How Big Is God?
Praise the Lord! (Hallelujah!)I will give thanks to the Lord with all my heart,In the company of the upright and in the congregation. Great are the works of the Lord,Studied by all those who delight in them. Splendid and majestic is His work,And His righteousness endures forever. He has made His wonderful acts to be remembered;The Lord is gracious and merciful and full of loving compassion. He has given food to those who fear Him [with awe-inspired reverence];He will remember His covenant forever. He has declared and made known to His people the power of His works,In giving them the heritage of the nations. The works of His hands are truth and [absolute] justice;All His precepts are sure (established, reliable, trustworthy). They are upheld forever and ever;They are done in [absolute] truth and uprightness. He has sent redemption to His people;He has ordained His covenant forever;Holy and awesome is His name—[inspiring reverence and godly fear]. The [reverent] fear of the Lord is the beginning (the prerequisite, the absolute essential, the alphabet) of wisdom;A good understanding and a teachable heart are possessed by all those who do the will of the Lord, His praise endures forever.
Imagine that you are at the mercy of twenty-five to thirty foot giants who speak a language you cannot understand, pick you up with ease, and swing you high over their heads. While you’re screaming, they’re laughing.
When they are tired of playing with you they drop you in a stockade called a crib or playpen where you entertain yourself with only things the giants choose. You eat when they decide, with foods of their choice; and if you find something you like, they may forcibly remove it from your mouth.
Your house is gigantic; stairs with steps more than two feet high, doors reaching up to forty feet, and the doorknob way beyond your reach. You’re not even tall enough to look out a window.
What I’ve just described are the proportions that exist between a toddler and a parent. To the child, Mom or Dad is great. It’s tragic when they are not also good.
If we consider the huge house we live in- the universe, with its black hole(collapsed star so dense that not even light can escape its gravitational pull) in the heart of Galaxy M84, at least three hundred million times the mass of the sun, and it’s only one among many; just how big is the God who made all this?
As children, no doubt, many of us have prayed this mealtime prayer: “God is great, God is good.” Psalm 111 reveals to us that the greatness of God is bound irrevocably to His goodness. His deeds are truly majestic and glorious, but His righteousness also endures forever. In a word, this giant God can be trusted to care for us.
The psalmist in this psalm paints the portrait of God’s greatness through His goodness to us, His people. In this picture we see how God uses His power for our well-being:
God is very kind to us(verse 4).
How would we act if we had everything? Would we let needy people, sick people, poor people, unimportant people, little people, or problem people get anywhere us? God does because His is gracious and compassionate.
God sustains us(verse 5).
In the Lord’s Prayer, Jesus taught us to pray, “Give us this day our bread.”(Matthew 6:11) We read that the Lord daily provided manna for the Israelites in the wilderness. I confess that it’s scary living on just enough to make it through the day. We fear our provision will run out and the next morning we’ll have nothing. But because God remembers our hunger- for fulfillment, relationship, security, or food- He will provide the “bread” just at the time we need it. Let’s not panic that tomorrow’s bread isn’t yet lying on our plates.
God enlarges us(verse 6).
In God we are never diminished for He expands the territory of our lives, enlarging our sphere of influence. Our enemy often comes to whisper to us that if we obey God, we will have less. Not so!
God is reliable. We can always depend on what He says for He is not fickle. He won’t turn on you, manipulate, or deceive us(verse 7). He will never tease or tantalize us with promises of illusionary love.(verse 8)
God is dependable, rock solid, and more than that He has provided redemption for His people. His love for us is so deep that He died to save us even when we were indifferent or opposed to Him(Romans 5:8).
The application of Psalm 111 is this: Our starting place of wisdom must always be God. If we do not have awe and respect for His great power and love toward us, we probably won’t make the right decisions. Since God loves us so much, don’t you think He deserves a response of praise, joyful submission and a yielding to His plans and ways?
Dr. John Thompson