Psalm 33:1 Shout for joy in the LORD, O you righteous! Praise befits the upright.
I get distracted easily. I can be right in the middle of a…there’s a squirrel in my birdfeeder.
Now, where was I? Oh, I remember. I am easily distracted. Not only in my personal life, but in my spiritual life as well. As a follower of Christ I am also easily distracted. In fact, I think the whole church – the Body of Christ – is easily distracted and has fallen victim to a deadly ploy of God’s enemy the Devil. If Satan can distract us from the fundamental truths of the Gospel then He is succeeding at hindering the work of the Holy Spirit to accomplish the mission of Christ through the church.
I know what Jesus promised and I believe it – On this Rock I will build my church, and the gates of hell shall not prevail against it. However, while the outside forces of evil cannot stop Jesus from building His kingdom, the internal influence of unfaithful people can certainly cause issues. And that is exactly what is happening.
My though process this morning all started when I read the 33rd Psalm. I underlined this phrase in verse 1 – Praise befits the upright. As I read on I was reminded of all the things for which I have reason to praise God.
- His Word is upright, meaning straight and true.
- His works are always done in faithfulness to His nature and character, so they are always good and for His glory.
- The earth is full of His steadfast love.
Then I read verses 6 through 9, and was distracted by the realization that the truths they contain have become a huge distraction for the Christian community, and is one of the weapons our Enemy is using to keep us from spreading the Gospel.
By the word of the LORD the heavens were made, and by the breath of his mouth all their host. He gathers the waters of the sea as a heap; he puts the deeps in storehouses. Let all the earth fear the LORD; let all the inhabitants of the world stand in awe of him! For he spoke, and it came to be; he commanded, and it stood firm.
It is fitting for the upright to praise God for CREATION. It is not fitting for His followers to be debating it or trying to make it fit within an evolutionary model. We have become so distracted by trying to blend our beliefs into a scientific model that we have minimized the very nature of God. We are guilty of worshiping our understanding of the creation rather than worshiping the Creator. (Romans 1:21) And as a result of not honoring God and giving Him thanks even when we cannot comprehend Him or His works, we have brought futile thinking into our churches so that some are even accepting the horrifying sins that result from exchanging the truth about God for a lie. (Romans 1:24-32) It is a terrible thing we have done, as followers of Jesus, to ourselves exchange the truth of God for a lie, and then justify it with a spiritual rationale of seeking higher knowledge and revelation.
Here’s what I see. Over the last few generations it has become increasingly popular to evaluate the fundamental truths of the Gospel by looking for possible alternative interpretations and applications. It all stems from man’s pride, in which he attempts to fulfill his need to know. We have been distracted by the possibility that we can answer eternal questions about the Infinite One within the confines of finite understanding. We have decided that there must be a way to explain the nature and power of God in a rational way so that unsaved people, who have no spiritual understanding, can accept what we believe.
The distractions we have chosen are designed by the Enemy of our souls to enhance our pride in our own knowledge. This stands directly opposed to faith, and as a result the church of Jesus Christ is weak and inept at standing as a beacon of hope in a dark world. We have engaged the culture on an intellectual level, and have removed faith from the foundation of who we are. We are choosing to trust in our own abilities and wisdom so that we can praise ourselves. We are distracted from praising God.
The Psalmist emphasizes the hopelessness of this distracted pursuit. The LORD brings the counsel of the nations to nothing; he frustrates the plans of the peoples…The king is not saved by his great army; a warrior is not delivered by his great strength. The war horse is a false hope for salvation, and by its great might it cannot rescue.
Our distracted into intellectualism is not the answer. It is a false hope. Our only hope lies in the fundamental truth that God is Who He says He is, and He has done exactly what He said He did. He is our hope – Our soul waits for the LORD; he is our help and our shield. For our heart is glad in him, because we trust in his holy name. Let your steadfast love, O LORD, be upon us, even as we hope in you.
My friends, it is time for some deep soul-searching. We live in a generation that has validated the re-evaluation of the fundamental doctrines of God as a healthy pursuit. NO! It is a prideful pursuit to validate man’s identity, not God’s. Let us leave the distractions, and return to a life of faith in God, and let us praise Him and give Him thanks even though we cannot fully comprehend Him. We are called to live by faith, and God said that everything not of faith is sin. Let us not be the reason that the Enemy of God has a foothold in His precious Son’s Body.