Temple Baptist Church - 7-3-2011
A. If we took a poll tonight concerning just how many of us want to have a happy life, I believe that the vote would be unanimous! The world is looking for happiness in all of the wrong places and so are many of God’s children.
John 6:33 These things I have spoken unto you, that in me ye might have peace. In the world ye shall have tribulation: but be of good cheer; I have overcome the world.
Job 14:1-2 Man that is born of a woman is of few days, and full of trouble. (2) He cometh forth like a flower, and is cut down: he fleeth also as a shadow, and continueth not.
B. The Lord gave us a wonderful world to live in and I enjoy many of the things of life. I love life and try to have a thankful heart for it but life at its best is hard. Life is both hard and unfair at times which create in the heart of the believer a longing for home. Things do not bring about either happiness or contentment!
C. True happiness is found in the Lord!
Colossians 3:4 When Christ, who is our life, shall appear, then shall ye also appear with him in glory.
D. In Psalms 22-24, we find a trilogy. A trilogy is a series, sequence, or cycle. These three Psalms operate hand-in-hand to describe our life in Christ from salvation until our Lord comes again to receive us unto himself.
1. The Cross of the Saviour- Psalm 22 portrays Christ on the cross and then gloriously resurrected. Because He lives, I can face tomorrow; because He lives, all fear is gone! I am glad that I am saved; I am glad that I am secure; I am glad that I am sanctified; I am glad that I am His and He is mine!
2. The Coming of the King - Psalm 24 portrays Christ as our soon coming King. Our blessed hope is the soon return of the Lord Jesus Christ! When He comes, all trials and troubles will be over.
3. The Care of the Shepherd - Psalm 23 (between our salvation and heaven) portrays Christ as our Shepherd. It is in this little Psalm that we find His watching over us and caring for us! Only eternity will reveal to us all that Christ does for us and is for us in this life. Christ, who is our life!
E. In the firs five words of this blessed 23rd Psalm, I want us to see the “Secret of a Happy Life.” It is both a secret and a not so secret. It is a mystery to the unbeliever but is beautifully laid out for the believer to both know and obtain. Before we can begin to grasp the happiness that is only found in Christ, we need to take a close look at the first five words of this Psalm. “The Lord is my shepherd!” Herein lies the secret of a happy life!
F. In these five words, I want us to see 5 things:
1. In These Five Words We Find Singularity – “The Lord” - Luke 10:27 And he answering said, Thou shalt love the Lord thy God with all thy heart, and with all thy soul, and with all thy strength, and with all thy mind; and thy neighbour as thyself. (Notice the repetition of the word “all.”)
True happiness is found only in the Person of the Lord Jesus Christ! A double minded man is unstable in all his way. Salvation is straight and narrow, not broad and wide. As the world continues to seek happiness in things cursed, the child of God finds true happiness in the Lord Jesus Christ. A double minded man is unstable in all his ways! You will never find true happiness or fulfillment outside of Christ if you are His.
2. In These Five Words We Find Sovereignty – “Lord” - Psalms 90:2 Before the mountains were brought forth, or ever thou hadst formed the earth and the world, even from everlasting to everlasting, thou art God. (Lord – to exist; to be the same.)
The Lord is eternal, immutable, impeccable, all knowing, all powerful, all wise, and all present. He created it all; He owns it all; He sustains it all; He makes all of the decisions; He needs no advice; He needs no help; He is the LORD! To quote Dr. S. M. Lockridge, “The Bible says He's the King of the Jews. He's the King of Israel. He's the King of Righteousness. He's the King of the ages. He's the King of Heaven. He's the King of Glory. He's the King of kings and He is the Lord of lords … He's incomprehensible. He's invincible. He's irresistible. I'm trying to tell you, the Heaven of heavens cannot contain Him, let alone a man explain Him. You can't get Him out of your mind. You can't get Him off of your hands. You can't outlive Him, and you can't live without Him.”
3. In These Five Words We Find Submission – “Is” - John 20:28 And Thomas answered and said unto him, My Lord and my God.
Not the Lord was my shepherd and not the Lord will be my shepherd but the Lord IS my shepherd. Living for the Lord is not “has been” nor is it “will be” but rather “I am!” For to me to live is Christ! TO ME! It is a personal choice that we make each and every day of our lives. He will not force you to live with Him; He will not force you to live for Him; but He can force you to love WITHOUT Him!!!
4. In These Five Words We Find Satisfaction – “My” - Philippians 4:11-13 Not that I speak in respect of want: for I have learned, in whatsoever state I am, therewith to be content. (12) I know both how to be abased, and I know how to abound: every where and in all things I am instructed both to be full and to be hungry, both to abound and to suffer need. (13) I can do all things through Christ which strengtheneth me.
I am His and He is mine! What a dynamic statement! In Christ we find fulfillment; In Christ we find satisfaction; In Christ we find success; In Christ we find happiness!
5. In These Five Words We Find Security – “Shepherd” - Job 13:15 Though he slay me, yet will I trust in him: but I will maintain mine own ways before him.
When you come to the place that the Lord is all that you have, it is then that you find that He is all that you need! He leads us; He guides us; He feeds us; He watches over us; He hears and speaks to us; He comforts us; He delivers us; He protects us; He loves you and I as much as He loves His Son, the Lord Jesus Christ for He gave Him for us! As Dr. Lockridge said, “That’s my King!”
The secret to a happy life is found only in “The Lord is my shepherd!”