Devotion Text: Psalm 24
Are you ready for Judgement Day? More importantly, are you waiting?
In a recent devotion on 1st Thessalonians 3, we talked about how the Lord gets us ready on our trip Heavenward–how we could not do it ourselves and how we depend on the strength God gives us and the fellow believers he blesses us with along the way.
How anxious are you to get there, though?
I remember by grandmother dying like it was yesterday. Still just a boy, I sat on the windowsill of the hospital room as I stood face-to-face with what death looks like. As we sang “I am Jesus’ Little Lamb,” with my entire family crowding the room, the words comforted us as much as her. When the song was over, my dad looked up and had someone go get a doctor. Her battle was over, she was in Heaven now.
Talking to my dad afterward, I remarked how glad I was that my grandma was finally in Heaven, because she had talked often about wanting to be there. She always seemed ill in some way or having other kinds of troubles in her old age. She couldn’t really see, hear or taste any more.
My father’s response surprised me and I will never forget it. “Son, your grandma has wanted to go home for the last 20 years.”
Years later, as my dad lay in his hospital bed, I got another look at what longing for heaven looked like. Cancer had ravaged his body and he could no longer care for himself. He, too, wanted to go home in a way that I hope I will one day understand. Right now, with an amazing family, great friends and a job I enjoy, my prayer is too often: “Come quickly, Lord Jesus, but not just yet…”
David reminds us in this Psalm that the Lord, who has gotten you prepared with “clean hands and a pure heart,” is coming. He is not far off. Lift up your heads and await his coming with thanksgiving and joy. The spoils this King of Glory brings are far more wonderful than any earthly joys. This king, Christ our King, is coming to take you to be with him forever.
Be ready, and be waiting.
Prayer: King of Glory, come quickly, Lord! Do not come on my time or on the world’s time. Let your kingdom come when you will it Lord, in your good time. I can not be ready on my own, dearest Jesus, nor could I turn from the fleeting joys of this world and faithfully wait for you. Prepare my heart and my hands, O Lord, and keep me in your grace until that time comes. Come quickly, Lord Jesus. Amen.
Text: Psalm 24
“Look! He’s coming! The King!”
All the people run to the city gates to see what the watchmen are talking about. It had been a while since a great king had entered the city in mighty procession. Well, almost since the time when Psalm 24 had been written by the greatest king ever, David, 1,000 years before. Now, Herod was sort of a figure head. Pilate was a Roman governor and a big meanie. They had no real king. So who was this king?
There wasn’t much to see.
No chariot. No valiant steed. No trumpet blasts. No mighty army.
Just Jesus. Riding on a donkey, coats and palm branches strewn before him. Adults and children shouting, “Hosanna!”
Most had grown to love Jesus because of the kind acts of love and power he did for so many. But also for most, this was all they wanted. So these shouts turned into cries of, “Crucify him!” within a few days.
With eyes of faith we look back through 2,000 years of history and see who this King really is. Yes, he is mighty in battle. He defeated sin, death, and Satan. Yes, he is the King of glory! He won our salvation.
So lift up your heads, dear Christians. Lift them up this Sunday to join in the shouts of, “Hosanna!” which means “Save us!” Lift up your heads and march behind this King into Jerusalem and up to Calvary where he will take all your sin away.
Who is this King of glory? It is Jesus, our Savior!
Prayer: Dear Jesus, King of glory, in humble love you rode into Jerusalem so that you could take all my sins away. Let me join in everlasting songs of worship and praise to you for your mighty acts of power and love. In your name I pray, Amen.
Text: Psalm 24
Every child loves a good game of hide and seek. Many adults would find themselves having at least a little fun if they were compelled to participate in this childhood pastime. There is something exciting about finding a good hiding place, something enticing about stalking and finding your prey as the seeker.
In the game of life (and I’m not talking about the board game) how is your seeking going? As humans the urge to search for meaning, for some purpose for our lives is built into our psyches. How is you seeking going? Have you found your God yet?
Unfortunately many people give up on seeking God’s face because they don’t like what they see. Richard Dawkins, a famous scientist and atheist, was once asked what he would say to God if he died and came face to face with his creator. His response, “Why did you make yourself so hard to find?”
Christianity makes the bold claim that God is found in the blood that flowed from the head of a man hanging on a cross. Christianity claims that the King of Glory is a man with nails through his hands and feet dying the death of a convict. Christianity claims that this dead man being put in a tomb is “The LORD strong and mighty, the LORD mighty in battle.”
Only with faith created by God through his word can we seek and find this man on Calvary as our Almighty Creator. In faith we trust that our King of Glory will come again soon. This Advent we look back and praise God for being the unorthodox God who came as a baby on Christmas. We also are encouraged in Psalm 24 to continue to seek God’s face as we await his return as our King of Glory.
Prayer: Heavenly Father, forgive us when we fail to praise you as our King of Glory, when we fail to keep clean hands and pure hearts. Help us seek daily to learn about you, to learn from you. You are the God who loves us even though we do not deserve it, for that we praise you. In Jesus name we pray, Amen.