The Special of the Day… From the Orange Moon Cafe…
"His Beauty Upon Us, Within Us"
How will God fulfill the Psalmist's hope, expressed in this week's memory verse?
"And let the beauty of the Lord our God be upon us" (Psalm 90:17).
The primary answer involves our Lord's primary trait, namely, loving and unselfish devotion to others. "God is love… Love seeketh not her own" (I John 4:8; I Corinthians 13:5). Nothing portrays the glory of His character more beautifully, or as beautifully, as this wonder of an infinite, all powerful Being who so loves to give. Interestingly, this disposition of love perfectly correlates with the truth that, by definition, God cannot receive anything because all things already belong to Him. "The world is Mine, and the fullness thereof" (Psalm 50:12).
"I have lift up mine hand unto the Lord, the most high God, the Possessor of Heaven and earth… The earth is the Lord's, and the fullness thereof, and all they that dwell therein" (Genesis 14:22; Psalm 24:1).
The Possessor made all things to be the recipients of His beneficence. "He giveth to all life and breath and all things" (Acts 17:25). In no other way could He have formed His creation since it all belongs to Him. Thus, the imparting of His "beauty… upon us" involves His love administered to us for our salvation and the meeting of every other need (Romans 8:32). Of even greater consequence, however, such a bestowal of grace also progressively transforms us from our native self-centeredness to His winsome devotion to others. He gives His greatest and most beautiful gift to those who trust the Lord Jesus. He works to make us givers like Himself. "Beholding as in a glass the glory of the Lord, we are changed into the same image, from glory to glory, even as by the Spirit of the Lord" (II Corinthians 3:18).
In the moment of our new birth, the Holy Spirit entered our spiritual being, bringing with Him the very nature of the living and loving God.
"The love of God is shed abroad in our hearts by the Holy Spirit which is given unto us" (Romans 5:5).
God saved us to make us like His Son, to be "conformed to His image" (Romans 8:29). Thereby, He answers the Psalmist's prayer for the bestowal of beauty by leading and enabling us to "walk, even as He walked" (I John 2:6). The essence of beauty is the Maker of beauty, God Himself. His beauty is most revealed and magnified in unselfish devotion to others. The Lord Jesus, "God… manifest in the flesh," gloriously revealed the Creator in heart, character, nature, and way (I Timothy 3:16).
"He that hath seen Me hath seen the Father… The Son of man came not to be ministered unto, but to minister and give His life a ransom for many" (Matthew 20:28).
Such beauty, adorned upon us as requested by the Psalmist, graces all who trust the Lord Jesus. However, God answered the prayer in far greater measure than "upon." His love within - this is the gift, the gift of God Himself to our hearts. Thereby, the Holy Spirit incessantly works to motivate and empower our devotion to God and others. Because in the final analysis, there is actually something we can offer to God. "Give unto the Lord the glory due unto His name" (Psalm 29:2). Yes, as His loving and beautiful unselfishness shines upon us and within us, we reflect well upon Him and reveal His glory. How this must please Him, and we may suppose that the Giver of all things receives this a gift of joy to His wondrous heart.
"Walk in love, as Christ also hath loved us, and given Himself for us an offering and a sacrifice to God for a sweet smelling savor."
"Look not every man on his own things, but every man also on the things of others."
Weekly Memory Verse
And let the beauty of the Lord our God be upon us.