This Week in Chapel

Monday, September 12, 2016

Fall 2016 Chapel Message

On Listening
Dr. Stanley Toussaint on August 31, 2016

Heritage week brings Dr. Toussaint to chapel to share a practical message on Psalm 19.  He delivers his message with a patient charm that reveals his love for God and confidence in His Word.

On Listening

"If God has spoken, nothing is more important than to listen to what He had to say."  Psalm 19 describes the revelation of God in nature and the revelation of God in the Bible.  More specifically than in nature, Psalm 19 describes the revelation of God in the skies.

(NASB) Psalm 19:1-14
1 The heavens are telling of the glory of God;
And their expanse is declaring the work of His hands.
2 Day to day pours forth speech,
And night to night reveals knowledge.
3 There is no speech, nor are there words;
Their voice is not heard.
4 Their line has gone out through all the earth,
And their utterances to the end of the world.
In them He has placed a tent for the sun,
5 Which is as a bridegroom coming out of his chamber;
It rejoices as a strong man to run his course.
6 Its rising is from one end of the heavens,
And its circuit to the other end of them;
And there is nothing hidden from its heat.
7 The law of the Lord is perfect, restoring the soul;
The testimony of the Lord is sure, making wise the simple.
8 The precepts of the Lord are right, rejoicing the heart;
The commandment of the Lord is pure, enlightening the eyes.
9 The fear of the Lord is clean, enduring forever;
The judgments of the Lord are true; they are righteous altogether.
10 They are more desirable than gold, yes, than much fine gold;
Sweeter also than honey and the drippings of the honeycomb.
11 Moreover, by them Your servant is warned;
In keeping them there is great reward.
12 Who can discern his errors? Acquit me of hidden faults.
13 Also keep back Your servant from presumptuous sins;
Let them not rule over me;
Then I will be blameless,
And I shall be acquitted of great transgression.
14 Let the words of my mouth and the meditation of my heart
Be acceptable in Your sight,
O Lord, my rock and my Redeemer.

Heart of the Message

Dr. Toussaint expounds on three points from Psalm 19.

  1. God revealed in the skies (verses 1-6) - Right from the start we see first that God's revelation in the skies is continuous.  We then learn that God's revelation in the skies is universal.  It is not bound by words or language and like the sun is plain for all of us to see.
  2. God revealed in the scriptures (verses 7-11) - Verse 7 begins the transition to the revelation of God in His Word.  Notable is the use of LORD which refers to the name of God - YHWH.  "The LORD of the Bible is the God of the universe."  In this section we see six titles of the word of God followed by seven qualities.  Each pair is then followed by the impact it has on our lives (ex. The Law of the LORD (title) is perfect (quality), restoring the soul (impact);)  These are more precious than fine gold (material things) and sweeter than honey from the honeycomb (pleasure/hedonism).  If God has spoken, then nothing is more important for us.
  3. God revealed in our response (verses 12-14) - The revelation of God in the skies and in His Word reveals our own transgression and exposes our sin.  In Him, we are forgiven when we turn our words and our hearts to him.  God is interested in our hearts.

In Summary

How you listen is important.  It's not an academic exercise, it's something we need to accept for our lives.  There are 3 responses to the revelation of God through His Word.  We can place ourselves above His Word and dismiss His revelation.  We can place ourselves equal with His Word and accept what we like and reject what we don't.  Or, we can place ourselves under His Word.  A servant in humble gracious submission to the Word of God.

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