Sunday, November 22, 2009

Be Encouraged, Praise God & Bear Fruit - Sermon



No matter what it is that we struggle with if we keep our eyes on Jesus we can still Praise God and bear fruit.

Text:

12 The righteous shall flourish like a palm tree.
He shall grow like a cedar in Lebanon.
13 Those who are planted in the house of the Lord
Shall flourish in the courts of our God.
14 They shall still bear fruit in old age;
They shall be fresh and flourishing,
15 To declare that the Lord is upright;
He is my rock, and there is no unrighteousness in Him. -- Psalm 92, NKJV

And David spoke the words of this song to the LORD in the day that the LORD delivered him from the hand of all his enemies and from the hand of Saul. And he said, "The LORD is my rock and my fortress and my deliverer; My God, my rock, in whom I take refuge; My shield and the horn of my salvation, my stronghold and my refuge; My savior, Thou dost save me from violence. I call upon the LORD, who is worthy to be praised; And I am saved from my enemies. For the waves of death encompassed me; The torrents of destruction overwhelmed me; The cords of Sheol surrounded me; The snares of death confronted me. In my distress I called upon the LORD, Yes, I cried to my God; And from His temple He heard my voice, And my cry for help came into His ears. 2 Samuel 22:1-7

Psalm 92, verses 12 - 15 "The righteous shall flourish like a palm tree. He shall grow like a cedar in Lebanon. Those who are planted in the house of the Lord shall flourish in the courts of our God. They shall still bear fruit in old age; they shall be fresh and flourishing, to declare that the Lord is upright: He is my Rock, and there is no unrighteousness in him."

The reference in verse 12 is to the flourishing of the date-palm. One of the more stately trees of the Palestinian plain, which when it has attained full size, bears from between 150 to 250 Kg
of fruit. With its perennial green vegetation constantly renewing itself from the root, this a picture of life.

Mentioned side by side with the palm is the cedar, the prince of the trees of the mountain. Fond near Mount Lebanon in the north of Israel, it is known for its graceful, lofty growth and the intensity of its vegetative strength. It is also known for the perfume which it gives off.

These trees portray the spiritual strength and fruitfulness of the godly person, fresh and flourishing spiritually no matter what age, eager to declare to all who will listen that the Lord is true and right in all his ways;

Faithful to his promise, He sent his Son Jesus Christ to die for our sin, so that full pardon might be granted, for every transgression to all believers. And as the Holy God, He keeps every one of His pledges of blessing to all who serve Him.

With the Psalmist, every follower of the Savior, therefore, joyfully exults: "God is my Rock, He is my fortress in him will I trust".

That is, He is a strong, never-failing, Deliverer in the time of every trouble, a sure and steadfast Guide for every path He would have us walk all our days on earth. He is an absolute, divine Guarantor of my eternal life with Him in heaven.

We often face troubles in life that make us less than confident that He is our "Rock". The same was true for David! He faced rebellions, famines, wars, the business with Bathsheba and the dying baby, and all sorts of court intrigues, including a wife that rejected him and mocked him, the son that tried to usurp his throne, and a military commander who went rogue and killed anyone he thought of as an enemy. His day-to-day was no better than ours, but he sang the song and confessed the goodness of the Lord and called the Lord His safety and protection and Savior!

I may face pain and troubles that may seem overwhelming. I may struggle with the darkness that surrounds me. I may feel as though I can go on no longer.

An in the midst of this I can look at Jesus on the cross. His sorrow bought us joy. His troubles bought us comfort. His pains bought us forgiveness. His death bought us life. And His resurrection is the guarantee of our own!

In the course of life here and now, we can count on God. We can call upon the LORD, who is worthy to be praised;

David said "I am saved from my enemies".

God still answers prayers. His Word still brings the Holy Spirit and His power - and it is He who is called "The Comforter". He is also called our Fortress, our Deliverer, our Refuge, our Shield, the horn of our Salvation, our Stronghold, our Savior, and, course, our God.

No matter what it is that we struggle with if we keep our eyes on Jesus we can still Praise God and bear fruit.

Fairdinkum

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