Monday, July 20, 2009

Taste and See

Monday morning at New Horizon and Ray Ortlund invited us to taste and see that the Lord is good (Psalm 34:8).It's an invitation to find our satisfaction in God rather than anything else, because God is the only one who can truly satisfy our deep longings. Each of us have a thirst, and all sins are an attempt to fill the void. We can either do good things, and expect God to reward us- which ends in false pride and an increasing hunger for God, or we can do bad things, attempting to find satisfaction, but ending up guilty, unclean and more thirsty. Sin is more than breaking a rule, it is living life without God.

The good news is that Christ suffered, the righteous for the unrighteous, to bring us to God. Jesus provides us with satisfaction with no bitter aftertaste. In fact, when the devil accuses us, he actually helps us to flee to Christ by reminding us of what Jesus has done for us and his great mercy.

God created us to glorify him by enjoying him. He is our pleasure, yet as Augustine pointed out, there's a danger that we can use God as a means of some other pleasure - this is sin!

When Psalm 34 tells us to taste and see that the Lord is good, it is a command from God. Enjoying God is therefore not only right, but also required! It's not an advanced thing, but the basic for all believers. Ray then looked at the why, what and how of enjoying God:

Why: because God is as good as he says he is - a message that is suppressed in our wicked world; our 'soul senses' are dimmed through our sin which keep us from enjoying God. It all goes back to Adam, who tore himself away from the life support for his heart and soul when he sinned, turning away from his soul connectedness to God and only having senses for the world around him. It's easier for us to get excited about our hobbies or the latest iPhone app than about our Creator. We're alive to the world, but dead to God. God acts though, to bring us to be born again, renewed and resurrected with Jesus, who changes and channels our desires - being greedy for Christ rather than money; passionate for Christ rather than lustful.

What: the text is clear, to taste is to receive and savour, to see is to personally experience vividly. It calls us to personal enjoyment of the pleasure of God, asking our existence on God's goodness and nowhere else. Holding to the Lord and not letting go until he blesses us.

How: the rest of verse 8 tells us how, by taking refuge in him. Image of an assylum seeker in an embassy - the laws of the nation don't apply as the embassy is an extension of it's native country. In this hostile land, we must take assylum in God. Being happy in the Lord, just like Richard Williams, a missionary to South America in 1851 who starved and froze to death, who wrote in his journal that he was happy in Christ, and would not change places with anyone else in the world.

Challenging material on my first morning, and later on we have Don Carson continuing the theme of enjoying God from the New Testament. Notes hopefully to follow.

No comments:

Post a Comment