Captive (Day 5)

So far this week we have examined the idea of being held captive either by selfish disobedience or by the marvelous grace of God. Honestly, most of the focus has been on internal reflection. We have considered ourselves still living as if we were held captive by sin and possibly even building a prison of our own design. We also considered how tragic it is that many of us (me included) get so self-righteous that we think we have earned our favor with God and become captive to self-righteousness.

For the last day on this topic I want to switch gears. I want to change from looking inward to looking outward. Instead of examining our hearts I want to examine the great creation that our God has surrounded us with. By now I hope that we have come to the point where we want to stop being a slave to our sin and a prisoner to our selfishness. Let’s replace that with opening our eyes brand new to see how great our God really is.

Let me share some ideas with you from my personal experience. Perhaps the best thing about living in the country is that the sky is brilliant on a clear night. There are no city skylines or heady streetlights to mar the brilliance of the night sky. I could sit for hours and marvel in the greatness of our God through the cosmos. Inside our own galaxy (the Milky Way) there are millions of stars. And on top of that there are millions of universes![1] How incredibly huge is our God that he spoke and all of that came into existence?

God is the creator of such magnificent things that we cannot fathom. The largest start in our solar system (the Sun) is able to hold our own planet millions of times over. On top of that, consider that there are billions of people on this one planet and we are so infinitesimal in comparison to the rest of the cosmos. Our God is a big God! He speaks and stars form. At his will molecules come into alignment and conform to his wonderful purpose.

To drive this point home, let’s examine my favorite Psalm: Psalm 19. I want you to take time to pour over this entire chapter. There are marvelous things in every verse. But here are the ones I want us to ponder over today:

Psalm 19 (NLT):

 [1] The heavens proclaim the glory of God.
The skies display his craftsmanship.
[2] Day after day they continue to speak;
night after night they make him known.
[3] They speak without a sound or word;
their voice is never heard.
[4] Yet their message has gone throughout the earth,
and their words to all the world.

 

I have become convinced that the sole purpose of God creating the entire universe is to declare his glory. How can we, as mere mortals, look upon a creation that we could not travel a fraction of in our lifetime if we were traveling at the speed of light. Year after year our best scientists are still discovering new things at what we keep thinking are the edges of the universe. We have just begun to comprehend how large and vast the cosmos is.

God is so great that he can create all of what we can and cannot see and still know our every thought, prayer, and need. He cares so intimately for us that he gave up that kind of glory and power to put on skin and live with us. How great of a God is he that he not only did that, but he died the death we should have? I cannot fathom how deep and wide the love he has for us.

Here is my challenge to you today. I want you to read Psalm 19 many times throughout the day. Each time you read it I want you to find something new to marvel at. Maybe it would be your fingerprint and how you alone have that one. Or maybe you’d look at a child and be captivated at how God designed us to grow both physically and spiritually. Even better, take your Bible out with you and read this passage out loud at night and take in the glory of God’s heavens in the millions of millions of stars that we do not even begin to fit our entire planet into.

Let us allow ourselves to be taken captive by God’s greatness. Let’s be held prisoner by his incredible love. Then let’s approach a lost and dying world knowing that since God loved us enough to leave that behind and die in our place that we should share that great love to others. And moreover, that we would share our faith with others who need the salvation God’s greatness provides for all who will repent and receive.

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