Psalm 24, a great psalm:
The earth is the Lord’s, and all its fullness,
The world and those who dwell therein.
2 For He has founded it upon the seas,
And established it upon the waters.
3 Who may ascend into the hill of the Lord?
Or who may stand in His holy place?
4 He who has clean hands and a pure heart,
Who has not lifted up his soul to an idol,
Nor sworn deceitfully.
5 He shall receive blessing from the Lord,
And righteousness from the God of his salvation.
6 This is Jacob, the generation of those who seek Him,
Who seek Your face. Selah
7 Lift up your heads, O you gates!Psalm 24
And be lifted up, you everlasting doors!
And the King of glory shall come in.
8 Who is this King of glory?
The Lord strong and mighty,
The Lord mighty in battle.
9 Lift up your heads, O you gates!
Lift up, you everlasting doors!
And the King of glory shall come in.
10 Who is this King of glory?
The Lord of hosts,
He is the King of glory. Selah
Praise the Lord! The Psalms are full of messages which are relevant to people who live in the New Testament dispensation as we do. And some of them speak about things which would have come with Yeshua / Jesus the Messiah.
When you look in this song very carefully, you see there are three themes in it:
- The first one in the first two verses tells you that the Earth is the Lord’s, that God made it, that it belongs to Him
- Verses 3 to 6 tell ask the question: ‘Who may stand in His holy place?’ How come we who are made in the image of God and who are sinners can come into the presence of a holy God?
- And verses 7 to 10 ‘Lift up your heads, O you gates! … And the King of glory shall come in.’ And asks ‘Who is this King of glory?’ A question which opens the door to us coming into a relationship with God and to Jesus coming into this world to take control of it at His Second Coming.
So, we’ll look at those three themes tonight.
First, God is the Creator
If you read through the Bible, you’ll find that from Genesis right through to Revelation, God is revealed as the Creator. Not just in Genesis chapter 1.
If you want to take God out of the creation, you’ve got to take Him out of most of the rest of the scriptures.
The first verse of the Bible tells you:
In the beginning God created the heavens and the earth.Genesis 1.1
It doesn’t discuss it; it doesn’t debate it; it doesn’t give you any other ideas. It just tells you that’s what happened: God created the heavens and the Earth.
It goes on to describe how God created the heavens and the earth, and comes to the creation of humanity, human beings, in verse 26 it says:
26 Then God said, “Let Us make man in Our image, according to Our likeness; let them have dominion over the fish of the sea, over the birds of the air, and over the cattle, over all the earth and over every creeping thing that creeps on the earth.” 27 So God created man in His own image; in the image of God He created him; male and female He created them.Genesis 1.26-27
God made man in His own image, in the image of God He created him, male and female, he created them.
28 Then God blessed them, and God said to them, “Be fruitful and multiply; fill the earth and subdue it; have dominion over the fish of the sea, over the birds of the air, and over every living thing that moves on the earth.”Genesis 1.28
This tells you a number of things about the human race which are very significant. It tells you that we are made in the image of God. Does that mean we look like God or God looks like us? Well, we don’t know what God looks like, but he did reveal himself in a human form, in the person of Jesus Christ / Yeshua the Messiah. He also made us with a spiritual nature so that we are actually different from the animals, and we have a spirit, a part of us which is able to communicate with God. That is very important important.
The human race actually is that that Spirit part of us has died at the fall of man in Genesis chapter 3, when Adam and Eve disobeyed God and all the problems came in as a result of that. As they broke the one commandment which God gave them ‘not to eat of the fruit of the tree of the knowledge of good and evil’, this opened the way for Satan to come in and to take them away from God.
Now the serpent was more cunning than any beast of the field which the Lord God had made. And he said to the woman, “Has God indeed said, ‘You shall not eat of every tree of the garden’?”
2 And the woman said to the serpent, “We may eat the fruit of the trees of the garden; 3 but of the fruit of the tree which is in the midst of the garden, God has said, ‘You shall not eat it, nor shall you touch it, lest you die.’ ”
4 Then the serpent said to the woman, “You will not surely die. 5 For God knows that in the day you eat of it your eyes will be opened, and you will be like God, knowing good and evil.”
6 So when the woman saw that the tree was good for food, that it was pleasant to the eyes, and a tree desirable to make one wise, she took of its fruit and ate. She also gave to her husband with her, and he ate. 7 Then the eyes of both of them were opened, and they knew that they were naked; and they sewed fig leaves together and made themselves coverings.
8 And they heard the sound of the Lord God walking in the garden in the cool of the day, and Adam and his wife hid themselves from the presence of the Lord God among the trees of the garden.
9 Then the Lord God called to Adam and said to him, “Where are you?”
10 So he said, “I heard Your voice in the garden, and I was afraid because I was naked; and I hid myself.”
11 And He said, “Who told you that you were naked? Have you eaten from the tree of which I commanded you that you should not eat?”
12 Then the man said, “The woman whom You gave to be with me, she gave me of the tree, and I ate.”Genesis 3.1-12
God’s purpose from that time on has been to redeem us and to bring us back to Himself. All this while however, whether we are in an unredeemed state or not, we are still made in the image of God. And you find that right through the Bible, from Genesis through to Revelation, there are passages which speak about God as the Creator.
Revelation chapter 4 verse 11 says,
11 “You are worthy, O Lord,Revelation 4.11
To receive glory and honour and power;
For You created all things,
And by Your will they exist and were created.”
God created all things, He created them by His will, and for His purpose. If God created them for His purpose, that means they were created for a purpose, not just as random and accidental. God made the world for a purpose, and He has a purpose for you and me, for human the human race within that creation.
You read also in the New Testament that Yeshua / Jesus was there at creation and that the world exists through Him. John chapter 1 says,
3 Then God said, “Let there be light”; and there was light. 4 And God saw the light, that it was good; and God divided the light from the darkness. 5 God called the light Day, and the darkness He called Night. So the evening and the morning were the first day.Genesis 1.3-5
In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God. 2 He was in the beginning with God. 3 All things were made through Him, and without Him nothing was made that was made.John 1.1-3
4 In Him was life, and the life was the light of men. 5 And the light shines in the darkness, and the darkness did not comprehend it.John 1.4-5
In other words, Jesus was there at the beginning God, from eternity, and all that exists was created through Him.
14 And the Word became flesh and dwelt among us, and we beheld His glory, the glory as of the only begotten of the Father, full of grace and truth.John 1.14
defining Who that Word is. The Word is the one through whom God made the heavens and the Earth, who is Jesus, who has revealed Himself in human form.
So, ‘we beheld His glory the glory as of the only begotten of the Father, full of grace and truth.‘
In the epistle to the Colossians, Paul writes:
15 He is the image of the invisible God, the firstborn over all creation. 16 For by Him all things were created that are in heaven and that are on earth, visible and invisible, whether thrones or dominions or principalities or powers. All things were created through Him and for Him. 17 And He is before all things, and in Him all things consist.Colossians 1.15-17
This is telling us that Jesus was there at the beginning. He has always been there. All things were created through Him. He is before all things. In other words, He is before the creation, He has existed from eternity to eternity. Therefore, He is God.
It is an interesting verse. It says, ‘in Him all things consist.’
Another translation of the verb ‘consist‘ is ‘are held together in Him’. And some people have observed looking at atoms and the fact that everything is made of atoms, that these have an electric charge which by nature should separate them and make them fall apart and not remain together in organisms. There is something which is holding all the atoms together and they’ve even called this the Colossian force because they can’t reason why all things are held together!
If it is God who is holding all these things together, then in Jesus / Yeshua everything which exists is being held together. If He removes that ‘force’, then everything is going to fall apart.
The Bible does say at the end of days that the heavens and the earth are going to be burned up and God is going to make a new one. So, you can see that these verses actually speak about something very fundamental to our existence here on the Earth.
All these passages also imply that we (the human race) are created for a purpose. We are not an accident. We come here by the will of God which means we are significant. If we are made in the image of God, that means we have a significance as God has significance, and we have a significance as we relate to God.
We are told that God created the human race to look after the earth which He had made in relation to Him. He told us to be fruitful and multiply. That He made them male and female.
Therefore, there is a distinct reason why he made us male and female, and the fact that we are different, and that if you are a male, you cannot become a female. Also, if you are a female, you cannot become a male. That is how you are and you should rejoice in whatever you are.
You are made in the image of God and this is necessary for the procreation of the species; it is part of God’s incredible design that He made us this way.
Psalm 139 tells us that,
For You formed my inward parts;Psalm 139.13-16
You covered me in my mother’s womb.
14 I will praise You, for I am fearfully and wonderfully made;
Marvellous are Your works,
And that my soul knows very well.
15 My frame was not hidden from You,
When I was made in secret,
And skillfully wrought in the lowest parts of the earth.
16 Your eyes saw my substance, being yet unformed.
And in Your book they all were written,
The days fashioned for me,
When as yet there were none of them.
You and I are wonderfully made and if you ever think about your body and just how remarkable it is, how everything fits together, everything works together.
You have all these incredibly complex parts: your brain, your heart, your bloodstream, your lungs, your blood, and it is all working together to keep you alive. If one part stops working, you don’t exist anymore.
And many people think that, in the beginning, we just began as a blob, a tiny little thing that evolved into what we are today. However, now they’ve found that even in the tiniest cell is also full of information, millions of parts, millions of pieces of information, even in a tiny cell.
Therefore, you have to ask yourself: ‘How did all that come about if it didn’t come about because God made it?‘
There is no answer to that question.
We have a creation which is good and I believe that all the evidence shows us that the creation was made by God, by intelligent design, not by accident.
Creation is good but it’s also fallen. Nevertheless, the earth is still the Lord’s, and His purpose is to redeem it from death and from the Devil.
Of course, we do have an alternative view. I think it was last November a few of us went down to the Tower of London where they were putting on a show called ‘About Us’ was a bit of evolutionary indoctrination and it was a quite a dramatic sort of light show which was projected onto the walls of the Tower of London.
There were thousands of people there, young people, old people, a lot of Muslims, a lot of people ‘drinking in’ pure evolutionary indoctrination. I copied down some of the things which it said. This is how it began:
How does that grab you?
I see a lot of people shaking their heads. Yet that is what they are being taught. And it is not just on this program, it’s what you’re being taught, basically, in schools and universities, in museums, in science classes everywhere. That is how we came about: ‘In the beginning there was nothing, and nothing exploded. And out of an explosion of nothing, a vast ordered universe came into being, including our own planet, with exactly the right framework for life.
And humans and other animals came out of some kind of spontaneous life form which existed and came from the simplest microbes to become the complex creatures which we have today.
I believe you have to have a lot more faith to believe that than you do have to believe that in the beginning God created the heavens and the earth. You have to believe that out of blind chance all this could come about and I say that means having a lot of faith.
The program said, ‘You are a little more than temporary constellations of atoms born in the Big Bang…‘ That actually means that you don’t have any significance, that you are pretty meaningless, and that, if you cease to exist, it doesn’t really matter much either.
So, there are two major issues which confront you, which come out in this Psalm and right through the scriptures:
- In the beginning God created the heavens and the earth. We are here by the will of God and for His purpose, or
- In the beginning there was nothing and nothing exploded and we came into here being by blind chance, and therefore, we really don’t have any significance.
I don’t know if you understand that one of the reasons why so many people today feel that their life seems meaningless is because they’ve been taught this stuff. If you absorb this in your youth, if you’re told this all the time, in the end, it means that you are just a ‘blind chance effect’, and that if you’re not here, it doesn’t matter very much. Your life has no significance.
On the other hand, if a loving heavenly Father created you for a purpose, then you and I have a tremendous significance, a significance which goes on right into eternity.
Therefore, because the earth is the Lord’s, and it is created and sustained by Him, we don’t believe this programme being fed to us, we believe that God created us and that He gave us significance and that is fundamental to what we are saying.
This Psalm is telling you that the earth is the Lord’s; therefore, you and I are the Lord’s; therefore, you and I have a significance. And the fact that we’re here today is not just a chance encounter, it is as a result of God’s will, and God has a purpose for you and for me, and for the world in which we live.
That makes a big difference and the will of God is for our Salvation not for destruction. If you take the other view then, basically, if your life is just a temporary constellation of atoms, then, once it is over, it is over, it is gone, it is forgotten, and it doesn’t mean anything.