Majesty and Holiness
Today’s passages: Jeremiah, chapters 18-20; Psalm 93; John, chapter 17
Scripture: Psalm 93 (NRSV) – The Lord is king, he is robed in majesty; the Lord is robed, he is girded with strength. He has established the world; it shall never be moved; your throne is established from of old; you are from everlasting.
The floods have lifted up, O Lord, the floods have lifted up their voice; the floods lift up their roaring. More majestic than the thunders of mighty waters, more majestic than the waves of the sea, majestic on high is the Lord!
Your decrees are very sure; holiness befits your house, O Lord, forevermore.
Observations: The two words that the psalmist uses from the beginning of this psalm are “majesty” and “strength.” In fact, “majesty” and “majestic” are used four times in these five verses to describe the Lord. Dictionary.com defines “majesty” as “regal, lofty, or stately dignity; imposing character; grandeur; supreme greatness or authority; sovereignty.” (www.dictionary.com) God is all of that, and more! The psalmist, in trying to describe God’s greatness, doesn’t merely say that the Lord is majestic; he is robed in majesty. It surrounds him, envelops him. Not only that, but the psalmist gives us two comparisons to help us understand just how majestic God is: more majestic than the thunders of mighty waters, and more majestic than the waves of the sea. If you’ve ever stood on the shore of the ocean and looked out at its immensity, and listened as the waves crashed against the shore, just think – God is more majestic than that!
But at the end of the psalm, we’re reminded of another characteristic of God – his holiness. Holiness befits your house, O Lord, forevermore. Holiness is not just one characteristic of God; it is at the center of his character. It is so important that everything about him flows from his holiness. Everything, and everyone, that comes into his presence must be holy. To say that holiness befits his house reminds us that we cannot take it lightly when we come into his presence. Because we do not often hear the crashing of the waves and see the immensity of the ocean when we come before God in worship and in prayer, we need to be reminded of his greatness and his holiness in order to have a true appreciation for the majesty of God.
Applications: God is reminding me of the importance of understanding, and communicating, his greatness and his majesty to others. To truly worship God involves a sense of awe and wonder – not that we are constantly cowering or cringing in fear, but that we recognize God’s majesty and his power, and we honor his holiness by striving to be holy, as he has commanded us. We do not have to fear, because we also realize that God loves us; his power stands ready to fulfill his purposes in us. So we rejoice at the knowledge of God’s majesty, and we dwell in the light of his holiness.
Prayer: Our Father in heaven, hallowed – HOLY – is your name. As I walk in your presence today, help me to recognize your majesty and your power. As you guide me today, help me to dwell in your holiness. Help me to honor you by doing your will, on earth as in heaven. Help me today to glorify you. In Jesus’ name, Amen.
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Pastor Rick Rice
Pastor Rick has served as Senior Pastor at TCNAZ since August 1999. He and his wife Jill have three grown children: Allen, David (Brianna), and MacKenzie.
Previous blog posts can be found at "My Journey".