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Sermon #5241

The Living God

A Sermon on Psalm 84:1-3


Psalms 84:1-3 ESV KJV
To the choirmaster: according to The Gittith. A Psalm of the Sons of Korah. How lovely is your dwelling place, O LORD of hosts! My soul longs, yes, faints for the courts of the LORD; my heart and flesh sing for joy to the living God. Even the sparrow finds …

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Sermon Description

What is true religion? Many people say that true religion is whatever makes people feel good, or whatever makes them experience the sense of the divine. But in this sermon from Psalm 84:1–3 titled “The Living God,” Dr. Martyn Lloyd-Jones gives a very different answer. He says that according to God’s word, true religion is that which worships and believes the living God. The true God that has revealed Himself as Father, Son, and Holy Spirit is beyond human comprehension; Christians can only speak of Him because He has revealed Himself in Scripture. God is holy. How then can sinners approach God? The answer is found in Jesus Christ and His death upon the cross. Jesus makes a way for sinners to be forgiven and come to God as children and heirs. Jesus is the new and better high priest that ever lives to intercede for His people as He rules from heaven. The mediation of Jesus Christ is the only way to approach God.

Sermon Breakdown

  1. True religion consists of, or in the knowledge of God.
  2. Religion without God is not true religion. Many have a religion without a personal God.
  3. True religion means a knowledge of God as the living God, the Lord of hosts, and Jehovah.
  4. True religion consists in a personal knowledge of God, not just a theoretical knowledge. The psalmist knew God personally as "my king and my God."
  5. The only way to know God personally is through the altars - the altar of sacrifice (Jesus Christ's sacrifice for our sins) and the altar of incense (prayer in Jesus' name).
  6. When we truly know God, He becomes everything to us. Our whole being longs for Him.
  7. We must visit the altars - trust in Jesus' sacrifice and pray in His name - to know God personally.
  8. Knowing God personally brings rest, peace, and the ability to face any circumstance with joy and praise like the psalmist.
  9. The psalmist teaches us the elements and first principles of true religion through his experience. We must follow his example.
  10. We must have the psalmist's understanding and diagnosis of life to know God personally.
  11. The psalmist's secret of peace and joy while facing difficulty was the altars - sacrifice and prayer.
  12. The psalmist's religion was not theoretical but based on experience, even in suffering. We should learn from his example.
  13. The psalmist praised and thanked God for the blessings of the godly life even in hardship. We should do the same.
  14. The psalmist would rather be a fugitive with God than enjoy the pleasures of the godless life. Do we have the same view?
  15. The psalmist's religion gave him joy and sustained him even in the worst of circumstances. True religion should do the same for us.

Old Testament

Dr. Martyn Lloyd-Jones

Dr. Martyn Lloyd-Jones (1899-1981) was a Welsh evangelical minister who preached and taught in the Reformed tradition. His principal ministry was at Westminster Chapel, in central London, from 1939-1968, where he delivered multi-year expositions on books of the bible such as Romans, Ephesians and the Gospel of John. In addition to the MLJ Trust’s collection of 1,600 of these sermons in audio format, most of these great sermon series are available in book form (including a 14 volume collection of the Romans sermons), as are other series such as "Spiritual Depression", "Studies in the Sermon on the Mount" and "Great Biblical Doctrines". He is considered by many evangelical leaders today to be an authority on biblical truth and the sufficiency of Scripture.