“EQUAL ACCESS” Pastor YAU
Text: Psalm 145:14-21 April 30, 2006
“I have the
same right”: Pastor Stuart Silvester loved to tell a story about a conversation he had
with one of his friends who frequently flew his small private plane in and out
2) We all have the same rights: Mr. Silvester then made this spiritual application: “It is the same with prayer, with the believer’s right to approach the throne of grace. No matter how unimportant we may think we are or how small we may be in comparison with others or how low our situation in life may be, when it comes to prayer, we take no back seat to anyone else. No one is given priority treatment before God.” In a world that offers special privilege to the rich, the famous and the powerful, it is encouraging to know that every child of God has equal access to the heavenly Father.
BIBLICAL BASIS OF EQUALITY:
1) All men are created equal: Few years back, my son and I were in a store to buy a poster. There was a large framed poster hanging at the entrance of the store, a muscular man with all the bulging muscles in the right places. A line of inscription at the bottom that reads: “Yes, all men are created equal, but some are more equal than others.” God never creates anyone who is more equal than anyone else. All the inequalities are created by man, not by God. The essence of a man, his spirit and soul are all from God and there is no difference in value, potential or dignity in the eyes of God.
All men are blessed
by God: When God called Abraham, He
specified that all the people on earth will be blessed through him. (Genesis
12:3) The fact that God has chosen the nation of
3) All men are in God’s plan of salvation: When the Bible says “For God so loves the world,” in John , all people in the world are included. Regardless of their racial, cultural, religious or socio-economic differences, God intends to save all of them with no exception. When Jesus was born, he was born to deliver all men from their sins. (Matt. 1:21) No one, regardless of his/her worldly status, has any special privilege and no one is denied of his equal opportunity to be saved. Anyone rich or poor who calls on the name of Jesus shall be saved by His grace. (Acts )
4) All men are equal in God’s eyes: In Romans 2:10-11, the Bible says “(God) gives honor and peace to everyone who does good …for God does not show favoritism.” In fact, God elevates the poor, the helpless, the widows and orphans to be equal to receive His grace. When Jesus entered the synagogue for the first time and read the Scripture, He chose to read from Isaiah 61:1-2 “The Spirit of the Lord is on me because He has anointed me to preach good news to the poor, to proclaim freedom for the prisoners and recovery of sight for the blind, to release the oppressed and to proclaim the year of the Jubilee.” (Luke 4:18-19)
THE SCOPE OF EQUAL ACCESS: No one may understand the limits or limitless scope of equal access to God and His riches.
1) Equal access to God in prayer: This is about equal right to access God in prayer. No matter it was ancient time or modern days, there is no such thing as equal access to people of authority and power. No ordinary people may access to the presence of ancient emperors or modern day presidents. But God grants all people, no regard of age, intelligent level, achievement or possessions, to access Him in prayer anytime anywhere under all circumstances for all the needs we may have. All that He asks is that we must have faith in Him to approach Him. (Hebrews 11:6)
2) Equal access to God’s grace: In describing the immeasurable grace, Apostle Paul says: “And God raised us up with Christ and seated us with him in the heavenly realms in Christ Jesus, in order that in the coming ages He might show the incomparable riches of His grace.” (Ephesians 2:6-7) Since grace is given and not earned, we have the unlimited access to His grace to forgive our sins and to be our strength in time of need.
3) Equal access to God’s provision: God owns everything in heaven and on earth. He is happy to give to those who trust Him. “For the Lord God is a sun and shield; the Lord bestows favor and honor; he does not withhold good things from those who are blameless.” (Psalm 84:11) Jesus compared a human father and his good will in giving his best to his children. He says: “How much more will your Father in heaven give good gifts to those who ask Him!” (Matt. 7:11) King David claimed, “The Lord is my shepherd, I shall not want.” (Psalm 23:1)
4) Equal access to God’s forgiveness: Forgiveness is a big problem in human relationship. We all have sinned and come short of the glory of God. We all have offended others and it is never easy to ask for forgiveness. God in His infinite love and grace, He is always ready to forgive our sins when we repent with sincerity. He will never mention them again like human beings do. He will clean our sins and transgression with the blood of Jesus and will wash us as white as snow. (Isaiah 1:18) The Psalmist also says, “He does not treat us as our sins deserve or repay us according to our iniquities. As far as the east is from the west, so far has he removed our transgressions from us.” (Psalm 103:10,12)
BENEFITS OF EQUAL TREATMENT: (Today’s text)
1) God supports the weak and the oppressed: “The LORD upholds all those who fall and lifts up all who are bowed down.” (145:14) Many of us understand the importance of having God by our side when we are weak and oppressed. While the world always stands with the strong and the powerful, God stands with the weak and the helpless. While the rich and famous can buy their support with money and influence, we can count on God’s support for free.
2) God provides for the needy: “The eyes of all look to you, and you give them their food at the proper time. You open your hand and satisfy the desires of every living thing.” (145:15-16) We all see the burdens many have to endure in need of material provision while the rich and famous live in extraordinary luxury. Those who trust in God will never be in want or lack of needs for God knows their situation and will provide at the right time.
3) God is close to the lonely: “The Lord is near to all who call on Him in truth.” (145:18) We all understand the dread of being lonely and helpless. While the world always crowds around the rich and powerful, we have a God who is willing to be close to us when we have no one stays with us. He always comforts the weak, gives hope to the hopeless and heals those who are wounded.
4) God protects the vulnerable: “The Lord watches over all who love Him.” (145:20) The poor and the weak are in need of protection because they are the most vulnerable and unprotected. God is their shield and protection in all circumstances. Our true security is in the almighty God.
1) Access the throne in confidence: “Let us then approach the throne of grace with confidence, so that we may receive mercy and find grace to help us in time of need.” (Hebrews 4:16) Jesus has opened the way for us to access God. Let us go to Him frequent enough to receive mercy and grace.
2) Access the gift of eternal life: As in the story of the “Prodigal Son”, our heavenly Father is waiting for all His wandering children to come home. No matter what you have done or how far you are away from God, He is looking for your return to Him. As millions have come to Him before you, today is your turn to come back to your Father. He will give you peace and rest.