LOOK UP

LOOK UP

1st Sermon from Home

29-03-2020

If you have not yet heard the first in the series, click here where you might learn that you are here For Such A Time As This

Look Up For The Answer Beyond You

Give ear to my words, O LORD, consider my meditation. Hearken unto the voice of my cry, my King, and my God: for unto thee will I pray. My voice shalt thou hear in the morning, O LORD; in the morning will I direct my prayer unto thee, and will look up. (Psalm 5:1-3)

How wonderfully David believed and trusted in the Lord. 

Of all the men noted in the Bible, he would have been identified as the most equipped to handle every trial. He was by far the greatest military leader, the most just King and ruler, the most Godly and every other king in the Bible was compared to David respecting his faithfulness to the Lord; 

YET even he LOOKED UP to the Lord for the many answers that were beyond him.

David had a heart for God from his youth, he had a yearning for the Lord and to do all his will, his relationship to the Lord was perhaps nurtured and built up in the days he tended the sheep for his fathers house. 

To David, that work must have been a precious. Even the day he was anointed by Samuel to be the future King, he was still a lad, and yet returned immediately to tend to the work ordered by his father.

David’s brothers however thought the work of David as a shepherd boy to be a lowly and mean task, a work that had little to no external benefit but to care for “those few sheep in the wilderness” (1 Sam 17:28).

But David saw his tending of sheep as preparatory.

Perhaps your own work and your own life in your eyes, you also see as having limited value. Yet if you are trusting in the Lord at this time, trust also that this work you are doing is also preparatory. Preparing you for work yet to be done.

David utilized his work to glorify God, and God threw a few challenges to him to also foster a greater reliance upon him.

Keep a finger in this Psalm, but Turn to 1 Sam 17 as we consider this passage for just a minute;

God had prepared David for one of the greatest accounts ever told through history, but on the surface you would never know what the purpose of those challenges where….until the time came to rely on them.

A giant of a man came up in the land to defy the nation of Israel and the God of Israel, Goliath of Gath was his name, one of five sons of a man known simply as The Giant. Goliath was numbered with the Philistines, and when he stood requiring any single man to come out and to fight with him, all the men of Israel “fled from him, and were sore affraid” (1 Sam 17:24). 

Not even King Saul, who stood head and shoulders above all the people of Israel, would fight with him.

(v33)

When David presented himself to the King wanting to face Goliath, the King said, “Thou art not able to go against this Philistine to fight with him: for thou art but a youth, and he a man of war from his youth” (1 Sam 17:33)

But consider how David looked back on the work God had done in his life as perfect preparation for this event: 

34 “David said unto Saul, Thy servant kept his father’s sheep, and there came a lion, and a bear, and took a lamb out of the flock: 35 And I went out after him, and smote him, and delivered it out of his mouth: and when he arose against me, I caught him by his beard, and smote him, and slew him. 36 Thy servant slew both the lion and the bear: and this uncircumcised Philistine shall be as one of them, seeing he hath defied the armies of the living God. 37 David said moreover, The LORD that delivered me out of the paw of the lion, and out of the paw of the bear, he will deliver me out of the hand of this Philistine.(1 Sam 17:34-37)

There are experiences that you have had in your own life that have prepared you for Such a time as this or even a time still future, don’t underestimate that work that has been done in you already, but take great care that you are not trusting in that alone;

It is true, David was prepared for such a time as this, but notice THAT DAVID DID NOT RELY ON HIS PREPARATION ALONE;

He knew that the true answer was beyond him;

Back to verse 37, The LORD that delivered me out of the paw of the lion, and out of the paw of the bear, he will deliver me out of the hand of this Philistine.

David is no fool, he did not look to his own power, but he LOOKED UP, the answer was beyond him. 

After Goliath mocked David, consider David’s rebuke of Goliath;

Then said David to the Philistine, Thou comest to me with a sword, and with a spear, and with a shield: but I come to thee in the name of the LORD of hosts, the God of the armies of Israel, whom thou hast defied. 46 This day will the LORD deliver thee into mine hand; and I will smite thee, and take thine head from thee; and I will give the carcases of the host of the Philistines this day unto the fowls of the air, and to the wild beasts of the earth; that all the earth may know that there is a God in Israel. (1 Sam 17:45-46)

The success of David was a WITNESS of God TO THE WORLD.

He was seen as the most unlikely to succeed.

But David remember how God built up his faith when he fought the lion and the bear and knew it would be him that would guide the stone he slung and deliver the entire nation from their common enemy. 

O that you would look and that you would see that it is God that is working in you at this time, to bring about an expected end, that through your faith and your peace and your trust in him, “all the earth may know that there is a God” this day, who looks for those to turn and to trust him.

We don’t really know what tomorrow will bring, nor do we know how we are being made ready or for what, but what we do know is that the Lord is clearly at work in your own life at this present time. 

The purpose is the same for you as it was for David, that God will make himself manifest to all the Earth, and that through you. 

Last week we looked at Queen Esther, an unlikely candidate to be the savior of Israel in such a time.

Today we see a teenager deliver his nation out of the hands of the Philistines.

Tomorrow, do not doubt how the Lord will use you to change the life of another.

But just as David did, so must you, you MUST LOOK UP! 

No matter the preparation, remember that it is The answer is beyond you.

Phil 2:13 For it is God which worketh in you both to will and to do of his good pleasure.

The work is being done in you, to prepare you, but you must LOOK UP.

Look Up When The Troubles Surround You

11 Withhold not thou thy tender mercies from me, O LORD: let thy lovingkindness and thy truth continually preserve me. 12 For innumerable evils have compassed me about: mine iniquities have taken hold upon me, so that I am not able to look up; they are more than the hairs of mine head: therefore my heart faileth me. (Ps 40:11-12)

We might think it is strange and that there is something wrong with us when we feel unable to look up.

There are times when our troubles and our fears come upon us like they did unto David, For innumerable evils have compassed me about. Things within our circumstances and our lives that would threaten to even bring us to the grave, they are so burdensome. 

But it is not strange.

David, though a valiant man at the time of this writing, who, unlike Saul who had slain his thousands, David had slain his ten thousands struggled still with innumerable evilssurrounding him, that he was not able to look up.

No doubt you have had your fair share of evils, times when your felt consumed by trouble and fears, even such things that you did not bring upon yourself, but as Job I was not in safety, neither had I rest, neither was I quiet; yet trouble came.” (Job 3:26).

We live in a time where false comfort has been so long experienced by those of us who live in the first world. 

We have long been provided for with things easy and simple to gain. 

We have now long lived in a McDonalds drive through society where that which was demanded, was very quickly filled.

We are unaccustomed to the trials of our parents or grandparants generation, where food was not easy to come by, where daily provisions had to long be sought after and prepared.

My mother in law still remembers to this day rejoicing at being given an Orange for Christmas. 

My father in law recalls eating potato peel soup as a full meal.

Or I could consider my grandfather who, as a soldier with the Partisans in WW2, survived a bullet in the back while protecting a fellow soldier, or my other grandfather, feigning death on the field fearing he would be shot as a survivor as he witnessed others were.

We don’t imagine such evils, we are a very well pampered lot comparatively speaking.  

We have long seen the world through rose colored glasses and the thought of evil in the world or evil coming upon us, is far from us. 

We have long lived in peace and safety….sudden destruction of our way of life would naturally then see us UNDONE and take our very breath away even to the point that we are not able to look up, as David was.

David’s troubles were indeed many, and we rejoice in the Psalms because they give us comfort through common experience in our own lives, but consider also that it was not only the “innumerable evils that compassed him about”, 

Consider again verse 12 as David confesses; 12 For innumerable evils have compassed me about: mine iniquities have taken hold upon me, so that I am not able to look up; they are more than the hairs of mine head: therefore my heart faileth me

“iniquities…more than the hairs of mine head”

Some have noticed that I have a thick head of hair, it might give you some indication of my own iniquities…

(No, those who are slowly going bald, you cannot take comfort from this passage….)

It is probably one of the most difficult things to endure, and all of Gods people have had to endure it;

Times when you most need the Lord and he seems absent; he seems far from you. To the point where your very heart fails you.

You long to have his comfort felt like you used to, you long to feel the warmth of his love, just like you have felt it before.

He seems far from you yet, you remember the scripture saying;

“I will never leave thee nor forsake thee” (Heb 13:5)

At a time where we most need the Lord, when troubles surround us, where even our own faults and sin take hold upon us that we are not even able to Look Up, David is first to acknowledge the love and joy in the Lord at just such a time;

Take another look at the passage from verse 13

13 Be pleased, O LORD, to deliver me: O LORD, make haste to help me. 14 Let them be ashamed and confounded together that seek after my soul to destroy it; let them be driven backward and put to shame that wish me evil. 15 Let them be desolate for a reward of their shame that say unto me, Aha, aha. 16 Let all those that seek thee rejoice and be glad in thee: let such as love thy salvation say continually, The LORD be magnified. 17 But I am poor and needy; yet the Lord thinketh upon me: thou art my help and my deliverer; make no tarrying, O my God. (Ps 40:13-17)

Even when his own heart fails him, he knows the Lord is his help and deliverer.

There will be more times that trouble will surround you, even when you are not able to LOOK UP. Still know that your comfort and hope is in the Lord.

Reading his words and believing them, will place that hope in you when the passages so important for your comfort are recalled to your mind.

Look Up, For Your Needs Are Given You

31 And he said unto them, Come ye yourselves apart into a desert place, and rest a while: for there were many coming and going, and they had no leisure so much as to eat. 32 And they departed into a desert place by ship privately. 33 And the people saw them departing, and many knew him, and ran afoot thither out of all cities, and outwent them, and came together unto him. 34 And Jesus, when he came out, saw much people, and was moved with compassion toward them, because they were as sheep not having a shepherd: and he began to teach them many things. 35 And when the day was now far spent, his disciples came unto him, and said, This is a desert place, and now the time is far passed: 36 Send them away, that they may go into the country round about, and into the villages, and buy themselves bread: for they have nothing to eat. 37 He answered and said unto them, Give ye them to eat. And they say unto him, Shall we go and buy two hundred pennyworth of bread, and give them to eat? 38  He saith unto them, How many loaves have ye? go and see. And when they knew, they say, Five, and two fishes. 39 And he commanded them to make all sit down by companies upon the green grass. 40 And they sat down in ranks, by hundreds, and by fifties. 41 And when he had taken the five loaves and the two fishes, he looked up to heaven, and blessed, and brake the loaves, and gave them to his disciples to set before them; and the two fishes divided he among them all. 42 And they did all eat, and were filled. 43 And they took up twelve baskets full of the fragments, and of the fishes. 44 And they that did eat of the loaves were about five thousand men. (Mark 6:31-44)

Jesus had tested the faith of his disciples respecting what they might do to feed the multitude;

Two hundred pennyworth of bread is not sufficient for them, that every one of them may take a little” says Phillip in the account given us in John (Jn 6:7).

But Jesus looked up to heaven, and blessed, and brake the loaves, and gave them to his disciples to set before them; and the two fishes divided he among them all.

NOTICE it was JESUS himself who “Looked up”. 

It is God the father who is able to multiply to us all the provisions that we need. 

Turn to one of the most famous passages in the Bible that we can draw the most specific blessing from as we Look Up.

Matthew 6:25:34, is a part of the famous Sermon on the Mount;

25 Therefore I say unto you, Take no thought for your life, what ye shall eat, or what ye shall drink; nor yet for your body, what ye shall put on. Is not the life more than meat, and the body than raiment? 26 Behold the fowls of the air: for they sow not, neither do they reap, nor gather into barns; yet your heavenly Father feedeth them. Are ye not much better than they? 27  Which of you by taking thought can add one cubit unto his stature? 28 And why take ye thought for raiment? Consider the lilies of the field, how they grow; they toil not, neither do they spin: 29 And yet I say unto you, That even Solomon in all his glory was not arrayed like one of these. 30 Wherefore, if God so clothe the grass of the field, which to day is, and to morrow is cast into the oven, shall he not much more clothe you, O ye of little faith? 

31 Therefore take no thought, saying, What shall we eat? or, What shall we drink? or, Wherewithal shall we be clothed? 32 (For after all these things do the Gentiles seek🙂 for your heavenly Father knoweth that ye have need of all these things. 33 But seek ye first the kingdom of God, and his righteousness; and all these things shall be added unto you.34 Take therefore no thought for the morrow: for the morrow shall take thought for the things of itself. Sufficient unto the day is the evil thereof.

It is the gentiles who do not know the Lord who seek after those basic provisions that the Lord gives to his own, but it is not for us to fear and to worry or to panic.

Look at King David’s own wonderful words in Psalm 37

23 The steps of a good man are ordered by the LORD: and he delighteth in his way. 24 Though he fall, he shall not be utterly cast down: for the LORD upholdeth him with his hand. 25 I have been young, and now am old; yet have I not seen the righteous forsaken, nor his seed begging bread. 26 He is ever merciful, and lendeth; and his seed is blessed.

The Lord has promised to provide for our need when we need them

It is the word of God that we are to trust and to believe and never have they proven false to those who love the Lord.

The last weeks have seen panic in the hearts of many around the world for the terror of going without. 

Having not seen ahead the danger looming precariously in the world, and having not prepared before time, they scrambled for all the necessities of life fearing to go without, and caring for none but themselves.

Those who have long used the supermarket as a pantry, have found for the first time empty shelves.

But those who’s trust is in the Lord can rest, knowing that their provision will come, he is able to multiply their needs so that his seed is not ‘begging bread’. 

Far too many are the depictions in the scriptures demonstrating the truth of it for those who’s trust is in the Lord.

Lets take a look at just one example;

Turn to 2 Kings 7:3

Allow me to set the scene. Elisha was the prophet of the nation at this time. A siege was laid against the City by the Syrians in order to starve the people into submission.

The price of basic goods naturally went through the roof…(yes beloved, it is not “profiteering” but basic market forces that push priuces up when demand is high but resources are scarce, evidence all the way back to the Old testament for this).

But Elisha makes an extraordinary prophecy in the first two verses of the passage;

Then Elisha said, Hear ye the word of the LORD; Thus saith the LORD, To morrow about this time shall a measure of fine flour be sold for a shekel, and two measures of barley for a shekel, in the gate of Samaria. Then a lord on whose hand the king leaned answered the man of God, and said, Behold, if the LORD would make windows in heaven, might this thing be? And he said, Behold, thou shalt see it with thine eyes, but shalt not eat thereof.

So incredible that a high official of the City though it impossible.

And there were four leprous men at the entering in of the gate: and they said one to another, Why sit we here until we die? If we say, We will enter into the city, then the famine is in the city, and we shall die there: and if we sit still here, we die also. Now therefore come, and let us fall unto the host of the Syrians: if they save us alive, we shall live; and if they kill us, we shall but die. And they rose up in the twilight, to go unto the camp of the Syrians: and when they were come to the uttermost part of the camp of Syria, behold, there was no man there. For the Lord had made the host of the Syrians to hear a noise of chariots, and a noise of horses, even the noise of a great host: and they said one to another, Lo, the king of Israel hath hired against us the kings of the Hittites, and the kings of the Egyptians, to come upon us. Wherefore they arose and fled in the twilight, and left their tents, and their horses, and their asses, even the camp as it was, and fled for their life. And when these lepers came to the uttermost part of the camp, they went into one tent, and did eat and drink, and carried thence silver, and gold, and raiment, and went and hid it; and came again, and entered into another tent, and carried thence also, and went and hid it. Then they said one to another, We do not well: this day is a day of good tidings, and we hold our peace: if we tarry till the morning light, some mischief will come upon us: now therefore come, that we may go and tell the king’s household.

LOOK UP, LOOK UP, ALWAYS LOOK UP, FOR YOUR NEEDS ARE GIVEN YOU

But seek ye first the kingdom of God, and his righteousness; and all these things shall be added unto you. 34 Take therefore no thought for the morrow: for the morrow shall take thought for the things of itself. Sufficient unto the day is the evil thereof.

Look Up For Your Redemption Draws Near

25 And there shall be signs in the sun, and in the moon, and in the stars; and upon the earth distress of nations, with perplexity; the sea and the waves roaring; 26 Men’s hearts failing them for fear, and for looking after those things which are coming on the earth: for the powers of heaven shall be shaken. 27 And then shall they see the Son of man coming in a cloud with power and great glory. 28 And when these things begin to come to pass, then look up, and lift up your heads; for your redemption draweth nigh. (Luke 21:25-28)

Never is a sign seen on the road AFTER the exit.

Never is a sign of warning seen AFTER the danger is past.

ALWAYS, signs are placed before the event, before the turn off, BEFORE THE DANGER POINT, in order that we may prepare ourselves for when we see that written of, come to pass.

It is MADNESS to ever make the claim that WE CANNOT KNOW the approaching of the hour. 

Though we will not know precisely ‘the day and the hour”, yet are we commanded to watch, 

“Lest coming suddenly he find you sleeping. 37 And what I say unto you I say unto all, Watch.” (Mrk 13:36-37).

An entry of mine that I wrote in my journal on the 21st of January this year;

The context was my consideration of selling a handful of large items, for the preparation of what I saw on the horizon;

It sounds mad and it is because it all sounds so crazy that I have been putting it off further and further.

Why is it mad?

The plan is mad because it has some assumptions, educated assumptions, that there will likely be the greatest financial meltdown in the history of the world within the next five years.

I had been preparing for what is evidently before us for more than ten years. 

But even early this year I thought my plans were mad because I was preparing for something that has never happened before in history the world

In short, I have been preparing for the impoverishment of the entire western world in the preparation of the formal creation of a Single Global Government and a Single global currency.

I have been watching its preparation for many years, and sign after sign was coming to pass that made things evident a great event or crisis loomed on the horizon.

(If you would like to know more you will need to revisit the newsletters I had written in 2018, or wait for the upcoming MayDay series).

I could see a time where there would be “distress of nations” (v25). We are limited in our ability to understand the cause of such distress, nevertheless there has long been evidence of such distress in the making from many fronts.

Whether it’s the turning away of the Churches from truth to entertainments and amusements;

Or the accepting of immorality in such a broad manner throughout the world;

Or the economic malfeasance evident in our governments and banks

Or the political endevours through environmentalism / Education / event our movies and music so filled with promoting ALL THE ABOVE

Distress of nations was evidently coming;

The “perplexity” spoken of in the same verse, I heard time and time again, not only by commentators, but by friends and family wondering of the madness that surrounds them.

Perplexed that people in high places could be such evident fools in there conflicting and contradictory decisions.

The seas and the waves roaring” being a perfect descriptions of the divisions among people, the evident effect of the distress and perplexity written of. 

Men’s hearts failing them for fear, and for looking after those things which are coming on the earth (v26) are we not seeing an introduction of this today?

Beloved, in Matthew 24:7 & 8 Jesus said “there shall be famines, and pestilences, and earthquakes, in divers places.” And then he refers to them saying “All these are the beginning of sorrows”.

Friends the difficulty and the strangeness of all of this is the way in which so many of us respond to it. 

The Bible pictures it as the greatest time of hope to come;

And when these things begin to come to pass, then look up, and lift up your heads; for your redemption draweth nigh

It is evidence of the Lord’s coming, of Jesus return, which will be a time of great trial and tribulation for the wicked, but a time of great joy for those who look for him.

As these things come to pass, those who are now saved and in Christ, are looking more earnestly for the catching up of the Church, the “blessed hope” that Paul wrote of to Titus and explained to the Thessalonians. 

But the strangeness and difficulty comes with the response of those who know the Lord. 

You see, many of us see this time before us as “Exciting times”, we look forward in anticipation seeing God’s words coming to pass before our very eyes.

BUT, many misinterpret such a notion. Because while we are looking for that blessed hope, we also know the world will go through a time of the end. 

SIGNS ARE GIVEN TO WARN, PREPARE AND REVEAL

And when these things begin to come to pass, then look up, and lift up your heads; for your redemption draweth nigh

Signs are given for three main reasons in the Bible, either to warn, to prepare or to reveal.

What is about us today warns of that which is to come. It has directed many to seek after the Lord, having once been told of these things, and now see so evidently come to pass.

I recall a time when I went to my girlfriends house, who’s name is Maria. Her youngest sister and boyfriend just became Christians. They were complete nutters for the Lord.

Sandro, is his name. And he invited us to watch a video about the end times. 

I and Maria did not know the Lord.

The video spoke of Revelation 13, and the mark of the beast.

The video clarified that an element of it will likely be a chip placed in the hand or the forehead…(not ‘On’ the hand or ‘on’ the forehead as modern translation have it, but “IN”).

When I heard of that event foretold, I though to myself, “ill watch for that, and when I see it, then ill believe”

Well, I can only thank God that I did not wait that long, now that I know what the world will be like during that time.

People are having just that done to them today.

The current day we are in, has plans already  to ban cash completely, using the spread of the disease as a catalyst for the endeavor.

You see these things come to pass…LOOK UP for your redemption draeth nigh.

To those who do not know the Lord and have endured this sermons this long, the time is drawing to a close with the signs of the times surrounding us, LOOK UP.

Seek the Lord while you may find him. LOOK UP.

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