We open and close the service this morning with two classic hymns which joyfully proclaim the transcendence of God. God, My King, Thy Might Confessing asks the question “who can reach His majesty,” and calls us to proclaim to a watching world His “dread acts,” “deeds of wonder,” and His “sovereign power.” O Worship The King presents us as the “humble creation,” whose feeble voices nevertheless praise our Lord’s “measureless might” and “ineffable love.” In between these robust declarations of God’s transcendence, we find more meditative hymns which encourage us to respond in awe and silence. Fret Not Yourself—Psalm 37, Answer, Father, When I Call—Psalm 4, Let All Mortal Flesh Keep Silence, and My Soul Waits In Expectation—Psalm 62 ask us to “be still,” to “wait,” to “lay your silent hearts before Him,” to “keep silence” and stand before Him with “fear and trembling.” When confronted with the truth that God is God, and we are not, often our best response is to humbly say with Job, “I am of small account … I lay my hand on my mouth.” —Henry C. Haffner
Key Words: Words, Vow, Heaven, Earth
Keystone Verse: Be not rash with your mouth, nor let your heart be hasty to utter a word before God, for God is in heaven and you are on earth. Therefore let your words be few. (Ecclesiastes 5:2)
Guard your steps when you go to the house of God. To draw near to listen is better than to offer the sacrifice of fools, for they do not know that they are doing evil. 2 Be not rash with your mouth, nor let your heart be hasty to utter a word before God, for God is in heaven and you are on earth. Therefore let your words be few. 3 For a dream comes with much business, and a fool’s voice with many words. 4 When you vow a vow to God, do not delay paying it, for He has no pleasure in fools. Pay what you vow. 5 It is better that you should not vow than that you should vow and not pay. 6 Let not your mouth lead you into sin, and do not say before the messenger that it was a mistake. Why should God be angry at your voice and destroy the work of your hands? 7 For when dreams increase and words grow many, there is vanity; but God is the one you must fear. 8 If you see in a province the oppression of the poor and the violation of justice and righteousness, do not be amazed at the matter, for the high official is watched by a higher, and there are yet higher ones over them. 9 But this is gain for a land in every way: a king committed to cultivated fields.