message was delivered on July 31, 2016
2 Timothy 3:16-17
16 All Scripture is given by inspiration of God, and is profitable for doctrine, for reproof, for correction, for instruction in righteousness, 17 that the man of God may be complete, thoroughly equipped for every good work.
This is one of the most important expression in the New Testament of the the doctrine of the divine inspiration of Scripture. The Bible has been breathed out by the Spirit of God...God is the source and ultimate author of Scripture. Though written by human authors, Scripture nevertheless has the full weight of His authority. The Bible, from start to finish and down to its very words, is the inerrant, meaning it “contains no error”, word of God.
The Bible applies to all men and women in every culture, in every age, in every walk of life. It is Gods supernatural manual that alone reveals the mind and ways of God so that humankind may know and experience His presence, and blessings.
The Bible is Gods written record of His works through the ages. It provides substantial evidence of His nature, His plans, and His purpose, so that we can confidently place our faith and trust in him. Because of His words, we are not left to archaeological, historical, or even theological guesswork. We can know that it is all True, because it has been written. Hence the words “for it is written”.
Scripture has it all, our past, or present, and yes even our future. Of course, we know not know the exact dates, but we do know the what lies ahead simply because, “it is written”. Not only do we feel secure in every word of God. But... God also gives us a warning of things to come.
2 Timothy 3:1-7
3 But know this, that in the last days perilous times will come: 2 For men will be lovers of themselves, lovers of money, boasters, proud, blasphemers, disobedient to parents, unthankful, unholy, 3 unloving, unforgiving, slanderers, without self-control, brutal, despisers of good, 4 traitors, headstrong, haughty, lovers of pleasure rather than lovers of God, 5 having a form of godliness but denying its power. And from such people turn away! 6 For of this sort are those who creep into households and make captives of gullible women loaded down with sins, led away by various lusts, 7 always learning and never able to come to the knowledge of the truth.
Scary right!!! With these parts of scripture, and many more warnings in the other books. How can we be secure and place our trust in God knowing that these things will happen. Or...if it has already begun? We look at our surroundings, we see, or read the news of the things that are happening around the world. When Paul wrote this letter to Timothy for the early church, is he speaking of our time now...after the resurrection? Or events to come before Jesus second coming? In keeping with the overall New Testament perspective, it is an era inaugurated by Christ’s first advent, and consummated by His return. You will hear many interpretations on this subject, but which one is real? The real question should be is, where, or better yet who do you put your trust In? Me... personally, whatever happens, whether i die today, tomorrow, or whatever time God has set for me, i am saved! There are just to many things to worry about, so many voices to listen to. Put your trust in God, and let Him do the rest. He is in control!!!
God is our refuge and strength, A very present help in trouble.2 Therefore we will not fear, Even though the earth be removed, And though the mountains be carried into the midst of the sea; 3 Though its waters roar and be troubled, Though the mountains shake with its swelling. Selah
We will be going through the whole chapter of Psalm 46, i will break it into three parts because, it is a long chapter, it has a total of eleven verses. Let me point out the use of the word “Selah” after verse 3, verse 7, and verse 11. This curious phrase is most likely a musical rest, in which the singers stopped singing and only the instruments were heard. According to one Bible dictionary, this phrase can also signify a musical,silent reflection. It also carries with it the idea of “meditation.” In Psalm 46, we’re called to pause and meditate three different times so that we can comprehend what God is saying to us. For our purposes this message, we’ll follow this natural outline and pause at these same spots.
We’re reminded of three essential truths about God from this passage. God demonstrates His dependability through:
His Protection (1-3) His Presence (4-7) His Position (8-11)
God desires to be our refuge, our strength, and our help. God is our refuge even when what seems permanent is demolished. When the world crashes in around us, God is still there, protecting us. The word “refuge” literally means “to flee,” as in running to a shelter. The idea is that God wants us to run to Him for protection. The word “strength” implies that we can rely on His might when we feel weak and defenseless.
The phrase “ever-present help” means that God is quick to give assistance. It literally means that He has “proved” Himself to be such a help in the past and we can therefore trust in Him in the present. Because of this we do not have to fear. The word “trouble” can mean, “affliction, distress, or tribulation.” God is calling us today to not live in fear because He is our refuge, strength and help. If we run to Him we will not be afraid. Verse 2 is true only if verse 1 is true. If God is your refuge and strength, you don’t have anything to worry about. He will do His part as you seek protection in Him.
In verse 2 the writer is imagining the worst calamity that could possibly hit his people as he describes earthquakes, volcanoes erupting, and mountains slipping into the sea. Even though the “earth gives way,” or the landscape suddenly changes, we don’t have to be afraid. Mountains provided refuge in times of war and were considered to be the most secure part of nature. They were the most fixed and firm things on earth.
Verse 3 describes the roaring waters of the sea, which is a picture of our lives when they’re out of control. “Roaring,” means to “be in great commotion, to rage, or be at war.” Our country is in commotion as we wonder what will happen next. When the “mountains quake with their surging” refers to the pride or haughtiness of the mountains. Our sense of pride and invulnerability as a country has been replaced with quaking and concern about the future. Does this make sense, with what is going on in our country? What will happen next for our country? “God is our refuge”
If we become more humble as a result, and recognize that God is our protector, our faith can cast out fear. The psalmist is saying that when that which is secure is suddenly gone, we’re to seek refuge in God Himself. Our sense of helplessness and fear should drive us to Him.
2 Chronicles 7:14
14 if My people who are called by My name will humble themselves, and pray and seek My face, and turn from their wicked ways, then I will hear from heaven, and will forgive their sin and heal their land.
This verse beautifully says it all. The first “Selah” is used at the end of verse 3. Let’s pause here and reflect upon God’s protection and our need to seek refuge in Him. Confess any personal sins, any sins in our church, what i mean by church is, as an individual, being part of Gods body. Not the building. “God is our refuge”
There is a river whose streams shall make glad the city of God, The holy place of the tabernacle of the Most High. 5 God is in the midst of her, she shall not be moved;
God shall help her, just at the break of dawn. 6 The nations raged, the kingdoms were moved; He uttered His voice, the earth melted. 7 The Lord of hosts is with us;
The God of Jacob is our refuge. Selah
The first three was about His protection. Now...we will look at His Presence.
God protects us when we seek refuge in Him. Fortunately, we don’t have to run far to find Him because His presence is right here with us. Verse 4 paints a picture that is easy for us to miss. First of all, the city of God is Jerusalem. While it was a very beautiful city, it had no river that ran through it like the other major cities and countries of that day. Babylon was built on the Euphrates. Egypt had the Nile. Rome had the Tiber. Jerusalem did not have a physical river but it had something even better, the very presence of God.
God’s grace flows through like a river that brings gladness and joy to His people. While the ocean rages and foams, God’s presence is depicted as a calm and gently flowing stream. This image in Scripture is used to represent happiness, abundance, and peace, even when everything else is falling apart.
God’s presence with His people is one of the central truths of Scripture. Verse 5 says that “God is within her” and verse 7 declares that the “Lord Almighty is with us.” This is from the root word “Immanuel,” which means “God with us” and was used in Matthew 1:23 to refer to Jesus. That means that when we put our faith in Jesus, we have “God with us” at all times.
Notice the last part of verse 5: “God will help her at the break of day.” No matter how bad things get, God’s presence means that He will help us. When we wake up to start a brand new day, we will experience what Jeremiah did in..
Through the Lord’s mercies we are not consumed, Because His compassion fail not.
23 They are new every morning; Great is Your faithfulness.
God is present with His people even when “nations are in uproar and kingdoms fall” according to verse 6. “Uproar” is the same word that is used in verse 3 to describe the roar of the waters. When the nations are agitated like the waves of the sea, God is still with His people. Even if we go through war, famine, terrorism, illness you name it,we can take comfort in the fact that God is with us. No matter how bad things get, we can always count on His presence. The last part of verse 6 reminds us of God’s incredible power. When “he lifts his voice, the earth melts.” What we are witnessing now, and what will happen in the future cannot be, compared to the awesome power of God. The raging world melts or dissolves before Him.
Verse 7 concludes by saying that the “God of Jacob is our fortress.” As in verse 1, God is depicted not only as powerful, but also as a fortress that we can run to for safety. The description of God as “The Lord Almighty” in the first part of verse 7 means, “The Lord of Hosts.” The hosts refer to all the armies of heaven. The Lord Almighty has all the hosts of heaven ready to do His work. As such, we can take comfort in His presence as we seek His protection. “God Is Our Refuge”
We now reach the second “Selah” and thank God for His presence with us. We have now learned about...His Protection (1-3) His Presence (4-7), Now..let us look at..
His Position (8-11)
Come, behold the works of the Lord, Who has made desolation in the earth.
9 He makes wars cease to the end of the earth; He breaks the bow and cuts the spear in two; He burns the chariot in the fire. 10 Be still, and know that I am God;
I will be exalted among the nations, I will be exalted in the earth!
11 The Lord of hosts is with us; The God of Jacob is our refuge. Selah
We can depend on God during times like this because of His protection, His presence, and finally, because of His position. As a nation, and as a church, according to verse 8 we’re called to “come and see the works of the Lord.” This word means to “run or pursue” in order to “see,” which refers to “gazing, contemplating, or perceiving.”
Verse 9 shows us that in His position as the Almighty God, He can make “wars cease to the ends of the earth; he breaks the bow and shatters the spear, he burns the shields with fire.” The Assyrian empire was at that time the mightiest on the globe. It had already overrun many of the smaller kingdoms and had hoped to conquer the entire world. But God had other plans. A broken bow is of no value and a spear that is shattered is no longer effective. Shields set on fire cannot function. In His position as sovereign king, God is in charge!
Verse 10 calls us to bow before His position as sovereign ruler. We’re called to “Be still and know that I am God.” To “be still” means to “cast down or let fall.” It’s the idea of not putting forth exertion... not to struggle. The picture is of letting our hands fall to our sides, as we leave matters with God. We’re not to just have a “moment of silence” or even to just be quiet. The purpose is so that we can know God. To “know” means to “acknowledge and comprehend, or to discover.” We can’t even begin to know God by experience until we become still before Him. This is actually a rebuke. We’re to cease striving and working in our own self-effort and submit ourselves to God.
Notice the last part of verse 10: “I will be exalted among the nations, I will be exalted in the earth.” As we quiet our souls and reflect upon His position as Lord over the whole world, we will recognize His supremacy and inevitable triumph over the nations. Until we’re still and quiet before Him, the awesome reality of His coming exaltation among all the nations will not impact us, Church...no matter what happens, remember this, God will be exalted among the nations! Like i had mentioned in our bible studies...
10 that at the name of Jesus every knee should bow, of those in heaven, and of those on earth, and of those under the earth, 11 and that every tongue should confess that Jesus Christ is Lord, to the glory of God the Father.
Whether you bow down to God now, or bow down to God in heaven or in hell, YOU WILL BOW DOWN!!!
Because “the Lord almighty is with us, and the God of Jacob is our fortress,” we can trust Him. The Lord of Host.. in His position as supreme commander of the armies of heaven
is present with us, because of that we can run to Him for protection. Jesus Christ is God and Lord of history. Nothing has happened outside of His plan. Nothing ever leaves him bewildered or astonished. Nothing ever catches him by surprise. Though there is tragedy and war, though the mountains fall into the sea, those who know Jesus Christ have nothing to fear. Whether nature wreaks havoc, or the nations rage against one another, God is our refuge. If war comes, God will still provide His protection and presence because of His position as Lord of Hosts. He will ultimately triumph.
Let’s pause here at the final “Selah” and be still before God. Affirm the central truth of Scripture that He is supreme and will be exalted among the nations. Psalm 46, has showed us who or God is.... His our Protection (1-3) We are in His Presence (4-7) We Know His His Position (8-11) “God Is Our Refuge”
We may not know what the future holds, but we know in our hearts, who holds it. Put your faith and trust in Jesus. The truth is, what is our life? Scripture.. the “Word Of God Speaks”. I do not know where your relationship is with our God. Whether you believe in Him, put your faith in Him, Have you been faithful in your walk with Him. The fact still remains, we need to make our life right with God.
Jesus is coming back, and we better be ready. There is enough warnings in the Scripture to say otherwise. Luke 21:10-11, gives us another warning of things to come...
10 Then He said to them, “Nation will rise against nation, and kingdom against kingdom. 11 And there will be great earthquakes in various places, and famines and pestilences; and there will be fearful sights and great signs from heaven.
These things will happen... “The Word Of God Speaks”, and He does not lie!
Always remember that the Bible tells us that...
“God is our refuge and strength, an ever-present help in trouble. Therefore we will not fear, though the earth give way and the mountains fall into the sea, though its waters roar and foam and the mountains quake with their surging. “God Is Our Refuge”
Pastor Richard Santos
Audio copies of previously delivered messages are now available in CD. Requests can be made on the 'Contacts' tab.