Our Identity 17 Known by Him
Our Identity In Christ
We are KNOWN by HIM – Psalm 139
Let’s review our Identity Alphabet up to the letter K
A – We have ALL THINGS PERTAINING TO LIFE AND GODLINESS
We are ABLE MINISTERS OF THE NEW COVENANT AMBASSADORS FOR CHRIST
B- BLESSED WITH EVERY SPIRITUAL BLESSING
IN HEAVENLY PLACES
BELOVED OF GOD
C- We are COMFORTED OF GOD
And CRUCIFIED WITH CHRIST
D – We are DEAD TO SIN, BUT ALIVE TO GOD
E – We are EPISTLES OF CHRIST
F – We are not only FORGIVEN, but also FREE from bondage
G - We are GIVEN A SPIRIT OF POWER, LOVE AND A SOUND MIND
H – We are HIDDEN WITH CHRIST IN GOD
We are Heirs
Heirs of God
Fellow Heirs with Christ
Heirs of the Kingdom
Heirs of Promise
Heirs of Righteousness
Heirs of the Grace of Life
His workmanship (poiema)
I – In Christ Jesus
for good works, which God prepared beforehand, that we should walk in them. (Eph. 2:10)
J – We are Justified
Do you remember any of the ornaments on our tree of justification? Because we are justified we have: Peace with God, Hope of Glory, Proven character which comes from perseverance in tribulation. The Spirit of God pours out what within our hearts? The love of God. Being Justified by His blood, by His grace and by faith we are also saved from wrath and reconciled to God.
K- Kingdom of Priests
With the responsibility of proclaiming the excellencies of him who has called us out of darkness into His marvelous light.
Our priestly offerings include: our bodies (lives), praise, possessions, good works, service to God.
With all of this knowledge about who we are, we should never ever feel insignificant. But you might say, Lori, as part of God’s Kingdom I know I am all these things and have all these things, but sometimes I feel like I just get lost in the crowd, even in a body of believers.
Well, there may be people here at Central who don’t know you, but I can assure you that the One who needs to know you does know you. In fact I would go so far as to say that He knows you better than you know yourself.
Let’s turn to Psalm 139 and see what David had to say about God’s knowledge of Him.
I’m sure you have read portions of this Psalm countless times, as have I. However, when I read it again a couple of weeks ago
the Lord spoke to me in such a loving way in light of the events of my personal life in 2007 and in contemplation of what might take place in 2008.
I believe girls, that this is right where He wanted us to be in our alphabet as we reflect on the past and look toward the future reminding ourselves of His thoughts toward us.
Let’s begin with the first 6 verses and as we read let’s look for what the passage tells us about God and what it says about us.
Read Vv. 1-6
What attribute of God’s character is most prominent in these verses? He is all-knowing (omniscient).
God’s intimate knowledge of us is referred to in 5 of these first 6 verses.
v.1 Thou has searched me and known me
· There is no me after known in the Hebrew.
The me before known is in the original language.
We could put an ellipsis after known and it refers to everything that concerns us…my circumstances, my needs, my sorrows, the precise time to rescue me.
· “searched” The Hebrew word originally means to dig and is applied to the search for precious metals.
What stands out to you in these 6 verses about you, about God, or about your relationship to Him?
· God knows our actions. Whether we are sitting or standing doesn’t matter. He keeps up with all that we do.
· David employs a figure of speech called merism here to express completeness. The opposites named represent everything in between. Vv. 2,3,8.
· God knows our thoughts.
· Luke 9:47 - The disciples were having a discussion about who was the greatest among them
“but Jesus, knowing what they were thinking in their heart, took a child and stood him by His side, and said to them…”
Now you might be able to discern my thoughts by what I am saying or the look on my face or by my body language. But unless you are hearing me or seeing me, you probably do not know what I am thinking, much less care about what I am thinking.
If you do care, you could still possibly misjudge me. But God will never misjudge or wrongly interpret us.
· Notice verse 2 again, He not only knows what we are thinking, He understands what we are thinking.
· He understands what prompted those thoughts in the first place.
· Paul said his goal was to bring every thought captive to the obedience of Christ.
· Knowing that God understands what prompts our thoughts and our motives, may be a key bringing every thought into the captivity of Christ.
· He scrutinizes our path and is intimately acquainted with all our ways.
Remember when Jesus said to Nathaniel when He saw him coming? “Behold, an Israelite indeed, in whom is no guile!” Nathanael - “How do You know me?”
Jesus - “Before Philip called you, when you were under the fig tree, I saw you.”
Scrutinize (Heb. zarah) literally means to sift or winnow. God is so intimately aware of all our ways that He has literally sifted our seconds to insure our well-being. (KJV Bible Commentary)
Don’t we often try to do this with our children?
We want to know where they are going, why they are going there and who they are going with. Not that it is a bad thing. We have their good in mind. And so does our Father. But He doesn’t have to ask and neither we nor our children can deceive Him.
He knows our thoughts, He knows our actions, what else does God know about us?
V. 4 He knows my words – before I speak them.
That’s why we can ask God to put a guard over the doorpost of our mouths. I wonder now if that is why I start to say something and it’s gone just like that. The guard (H. S.) is standing post, and teaching me some humility along the way.
He knows my THOUGHTS, my WORDS, my ACTIONS
You can talk to God because God listens. Your voice matters in heaven. He takes you very seriously. When you enter his presence, he turns to you to hear your voice. No need to fear that you will be ignored. Even if you stammer or stumble, even if what you have to say impresses no one, it impresses God, and he listens. He listens to the painful plea of the elderly in the rest home. He listens to the gruff confession of the death-row inmate. When the alcoholic begs for mercy, when the spouse seeks guidance, when the businessman steps off the street into the chapel, God listens.
Intently. Carefully. (Lucado, Jan. 1, Grace for the Moment)
V. 5 He has enclosed me and laid His hand upon me.
Each of us is enclosed by the Father.
This same word is translated “besieged” 21 times in scripture.
It is almost like being caught in an ambush. If you go forward His is there. If you try to go backward He is there. And lest we think that His surrounding presence is a distant one, David says, “He has laid His hand upon me.”
That’s good news for us, bad news for our enemies, and difficult for those who choose to live their lives their own way.
Have you ever prayed that He would go before you and prepare the way? Since that is His word, it receives a yea and amen. “Yes and so be it.”
V. 6 Such knowledge is too wonderful for me
It is too high, I cannot attain to it.
Our finite minds cannot understand or even imagine the depth of God’s knowledge, or any of His attributes for that matter.
· “Our mind has no line with which to measure the infinite.” --Spurgeon
How can this information impact my life in 2008?
Pray – Thank God for His knowledgeable concern for us.
Read vs. 7-12
What attribute of God’s Character is David describing in these verses? God is omnipresent - present everywhere.
v. 7 By what means is God present with us? His Spirit
· Spurgeon – The thought of this makes sin even more dreadful since we offend the Almighty to His face and commit acts of treason at the very foot of his throne.
· David again uses a merism (figure of speech) here to express completeness. The opposites named represent everything in between. Vv. 2,3,8.
· Have you ever tried to run from God or ignore Him?
What Bible personalities tried to run from or hide from God? Adam and Eve, Jonah. (tried to run to Tarshish so he wouldn’t have to go to Ninevah Did he think God was not in Tarsish?)
Did they accomplish anything from running or hiding? What happened? They just made the situation more difficult.
Isn’t it neat to realize when you go out of the country whether for a pleasant visit or mission trip or for whatever reason, God is there. You did not leave Him when you left your home.
I remember Kim Ledbetter who served with her family on the mission field in the Ukraine telling us, “God did not arrive in the Ukraine when we arrived He was already there. We were just joining Him in His work. Henry Blackaby teaches us this in experiencing God also.
· Russian Cosmonot “I don’t see God up here anywhere.”
American Astronaut “I see Him everywhere.”
· “The presence of God’s glory is in heaven; the presence of His power on earth; the presence of his justice in hell; and the presence of his grace with his people. If he deny us his powerful presence, we fall into nothing; if he deny us his gracious presence, we fall into sin; if he deny us his merciful presence, we fall into hell.”—John Mason
How can these truths affect my next 365 days?
(look for His hand leading me v. 10)
Pray thanksgiving for vs.7-12
v. 13-16 God the Creator/ Sustainer
· Notice the poetical description of how He made us
like an artist completing an important work. “form, weave, fearfully and wonderfully made, skillfully wrought.”
· A weaver has a plan before the 1st thread is put into place. God has a custom design for each of us. (vv. 14-16)
· Does God assign personal worth the way we do?
No, He looks beyond the bodily frame to the picture within (I Sam. 16:7) – Believer’s Study Bible
· To criticize the creation is to blame the Creator.
– Isaiah 45:9-11
· Has God finished creating?
1 Peter 5:10 “And after you have suffered for a little while, the God of all grace, who called you to His eternal glory in Christ, will Himself perfect, confirm, strengthen and establish you.”
Romans 8:38 “God causes all things in our lives to work together for good.”
· Even now the bride of Christ is being fashioned by the Creator. He sees the “unformed (imperfect) substance” of the church. (Treasury of David)
How should these truths affect my next 365 days?
The context for this remark is all the preceding verses.
As David reviewed God’s knowledge of him, His presence with him, and his creation of Him, he is again overwhelmed with praise!!
Some may count it a hardship that God knows everything about us, but David counts it a valuable privilege.
We may lose consciousness of God in sleep, but God never loses consciousness of us. V. 18
How will these verses effect my next 365 days?
A fresh awareness of His companionship in my life.
The Unpublished Personal Writings of
Hannah Whitall Smith – The Christian’s Secret of a Holy Life
I must tell you of the wonderful vision God has given me of Himself. Not an emotion, but a knowledge a sort of real seeing. It seems to me somehow as if I had gotten home to God. As if I had been taking refuge in all sorts of things until now, but had at last been driven out of them all and had found myself in God. I wish I could tell you about it. It is as if I had got to the bottom of things somehow, back into the very beginnings of them all and had found it was God. “For of Him and to Him and by Him are all things.” I have discovered the truth of this, that it is a fact. He is really all in all, the beginning and the end of everything; the King in His own universe, the one only and omnipotent Creator!
I have never known an omnipotent God before. I have only known a bounded, limited, helpless God; and I have never therefore been able really to reckon on Him as a positive presence and power. I have feared enemies and dreaded precipices. But I see now that no enemies can for a moment withstand such a God; and one can’t fall down any precipices when one is already at the foot of them. Read Ps. 139 and you will get the idea, that is if your eyes have been opened to see it. “Beset” by God, only think of it! It is grand, dear Carrie, thus to find God in everything, and to be able down at the bottom of everything, and behind everything to rest in God. Faber says “God only is the creature’s home,” and it is like getting home to get to Him.
—To Carrie, 1315 Filbert St., October 16, 1879
Vv. 19-22 An abrupt transition
He is reacting to all those who revile God’s name and nature – God’s enemies are David’s enemies.
Since we are “beset” or enclosed behind and before by God, we have the freedom to talk to Him concerning our enemies and know that He will respond with His powerful right hand on our behalf in His time.
Pray for those who speak against God.
That He would slay their unbelief.
Having spoken against the wickedness of God’s enemies, David is willing to place himself under the same judgment—to have the Lord turn the spotlight on his inner being.
He is only responding to the reality that God has already searched him and known him. v.1
He wants God to point out those things that need to be changed in him.
How can I implement this in my next 365 days?