Through the Word in 2020 – June 12 / A Most Profound Prayer


 
For the audio Podcast of this and every episode, find us on Breaker, Google Podcasts, Overcast, Pocket Casts, RadioPublic, Spotify or HERE
 
If you’d like to join us in our journey reading all the way through the Bible this year, drop me a line at reid.ferguson@gmail.com, and I’ll be glad to email back a copy of the reading plan we are using.
 
“God is great, God is good, let us thank Him for our food – Amen.”
 
Raised in a Christian home, I had the privilege of being taught to pray early on. What I just quoted is the first prayer I remember being taught. Nearly 70 years later, it’s still a good prayer to pray. Tho I trust with less rote than when I first learned it. Little did I know then the true depth and theological significance of those 14 little words. That’s our topic today on Through the Word in 2020.
 
We’ve talked before about the amazing economy of words the Bible often uses. One case in point is part of our reading for today – Psalm 100. It comes to us along with 2 Kings 6:24–8:15; Ephesians 1:1–2; and Mark 15:21–32.
 
The structure of the Psalm is simple:
 
Vss. 1-2 are a call to worship the Lord with gladness.
 
vs. 3 offers 3 reasons for that activity:
 
a. Because the Lord we serve is God. Supreme. Holy. The Creator.
 
b. Because He made us! We are not cosmic accidents. You and me, each one of us exists because God determined it was wisest and best and most pleasing to Him for us to be a part of His universe. He personally decided you should personally – be.
 
c. Because as made by Him and for Him, He takes personal responsibility for us. He sees to it our needs are met like a gentle and loving shepherd. We aren’t just out here in life flapping in the breeze. We are His.
 
vs. 4 – Contemplating those realities, and we DO need to stop and actually let those things sink in – for once they do – they incite us to worship again.
 
Which brings us to vs. 5 and the simple prayer I was first taught at the supper table.
 
In vs. 3 – we contemplated God’s greatness, but in vs. 5 we are brought to see He is not just great – but He is good. A good God whose steadfast love endures forever. And whose faithfulness – His inviolable commitment to see all of His promises come to pass – extends to all generations. Time is no enemy to His bringing every promise to pass. No place is that more perfectly demonstrated than in Christ’s atoning death for our sins, finally coming to pass after its first being promised in Genesis 3.
 
And here is the great lesson in all of this: No matter what we are facing today, globally, personally, nationally, physically, circumstantially – our God is great. Greater than all. Greater than all of them put together. He is more than sufficient for all we need. Greater than all that threatens us. Our God dear one – is GREAT! Not small. Not ineffective. Not distant. Not disinterested. Not unaware. Our God is great.
 
But if He were great, and not also good – His greatness might not mean very much. But He is not only great – He is GOOD.  James 1:17  “Every good gift and every perfect gift is from above, coming down from the Father of lights, with whom there is no variation or shadow due to change.”
 
There is no defect in Him. No shortcoming. Nothing dark, nefarious or evil in the slightest way. He is good. All good. Infinitely, absolutely, unchangeably holy, and just and righteous and good. And He can do His loved ones no harm in any way.
 
When you sit for breakfast or lunch or dinner today – take a few moments to bow your head. And seeing the provision in front of you – stop and consider: Your food is there to eat, and you are there to eat it – because your God is great. And your God is good. Thank Him for that food.
 
In that simple prayer – Enter His gates with thanksgiving, and His courts with praise! Give thanks to Him; bless His name.
 
I’m Reid Ferguson. And God willing, we’ll be back next Monday.

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