Psalms 96:1-3 ESV
“Oh sing to the Lord a new song;
sing to the Lord, all the earth!
Sing to the Lord, bless his name;
tell of his salvation from day to day.
Declare his glory among the nations,
his marvelous works among all the peoples!”
As followers of Jesus Christ we should be singing to the Lord every day. It doesn’t mean that we have to always open up our mouths and literally sing with our voices, but we should be singing in our minds and in our hearts in thanksgiving to our Lord for who he is and for all he has done for us. And it doesn’t even have to be a literal song, but it can just be a prayer of thanksgiving or of praise to the Lord, giving him glory and honor.
To tell of his salvation we have to literally either open our mouths and speak it or we have to write out the message of the gospel. And the message of the gospel is not a quick formula on how to “get saved.” The gospel extends all the way from the birth of Jesus Christ to his death and resurrection, to us believing in him as our Lord and Savior, to us dying with him to sin and us walking with him in obedience, and to the day when he comes to judge the earth and to take us home, which is when our salvation will be complete.
For the gospel is the “Good News,” and the good news is not just that Jesus died on that cross so that by faith in him we can have our sins forgiven, and so when we die we can go to heaven. The Good News is that Jesus, in his death on that cross, took upon him the sins of the entire world. So when he died our sins died with him so that we can now die with him to sin and live to him and to his righteousness. For he did not remain dead, but he was resurrected from the dead so that we can now live through him.
So to tell of his salvation is not about telling people that they can have their sins forgiven so that they can escape hell and go to heaven when they die. Our salvation is deliverance out of our slavery (addiction) to sin and it is empowerment of God’s Spirit to live godly, holy, upright, and pure lives to the glory of God every day of our lives.
By God’s grace we no longer have to live as slaves to sin but now we can live as slaves to God and to his righteousness. We can walk in purity of devotion to our Lord and we can live our lives for his glory and praise according to his will and purpose for our lives. And one day Jesus is going to come back and take us to be with him.
Psalms 96:4-6 ESV
“For great is the Lord, and greatly to be praised;
he is to be feared above all gods.
For all the gods of the peoples are worthless idols,
but the Lord made the heavens.
Splendor and majesty are before him;
strength and beauty are in his sanctuary.”
Yes, our Lord is great and he is to be praised. But praising the Lord is not just with our lips. For if it is with our lips or in writing only but it is not being lived out in our lives and in our service to him then it is empty praise and it means nothing to him. For truly our praise to the Lord is our obedience to him, and it is our submission to him as Lord, and it is the forsaking of our sins in order to follow him wherever he leads us. For we praise him by our dying with him to sin and living to his righteousness first and foremost.
And yes, He is to be feared above all gods. And to fear the Lord is to give him due honor, respect, reverence, obedience, submission, and worship. And we worship him by surrendering our lives to him as living sacrifices, holy and pleasing to him, and by us no longer being conformed to the ways of this sinful world. We truly fear him when we submit to daily dying with him to sin and living daily to him and to his righteousness. We honor him as Master of our lives and we view our lives as now belonging completely to him.
For Jesus didn’t die on that cross for our sins just so we could go to heaven when we die. He didn’t die just to save us from the punishment of sin, either, but he died to free us from our bondage (addiction) to sin so that we will now walk in holiness and righteousness. And he did not free us just so we could go right back to living in sin, doing whatever we want, worshiping the gods (idols) of this world. But he has a purpose for our lives and that purpose is to serve him in all the ways he has designed for us.
Psalms 96:7-9 ESV
“Ascribe to the Lord, O families of the peoples,
ascribe to the Lord glory and strength!
Ascribe to the Lord the glory due his name;
bring an offering, and come into his courts!
Worship the Lord in the splendor of holiness;
tremble before him, all the earth!”
Not too many people today are ascribing to the Lord the glory due his name. Many people professing faith in Jesus Christ are conforming God in their minds to their earthly standards, and they are making God out to be like them. Few people anymore, at least here in America, are teaching the fear of the Lord and the honoring of God for who he truly is. They recreate him in their own minds according to their own image to fit with their own lifestyles and they make him out to be a doting grandfather in the sky to serve them.
So, they teach Scriptures outside their context and then they twist them to say what they want them to say so that they can live the way that they want to live. Therefore, we have many people professing faith in Jesus Christ who are claiming for themselves salvation and forgiveness of sins and heaven as their eternal destiny who are still living in the flesh, living to please the flesh without regard for God or for his holiness or for what he desires and commands. Although they know they are doing wrong still they claim God as their God and heaven as their eternal destiny.
And this is being taught by many pastors, preachers, and teachers of the Scriptures and those who write and publish “Christian” books. And people are flocking to these messages and they are drinking up these lies because the lies are telling them that they can keep on in deliberate and habitual sin, and that they can live their lives however they want, for their own pleasure, and that God is still their God and that heaven is still their eternal home.
But what many of them are teaching goes directly against the character of God and against the teachings of the Scriptures, and against God’s will and purpose for our lives. For Jesus died that we might die with him to sin and live to him and to his righteousness. He died that we might no longer live for ourselves but for him who gave his life up for us. And he shed his blood for us to buy us back for God (to redeem us) so we will no longer be enslaved to sin but so that we will now honor God with our lives.
[Lu 9:23-26; Jn 6:35-58; Jn 15:1-11; Rom 6:1-23; Rom 8:1-17; Eph 4:17-24; 1 Pet 2:24; 1 Co 6:9-10,19-20; 2 Co 5:10,15,21; Tit 2:11-14; Jas 1:21-25; Rom 12:1-2; Eph 2:8-10; Php 2:12-13; Col 1:21-23; Col 3:5-10; Gal 5:16-21; Eph 5:3-6; Gal 6:7-8; Rom 2:6-8; Heb 10:26-27; 1 Jn 1:5-9; 1 Jn 2:3-6; 1 Jn 3:4-10; Matt 7:21-23; Ac 26:18; Rev 21:8,27; Rev 22:14-15]
Under His Wings
By William Orcutt Cushing and Ira David Sankey
Under His wings I am safely abiding;
Though the night deepens and tempests are wild,
Still I can trust Him, I know He will keep me;
He has redeemed me, and I am His child.
Under His wings—what a refuge in sorrow!
How the heart yearningly turns to His rest!
Often when earth has no balm for my healing,
There I find comfort, and there I am blest.
Under His wings—oh, what precious enjoyment!
There will I hide till life’s trials are o’er;
Sheltered, protected, no evil can harm me;
Resting in Jesus I’m safe evermore.
Under His wings, under His wings,
Who from His love can sever?
Under His wings my soul shall abide,
Safely abide forever.
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