Sermon preached on Sunday, August 5, 2012 at Garden Valley Chapel during our morning worship service based on Psalms 78:9-72.
Turn in your Bible, if you will, to the seventy-eighth chapter of the book of Psalms - Psalms seventy-eight.
I invite you to stand in the reading of God´s Word. Read Psalm 78:9-20.
It was Dr. Arthur T. Pierson who said, "History is His story" and this psalm bears that out.
Philosopher and Spaniard George Santayana put it this way, "Those who do not remember the past are condemned to relive it."
That is how we approach this particular psalm, which is known as an instructive psalm. We come knowing that history is just that, God´s story.
We also come knowing and believing that God intended for us to learn from history which Calvin sometimes called sacred history.
As Solomon wrote in Ecclesiastes 1:9 -
9 That which has been is that which will be, And that which has been done is that which will be done. So there is nothing new under the sun.
It is a harsh reality but nothing is new. We just need to turn the things of old to things newly discovered that we might glean from ages past.
Is it not amazing to notice how slow we always are to learn the great lessons of life and of history?
In highlighting the authority of Scripture, R.A. Torrey has said -
"Oh, happy is the man who has sense enough to learn from the unvarying history of the past and believe what God says in spite of the proud unbelief of men, no matter who they may be."
So let us be happy men who have sense enough to learn from sacred history and believe that God intends for us to learn lessons from His Word for us this morning - lessons that we are commanded to teach the coming generation that they might know God; "that they should put their confidence in God and not forget the works of God, but keep His commandments" (v. 7).
9The children of Ephraim, being armed, and carrying bows, turned back in the day of battle. 10They kept not the covenant of God, and refused to walk in his law; 11And forgat his works, and his wonders that he had shewed them. 12Marvellous things did he in the sight of their fathers, in the land of Egypt, in the field of Zoan. 13He divided the sea, and caused them to pass through; and he made the waters to stand as an heap. 14In the daytime also he led them with a cloud, and all the night with a light of fire. 15He clave the rocks in the wilderness, and gave them drink as out of the great depths. 16He brought streams also out of the rock, and caused waters to run down like rivers. 17And they sinned yet more against him by provoking the most High in the wilderness. 18And they tempted God in their heart by asking meat for their lust. 19Yea, they spake against God; they said, Can God furnish a table in the wilderness? 20Behold, he smote the rock, that the waters gushed out, and the streams overflowed; can he give bread also? can he provide flesh for his people? 21Therefore the LORD heard this, and was wroth: so a fire was kindled against Jacob, and anger also came up against Israel; 22Because they believed not in God, and trusted not in his salvation: 23Though he had commanded the clouds from above, and opened the doors of heaven, 24And had rained down manna upon them to eat, and had given them of the corn of heaven. 25Man did eat angels' food: he sent them meat to the full. 26He caused an east wind to blow in the heaven: and by his power he brought in the south wind. 27He rained flesh also upon them as dust, and feathered fowls like as the sand of the sea: 28And he let it fall in the midst of their camp, round about their habitations. 29So they did eat, and were well filled: for he gave them their own desire; 30They were not estranged from their lust. But while their meat was yet in their mouths, 31The wrath of God came upon them, and slew the fattest of them, and smote down the chosen men of Israel. 32For all this they sinned still, and believed not for his wondrous works. 33Therefore their days did he consume in vanity, and their years in trouble. 34When he slew them, then they sought him: and they returned and inquired early after God. 35And they remembered that God was their rock, and the high God their redeemer. 36Nevertheless they did flatter him with their mouth, and they lied unto him with their tongues. 37For their heart was not right with him, neither were they stedfast in his covenant. 38But he, being full of compassion, forgave their iniquity, and destroyed them not: yea, many a time turned he his anger away, and did not stir up all his wrath. 39For he remembered that they were but flesh; a wind that passeth away, and cometh not again. 40How oft did they provoke him in the wilderness, and grieve him in the desert! 41Yea, they turned back and tempted God, and limited the Holy One of Israel. 42They remembered not his hand, nor the day when he delivered them from the enemy. 43How he had wrought his signs in Egypt, and his wonders in the field of Zoan: 44And had turned their rivers into blood; and their floods, that they could not drink. 45He sent divers sorts of flies among them, which devoured them; and frogs, which destroyed them. 46He gave also their increase unto the caterpiller, and their labour unto the locust. 47He destroyed their vines with hail, and their sycomore trees with frost. 48He gave up their cattle also to the hail, and their flocks to hot thunderbolts. 49He cast upon them the fierceness of his anger, wrath, and indignation, and trouble, by sending evil angels among them. 50He made a way to his anger; he spared not their soul from death, but gave their life over to the pestilence; 51And smote all the firstborn in Egypt; the chief of their strength in the tabernacles of Ham: 52But made his own people to go forth like sheep, and guided them in the wilderness like a flock. 53And he led them on safely, so that they feared not: but the sea overwhelmed their enemies. 54And he brought them to the border of his sanctuary, even to this mountain, which his right hand had purchased. 55He cast out the heathen also before them, and divided them an inheritance by line, and made the tribes of Israel to dwell in their tents. 56Yet they tempted and provoked the most high God, and kept not his testimonies: 57But turned back, and dealt unfaithfully like their fathers: they were turned aside like a deceitful bow. 58For they provoked him to anger with their high places, and moved him to jealousy with their graven images. 59When God heard this, he was wroth, and greatly abhorred Israel: 60So that he forsook the tabernacle of Shiloh, the tent which he placed among men; 61And delivered his strength into captivity, and his glory into the enemy's hand. 62He gave his people over also unto the sword; and was wroth with his inheritance. 63The fire consumed their young men; and their maidens were not given to marriage. 64Their priests fell by the sword; and their widows made no lamentation. 65Then the Lord awaked as one out of sleep, and like a mighty man that shouteth by reason of wine. 66And he smote his enemies in the hinder parts: he put them to a perpetual reproach. 67Moreover he refused the tabernacle of Joseph, and chose not the tribe of Ephraim: 68But chose the tribe of Judah, the mount Zion which he loved. 69And he built his sanctuary like high palaces, like the earth which he hath established for ever. 70He chose David also his servant, and took him from the sheepfolds: 71From following the ewes great with young he brought him to feed Jacob his people, and Israel his inheritance. 72So he fed them according to the integrity of his heart; and guided them by the skilfulness of his hands. (KJV)
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