Psalm 138 (Part III)

5 Yes, they shall sing of the ways of the Lord,
For great is the glory of the Lord.
6 Though the Lord is on high,
Yet He regards the lowly;
But the proud He knows from afar. Psalm 138:5-6

I shared in the last devotional that David’s hope and expectations were that the kings of the earth someday will be praising the Lord! In our modern day, those kings are those with money, prestige, popularity, or expertise in a particular area. They may think that they are in a exalted position, but God cares about those who are humble and look to Him. The more we move away from the ways of God, the more we have a tendency to fill the void of eternal thirst with people! The closer we get to the Lord, the greater understanding we have of His ways in our lives!

Oh, the depth of the riches both of the wisdom and knowledge of God! How unsearchable are His judgments and His ways past finding out! Romans 11:33

In the above verse Psalm 138:6, David exclaims that kings and those in power will sing of the ways of the Lord! On the other hand, Paul declares in Romans 11:33 that God’s ways are unsearchable. How can they both be true!? Paul understood that we cannot find God’s ways in our own strength, intellect, or zeal, because he had tried it as a Pharisee. On the other hand, David had found that when sought the Lord, God chose to reveal His ways to him.

The people in world make goals to pursue education and to gain skills, but we cannot strategize to gain spiritual growth and understanding that way. We are incapable of becoming expert in  God’s ways by going to a theological school or trying to make it happen on our timetable. While it is very beneficial to study the Bible, we will never arrive by our self-effort. Unless God opens our eyes to reveal His heart to us, we will only gain head knowledge. There are many theologians who have advanced degree in theology but no understanding of God’s ways. God reveals His ways to us through interacting with Him, which is a process that could take years and decades.It is clear that Biblical characters such as Abraham, Jacob, Samuel, or David did not fully understand what God was doing in their lives. God’s ways are rich and deep in wisdom and insight and knowing them require time and humility on our part. 

Those of us who teach and preach the word of God have to be cautious and not try to define God’s ways by extracting doctrine out of every scripture. There are at least two problems with that approach. First, doctrine has a tendency to perceive God only in a certain way. The scripture certainly is full of doctrine, but not every scripture is meant to be a doctrine. For example, if Jesus had his quiet time early in the morning, it does not mean that everyone needs to have their quiet time early in the morning. I may do it early because I am following His good pattern, but I don’t have to make a doctrine out of it for others. The second issue with creating doctrine is that this encourages people to be lazy in seeking God since they can just follow our prescribed way to be obedient to God. People should always be encouraged to develop their relationship with the Lord by seeking Him in all matters and especially on those issues that are not in black and white. When we attach a doctrine to a scripture, we put ourselves in the position of authority to declare not only how God works, but that He only works in a certain way. 

While the Lord desires for us to grow in wisdom, knowledge, and understanding, none of us will be able to figure out God! We will always need to remain in position of humility, asking for His help, direction, and revelation. The Lord is very creative and He is working on several dimensions all at once. As Paul stated in 1Corinthians 13:12, that we see dimly but someday we will see Him face to face. Praise God that God is near those who are humble, and He chooses to reveal Himself  and show them His ways! Look to the Lord with humility today and let Him show you His ways!

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