Finding Peace

Songs for Life - Part 9


Israel Guerrero

Dec. 19, 2021


Disclaimer: this is an automatically generated machine transcription - there may be small errors or mistranscriptions. Please refer to the original audio if you are in any doubt.

[0:00] So today we're going to look at the first five verses of Psalm 27 from verse 1 to 5.

[0:13] And let me read this. The Lord is my light and my salvation. Whom shall I fear?

[0:24] The Lord is the stronghold of my life. Of whom shall I be afraid? And able doers sale me to eat up my flesh? Thank you.

[0:38] My enemies, my adversaries and foes, it is they who stumble and fall. Though an arming camp against me, my heart shall not fear the war arise against me, yet I will be confident.

[0:54] One thing have I asked of the Lord, that will I seek after, that I may dwell in the house of the Lord all the days of my life, to gaze upon the beauty of the Lord and to inquire in his temple, for he will hide me in his shelter.

[1:18] In the day of trouble, he will conceal me under the cover of his tent. He will leave me hide upon a rock.

[1:29] This is God's word. So today I want to preach about the best place and the best answer for the worst moment.

[1:47] The best place and the best answer for the worst moment. Here we can read that, for he will hide me in his shelter in the day of trouble.

[2:03] In other words, in the worst moment. All we know that the times we are living could be considered as one of the most challenging times.

[2:14] We know that we are living hard times right now, regarding health issues. The whole war has been choked by COVID-19. We are living maybe on certain days.

[2:27] We don't know what's going to happen in the next couple of days. On the other hand, politically and socially, we see that things are not going very well.

[2:41] Even worse, it seems that our lives are running around anxieties. Our hearts and minds are full of anxieties. However, some situations are not like a mere general problem, but a serious problem.

[3:01] A personal problem. Not just something outside of us, but in the very inside of our hearts. A deep pain maybe.

[3:12] An endless frustration about our lives. Frustration for being defeated by our very worst enemies.

[3:24] In this case, as we will see, our sin or the desires of a fallen world and even Satan. We are so frustrated and we think that every day is going to be worse because we are being defeated by our enemies.

[3:44] So why does God allow us to experience this bitter taste of difficult moments? Why?

[3:54] And what should be your answer for the worst moment? Worst God in those moments? Worst God when we can read here that the one army encamp against me, an army, an army of temptations, an army of sins, an army of depression and anxieties in life.

[4:21] Worst God in those moments. And these questions we will answer considering the next following three points or three heads.

[4:33] The first one I want to share with you is the worst moment and that is the enemy's war. The second point is the best answer for this moment.

[4:45] And here is choose to dwell in the house of the Lord. And finally the best place for the best answer and it is God dwelling, God himself dwelling in his house.

[5:02] So the first point, the worst moment and that is the enemy's war. The psalm begins declaring who God is first.

[5:15] The Lord is my light and my salvation and the Lord is the strength of my life. So when the author of this psalm considers who God is, then he asks, whom shall I fear?

[5:35] Of whom shall I be afraid? So first of all we can see here something that is certain. We can see here an assurance, something that is real and brings security.

[5:51] As I said before, we are living in times where people, we are unsure. These are uncertain times. But here there is something that is secure, that there is something real, but at the same time secure for the psalmist.

[6:06] What is? It is that the Lord is my light and my salvation. And because of that, because of that he asks, of whom shall I be afraid? Whom shall I fear?

[6:18] So when David talks about fear, we see that there is something that could cause intense fear in David's heart.

[6:31] The word here for the original word for to be afraid is just this like intense, like a horror when you are trembled for something that is, you are very afraid of that.

[6:44] So the question is, what's that that can make our life tremble? Something that we know that oppose us, oppose to us.

[6:55] Something bigger than us. Something that we know that can hurt and defeat us. In other words, the enemies are those who can provoke terror in us.

[7:11] But David here describes the nature and work of these enemies. They are evildoers, someone who consciously does hurtful actions against himself and against others.

[7:28] At different moments of his life, David was faced with enemies and we know that. However, the enemies described here are not far away from him, but close to him.

[7:44] We can read here, they came against me, assailed me. The same happens with the worst enemy of every Christian or worse enemy is not outside of us, but is in our heart or sin.

[8:05] It is not a distant enemy. It is not that something that it is not something that is like in the next person who is next to you, but is within us and we fight against that.

[8:22] It is in the very deep of our hearts. Sadly, our worst enemy is within us.

[8:33] And as I said, it is sin. But what is sin? We talk about sin, but how can we describe sin? I really like the answer of the Westminster Shorter Catechism, question 14.

[8:47] Sin is anyone of conformity unto or transgression of the law of God. Again, sin is anyone of conformity unto or transgression of the law of God.

[9:06] In other words, sin, in this answer, we know that sin we can describe it when we are not satisfied with God's holy law.

[9:17] We're not satisfied with that. We're not satisfied and we try to think that we can create another law. So we are not conformed with this.

[9:29] We tend to think that this is not enough or I don't like it. So that's the reason why we break this law and what is God's law?

[9:41] In one word, it's love. Love God and love your neighbor. So the root of God's law in one word is love.

[9:53] So we break that law and we race up against the will of God and that is our worst enemy. That's our sin and the enemy, we know that doesn't come to play with us or have fun with us.

[10:12] An enemy come to, according to the enemy, according to Jesus, come to steal, according to John 10, come to steal, hurt, kill, sorry, and destroy it.

[10:28] So the enemy is not satisfied. My sin is not satisfied. We just steal something from our families, from our heart, but sin or every enemy of the church wants to steal, but not only that, he wants to kill, but not only that, he wants to destroy your life, my life, your family, my family.

[10:55] In David's words, they come to eat up the flesh. When Abel Doers sailed me to eat up my flesh.

[11:09] So how are we dealing with our sins? Are we playing with it? Or what kind of temptations are leading us to stumble and fall down?

[11:26] However, if you are in Christ, let me tell you this, you definitely will not fall down, but your enemies, your enemies will surely stumble and fall.

[11:46] They will fall, those who are in Christ not. Why? Because of you? No, because of who God is. So David's thoughts, affections, and will are directed and centered in who God is.

[12:04] Even when an army, an army of enemies are ready to attack and to kill his life, his eyes are not fixed on them, on these enemies, but on God.

[12:24] But not just on God, but on his God. There is something that is intimate here and personal in his speech.

[12:35] It is not about a mere head knowledge about God, but it's a heartfelt knowledge of the God of the Bible, of the God revealing the Bible, the God who is here.

[12:47] It is also in his heart, because it's not only God, but it's my God. In this way, David can say the Lord is, it is not the Lord's light or the Lord's salvation.

[13:04] David can declare the Lord's my light and the Lord is my salvation. So why does David use this word my?

[13:18] Because he, in this Psalm, he describes a God that is personal, the real God that is personal. He describes God with his covenantal name, Yahweh, the Lord, the immutable God of the covenant.

[13:36] The Lord is my light and my salvation, Yahweh, the Lord of the covenant, the faithful God, the immutable God who is faithful to his promises.

[13:50] It's my light and it's my salvation. It's my God, the faithful God, the God who shows his favor, his light, the same God that redeemed Israel from slavery in Egypt, is the same God that redeemed David.

[14:12] And it is the same God, is the same God who is here this night to redeem our hearts, to redeem our families, to defeat your enemies.

[14:25] That God is our God, is your God. You belong to him.

[14:37] That's your only comfort, both in life and death, that we are not ours. But we belong to Christ, we belong to God, to the faithful God.

[14:51] So with this in mind, David asks something that reflects the best answer in the worst moment.

[15:02] When enemies are against him, when an army of enemies are ready to destroy his life, he can declare this.

[15:13] The second point, the best answer, choose to dwell in the house of the Lord. So when David considered who his enemies are and who God is, he asked for only one thing, only one thing in the very worst moment.

[15:38] And what he asked here, it is not only a deep desire. Here he said, verse four, one thing have I asked of the Lord. That word asked, it is a desire, it's an intense desire that David really wants.

[15:57] When we were a child at Christmastime, we were desiring something. I don't know, in your case, or in the 1064, maybe that's pretty old, but something that you really desire when you were a child.

[16:10] Or maybe now, I don't know. But here we can see something that he really wants. The enemies are ready to kill him, and he wants only one thing.

[16:21] One thing have I asked of the Lord. But at the same time, it is not only a deep desire, but an action as well.

[16:34] Verse four again, that I, that will I seek after. So this action stands out for this intensity, that is, there is a great effort to reach this objective.

[16:52] His whole person is involving this, in this desire, in this action. Again, in the day of trouble, what do we want?

[17:05] Here we can see the answer. And we seek with intensity something that we really want, that we really desire, that we really need.

[17:16] So it is in the midst of the war that David asked one thing to dwell in the house of the Lord.

[17:31] He chooses to dwell in the house of the Lord of the Covenant. This is David's desire, desire and action.

[17:43] Not only when things are going well or bad, but every day, again, that I made the well in the house of the Lord all the days of my life, in days of victory or in bad days, in the day of trouble.

[18:02] He wants only one thing, and it is to live, to dwell in the house of the Lord. Good or bad days, on good days and bad days, he wants to be in the house of the Lord, and that is, he wants to have communion or fellowship with God.

[18:24] So what can we learn from this verse? Is that in the very worst moment when we are suffering, it is the best time to have fellowship, a sweet fellowship, to really enjoy God's presence, God's covenantal presence in our lives, in our families, in the midst of our temptations.

[18:51] When you are maybe ready to fall in that ugly temptation, God is there, the faithful God is there to have communion with God.

[19:04] And the motive behind this desire, this desire, sorry, speaks to the main end or purpose of this man.

[19:15] And it is important to consider this because some people want to be in the house of the Lord for their own benefits, for wrong reasons.

[19:26] In John chapter 2 or in the Gospels, we can see that the sellers or the money changers are sitting in the temple. They are near of this house of the Lord.

[19:38] We can see the Pharisees talking about this, praying near to the temple, but their motivations are the wrong motivations.

[19:53] So here with David, we see that his motive, his desire, it is not about to get a benefit, that selfish benefit.

[20:09] Far from that. This is not the case in this Psalm. The focus of the Psalm, it is not the Psalmist here, it is not David.

[20:20] The focus of the Psalm is not the enemies. The focus of the Psalm is not how the things are so bad outside. The focus of the Psalm, the beginning and the end of the Psalm, of the Bible, is the God of the Covenant, is Yahweh, is the Lord.

[20:42] The motive behind this desire speaks about man's chief end. And let me ask you this, church, what's the chief end of man?

[20:57] And will you reply? You can say in Spanish if you want.

[21:08] The main purpose of your life and my life, the main purpose at the end of this year or for the next year, the main purpose of everything, of your marriage or your singleness, of your bad moments, good days of everything, is to glorify God.

[21:30] It is to see the glory of God and enjoy Him for five minutes, for two minutes, forever, forever.

[21:43] And I know that it's hard. Difficult times are really hard. So how can we glorify God? So what's the desire? What's the motive? The motivation behind this desire, it is this verse, the end of verse four.

[22:02] We know that sometimes David can ask, oh God, please, we can ask, and that's fine, we can ask, oh God, please destroy my enemies, destroy the sin, and we have to pray in that way.

[22:15] We have to kill our sins, to modify our sins. But in this case, how can we really modify our sins? This is the answer.

[22:26] To gaze upon the beauty of the Lord and to inquire in His temple. You see, the Pharisees just praying for their own glory.

[22:37] We have people near of the temple, near to the temple, like the sellers. They are there, but their motivation is not to glorify God. It is not to seek the pardon of their sins. It is just to sell and, I don't know, what else?

[22:52] Wrong motivations, and they are there, they are near to the temple. But here, the motive behind this desire is only one thing.

[23:04] It is to gaze upon the beauty of the Lord and to inquire in His temple, to gaze. That is to, it is to behold. It is to perceive with attention something that we desire.

[23:19] His gaze is fixed on the beauty of Yahweh. It is not a quick look. When you see a beautiful picture, if you go to ETS, to the Free Church College, and you see this beautiful painting of the disruption, and you see the details, it's beautiful.

[23:42] Or if you see any picture or whatever, whatever, and when you see that, and you like it, what do you want to do?

[23:52] Do you want to see the details of that? If you see a beautiful house and you love that, oh, wow, this is a beautiful house, what do you want to do? Is to see the details, right?

[24:06] You want to spend time with that. It is not something, oh, just a news or something, oh, that's beautiful, and that's okay. No. Your affection, your mind, your everything, it's just, you are just saying, wow, this is absolutely beautiful because of this, this, and this.

[24:25] So you spend time just describing that beautiful thing. And not only that, you see that picture, and you want to communicate the beauty of that to others.

[24:36] And sometimes you get angry when sometimes it doesn't value that beautiful thing that is in front of you. So we are not talking here about a beautiful picture.

[24:48] We are not talking here about a beautiful landscape. We are talking about the beauty, the beauty of God, God himself, and not just the Almighty God, El or Elohim.

[25:06] We are talking about Yahweh. We are talking about the Lord of the Covenant. And he wants to just behold the beauty of his God again in the midst of a war, in the day of trouble.

[25:22] He wants to just gaze upon the beauty of the Lord. Again, this is not a picture. This is the beauty of the Lord. It's about his glory.

[25:33] And let me quote here an old theologian. Maybe you recognize his surname, Hermam, boving.

[25:45] And he says, the glory of the Lord is the splendor and brilliance that is inseparably associated with all of God's attributes and self-revelation in nature and grace.

[26:05] So think about it. The glory of the Lord is the beauty of the Lord associated with all of God's attributes, with his self-revelation, in his works of nature and grace, in his works of nature.

[26:29] If you see Scottish landscapes again, if you see the beauty of the universe, this only just the universe is so beautiful just to say that is nothing compared with the beauty of the Creator.

[26:45] This is so beautiful just to tell you that is nothing compared with the beauty of the Creator. But here we see more of God's, of this beauty in God's work of grace in your salvation, a salvation that talks about communion with God.

[27:09] And you see the beauty of the Lord when you just fell down into temptation and you feel so guilty because of that, because of your unfaithfulness.

[27:27] But God is there to tell you that he is your God, that he is your Father, and if you are unfaithful, you have to be, you have to just rejoice that he is the faithful God forever because he is the God of the covenant.

[27:54] Can you see the beauty of the Lord there in the worst moment? Can you see the beauty of God there when things are going bad?

[28:08] So the question is right now, are we desiring? Are we wishing to dwell in the house of the Lord?

[28:18] Are we growing in knowing more about God's beauty and glory? And let me tell you this, this is the important of solid, of solid, sorry, of solid and living doctrine.

[28:36] It is important to know more about God's attributes, to worship him, to rejoice in him. Are we spending some time that maybe during the Lord's day to know more about God's holiness?

[28:51] What's the meaning of that? What's the importance to know more about, for example, that God is a triune God? We are talking right now about covenant, covenant, but what's the meaning of that?

[29:04] What's the meaning of the covenant of grace for your life, for your family, for the church, for society, for who God is?

[29:19] When things are going bad, David wants to have an experiential, that is a life-changing knowledge of God. So theology is very important, it's super helpful here.

[29:33] Let me quote another old man, William Plummer, commenting on the psalm, a Presbyterian pastor, theologian. He said, one of the best ways to dispel doubts and fears is to summon to our aid the very strongest doctrines and highest truth of religion.

[29:57] Weak doctrines will not be a match for powerful temptations. Do you want to defeat your temptations?

[30:09] If we only focus on our temptations, in our sins, and saying, oh, I don't want to sin, I don't want to sin, I don't want to sin, and then you fall into temptation.

[30:22] But what about if we focus more on who God is? What about if we focus more on God's holiness, his attributes, and you spend time praying that direction?

[30:35] What about if you take just only a section of the Westminster Confession of Faith in one of the chapters described God's attribute, and you pray according to those attributes about God's almighty power, about his holiness?

[30:58] What could be the result of spending more time thinking about, meditating about God's holiness, for example?

[31:13] So let me finish with this. What about the adoption of the incarnation that we are thinking about in this season, the Tabernacle of God as the best place to do well in bad moments?

[31:29] So finally, here we see that what gives foundation to David's desires, it is the grace of God. It is the grace of God.

[31:41] Here we see three things that God does. It is God who hides him. It is God who conceals him, and it is God who lifts him high upon a rock.

[31:57] It is God's work in David's life. So when the enemies come, God hides him in his Tabernacle, the place where God's presence and glory dwells.

[32:13] God chooses to do well in the same way that his people in the Old Testament dwell in a tent.

[32:23] Herman Baving had a friend who was called Gerhardus Vos, and this guy said this, that the willing with his people, it is to satisfy God's desire to have a mutual identification of God between himself and them.

[32:42] So in that place, in that tent, in the Tabernacle or in the temple, in that place, God brings to that place, God brings David.

[32:57] However, David cannot enter to the Holy of Holies, but in Christ we can, because he is a true temple.

[33:10] Christ is the true Tabernacle, the Tabernacle of God among men. Now we have access to God. When Christ died, the veil, the curtain of the temple, was torn into two.

[33:27] Now in Christ we have true fellowship with God. Now in Christ we see God's beauty and glory.

[33:38] So are you having a bad day, or do you have a bad year maybe? Or are you experiencing right now a bad moment? And you are really tired of that.

[33:50] Let me tell you this. This is the best moment. This is the best moment to enjoy and to experience the faithfulness, the faithfulness, sorry, of your God, of my God, of the God of this church, of the God of your family.

[34:11] For the worst moment, the best answer, the best answer is just to say, God, this is the only thing that I want. This is the only thing that I want for this day, because we don't know if we are going to live tomorrow or for the next year.

[34:25] This is the only thing that I want for this, for my family. This is only one thing, oh Lord, that I want to do well in the house of the Lord. I want to live there.

[34:36] I want to live near to God. I want to live near of the heart of Christ as the beloved disciple used to rest upon Jesus' bosom.

[34:53] To be there near to the heart of Christ, of the beating heart of Christ, now in heaven, praying for us.

[35:05] Are you having a bad moment? So this is the best moment to have this resolution and say, I want to have communion with God.

[35:16] I want to know God, because this is the eternal life. It is to know God. It is to know God. The part of me, I never knew you.

[35:32] Everything is about to have a real, deep, living knowledge of the living God. That's the only thing that matters.

[35:44] That's the only secure thing, and it's yours. Our only duty, it is to enjoy this. It is to pray, and to pray, and to worship God, because He is the beautiful, faithful God of the covenant in Christ.

[36:06] Let's pray together.

[36:16] Oh God, there's an army against us. There's an army racing up against us just to destroy our lives, our families.

[36:36] There's an army of temptation. There's an army of secret, ugly sins within us, and we are desperate.

[36:50] We are tired. We are living in a day of trouble.

[37:03] That is in this context, in a dark context, in a dark day, that we want to say with David, the Lord Yahweh is my God, is my salvation.

[37:25] There is true redemption in Christ, in our triune God, Father, Son, and Holy Spirit.

[37:37] So there's only one thing that we want to ask in this night, and we pray together as one body. We pray together as one body, and please, oh God, please help us to every day have a deep desire to seek Your face, to have this desire to spend more time knowing who You are, knowing more about You, about Your faithfulness, about Your attributes, and how can we, because of that, live in that way, and apply and live according to Your promises, and help us, oh God, in this day of trouble, to gaze upon Your beauty, the beauty of Christ, the beauty of Christ, in every moment.

[38:50] In Your precious name we pray. Amen. O Lord, prophet, amen.