What Will Impress God?


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Isaiah 66:1-2 (KJV)  Thus saith the LORD, The heaven is my throne, and the earth is my footstool: where is the house that ye build unto me? and where is the place of my rest?  [2]  For all those things hath mine hand made, and all those things have been, saith the LORD: but to this man will I look, even to him that is poor and of a contrite spirit, and trembleth at my word.

What would impress God?
What would get God’s attention?

There are many who are puffed up. They think they created themselves and the earth on which they stand. They themselves believe that they are the highest and best. They start their days by gazing in the mirror, by worshiping the idol of themselves. They ask themselves “What shall I do today to please myself?” then coming from this act of worship begin to order their day according to their royal will. Is God impressed by such as these? These who are arrogant, self sufficient, puffed up and proud? Is God impressed by them? What does God say?

Isaiah 66:3-4 (KJV) He that killeth an ox is as if he slew a man; he that sacrificeth a lamb, as if he cut off a dog’s neck; he that offereth an oblation, as if he offered swine’s blood; he that burneth incense, as if he blessed an idol. Yea, they have chosen their own ways, and their soul delighteth in their abominations.  [4]  I also will choose their delusions, and will bring their fears upon them; because when I called, none did answer; when I spake, they did not hear: but they did evil before mine eyes, and chose that in which I delighted not.

To those who consider themselves gods, who take His place. To those who do not value life thinking to kill an ox and to kill a man is the same. To those who mock God, who say to God:

I choose my own way.
I will not hear your word, nor obey your command.

God is not impressed with them. God gives them over to delusion, and brings their fears upon them. There is no blessing in rejection of God. There is no blessing in rejection of God’s command and God’s Word. The Lord says in another place:

Romans 1:17-25 (KJV)  For therein is the righteousness of God revealed from faith to faith: as it is written, The just shall live by faith.  [18]  For the wrath of God is revealed from heaven against all ungodliness and unrighteousness of men, who hold the truth in unrighteousness;  [19]  Because that which may be known of God is manifest in them; for God hath shewed it unto them.  [20]  For the invisible things of him from the creation of the world are clearly seen, being understood by the things that are made, even his eternal power and Godhead; so that they are without excuse:  [21]  Because that, when they knew God, they glorified him not as God, neither were thankful; but became vain in their imaginations, and their foolish heart was darkened.  [22]  Professing themselves to be wise, they became fools,  [23]  And changed the glory of the uncorruptible God into an image made like to corruptible man, and to birds, and four-footed beasts, and creeping things.  [24]  Wherefore God also gave them up to uncleanness through the lusts of their own hearts, to dishonor their own bodies between themselves:  [25]  Who changed the truth of God into a lie, and worshipped and served the creature more than the Creator, who is blessed for ever. Amen.

When man rejects the call of God, the Lord is not impressed. What God does then is “give them over” to their delusions. God calls, but after calling if His Word is rejected finally God says “Fine. You chose this. Now sleep in the bed you have made.” This is where most of America has gone. Many come to “Church” to be pampered and petted. They want to hear sweet nothings that support their doing nothing. In my lifetime I have heard 59 years of “God loves you” preached from pulpits all across our nation and all over the world, and yes, I fully agree with this. God does love you. But if you truly understand that God loves you, then YOU WILL HEAR AND DO HIS WORD WITHOUT DEBATE. If God loves you it goes to reason that WHAT GOD COMMANDS IS WHAT IS BEST FOR YOU. God does not ask if it is popular or whether any agree with Him. For God is God, and He knows what is best.

Only God Is God

Isaiah 66:1 (KJV)  Thus saith the LORD, The heaven is my throne, and the earth is my footstool: where is the house that ye build unto me? and where is the place of my rest? 

Only God is God.
Man is not God.

We make big things. We make sky scrapers go thousands of feet into the air. We made a Hubble telescope that sits in space, looking out over light years of infinite stars. We have made medical advances, doing heart or liver or kidney transplants. We have grown in our ability to forecast weather, and have created weapons that can destroy millions in nuclear holocaust. We have even advanced to where we can kill a life before it ever walks the earth. We can, through medical procedures, now murder the innocent and appease our conscience by saying cute phrases like:

It’s MY Body, and I Can Do What I Want To

Is God impressed by our godness? No, He is not.

Thus saith The LORD!

Some 854 times throughout the Bible you have God’s “thus saith the LORD”.

In the King James the name that God uses for Himself in this phrase is fully capitalized to show its significance. LORD is the most holy and significant name of God. It shows God as He truly is.

As His creatures we have a PAST, a PRESENT, and a yet undisclosed FUTURE.
We do not know what tomorrow will bring.
I do not know. You do not know. We all have regrets.

We have have all had crossroads in our lives when we chose one direction or another, only to later deeply regret that decision. It looked like a good decision at the time.
Oh, the regrets I have!

I do not regret marrying the love of my life, Sherry. That is one great decision made.
I do not regret giving life to my children.
I do not regret giving my life to Jesus, nor to following the LORD.
There are no regrets in following HIM.

Yet oh, there are so many times I wish that I could push the reset button, rewind the clock, go back to another time and place and undo what I did. I am sure many of you are that way. I am sure you would – at least – love to wake up tomorrow and see the winning lottery number, then rewind the clock and buy that ticket today. Don’t look smug and self righteous at me. You know you would if you could. But we can’t.

God has no crossroads.
He is the LORD.
This is the name that He gave Moses.
Moses asked “Who shall I say sent me?”
God said “I AM that I AM”
“Tell them I AM SENT YOU” (Exodus 3:14)

Out of this exchange God presented Himself to those who would listen. God is not like us. He is the Infinite, the Immortal, the Unchanging God. God is not bound by time nor limited by events. He is above all things.

God is the Eternal Present Tense. He knows a thousand thousand thousand years from now just as He knows yesterday or a million yesterdays past. God knows. He knows what the Lottery number will be – and does not care. He knows what the effect of every crossroad you will reach will be, and knows the outcome for good or bad. God knows. God is immense in His knowledge, infinite. He is immense in power. The Scripture declares:

Psalms 33:6 (KJV)  By the word of the LORD were the heavens made; and all the host of them by the breath of his mouth.

God spoke all things into existence. Do you not see the irony here? God SPOKE US into existence, and yet WE WILL NOT HEAR HIS WORD. Is this not the height of arrogance? God gave us life by speaking it, and yet we think we shall ave life by ignoring His Word.
How foolish!

Isaiah 44:24 (KJV)  Thus saith the LORD, thy redeemer, and he that formed thee from the womb, I am the LORD that maketh all things; that stretcheth forth the heavens ALONE; that spreadeth abroad the earth BY MYSELF;

God needed no helpers to help Him create creation. God made what is. The Ever Present I AM made the earth we stand on, and the feet by which we walk on it. God did not take an opinion poll before He created. God did not call up NBC, CBS, ABC nor even FOX or HBO before He created. He did not consult the Republicans or Democrats or even the Independents. He did not wait for Ireland to cast its vote, nor did He ask the Pope with all his Cardinals what they thought. God did not contact the Southern Baptist Convention and ask what its messengers thought of the situation. God does not care what the Presbytery thinks, nor what the so called Independent Baptists agree upon. God did not even ask your pastor his opinion. God created all things alone.

Jeremiah 32:17-18 (KJV)  Ah Lord GOD! behold, thou hast made the heaven and the earth by thy great power and stretched out arm, and there is nothing too hard for thee:  [18]  Thou shewest lovingkindness unto thousands, and recompensest the iniquity of the fathers into the bosom of their children after them: the Great, the Mighty God, the LORD of hosts, is his name,

God is immense in His ability. He is no fairy tale to be mocked, nor a man that can be killed outside of His willing Cross. God is God. God made the birds in the trees – and the trees themselves. God made the grass, the soil, the sand, the sea. God made every star and planet known and unknown. God says:

Isaiah 66:1 (KJV)  Thus saith the LORD, The heaven is my throne, and the earth is my footstool: where is the house that ye build unto me? and where is the place of my rest?  

God is enthroned in Heaven, and the earth is but His footstool. His footstool. His footstool! God sits in Heaven and puts His feet up on the earth. To those who think they are something, you are but tiny creatures – mites – resting and rowing and rooting on the footstool of God. You and I are nothing compared to the immensity of God. God says “where is the house YOU can build Me? How can YOU give Me rest?”. The truth is, God does not need us. God loves us, but does not need us.

Isaiah 66:2 (KJV) For all those things hath mine hand made, and all those things have been, saith the LORD

If it is made, God made it. You say “Oh no. God did not make a Porsche. God did not make a Lamborghini. God did not create a cure for polio. God did not do this or that.” Beloved, God did it all. If it is made God made it. Man may have made the Porsche or the Lamborghini, but God made the materials that man put together to make it. God made man. He gave us our design. God has made what is, what was, and what will be. God holds the very atoms – the building blocks of our universe – together. The Bible says of God’s Son:

Colossians 1:17 (KJV)  And he is before all things, and by him all things consist.

The word “consist” means “to hold together”. It is by Christ that God created all things, and it is by Christ that God holds all things together. As the Scripture declares:

John 1:1-3 (KJV)  In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God.  [2]  The same was in the beginning with God.  [3]  All things were made by him; and without him was not any thing made that was made.

God is the LORD, and the LORD made all things by His Word. Oh the immensity of God, and the smallness of man. The Psalmist David was greatly blessed because he declared:

Psalms 135:5-6 (KJV)  For I know that the LORD is great, and that our Lord is above all gods.  [6]  Whatsoever the LORD pleased, that did he in heaven, and in earth, in the seas, and all deep places.

God is God. God is LORD. He is above all time and above all things. He made all, and He loves all. So what can impress God?

How To Impress The Infinite God

Isaiah 66:2 (KJV) … but to this man will I look, even to him that is poor and of a contrite spirit, and trembleth at my word.

God asks “Who is the one to Whom I Will Look?” Will God take heed of the godling that thinks he or she hung the moon? No, but God will look to the creature who behaves as he or she was made.

We were not made to be gods, but we were made to be God’s.
If you hear me speaking this you will not understand, so I will spell it out.
We were not made to be “little g – gods”, but we were made to be “Big G – od apostrophe s”

Who is the creature that God looks to to bless? It is the man who understands that next to God he is impoverished. It is the woman who, no matter how outwardly beautiful she is, knows that she is ugly without God’s presence. It is the businessman who has made millions, but gives God and not himself the glory for the achievement. It is the successful person who, though fame and fortune has found him, realizes that he would have neither were it not for the love of God. The Bible tells us that:

Matthew 5:45 (KJV) {God} maketh his sun to rise on the evil and on the good, and sendeth rain on the just and on the unjust.

Pastor John Piper gave a wonderful illustration I’d like to share with you. “Suppose the president of the United States invited you and a few of your friends to the White House for a reception. As you enter the cozy green room, the president is sitting by the fire place and you walk right by him without a glance or a greeting. For the whole evening you neither look at him nor speak to him nor thank him nor inquire why he called you together. But every time the one reporter asks you if you believe in the existence of the president, you say, “Of course.” You even agree that this is his house and that all this food came from his kitchen. But you pay him no regard. Practically speaking you act as if you do not believe he exists. You ignore him. He has no place in the affections of your heart. His gifts, not himself, are the center of your attention.

The vast majority of people who say they believe in God treat him this way. He is like hydrogen. You learned once in school that it is in the air you breathe, but after that your belief in it has made no difference in your life. Every time someone takes a poll, you say, “Of course, hydrogen exists.” Then you return to things that matter.”

God is not impressed with the self made man or woman, or the person who only wants His hand and not His face. God wants us to come to Him as we are IMPOVERISHED. We come to Him with empty hands.

He is God, and we are not.
He is able, but we unable.
He can, but we can’t.

When we come to God POOR and broken then God can and will bless us. He blesses us everyday. He has given us rain in due season. He gives us life and light. He gives us the minds we have, and if we have earned anything, it is because He has given us hands and feet to do so. Oh praise Him! Praise Him if you realize your poverty as I often do. Praise Him, for God works not on a canvas of light but of darkness.

I remember many years ago I had followed God – or so I thought – to a ministry far from this place. Everything I found was hard. No matter what I tried to do flopped. Finally the hardness of that ministry began to effect me physically. I had been told by the devil’s whisper that I could do all things. This was only partly true. I can do all things, but only through Christ Jesus Who strengthens me. I am the Branch and He the Vine. Apart from the LORD I can do nothing. But still I tried. Perhaps if I do this it will work. Perhaps if I do that. But then, it all fell apart. It was so bad I began to have panic attacks. The darkness frightened me, I put night lights in every room of our home, and yet I feared closing my eyes at night.

Then God came to me.
“David, do you not know I work on the dark canvas.
I work where there is brokenness.
I do not look to use the sel
f sufficient,
But the broken, the poor, the unable.”

When you realize your poverty and God’s richness, here is when you can be blessed. This is the truth the televangelists will not tell you. God looks on the poor. He looks on the broken. In the very beginning of Scripture the word LIGHT is NOT THE FIRST WORD, but DARKNESS.

Genesis 1:1-2 (KJV)  In the beginning God created the heaven and the earth.  [2]  And THE EARTH WAS WITHOUT FORM, AND VOID; AND DARKNESS WAS UPON THE FACE OF THE DEEP. And the Spirit of God moved upon the face of the waters.

God was moved by the darkness. The darkness was His canvas upon which He said “Let there BE LIGHT”. And there was light. The darkness and the brokenness is where God’s treasures lie. He told His Israel:

Isaiah 45:3 (KJV)  And I will give thee the treasures of darkness, and hidden riches of secret places, that thou mayest know that I, the LORD, which call thee by thy name, am the God of Israel.

The self sufficient will never find God. The self made man, the fully endued woman, the rich satisfied with their richness or the Church impressed with its Laodicean glories will never be looked upon by God. It is in the brokenness that God calls. When Abram realized he could have NO CHILDREN NOR LEGACY then he looked up – and God answered. When Daniel realized that what he had he had of God he looked up – and lions prayed. Oh, hold on to your arrogancy, dear fool! Hold on to your science, your body, your choice, your desires. Hold on to anything but the hand of God, feminist! Hold on to your sexual desires, regardless as to what they might be. Hold on to your political party, your conservatism or liberality, but do not hold on to God.

But you will not be blessed.

To Impress God, Humble Yourselves –
And Let God BE God

Isaiah 66:2 (KJV)  Thus saith the LORD …. saith the LORD: but to this man will I look, even to him that is poor and of a contrite spirit, and trembleth at my word.

To whom will God look to bless? To the one of a CONTRITE spirit. What is this? When God told Moses “Stretch out your hand toward heaven, that there may be darkness over the land of Egypt, a darkness to be felt” (Exodus 10:21) the Lord did so that – perhaps in the darkness – the fallen would repent. It is in the darkness that we realize that God is God. If God has allowed darkness into your life it is not to damn you, but to woo you to Him, to wake you up, to stir you to your need of Him. Author Kassie Prather writes:

If you’re in a season of darkness (confusion, waiting, conflict), take heart. You’re not in the dark alone … The same God who used a lack of light as His creative canvas can shape a Genesis week in you if you wait on Him. He will share with you the hoards of secret places, showing off His power and pursuit of you, drawing you in and enjoying your company as you sit together. Who knew the dark could be such a gift?”

When we humble ourselves before God then He will bless us.

James 4:10 (KJV)  Humble yourselves in the sight of the Lord, and he shall lift you up.

1 Peter 5:5-6 (KJV) … be clothed with humility: for God resisteth the proud, and giveth grace to the humble.  [6]  Humble yourselves therefore under the mighty hand of God, that he may exalt you in due time:

God blesses those who realize He alone is God. Let us “tremble at His Word”. Do you “tremble at His Word”? … Or do you act as if you are the autocorrect of the computer, debating God and His Word rather than submitting?

Micah 7:8 (KJV)  Rejoice not against me, O mine enemy: when I fall, I shall arise; when I sit in darkness, the LORD shall be a light unto me.

Do we tremble with fear at disobeying our God? Or do we tremble at what the crowd may say, while poo pooing God’s Word. For what God has said, He has said in His infinity. God has looked forward into the future, and knows what is good and bad for me, for you, for all of us.

When I surrender the idol of my life to God, He will then be willing to bless me. As the Apostle said:

Galatians 2:20 (KJV)  I am crucified with Christ: nevertheless I live; yet not I, but Christ liveth in me: and the life which I now live in the flesh I live by the faith of the Son of God, who loved me, and gave himself for me.

In my helplessness I come to Him. In my inability I rest in His arms. I am the blind man crying out for Jesus. I am the leper chasing after Him, saying “Lord, if Thou will, You can make me whole”. I love Him for Who He is, and tremble with fear at what He says is wrong. I tremble with joy at what He commends and commands. He is my all, and in all.

And only through Him do I have salvation today, tomorrow, and forever. Blessed be the Name of the Lord! I will love and trust Him!

About bibleteacherorg

A searching Pastor, I am looking for a people who love the Lord and love one another. Daily I pray for the Church. Most of what the world sees today is not the Church, but clubs pretending to be the Church. God is calling to Himself a people willing to be righteous, not self righteous, serving not served. I am called to pastor God's people, those who want to change the world by willingly and willfully following Jesus Christ. Only God is able to change the world, and we must follow His Christ. He is able! Praise His Name! Come quickly Lord Jesus!
This entry was posted in Isaiah, Sermons Preached and tagged , . Bookmark the permalink.

1 Response to What Will Impress God?

  1. Luke Turner says:

    Amen! Thank you so much for a good and invigorating excerpt.

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