2. God is love…whatever that means! (Psalm 36)
We have all heard « God is love, » but what does that actually mean? What does it not mean?
Following up on my previous sermon on Psalm 36, here is an examination of an aspect of the nature of God.
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I would like to clarify two things I said in this sermon. My final point is that « love is wise. » I go to great lengths to explain what wisdom looks like in an authority figure (that is, they modify their judgments to various situations). I should have seen that in the passage being studied, God’s « righteousness » is like a mountain (that is, it is firm and doesn’t move) while His « judgments » are like a great deep (that is, they are fluid, situational and profound). The way I said it towards the end of the sermon could be taken to say that God’s ethics change with each changing person and situation (situational ethics) and this is not what the passage is saying. Probably a more accurate direction to take it (although it would have been awkward in this particular sermon) would be to apply it directly to the judgment-seat of Christ (Gen. 18:25, Psalm 58:11, Daniel 7:10, 1 Peter 1:17, Revelations 20:12, etc.). At that one, post-life judgment (Heb. 9:27), we can rest assured that God’s judgments will be particularly adapted to the situation, the knowledge, the advantages and disadvantages of each individual person. This is different, however, than saying that His sense of right and wrong (or, His « moral compass ») changes from situation to situation on issues He has spoken out on.
I also said some derogatory things towards younger people in authority (I was saying this against myself, as a recognition that I have much to learn from older people) but someone who heard this interpreted it as « you’re right. So-and-so, who is a young pastor, just doesn’t have much wisdom! » This was not what I was getting at. Young people can do a good job too, as Paul says, « Let no one look down on your youthfulness, but rather in speech, conduct, love, faith and purity, show yourself an example of those who believe. » (1 Tim. 4:12)
Other than these corrections, though, I think the rest of the sermon is quite sound and should be a blessing to those who hear it.
Enjoy and God bless!