Drop files to upload.
Faithlife Corporation

Learning to Never Stop Talking About God’s Goodness

Notes & Transcripts

March 5, 2012

By John Barnett

Read, print and listen to this resource on our website www.DiscoverTheBook.org

As we open to Psalm 71, we have already seen how the whole Psalm is a portrait about how David looked at life through the lens of Scripture.

But today, as we come to the ending of David’s life we are looking at another aspect of His life reflected in this Psalm.

David declares that he is going to speak out about the goodness of God to the end.

David Decided to Talk About God’s Goodness

David has learned to never stop talking about the goodness of God.

Please listen to God speaking through David.

Psalm 71:6, 8, 15, 17-18 (NKJV)

v. 6 By You I have been upheld from birth;

You are He who took me out of my mother’s womb.

My praise shall be continually of You.

v. 8 Let my mouth be filled with Your praise and with Your glory all the day

v. 15 My mouth shall tell of Your righteousness and Your salvation all the day, For I do not know their limits.

v. 17 O God, You have taught me from my youth; And to this day I declare Your wondrous works.

v. 18 Now also when I am old and grayheaded, O God, do not forsake me, Until I declare Your strength to this generation, Your power to everyone who is to come.

If we could summarize what David was doing in Psalm 71 it would be something like:

I’m going to be thankful about everything and pray about everything.

Look back at what he says, and underscore them in your hearts, your minds, and your Bibles.

David is: Rejoicing

First of all, David is rejoicing in the Lord. You, You, You: the Lord fills David’s mind, David’s words, David’s future plans. That is what rejoicing is about: the Lord. Rejoicing is not about good times, it finds it source in the Lord. If the Lord fills our minds and lives, we are rejoicing, there is no way around it. So David is rejoicing.

David is: Praying

Secondly, David is talking to the Lord. All the way through this Psalm we see David talking to the Lord. In fact almost all of David’s 71 Psalms look either partially or entirely like prayers. They reflect David’s heart. David loved to talk to the Lord. What do we call “talking to the Lord”? We call it prayer, right? So David is praying.

David is: Thankful

Finally, David is clearly thankful. He is talking about all the good things his God has done for him. David says everything since my birth has Your Handiwork stamped upon it. David was thankful for God’s wondrous works, for God’s salvation, for God’s righteousness, for God’s power. In other words David saw God everywhere in life, and in everything that happened. So David is thankful.

With those three truths in mind, as I read back over those five key verses in Psalm 71, notice for yourself these three amazing elements of David’s life:

David is rejoicing. David is praying. David is thankful.

Psalm 71:6, 8, 15, 17-18 (NKJV)

v. 6 By You I have been upheld from birth;

You are He who took me out of my mother’s womb.

My praise shall be continually of You.

v. 8 Let my mouth be filled with Your praise and with Your glory all the day

v. 15 My mouth shall* tell of Your righteousness and

Your salvation all the day, For I do not know their limits.

v. 17 O God, You have taught me from my youth; and to this day

I declare Your wondrous works.

v. 18 Now also when I am old and gray headed, O God, do not forsake me,

Until I declare Your strength to this generation,

Your power to everyone who is to come.

David’s Life: Summarized

We could almost summarize David’s life, recorded in the Psalms by these same three amazing elements:

David is rejoicing. David is praying. David is thankful.

Those three choices, habits, characteristics: whatever you want to call them, those three sound like a great way to live life. They are what reflect David’s love for God and David’s passion for God’s supremacy in his life.

Today, those same elements are to be in our lives. Listen to them again:

David is rejoicing. David is praying. David is thankful.

We could say David seems to want to always rejoice, always pray, and always express gratitude or thankfulness. That kind of sounds like a NT passage that says something like: rejoice always, be prayerful at all time, and be thankful in everything.

David’s Life: Reflecting God’s Will

Why not turn with me to I Thessalonians 5 and there we will see that David was reflecting God’s will for us. God has revealed His will, and if He wants us to do something, He gives us the grace to accomplish it, right? I Thessalonians 5:16-18.

1 Thessalonians 5:16-18 (NKJV) Rejoice always, 17 pray without ceasing, 18 in everything give thanks; for this is the will of God in Christ Jesus for you.

We could almost summarize David’s life, recorded in the Psalms by these same three amazing elements, which are imperatives or commands in Paul’s letter from God to the Thessalonians:

David is rejoicing. David is praying. David is thankful.

Those three choices, habits, characteristics: whatever you want to call them, those three sound like a great way to live life. They are what reflect David’s love for God and David’s passion for God’s supremacy in his life. And God commands us to allow Him to bring about those same elements in our lives. Listen to them again:

1 Thessalonians 5:16-18 (NKJV) "Rejoice always, 17 pray without ceasing, 18 in everything give thanks; for this is the will of God in Christ Jesus for you."

God’s will for us is vital.

God has stated that will clearly.

Which leads us to another huge reality: this lifestyle of praise, prayer, and thanksgiving is God’s Will for each of us. And it is just one element of several clearly recorded declarations of God’s will.

For just a moment let me share what I was taught in the five years that I was mentored in pastoral ministry at Grace Community Church. I had just graduated from three years of University and five years of Graduate school.

I was full of facts and books, but needed to be trained in how to apply all that I had learned. God placed me on staff with John MacArthur. It was totally God’s doing. I met John once over lunch, and at the end of that lunch he stood up and shook my hand and asked me to come on staff and serve with him. That was something only the Lord could do.

For five years as I traveled with John and stood with him in the visitor reception line at Grace, much like ours here each Sunday, I watched him give each person the same advice as they sought direction from him. It was a sermon he had preached that was so powerful, the church printed it up as a small booklet to hand out to every single person that visited Grace. In my tenure there we had at least 100 visitors weekly, usually more.

Here is a summary of what I heard, over-and-over again as John MacArthur shared the words of that message: Found God’s Will

Number one: The will of God is that men be saved.

2 Peter 3:9 (NKJV) "The Lord is not slack concerning His promise, as some count slackness, but is longsuffering toward us, not willing that any should perish but that all should come to repentance."

Now this is where the will of God begins for us or for any man. Second Peter is about false prophets, who deny the return of Christ in 2 Peter 3. False prophets deny the return of Christ. And they're saying, are always saying 'Jesus is coming, Jesus is coming.' Where is He? Where is He?"

And Peter answers and says this, verse 9: "The Lord is not slack concerning His promise as some men are." In other words, He hasn't come because He's slack in promise, but He is long-suffering.

In other words, He hasn't come not because He can't come but because He waits in mercy. And the reason He waits is that "He is not willing that any should perish but all should come to repentance."

The will of God is not that men perish. The will of God is not that men perish. The will of God is that men be saved. So God's will then for your life, for the life of any man, begins with salvation. God's will is that you be saved. That's where it all starts. You commit your life to Jesus Christ. That's basic.

Number two: God's will is that you be Spirit-filled.

Ephesians 5:17-18 (NKJV) "Therefore do not be unwise, but understand what the will of the Lord is. 18 And do not be drunk with wine, in which is dissipation; but be filled with the Spirit,"

We are to be kept filled with the Spirit. In other words, the word 'filled' means totally dominated and controlled. The word is used in the Gospels when it says someone was filled anger or so-and-so was filled with rage or so-and-so was filled with wrath or filled with madness. It means that it totally controls you.

The Spirit is a person. He is either there or not there. The Spirit doesn't come in pieces. You know, we ask God for strength and we already have strength that Christ has given us. We can do all things through Christ whose strengthen us.

We ask Him for power and the Spirit's there with all the power we need. We ask Him for grace and He says, "My grace is sufficient." We ask Him for love and he says, "The love of Christ is shed abroad in your heart". We ask Him to guide us, He says, "I'm trying, why don't you follow?" We always ask for these things that we already have and we have the Spirit.

And so the Bible is really saying, confess your sin, yield to the Spirit, He will release His power. And then when you wander through the world, people will mistake you for God, or Jesus Christ. They'll see godliness in you. That's the Spirit-filled life. You know, once you're Spirit-filled, then you just begin to go in the will of God; it's fantastic!

If I had a glove lying here, and I said, "Glove, go play in tune on the piano" what's the glove going to do? It's not going to do anything! Gloves cannot play the piano.

Colossians 3:16 says "Let the word of Christ dwell in you richly." The Spirit-filled life is nothing more than saturation with the person of Christ. You get that? Everybody wants a quickie. Everybody wants three easy steps to instant spirituality. Instant maturity. It can't happen.

We will never know what the walk in the Spirit means until we commit ourselves to the saturation of the presence of Jesus Christ. You say, well how do you saturate yourself with His presence? Simply by studying the Word, right?

The more I focus on Him and the Word, and the more the thoughts of God saturate my mind, the more the word of Christ controls me, the more yielded I am to Him.

Number three: God's will is that you be sanctified.

1 Thessalonians 4:3-6 (NKJV) "For this is the will of God, your sanctification: that you should abstain from sexual immorality; 4 that each of you should know how to possess his own vessel in sanctification and honor, 5 not in passion of lust, like the Gentiles who do not know God; 6 that no one should take advantage of and defraud his brother in this matter, because the Lord is the avenger of all such, as we also forewarned you and testified."

1 Thessalonians 4:3 is a verse that's not too tough to understand. “For this is the will of God”, that's not difficult is it?

This is the will of God. What? Your sanctification. Stop right there.

God wants you to be set apart, and the word sanctification means holy. Let's use the word pure, because that illustrates it. God wants you to be pure. That's his will. Sanctified.

Saved, Spirit-filled, sanctified.

Paul gives the four principles of Sanctified purity.

1. Number 1: v. 3: that you should abstain from fornication. Now the word fornication means sexual sin. Principle one is: Stay away from sex-sin, period. Don’t do it, don’t watch it, don’t read about it, don’t listen to it. Stay away from it to be pure.

2. Number 2: v. 4, that every one of you, no exceptions, that every one of you should know how to possess his vessel in sanctification and honor. Now vessel could mean wife or body. In the context here it means body. Principle two is: God is saying, every one of you should know how to possess his body in purity and honor to God.

3. Number 3: v. 5, not in the lust of evil desire as the heathen who know not God. Now principle three is, "Don't act like a godless heathen."

4. Number 4: v. 6 “no man go beyond and defraud his brother in any matter. Because the Lord is avenger of all such as we also are forewarned and testify.” Now principle four is: Don't take advantage of other people.

So God’s will is that we be like this: Saved, Spirit-filled, Sanctified, In everything Rejoicing, Praying, and Thankful.

Now back to what David wrote in Psalms 71—how to talk about God’s goodness all our days. That is why He left us here. That is what life is all about. But how do we do it? David shows us.

We don’t know how long before our Master returns. Jesus said we must do His work until He comes. The best way to do that is to start living right now the way we want to have Him find us at the end when He comes (rapture) or calls (death).

Plans to Rejoice Always, Pray Ceaselessly & Always be Thankful

To profit most from this lesson, I encourage you to personalize David’s list by beginning each resolve saying, “Lord, by Your grace I will …”—and then say the choice you’re making to serve Him:

Lord, by Your grace I will …”—

1. Flee to You for hope as my troubles threaten to drown me. Psalm 71:1 In thee, O LORD, do I put my trust: let me never be put to confusion.

2. Cry out to You for help before I give in to temptations. Psalm 71:2 Deliver me in Your righteousness, and cause me to escape; Incline Your ear to me, and save me.

3. Trust Your Word over my fears before I get paralyzed by them. Psalm 71:3 Be my strong refuge, To which I may resort continually; You have given the commandment to save me, For You are my rock and my fortress.

4. Seek You about my hurts before I get bitter. Psalm 71:4 Deliver me, O my God, out of the hand of the wicked, Out of the hand of the unrighteous and cruel man.

5. Keep reminding myself of Your faithfulness for all of my life. Psalm 71:5 For You are my hope, O Lord God; You are my trust from my youth.

6. Seek Your plan for my life each day. Psalm 71:6 By You I have been upheld from birth; You are He who took me out of my mother’s womb. My praise shall be continually of You.

7. Use my mouth so often for praise that there’s no room left to complain. Psalm 71:8 Let my mouth be filled with Your praise And with Your glory all the day.

We could almost summarize David’s life, recorded in the Psalms by these same three amazing elements, which are imperatives or commands in Paul’s letter from God to the Thessalonians:

David is rejoicing. David is praying. David is thankful.

And that is God’s Will!

# 43: Great Is Thy Faithfulness

Great is Thy faithfulness, O God my Father!

There is no shadow of turning with Thee;

Thou changest not, Thy compassions, they fail not:

As Thou hast been Thou forever wilt be.

Summer and winter, and springtime and harvest,

Sun, moon, and stars in their courses above,

Join with all nature in manifold witness

To Thy Great faithfulness, mercy, and love.

Pardon for sin and a peace that endureth,

Thine own dear presence to cheer and to guide,

Strength for today and bright hope for tomorrow—

Blessings all mine, with ten thousand beside!

Refrain—

Great is Thy faithfulness, Great is Thy faithfulness,

Morning by morning new mercies I see;

All I have needed Thy hand hath provided—

Great is Thy faithfulness, Lord, unto me! Amen.

—Thomas Obadiah Chisholm (1886-1960)

120108PM

RELATED MEDIA
See the rest →
Get this media plus thousands more when you start a free trial.
Get started for FREE
RELATED SERMONS
See the rest →