I. Trust in the Lord
* The path to God's joyful presence begins with saving faith!
- Preserve me, O God, for I take refuge in You. I said to the Lord, "You are my Lord; I have no good besides You." As for the saints who are in the earth, they are the majestic ones in whom is all my delight. The sorrows of those who have bartered for another god will be multiplied; I shall not pour out their drink offerings of blood, nor will I take their names upon my lips (Psalm 16:1-4; see Psalm 24:3-5).
- This was in accordance with the eternal purpose which He carried out in Christ Jesus our Lord, in whom we have boldness
and confident access through faith in Him (Ephesians 3:11, 12).
II. Focus on the Lord
* The path to God's joyful presence matures with a heavenly focus!
- The Lord is the portion of my inheritance and my cup; You support my lot. The lines have fallen to me in pleasant places; indeed, my heritage is beautiful to me. I will bless the Lord who has counseled me; indeed, my mind instructs me in the night. I have set the Lord continually before me; because He is at my right hand, I will not be shaken (Psalm 16:5-8; see Ecclesiastes 5:1, 2).
- For those who are according to the flesh set their minds on the things of the flesh, but those who are according to the Spirit, the things of the Spirit. For the mind set on the flesh is death, but the mind set on the Spirit is life and peace, because the mind set on the flesh is hostile toward God; for it does not subject itself to the law of God, for it is not even able to do so, and those who are in the flesh cannot please God (Rom. 8:5-8).
III. Rejoice in the Lord
* The path to God's joyful presence celebrates His faithfulness!
- Therefore my heart is glad and my glory rejoices; my flesh also will dwell securely. For You will not abandon my soul to Sheol; nor will You allow Your Holy One to undergo decay. You will make known to me the path of life; in Your presence is fullness of joy; in Your right hand there are pleasures forever (Psalm 16:9-11).
- Finally, my brethren, rejoice in the Lord. To write the same things again is no trouble to me, and it is a safeguard for you . . . Rejoice in the Lord always; again I will say, rejoice! (Philippians 3:1; 4:4).
Sermon by Pastor Rod Akins, October 23rd, 2022
Life group flow and discussion questions
Come into the presence of love
An important Guideline of Life Groups: Coming into the presence of God is the real purpose of Life Group meetings. We are the saints who are in the earth (Psalm 16:4).
- How should you approach God's presence in your personal quiet times with Him (Ecclesiastes 5:1, 2)?
- What disciplines help us to "lower the volume of life" and "raise the volume of the Lord" when we come into His presence (Psalm 46:10)?
- Why are we able to "draw near with confidence" to God's holy presence according to Hebrews 4:14-16?
- How is the first step toward God's presence an act of humble repentance before a holy God (Acts 3:19)?
- What do you think are the prerequisites for someone to enter into the presence of our holy God (Psalm 24:3-5)?
- What does it look like for us to enter into God's majestic presence with thanksgiving and shouts of joy (Psalm 95:2)?
- What simple acts of kindness and obedience allow us to enter into the eternal joy of our Master (Matthew 25:21, 23)?
- How is the resurrection of Jesus the spiritual key for us to enter into God's holy presence (Psalm 16:10; Acts 2:24-28; 1 Corinthians 15:13-20)?
- What is the difference between biblical joy and mere happiness?
- How has God made known to you "the path of life" (Psalm 16:11; Pr. 10:17; John 14:6)?
Now What? Application:
- Do you have a daily practice of being still before the Lord? Make it an everyday habit!
- How will you truly experience the path of life, the fullness of joy and pleasures forever during this week?