Sermon September 4, 2016 Psalm 100 “A Worship Celebration”

Psalm 100                                   September 4, 2016

Sermon Series: “Short and Sweet Summer Psalms”

Today’s Sermon: Psalm 100   “A Worship Celebration”

Pastor Louis Prontnicki    Maple Glen Bible Fellowship Church

 

Psalm 100    A psalm. For giving thanks.

Shout for joy to the Lord, all the earth.
    Worship the Lord with gladness; come before him with joyful songs.
Know that the Lord is God.
It is he who made us, and we are his, we are his people, the sheep of his pasture.

Enter his gates with thanksgiving and his courts with praise;
give thanks to him and praise his name.
For the Lord is good and his love endures forever;
his faithfulness continues through all generations.

 

What was on your mind and heart as you entered the church building this morning?

What were you thinking about when Paula was playing the prelude on the piano?

If we’re honest, many of us would admit that we were more focused on talking to someone or getting something done, then we were on preparing our hearts to worship the Lord, right?

Well, Psalm 100 is a great remedy for that. In fact, if you want to enhance your worship of the Lord every Sunday morning, then I encourage you to read, memorize and meditate on Psalm 100. For here the Lord has given us a simple but powerful song for heightening our worship celebration of the Lord God. Here is a psalm that appeals both to our rational thinking as well as to our emotions and our passions.  Now some of you are more cerebral and analytical worshippers, while others are more emotional and expressive celebrants! But Ps. 100 combines the best of both worlds, so that we can worship the Lord with all of our minds and with all of our hearts. For God has created us and redeemed us to be both intelligent and joyful worshippers of Himself!

So, on the analytical side, Note the structure of this psalm:

  1. 1-2 tell us How to worship the Lord: with joyful singing and gladness!
  2. 3 tells us Why we are to worship the Lord: Who He is and what He has done for us.
  3. 4 goes back to How we are to worship the Lord: with much thankfulness and praise!
  4. 5 concludes with a second round of Why we are to worship the Lord: because of his enduring goodness, love and faithfulness!

In other words, how we worship the Lord is based on who He is and what He has done. Therefore, the more you comprehend who God is and what He has done for you in His Son, Jesus Christ, the more you will be filled with joy and thanksgiving in your worship of Him!

The more you meditate on the glorious truths on the Gospel, the more you will be moved to respond in praise to Him!

It’s the same principle at work as when you see more of God’s creation and learn more of the awesome nature He has designed, from the stars at night, to watching animals at play: The more you see and know, the more you will appreciate and extol its wonders and delights!

Let me ask you: Who is this psalm about? Did you notice how this psalm is really about the Lord? It’s not about you or me, except in our response of worship to Him, right?  (See Psalm 115:1 “No onto us, O Lord, not onto us, but to your name be glory…”) That should be obvious, yet many Christians today base their choice of what church to attend on how the worship makes them feel. We have a very subjective approach to worship, as if we were consumers and God was offering a product, hoping we will buy his goods!  But psalm 100 cuts right through that mindset, and puts the focus where it should be – on the Lord, on His character, and on what we should do in response.

With that is mind, look at the action verbs in this psalm. Look at the action verbs in Psalm 100, which are addressed to you and me.  What are they telling us?

There are seven commands that God gives us about our approach to worship:

Shout/ make a joyful noise to the Lord, all the earth. Our worship is to be joyful and it is to be universal, for the LORD is the sovereign Ruler over the whole earth. Therefore when we assemble to worship, we should desire not only to be joyful ourselves, but that all the nations should join with us in our glad duty.

Serve/worship the Lord with gladness. It is our solemn and joyful duty to worship the Lord, hence, we call our time a worship service. Also see Romans 12:1 “Offer your bodies as living sacrifices, holy and pleasing to God – this is your spiritual act of worship.”

Come before Him with joyful songs. This has the idea of joyfully singing at the thrill of liberation and redemption from captivity and bondage. [Have you ever been set free form jail? No? How about being released from a long stay in the hospital? That’s the joy that God’s redeemed people will have!] John Stott comments: “Joy is to characterize our worship….For if God is King, what can our worship be but joyful? Joy, gladness, and singing are to be the accompaniment of worship.”

Know that the Lord is God. How we worship depends on what we know about Him.

Enter His gates with thanksgiving and His courts with praise. Note the increasing nearness to the Lord: from the gate, to the court, to the intimate reality of the Name at the end of v. 4 Also, note that the gates and the courts are HIS, not ours, which should make us think about our posture and attitude as we enter into worship. Also, we thank and praise Him that He has opened his gates, as well as the Holy of Holies, to us, by a new and living way; we are welcome and invited to come in and worship Him!

Give thanks to Him.

Bless/praise His name: Spend time each day, but especially when you come to corporate worship, recalling all the Lord’s blessings to you, and give Him thanks for all He has done!

What are the practical applications of those commands regarding our worship?

It means first that our songs and hymns, our prayers and our sermons, should all focus on the Lord’s greatness and goodness, especially as seen in Jesus Christ.

Every part of our worship service should make much of the Father, the Son, and the Holy Spirit, and not make much of us. The songs and the sermon must be God-centered and Christ-centered. Everything is the worship service should help us to understand and enjoy the Lord’s sovereignty, grace, love, and wisdom!

Second, it means that our response to who God is should be full of adoration, exaltation, joyful singing, thanksgiving, and praise!

We may come to the worship service thinking, “Will my needs be met? Will the sermon speak to my heart and my situation in life?” But the truth is that God Himself, in Jesus Christ, will meet our deepest needs, in Himself. (See Phil. 4:19 “My God will supply all your needs, according to His riches in glory in Christ Jesus.”) That is, since our chief end in life is to glorify God by enjoying Him forever, than our ultimate needs will be satisfied as we lose ourselves in Him, and all that He is for us in His Son, the Lord Jesus Christ.

 And then Psalm 100 gives us seven reasons why we should worship Him:

  1. TheLord is God (that is, YHWH, the God who has revealed Himself in the Bible and in His Son Jesus Christ, is the one and only true and living God!
  2. It is He who made us (He is our Creator)
  3. We are His; We are his people,(He called us to Himself and redeemed us as His called out, holy and special adopted people)
  4. [We are the sheep of his pasture.]  The Lord is my shepherd; He will provide for us.
  5. The Lord is good. Wilcock: All that the Lord has done for us in Christ, He has done out of His goodness, His covenant love, and His faithfulness.
  1. His love endures forever
  2. His faithfulness continues through all generations. And of course the Lord’s love and faithfulness are seen most clearly in His giving of His Son to be our Savior!

Alex Motyer comments that this is what Ps. 100 celebrates. But looking ahead, Paul foresaw the gathering from a more wonderful perspective – the union of all Jesus’ people at His blessed return (1 Thess. 4:15-17).  And then John saw the eternal reality of this innumerable company and heard their shouts of acclamation of their God-wrought salvation… finally to see the heavenly Zion itself (Rev. 7:9-17, 21:2, 27).