God Shows, We Tell (Psalm 48)
Reading: Psalm 48
Great is the Lord and greatly to be praised in the city of our God! …Within her citadels, God has made himself known as a fortress. …Walk about Zion, go around her, number her towers, consider well her ramparts, go through her citadels, that you may tell the next generation that this is God, our God forever and ever.”
Some people have said that they would believe in Jesus if they had been able to see the miracles that the disciples had seen. “If I had that kind of evidence…surely I would believe.” They are much like Thomas, who said that he would never believe in the resurrection unless he saw it with his own eyes.
But there were also those who saw the miracles for themselves and did not believe. Many of the religious leaders were witnesses to the life and ministry of Jesus—and they condemned him for it. Indeed, Jesus even tells a parable of a man who dies and asks that Abraham send some messenger to his relatives to reveal to them the truth. But Abraham replies, They have Moses…and if they don’t believe him neither will they believe if someone returns from the dead.
So it is with our generation. People think that if only they had more of the right kind of evidence that they could then believe. But the reality is, people don’t want to believe (including you, by the way). Our hearts’ are naturally oriented towards disbelief because the truth presses on us to stop living for ourselves—and nobody wants to do that, by nature.
One of the conclusions we can draw from all of this is that the revelation we have of God is sufficient. And Psalm 8 says that the heavens declare the glory of the Lord and Paul says in Romans that creation bears witness to God’s power and divine nature. Thus, we have revelation from God generally (in the creation).
Furthermore, we also have special revelation in the Scriptures. And, as the Westminster Confession puts it: “The whole counsel of God concerning all things necessary for His own glory, man’s salvation, faith and life, is either expressly set down in Scripture, or by good and necessary consequence may be deduced from Scripture” (1.6). In other words, we have enough knowledge of God in creation and in Scripture—enough to be held responsible, and enough to believe.
But this psalm adds a new dimension to all of this, and that is our role in telling of God’s revelation from one generation to the next. God sweeps us up into his redemptive purposes and makes us agents in spreading the good news out to the far corners of the earth and from generation to generation. Not only are we called to know what God reveals about himself; we are also called to go tell it on the mountains.
Father, thank you for revealing yourself to us, for showing us who you are. Thank you that your fingerprints are found all over creation and that your image is imprinted on each one of us. Thank you that you’ve given us your word which is living and active and pierces to the depths of our souls, shaping us and mold us into the likeness of Jesus.
Lord, we ask you to teach us to love your revelation. Help us to enjoy you in what you have revealed to us, that we might call it out from the rooftops and that we might teach it for generations to come.