[SERMON] “The Nation and You”

[SERMON] "The Nation and You"

by Pastor Afolabi Oladele (preached in 2009)
The Psalms are actually divided into five books. The first book of Psalms (Psalm 1-41), type the beginning of things in terms of Genesis, man and creation; Psalms 42 – 73 speak concerning the book of Exodus, deliverance and redemption; psalms 74-89 talks about Leviticus, worship and sanctuary; psalms 90-106 type the book of Numbers, the wilderness and wandering; while the fifth book of Psalms (Psalm 107-150) types the book of Deuteronomy, the scriptures and praise. This fifth book of Psalms is my emphasis. When you understand the things that are written in the book of Deuteronomy, you will then understand why the spirit of God moved upon David and those who wrote those psalms (107 – 150), and you will also understand thesignificance that those psalms hold for you.
The book of Deuteronomy actually means the repetition of the law. The law was given in Horeb in the book of Exodus, but in Deuteronomy, not only was God repeating the things He had in Horeb, He also expanded it so that we can understand that truly, repetition is the rule of everlasting remembrance. It was important that in repeating the laws, God was trying to remind the people so that they would not forget and also sealing His words until the time of the end.  The book of Deuteronomy had two key things in mind – reminding the people about God’s laws; and revealing unto them the significance of what could happen to them if they missed the way. And God spoke these words were spoken to the transition, the generation of people that were about to enter into the Promised Land. That is why these words are coming to you, who are waiting for the return of the Lord Jesus Christ.
Psalm 121:1 “I will lift up mine eyes unto the hills, from whence cometh my help.”This psalm that is called the pilgrim’s / travelers psalm, is rendered in a call and response method, where the priest says one verse, and the congregation says it after him. Let us look at the significance of looking unto the hills speaks in two dimensions:
  1.  Jeremiah 3:23 “Truly in vain is salvation hoped for from the hills, and from the multitude of mountains: truly in the LORD our God is the salvation of Israel.”In this text, the ‘hills’ signified the place of idolatry, the place of perversion where the children of Israel imported all strange gods, got corrupted, and needed to return back to the true God.
  2. Isaiah 2:1-4 “The word that Isaiah the son of Amoz saw concerning Judah and Jerusalem.” Here, the other dimension of the hills is seen to mean the house of God, or the place of worship for he true God.
So, looking up to the hills’could either signify the idols of  your heart, or the house of the Lord.  What are the idols in your heart? Is it your job, your career, your spouse, your house? What is ruling your heart and taking your attention away from God? What takes priority in your heart day by day? Lay down the idols of your heart and look unto the hills of the house of God, seek your help from Him. David became a man after God’s heart because of his total dependence on God, you can also be a man after God’s heart if you depend totally on Him.
Psalm 121:2 “My help cometh from the LORD, which made heaven and earth.”  God is the creator of everything!  Come to think of it, if He created the heavens and the earth, won’t He have power ova them? Won’t He know the mechanism, that put them together? Won’t He know how to pieces them if He wants to? If God needs to defend you, won’t He know what to put in place to defend you? God, who is the creator of everything, is the one that has the power to do all things. He can defend you, protect you, provide for you, and do all that it takes for you to be who you are.
Psalm 121:34 “He will not suffer thy foot to be moved: he that keepeth thee will not slumber. Behold, he that keepeth Israel shall neither slumber nor sleep.”  There are certain blessings that belong to those who have made the choice, that the eternal God, the king of kings is the One whom they have chosen. When God says your foot shall not be moved, what does that mean? – stability! God will give stability to His people, because He neither sleeps nor slumbers, and there is nothing that can happen without His knowledge, except He allows it. 
Psalm 121:5,6 “The LORD is thy keeper: the LORD is thy shade upon thy right hand. The sun shall not smite thee by day, nor the moon by night.” Gen. 1:16 “And God made two great lights; the greater light to rule the day, and the lesser light to rule the night: he made the stars also.” The operative verb in this verse is‘rule’.  In other words, these two lights were created and they had a covenanted relationship with God to be rulers of particular times of the day. Jeremiah 33:20 “Thus saith the LORD; If ye can break my covenant of the day, and my covenant of the night, and that there should not be day and night in their season;” These two covenanted servants have a specific duty to rule – to dominate, to exercise authority, but their dominion will not be of adverse effect on God’s children.
Jonah 4:5,6 “So Jonah went out of the city, and sat on the east side of the city,and there made him a booth, and sat under it in the shadow, till he might see what would become of the city. And the LORD God prepared a gourd, and made it to come up over Jonah, that it might be a shadow over his head, to deliver him from his grief. So Jonah was exceeding glad of the gourd.”  The shade that Jonah built for himself which was not adequate, so God had to build another one for him. Don’t put your trust in yourself as Jonah did, that was why the shade he built withered away. There is enough heat that the sun can emit on you which can cause you to faint, but God’s protective shade can keep us from all those.
Mat. 17:14-18 “And when they were come to the multitude,there came to him a certain man, kneeling down to him, and saying, Lord, have mercy on my son: for he is lunatick, and sore vexed: for ofttimes he falleth into the fire, and oft into the water. And I brought him to thy disciples, and they could not cure him. Then Jesus answered and said, O faithless and perverse generation, how long shall I be with you? how long shall I suffer you? bring him hither to me. And Jesus rebuked the devil; and he departed out of him: and the child was cured from that very hour.” The word ‘lunatic’ comes from ‘luna’, which means moon. The demon that troubled the young boy in this text was more active either at full-moon, or at the time of the changing of the moon, so that people thought it was the moon that was troubling the boy.  But it wasn’t the moon, it was demons that  operated under the guise of the moon, to make people think that the moon was the cause. The scriptures show us, that the night is when the power of darkness operate.  Jesus needed to make the people understand that it was not the moon at work in the boy’s life, so He cast out the demon from the boy.
When God’s word say’s He will not allow the sun to smite us by day, nor the moon by night, there are things that are tied to that. In he night hours the forces of darkness are in full-bloom God is not fooled and you don’t need to be fooled. God will put a protective cover upon you so that things will not begin to happen to you by the workings of demons. God’s cover is put only upon those who have made Him their trust.And if you believe it, you will see God beginning to work in your life, in defence of the issues that trouble  you both at day or at night.  In other words,we have a 24-hour insurance that guarantees the keeping of our lives by God.  Psalm 91:5; Isaiah 49:10. Every wrong step that you take at this time can cause you your inheritance concerning the coming of the Lord.
Psalm 121:7,8 “The LORD shall preserve thee from all evil:he shall preserve thy soul. The LORD shall preserve thy going out and thy coming in from this time forth, and even for evermore.” There is a guarantee of preservation of soul of all that concerns you in your journey of returning to God, because you came from Him. Deut. 28:6 “Blessed shalt thou be when thou comest in, and blessed shalt thou be when thou goest out.” These are the blessings of those who have made God their God, those who understand the ‘hills’ that they are looking up to for the help, not those who trust in the things they have acquired.
Proverbs 3:5,6; 21-26 “Trust in the LORD with all thine heart; and lean not unto thine own understanding. In all thy ways acknowledge him, and he shall direct thy paths. My son, let not them depart from thine eyes: keep sound wisdom and discretion: So shall they be life unto thy soul, and grace to thy neck. Then shalt thou walk in thy way safely, and thy foot shall not stumble.When thou liest down, thou shalt not be afraid: yea, thou shalt lie down, and thy sleep shall be sweet. Be not afraid of sudden fear, neither of the desolation of the wicked, when it cometh. For the LORD shall be thy confidence,and shall keep thy foot from being taken.” Sound judgment and discernment are two things that we all need in these times. There is a higher level of wisdom, discernment and judgement that we can tap from God, than the conventional wisdom that is prevalent among the people of communion with Him concerning the issues that we face.
Ezekiel 14:19-20 “Or if I send a pestilence into that land,and pour out my fury upon it in blood, to cut off from it man and beast: Though Noah, Daniel, and Job, were in it, as I live, saith the Lord GOD, they shall deliver neither son nor daughter; they shall but deliver their own souls by their righteousness.” Noah, Job and Daniel were men who had made God their choice, yet God said that in the day of judgement, their righteousness will deliver them alone; not their children, or even their wives. We have gotten to that state now, in the affairs of our nation, and that’s we you need to make choice to lift up your eyes to the hills. Which hills are you looking at – your idols or the Lord God almighty? If you don’t get it right, you will be swept away and it could also cost you your place in the destiny that God has set for you. God is saying to you: “make your choice and determine your end.”
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