Is praising God becoming boring to you? Does it feel like it is just a mechanical action? I hope not! Please let me encourage you to keep those things from happening. Praise and worship should not be done just out of habit. If you need a good text to remind you of the importance of praise check out Psalm 134.
I closed out last year with a study of the shortest psalm in the Bible. Today, I'm continuing our consideration of the Book of Psalms, and doing so based on length. Even though Psalm 131 is only 3 verses in length, there are some main ideas that immediately jump out at me. Two of these are not concerning myself with matters too wonderful for me, and the image of a weaned child with a mother.
Near the end of August, I shared some thoughts on The Two Ways of Psalm 1. Now that we are coming to the close of 2019, I think tonight is a good time to return to this Book of Wisdom. The text of Psalm 117 focuses on two major ideas. These are that Yahweh is worthy of praise, and He is kind and faithful. Let's take a look at each of these!
What can we expect when Jesus comes in His glory and sits on the throne of His glory? Many things, but one of them is division! Matthew 25:31-46 provides an incredible and terrifying glimpse of the judgment to come. In the passage, Jesus separates people from all the nations as a shepherd separates the sheep from the goats. This will be great from some, and horrible for others.
Recently we've been examining the idea of the Christian Faith being known as "The Way." As is taught in multiple places, there are only two ways that we can go in this life. Near the end of 1 Thessalonians we read of the conflicting characteristics between the children of the day and those of the night.
Being a disciple indicates that they were being taught. As they learned, they were traveling along the Way of Christ, and did not deviate from it. One impressive thing about them was that they were willing to be persecuted by others for their faith. Despite their terrible treatment, many were willing to be bound with chains and sent to far off cities for the name of Christ.
Jesus begins this portion of His sermon by exhorting His hearers to enter through the narrow gate. For years, I felt like that was a surprising way to start the thought. Especially since He immediately changes His topic to the gate and way that we should not travel. As I reflect on it further, it actually does make sense. The reason is because the consequences of not entering by the narrow gate are horrible.
One common aspect of the Bible is its contrasts. Many passages speak of only two positions. A well-known text that presents such a division is the first Psalm. It describes the contrast between the righteous and the wicked. I think it will be beneficial for us to explore these two different types of people so we are encouraged to go in the way of righteousness.