Monday, January 21, 2013

"Fearfully. Wonderfully."

(Friends: as I sat down to write this morning, I simply looked at my hand.  Which led to the following.)

    "I will praise Thee; for I am fearfully and wonderfully made: marvelous are Thy works; and that my soul knoweth right well" (Psalm 139:14).

     The Psalmist considered the marvel of his own existence and constitution, concluding it to be a fearful and wonderful thing.

    The latter aspect we can easily understand.  Human beings are indeed a thing of wonder, even when considered in our spiritually and morally fallen condition.  Possessed with capacities unlike any other creation, a mere glance at any part of our bodies should cause us to shake our heads, even as we bow them to join David in his proper acknowledgement of our Maker: "I will praise Thee."  Further consideration of our mental, emotional, verbal and relational capacities enhances our appreciation of God's goodness whereby He constituted us akin to Himself by creating Adam in His image.  Most wonderfully, our Lord made us for relationship with Him, as made possible by our spirits possessing the potential of intimate union with God as His habitation - "I will dwell in them" (Ephesians 2:22; II Corinthians 6:16).  Yes indeed, we are wonderfully made.

    The "fearfully" aspect leads us down a different pathway of consideration.  What kind of being could conceive and then actually make a human being?  Who are we dealing with when we ponder the fact of a God possessed of such wisdom and power?  How great must He be?  So great that the word "great" seems a woefully inadequate attempt to describe Him.  It is.  The Bible uses the term, however, along with other adjectives that at least initiate the consideration and affirmation of One declared by David to be beyond discovery: "Great is the Lord, and greatly to be praised; and His greatness is unsearchable."  Little wonder that Scripture tells us that the fear of God is the beginning of both wisdom and knowledge" (Proverbs 1:7; 9:10).  How could it be otherwise, for yes indeed, we are fearfully made.

    God's greatness must necessarily cast us to our knees in those moments when we allow our hearts and minds to actually consider the fearful vastness and power of the Lord of Scripture.  His goodness, however, raises up as we remember the saving grace and mercy of the Lord Jesus Christ.  In Him, the God beyond understanding and knowing becomes the God nearer and more intimate than our next breath.  Fearfully.  Wonderfully.  Gloriously!

"And when I saw Him, I fell at his feet as dead. And He laid His right hand upon me, saying unto me, Fear not."
(Revelation 1:17)

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