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FROM THE SERVANT GENERAL
 

FROM THE SERVANT GENERAL

LESSONS OF JOB
(Part 43)

REITERATING OUR THEME FOR NEXT YEAR


“Sing to the Lord a new song;
sing to the Lord, all the earth.”
(Psalm 96:1)

December 29, 2009

The psalm reading for these last three days of the year 2009 is from Psalm 96. This reiterates and confirms the theme God gave us for 2010. Psalm 96 helps us prepare for the new year that is upon us in a few days.

God is the Almighty! “God is clothed with awesome majesty. The Almighty .... is great in power” (Job 37:22b-23a,RSV). He is the Creator-God, having “made the heavens” (Ps 96:5b).[1] As such, “splendor and power go before him; power and grandeur are in his holy place.” (Ps 96:6). God the Almighty is simply awesome!

Being so awesome, God is “to be feared above all gods” (Ps 96:4b). “Therefore men fear him” (Job 37:24a,RSV); “Therefore men revere him” (Job 37:24a,NAB). Our posture is reverential fear or awe. It is what makes us “bow down to the Lord .... (and) tremble before God” (Ps 96:9). It fosters humility, when lowly creatures come before their great Creator.

But this awesome God reveals Himself as just and righteous. “The Almighty .... is great in power and justice, and abundant righteousness he will not violate.” (Job 37:23,RSV). He intends to “govern the world with justice” (Ps 96:13b,NAB); “He will judge the world with righteousness” (Ps 96:13b,RSV).

The above are realities that impact on how we live our lives. We cannot discard, ignore or marginalize such a God. We have two basic ways of rightly relating to such a God -- worship and evangelization. “Sing to the Lord, bless his name; announce his salvation day after day.” (Ps 96:2). The two, as in this verse, go together.

By worship we acknowledge who God is, and who we are. God is great and what is due Him is to be glorified. “For great is the Lord and highly to be praised” (Ps 96:4a), so we “give to the Lord the glory due his name!” (Ps 96:8a).

By the work of evangelization, we acknowledge who God is, the Savior, and who we are, His instruments, and what we are called to do. We are to proclaim Christ to the whole world. “Tell God’s glory among the nations; among all peoples, God’s marvelous deeds.” (Ps 96:3). We are to do a worldwide work of evangelization, so that Jesus can properly be installed as King of people’s hearts and homes. We are to “say among the nations: The Lord is king.” (Ps 96:10a).

Worship and evangelization have to do with our relationships -- to God and to the world. These have to do with who we truly are -- God’s people and disciples, and God’s servants and instruments.

As God’s people and instruments, we are called to be like Him, that is, holy. We are to reflect the very image and likeness of God, in which we were created, and we are to be pure instruments that He can effectively use for His purposes. This is such a great privilege. For weak, sinful human beings such as us to be called to follow in the very footsteps of the Savior, and as His witnesses to allow people to see Jesus in us. Indeed we are called to be “splendid in holiness” (Ps 96:9a).

This privilege God extends to us is cause for great joy. The Almighty God favors us as His people. He has saved us. He even uses us to be instruments of salvation for the world. This joy we live and this joy we share with the whole world and all of creation.

“Let the heavens be glad and the earth rejoice;
let the sea and what fills it resound;
let the plains be joyful and all that is in them.
Then let all the trees of the forest rejoice”

(Psalm 96:11-12)

* * *


[1] NAB if Bible version not indicated.

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