The Lord lives! Praise be to my Rock!
Exalted be God my Saviour!
Psalm 18:46 NIVUK
There are three words in this short verse that stand out a mile – “Lives”, “Rock” and “Saviour”. Or to expand a bit, God is alive, He is our Rock and our Salvation. But let’s take the first phrase – “The Lord lives”. How does that make us feel? We looked earlier in one of my blog posts at the thought “God is dead” but here is the concept that He is alive. There is no half way state between life and death (though looking at our elderly pet Westie asleep in his basket, I wonder sometimes).
There are published theological proofs claiming that God is alive, but for me the situation is simpler. Jesus, the Son of God, and a part of our Trinitarian God, came to this world as a man, walked the highways and byways of Palestine and then was cruelly crucified, suffering the Roman-applied criminal’s death. But, on the third day after this happened, Jesus rose from the dead and appeared to His disciples for a period of fifty days until His ascension back to Heaven. So He’s not dead any more – He has just moved to a new address. The Apostle Paul wrote in his Epistle to the Romans, 8:34, “Who then is the one who condemns? No one. Christ Jesus who died – more than that, who was raised to life – is at the right hand of God and is also interceding for us.” We can look back at the events 2000 years ago but the Psalmist David didn’t have that benefit. However he developed a relationship with God that was so vibrant that he knew God was alive. And his heart overflowed with grateful praise as he exalted the living God, his Saviour.
But I ask the inevitable question – is God alive for us today on Planet Earth, in the societies of which we are a part? Do we look at local and global world events and ask ourselves why God is not intervening? The wars and suffering, the malnutrition and disease. Does God’s life or death make any difference either way? There are no glib, off-the-cuff answers to this question, this dilemma that we face every day. For me personally, living in this sin-soaked world is difficult. It has its challenges. But the day is coming when God will cry, “Enough!” and we read in the Book of Revelation about the end times and the new heaven and earth. And, soberingly, we read about the day of judgement coming as well. Why doesn’t God sort out the world now? That’s where the concept of grace comes into play. God in His loving kindness and mercy gives everyone the opportunity during their lifetime to make that leap of faith and put their trust in Him, thus ensuring a place at the banquet and a home in a mansion, that Jesus told His disciples about.
Blaise Pascal the great 17th Century mathematician and philosopher was credited with the following quotation, “If I believe in God and life after death and you do not, and if there is no God, we both lose when we die. However, if there is a God, you still lose and I gain everything.” In other words, if God is alive, as David claimed, and we align our lives to Him through the sacrifice Jesus made for us at Calvary, then we have a glorious future awaiting us. If we don’t then, like Blaise suggested, we’re “losers”. Something else to meditate over our day ahead?