What Are You Looking At? 4/14/20

Psalm 119:37 “Turn my eyes from looking at worthless things; and give me life in your ways.”

As we try to live the Christian life, as we are daily transformed more and more into the image of Christ by the sanctifying work of the Holy Spirit, we find that often we still struggle. There is sin that still tempts us. The devil uses the enticements of the world to lure us away from God and the holy life He has called us to live. Instead of a steady progression up the road to holiness, we experience a roller coaster ride, rising to heavenly heights only too soon to come crashing down into the depths. What can we do to get off that roller coaster?

It is a struggle that requires God’s strength. He has given us a desire for Himself. He has given us salvation. Paul writes that God “has blessed us in Christ with every spiritual blessing in the heavenly places.” (Eph 1:3) All of this is ours, and yet we are tempted to yield to earthly pleasures, to things that are offensive to God and that should be offensive to us.

David says in our text, “Turn my eyes from looking at worthless things.” We need to understand the difference between worthless things and heavenly things. We need to understand why worthless things are worthless. They are worthless because they do not satisfy, they are temporary and not lasting, and they take our minds and hearts away from God. Most of these worthless things we probably recognize ourselves, but we also need to ask God to open our eyes and help us discern what things are worthless.

John Owen, that great Puritan pastor, warned that we struggle to keep our desires pure and fixed in Christ. He said, “Watchfulness, prayer, faith in the promises of God, and self-examination are all required to defend ourselves against such temptations and prevail over them.” If we are serious, we will fight against the attraction of worthless things and ask God to give us life in His ways.

“Whatever is honorable, whatever is just, whatever is lovely, whatever is commendable, if there is any excellence, if there is anything worthy of praise, think about these things.” (Phil 4:8) God, keep our eyes on You and give us life in Your ways. Amen.

Pastor Mike

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