Text: Psalm 112:1-9 April 15, 2012
1) There is a wish: We all have wishes to have things in our life and our wishes are varied in different stage of life. Most people wish to have a better and happier life, success in school, career and marriage. Although the Bible doesn¡¯t give us a secret formula to get richer, higher and better, it does promise God¡¯s blessings on those who live their lives God¡¯s way. God didn¡¯t just promise to bless his faithful, he also promised to bless their descendents if they obey his laws: ¡°But (I will) keep showing love to a thousand generations of those who love me and keep my commandments.¡± (Exodus 20:6)
2) There is a way: In the passage above, God promised his blessing on a man who fears God, (v. 1) His children will be mighty in the land where they dwell, (2) and he will have wealth and riches in his house. (3) God promised to provide light in time of darkness, (4) and good, instead of evil, will come to him. (5) He will never be shaken (6) or be afraid of bad news. (7) He will triumph over his adversaries, (8) and he will receive honor from the Lord. (9) In order to receive blessing from the Lord, a man needs to live his life in the way God has prescribed. Let us examine what we can do to turn our wishes into real blessings:
THE MAN AND HIS GOD: ¡°Blessed is the man who fears the Lord, who finds great delight in His commands.¡± (Psalm 112:1)
1) He needs to have God in his heart: This is the starting point. No one can expect God¡¯s blessing without having God lives in his heart and rules in his life. Anyone whose heart is filled with everything except God, and he wants to run his life on his own, there is no room for God to pour His blessings.
2) He needs to respect God in his life: To have God lives in our hearts means to allow God to be in charge of our lives. God won¡¯t be happy just being an invited guest but the Master in our hearts. Humility and obedience to surrender our desires of life to Him is a pre-requisite to receive His blessings.
3) He needs to follow the laws of God: Knowing God¡¯s commands and laws in one thing; to obey and follow through with them is another. If you do not follow the drawing of a map in treasure hunting, you won¡¯t find the treasure is a simple truth. God has prescribed a route to his blessings and they are all in his laws and commandments. If you are sincere to follow, you will find.
THE MAN AND HIS LIFE: ¡°His children will be mighty in the land; the generation of the upright will be blessed. Wealth and riches are in his house and his righteousness endures forever.¡± (Psalm 112:2-3)
1) He knows right from wrong: A man needs to have a right mind to do the right thing. His conscience needs to be in proper position to choose right from wrong. He needs to see good and evil from God¡¯s perspective.
2) He honors what is true and right: He will not allow his personal interest or bias to interfere with his sense of right and wrong. He will not bend the truth for personal gain. He will take a stand for what is right and good even to his personal loss. He will not flip flop for benefits.
3) He will keep his life clean: No one can be absolutely perfect but he must try his best to think right, do right and talk right humanly possible. He needs to shun evil, stay away from the ungodly and uphold truth in all conditions. (Psalm 1:1)
THE MAN AND HIS PEOPLE: ¡°Even in the darkness light dawns for the upright, for the gracious and the compassionate and righteous man. God will come to him who is generous and lends freely, who conducts his affairs with justice.¡± (112:4-5)
1) He is gracious and humble: Even though with all the blessings of the Lord on him and his children, he is gracious and humble with people. He is not boastful or self-assertive. He will not over rule others when people disagree with him. He will admit fault and accept defeat graciously and sincerely.
2) He is generous to the needy: To the less fortunate, he will show compassion and care. He will never gloat on the misfortune of others. His heart is soft and he feels the needs of the helpless. He will forgive those who owed him or wronged him.
3) He is honest in business: In his business dealing, he is honest and will do what is right, just and appropriate. He will not allow profit to take control of his business transactions. He will not cheat or bend facts to benefit himself and hurt others.
THE MAN AND HIS WEALTH: ¡°He has scattered abroad his gift to the poor, his righteousness endures forever. His horn will be lifted high in honor.¡± (112:9)
1) He recognizes the sovereignty of God: With all the blessings of the Lord, he recognizes the sovereignty of God in his possessions. He knows that he is only a caretaker of the trust God has given him. He acknowledges God¡¯s purpose in his riches and he will follow God¡¯s guidance in dispensing them.
2) He is not selfish in his riches: He will not indulge in reckless or wasteful life style and will never squander God¡¯s wealth in evil things. He will not withhold his hands to help those who have needs. He will share more than just his wealth but also his love.
3) He is faithful in giving to God: He will be faithful and honest in his giving of tithes and offering to God through his church. He will not steal what belongs to God for his personal use. He will use his resources to advance the gospel ministry at home and abroad through mission work in his community and around the world to save souls.
1) What are your wishes? The nature of our wishes represents the nature of our life. If all our wishes are for personal gain, riches and fame, power and glory or good life in general. Then we can see that we care only for ourselves, not God not others. It is important that we have wishes that go inline with the nature of God, loving, caring for others.
2) It¡¯s not prosperity theology: God never bribes anyone to do good and right. But he did promise blessings to those who follow his laws and commands. Psalm 1 and 112 gives us a simple and workable formula for a life that will be in God¡¯s blessing. This is not about prosperity theology, but it is about a man and his journey of life, his faith in the Lord of grace. Are you ready to make that wish? Are you ready to be blessed?