Teaching Sermons For Pastors and Laymen

May 1, 2006

"Living at the Right Hand of God!"

Psalm 44:1-8

 

Did you ever notice that the Bible always talks about the right hand of God; never the left. 

 

Why is that? 

 

Well, I can’t tell you for sure; I can only speculate. 

 

But it could be that the right hand was thought of as the strong hand, and the right arm the strong arm. 

 

That’s true today for most people, since most people are right handed.

 

Let’s have a show of hands and see if that’s true for this group. 

 

If you’re left-handed, hold up your left hand. 

 

Count hands: _____ out of_______.

 

Do you think that’s a typical number?

 

_____% is usually left handed.

 

This evening the subject of the lesson is “Living at the Right Hand of God.”

 

The text for the lesson is Psalm 44, verses 1-8. 

 

While David was fighting with the Syrians, the Edomites made an invasion into Israel. 

 

In the midst of the anguish that that caused, this Psalm may have been written by the Sons of Korah.

 

1 For the choir director: A psalm of the descendants of Korah. O God, we have heard it with our own ears— our ancestors have told us of all you did in other days, in days long ago:
2 You drove out the pagan nations and gave all the land to our ancestors; you crushed their enemies, setting our ancestors free.
3 They did not conquer the land with their swords; it was not their own strength that gave them victory. It was by your mighty power that they succeeded; it was because you favored them and smiled on them.
4 You are my King and my God. You command victories for your people.
5 Only by your power can we push back our enemies; only in your name can we trample our foes.
6 I do not trust my bow; I do not count on my sword to save me.
7 It is you who gives us victory over our enemies; it is you who humbles those who hate us.
8 O God, we give glory to you all day long and constantly praise your name. (NLT)

Today, I would like for us to focus upon the greatness of God and the joy and pleasure He has in store for those who desire to live and serve Him.

It‘s often seems strange to hear from those who claim to be faithful believers and followers of Christ as they complain about the condition of the world and the problems that they face.

Many talk about these things as if we have neither hope nor the power to be overcomers of life's difficulties.

Paul talks about hope in 1 Thessalonians 4:13, "But I would not have you to be ignorant, brethren, concerning them which are asleep, that ye sorrow not, even as others which have no hope."

 

Christians experience sorrow sometimes; but it is not the hopeless sorrow of the world.

 

Jesus is coming again, and that means reunion and eternal rejoicing!

Paul said, “No, in all these things we are more than conquerors through him who loved us. For I am convinced that neither death nor life, neither angels nor demons, neither the present nor the future, nor any powers, neither height nor depth, (and then, because he doesn’t want to miss anything, he adds) nor anything else in all creation, will be able to separate us from the love of God that is In Christ Jesus our Lord." (Romans 8:37-39)

The assurance that nothing can ever separate the believer from God’s love is based on what God has done in the past, and what He doing for us in the present.

 

Christ continually intercedes for believers in a courtroom where deliverance replaces condemnation.

 

Christ, the One who could condemn believers, is in reality pleading their cases.

 

Everyday, I am becoming more convinced of the truth of God's "right hand" of protection, provision, and promotion.

 

Now I need to give a disclaimer to today's lesson.

 

I’ll speak a lot about the "Right hand of God" today.

 

Scripture continually mentions the "right hand" of God as He deals with His people throughout history.

 

This is not to say that those who are predominately "left handed" are less than us right-handers.

 

This is not about what hand you prefer to use in your daily routine, it is about the blessings of God that Scripture states are found in His right hand.

 

Let’s examine our hands for a moment.

 

Look at your hands closely; what a wonderful marvel of God's creative design.

 

Are you looking at your hands?

 

Some of you aren’t looking.

 

You can do a lot of things with your hands.

 

With your hand you can say "HELLO!"

 

We extend our hand to others as a greeting and a gesture of welcome.

 

Could you think of tying your shoes or buttoning your shirt without one of your hands?

 

Eating your favorite messy hamburger without a hand would not be nearly as fun.

 

The hands have nerve endings that make it possible to feel the soft skin of a new born baby or the weathered skin of an aged saint.

 

The hand can be raised in blessing or raised in anger to bring pain to someone with a slap or a powerful blow.

 

I know some people that couldn’t talk if they didn’t have hands.

 

Think about the hand.

 

It’s connectedto the body.

 

The hand doesn’t act alone; there are other factors that are involved.

 

It receives communicationfrom the mind.

 

The brain sends a message to the hand to direct its movement.

 

The brain tells the hand to open and it opens; it does whatever the mind tells it to do.

 

It wascreatedfor a purpose.

 

The hand did not simply grow itself on the end of the arm.

 

God had great plans for the hand.

 

One of its purposes is to remind us—every time we look at it— that God's hand is upon us and that God is in control.

 

Let’s take a look at Psalm 44, for there we will discover the mighty hand of God working among his people.

 

The first thing you will notice is that His hand is a hand of justice & authority.

 

Verse 3 says, “They did not conquer the land with their swords; it was not their own strength that gave them victory. It was by your mighty power that they succeeded; it was because you favored them and smiled on them” (NLT).

 

The reference here is to the time when Israel first entered the Promised Land.

 

The conquest of Canaan was accomplished by the power of God’s hand.

 

It’s true that God used Israel’s armies, but they weren’t the conquerors of Canaan.

 

The Lord alone can be considered the conqueror of the Promised Land.

 

 

We can’t look at the goodness of God's hand until we are willing to see and respect God's hand of justice and authority.

 

In the book of Habakkuk we are told, "You will be filled with shame instead of glory. Now it is your turn! Drink and be exposed! The cup from the Lord's right hand is coming around to you, and disgrace will cover your glory"(Habakkuk2:19).

 

And Exodus 15:6 states, "Thy right hand, O LORD, is become glorious in power: thy right hand, O LORD, hath dashed in pieces the enemy."

 

 

In God’s hand there is justice and authority, but it’s also a hand of provision.

 

Every child of God has plenty of reasons to rejoice, because when He saves us He also gives us an inheritance. 

 

The Bible declares that we are joint heirs with Jesus.

 

Isn’t that wonderful that Jesus is willing to share what He has with us.

 

That’s just one more sign of God’s great love for His children.

 

When they walked by sight, Israel complained; but when they believed God and saw His mighty hand at work, they praised Him.

 

Listen again to verses 1 and 2:  “…O God, we have heard it with our own ears— our ancestors have told us of all you did in other days, in days long ago: You drove out the pagan nations and gave all the land to our ancestors; you crushed their enemies, setting our ancestors free.”

 

God provides for every need that the believer will ever have.

 

 

Paul stated,"But my God shall supply all your need according to his riches in glory by Christ Jesus" (Philippians 4:19).

 

God promises to meet all of our needs, but not all of our wishes, wants, or whims.

 

His supply is infinite, abundant, and inexhaustible.

 

God's right hand has been providing for His children since the beginning of creation and has continued until now.

 

All that we are, and have, and hope for, is the gift of God’s undeserved mercy. 

 

We don’t need to boast about it, but we also shouldn’t worry about losing it either. 

 

God will provide.

 

The Psalmist stated in Psalm 16:11,"Thou will show me the path of life: in thy presence is fullness of joy; at thy right hand there are pleasures for evermore.”  

 

God’s right hand has provided joy, and according to Psalm 78:54 it has also provided prosperity.

 

It says, “He brought them to the border of his holy land, to this land of hills he had won for them.”

 

God’s strong right hand guided Israel for 40 years as they wandered through the wilderness. 

 

Then He brought them into the Promised Land, and there He enabled them to conquer their enemies.

 

But the most wonderful thing He ever did for mankind is to save those who will believe in His Son.

 

That’s the gist of Psalm 17:7—“Show me your unfailing love in wonderful ways. You save with your strength those who seek refuge from their enemies.”

 

In His hand there is justice and authority, and there’s something else; His handis a hand of protection.

 

Listen once more to verses 6 and 7: I do not trust my bow; I do not count on my sword to save me.  It is you who gives us victory over our enemies; it is you who humbles those who hate us.”   

 

God has given us protection from many things in our lives.

 

Did you ever think about all the times God has protected you from some catastrophe?  

 

Most of the time we aren’t even aware of what God has done for us. 

 

But some things are obvious and God’s hand is clearly seen at work in our lives or the lives of others. 

 

I’ll give you an example. 

 

Justus is my next to the youngest grandchild. 

 

Five days after he was born he got sick, so Mary, my daughter, took him back to the doctor and he was immediately admitted to the hospital.

 

He had a low body temperature, and he was lethargic, and sometimes he quit breathing. 

 

They ran a bunch of tests to see what was causing his high temperature, but nothing could be concluded from the results. 

 

Finally one of the tests revealed that he had viral meningitis. 

 

They were able to treat it and Justice finally came home after 9 days on a ventilator and 12 days in the ICU. 

 

But while he was still in the hospital, one of the doctors told Mary that all they were doing was treating whatever symptom he was having at the time. 

 

They were at the end of their rope, and didn’t expect that Justice would live to leave the hospital. 

 

A lot of people prayed for him; I know some of you did, and I am convinced that the Lord Jesus healed him because of your prayers.

 

I don’t know what your situation is; it may be painful, but God has not changed.

 

He can still work wonders and glorify His name

 

At one time or another we have all felt as if we have come to the end of our rope.

 

Friends, Jesus lives at the end of your rope.

 

Sometimes you need to come to the point that you realize that you can’t do it all by yourself.

 

That’s when the Lord will help you.

 

Listen to verse 8 again: “O God, we give glory to you all day long and constantly praise your name.”

 

Sometimes God takes away all those things that bring us enjoyment and encouragement to see whether we still cling to Him for Himself.

 

Sometimes God allows defeat just to remind you that you must trust Him and Him alone.

 

Isaiah 41:13 states,  "For I am the LORD, your God, who takes hold of your right hand and says to you, Do not fear; I will help you."

 

God’s people don’t need to be afraid.

 

God is with us no matter what the circumstances might be, and He strengthens us and helps us no matter what the task is.

 

He holds us close as He helps us.

 

He will not forsake us because He made us and redeemed us, and we belong to Him.

 

He was with us before we were born, and He has a purpose for us to fulfill in His world today.

 

How can we be afraid when God’s words are guaranteed by His strong right hand and He is the Rock of our salvation?

                     

InPsalm 110:1 David says, “…The Lord said to my Lord, “Sit in honor at my right hand until I humble your enemies, making them a footstool under your feet.”

 

And Psalm 18:35 declares;You have given me the shield of your salvation. Your right hand supports me; your gentleness has made me great.”

 

And Psalm 17:7 says;Show me your unfailing love in wonderful ways. You save with your strength those who seek refuge from their enemies.

 

There is protection in God’s strong right hand.

 

Satan accused God of building a hedge around Job, and he said he couldn’t touch him, because God was always protecting him.

 

God does the same thing for us, therefore, Satan can’t harm a Christian any more than God will allow.

 

It’s not easy to always live righteously, even when things are going well.

 

But when we’re having problems, it is even more difficult to live in the right way.

 

Only the Lord God Himself, as He directs us through His Word, and by His Spirit, can keep us on the right path and lift our spirits.

 

His hand is all of these things that I have mentioned—justice, authority, provision, protection—but itis also a hand of promotion.

 

Verse 8 says,We will always praise you and give thanks to you for ever.

 

The writer to the Hebrews had this to say: "The Son is the radiance of God's glory and the exact representation of his being, sustaining all things by his powerful word. After he had provided purification for sins, he sat down at the right hand of the Majesty in heaven.”

 

God gave promotion to His Son in three ways.

 

He promoted Him by the resurrection, and His ascension, and by setting Him at His right hand.

 

Now get this:Because Christ is at the right hand of God and I am in Christ Jesus, Colossians 3:1-4 tells us:

“Since you have been raised to new life with Christ, set your sights on the realities of heaven, where Christ sits at God’s right hand in the place of honor and power. Let heaven fill your thoughts. Do not think only about things down here on earth. For you died when Christ died, and your real life is hidden with Christ in God. And when Christ, who is your real life, is revealed to the whole world, you will share in all his glory.

Think about it; we are going to share glory with Christ; all of His glory.

In Christ, you have died to the old life and been raised to a new life, so make the new life the focus of your attention.

Set your mind on it; seek to experience all that you have in Christ.

Like Lazarus, you must get rid of the grave clothes that belong to the old life.

And by faith, put off the old sins that bound you; Christ has set you free.

 

God wants you to wear the grace clothes, not the grave clothes!

 

If your focus is on heavenly things, you will obey God in things on earth, especially in your relationships with others.

I’ll end by asking you to think about what the Bible says about God’s right hand. 

We have seen that it gives justice, authority, provision, protection, and promotion.

Let’s pray and thank God for all that we have because we are in Jesus.

Amen

 

 

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