the necessary action to finding happiness.
● The happy Christians meditate on God’s Word. What is meditation? Def.
● Deep, dull sound like animals make when they purr or growl.
● God’s people purr Word of God. How often? Day and night! Always thinking about it!
2. A cow has several compartments in stomach. They store chewed hay in the stomach then regurgitate it & chew it again. This is done to get all nutrition from hay
● Bartholomew Ashwood, Meditation chews the cud & gets the sweetness and nutritive virtue of the Word into the heart & life.
● How can I chew on word of God? Like a financial decision, Think, ponder, pray.
● Act of meditating on the Word draws out spiritual nutrition of wisdom or hope or faith.
3. Lets practice. Turn to Ph4:4. (1) What is 1st word? Rejoice (2) Is it a command or suggestion? Command (3) How often? Always (4) What is the well from which we draw out joy? Focus my life on him.
● God commands me to be happy in all circumstances as I center life on him.
● I’m at work, my boss has scolded my backside, the Lord says Rejoice!
● My wife confronted me about some matters. Lord says rejoice!
This exercise can be practiced by anyone at anytime. Meditate upon the Word insures a happy life.
1. How can I find happiness? Delight in law of Lord; that speaks of our attitude. Meditate on God’s law day & night. This is the action-step toward happiness.
● Delight on God’s Word & meditate on God’s Word day & night & you will be happy
● Deepest mark of the happy person is that he desires more of God’s Word.
● Ps119:148 My eyes are awake thru night watches, that I may meditate
2. In the fall of 1944 an officer and his platoon were ordered to capture a small French city from the Nazis. French Resistance fighters risked their lives to map all German fortifications.
● To insure success, the officer had his men memorize every detail of the map. They were tested on it.
● They earned a near perfect score. Knew every landmark, bunker, sniper & troop
● When Americans captured the city, few lives were lost. The city was liberated.
3. Just so, life and liberty are assured to every believer who lives a Word-saturated life. Blessed is the man who delights in the law of God and meditates on that Word.
Church Goer Story
A Church goer wrote a letter to the editor of a newspaper and complained that it made no sense to go to church every Sunday. "I’ve gone for 30 years now," he wrote, "and in that time I have heard something like 3,000 sermons. But for the life of me, I can’t remember a single one of them. So, I think I’m wasting my time and the pastors are wasting theirs by giving sermons at all."
This started a real controversy in "Letters to the Editor" column, much to delight of editor. It went on for weeks until someone wrote this clincher:
"I’ve been married for 30 years now. In that time my wife has cooked some 32,000 meals. But, for the life of me, I cannot recall the entire menu for a single one of those meals. But I do know this:
They all nourished me and gave me the strength I needed to do my work.
If my wife had not given me these meals, I would be physically dead today.
Likewise, if I had not gone to church for nourishment, I would be spiritually dead today!"
When you are DOWN to nothing…. God is UP to something! Faith sees the invisible, believes the incredible and receives the impossible!
Thank God for our physical AND our spiritual nourishment!
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