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July 7, 2014 – Psalm 132-134

Click here to read Psalm 132-134 on BibleGateway.com

prayerFeeling a little rebellious today? I hope so. We’re gonna break the Golden Devotional Rule. Instead of looking at just one chapter, the way God intended, we’re actually going to look at two. That’s right. It’s getting crazy up in here. I just wanted to warn you, in case that’s too much wackiness for you; don’t want to be responsible for any heart attacks, you know.

Psalm 133 and 134 are part of a group of Psalm called “songs of ascent.” While not many would bet their lives on it, the consensus among scholars is that these were songs that people sang as they traveled up to Jerusalem for various religious festivals. They are very brief, repeatable, and are generally positive in content (as opposed to some of the less-postive psalms that talk about God smashing people’s heads).

HOW IT’S SUPPOSED TO BE

Psalm 133 refers to how awesome it is when God’s people (church folk, to you and me) get along with each other. This is both true, and unfortunately, rare. The Church is more often associated with people fighting amongst themselves, with outsiders, with their pastors and leaders, with other denominations, and just about anyone else we can think of. But if you ever been a part of a church where everyone is genuinely looking out for each other, you’ve seen how incredibly amazing that can be.

Psalm 134 gives us what may be the key. Verse 1 say “Praise the Lord, all you servants of the Lord, who minister by night in the house of the Lord.” Originally, this referred to the priests who worked 24/7/365 to keep certain sacrifices and fires running in the temple in Jerusalem.  That means that some of them were working when everyone else was sleeping.  Some of them served God in the dark, when no one else would ever know. But let’s update this to our time. What is the house of the Lord now? The New Testament says that God now dwells in us, not in houses made by men. Who are the servants? Hopefully all us; anyone who is striving to serve Jesus.

BETTER CHURCH, FROM THE INSIDE OUT

If you research revivals or large church growth movements, there’s one common denominator (if you look for it) that sometimes is hidden behind all the flashy-ness. Almost all revivals start with a small group of believers (sometimes just one or two) that agree to meet together on a regular basis, care for each other, and for all of them to take the responsibility to individually seek God’s will. Often, these people go unnamed in the larger movement. They are not typically the super-pastors or evangelists that you may hear about; they are the force that sustains those in front of the cameras. They are the ones that pray when no one else is looking; that give what they have to others, that care more about being holy than than being known for being holy.

Do you want revival to come to your church? Do you want God to move in your city? Get alone with God and seek him with all your heart. Take care of fellow believers; put their needs ahead of yours. Be more concerned with supporting your pastor instead of “correcting” his mistakes. And be prepared to get absolutely no recognition for it. The ones who minister by night, who seek God when no one else is around, who support and encourage instead of looking to be fulfilled – these are the real heart of God’s work on earth.

Are you strong enough to be unknown?

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