Evangelist Jabez Park’s sermon from Shiloh’s Lord’s Day Service on May 12, 2019
What was spoken about Abraham?
When you look at Abraham’s first calling, God calls him out to go into Canaan (Gen 12:1-3). God commands Abraham and says, “Leave your country, relatives and your father’s household and go to the land that I will show you.” God then says to Abraham, “I will make you a great nation, and through you, all the nations of the earth will be blessed.” Furthermore, Abraham was chosen so that he could command his children and his household to keep the way of the Lord by doing righteousness and justice. As we celebrate parent’s day, we want to remember the parents that gave us life and also our spiritual parents who taught us the Word of life and faith. Through God’s righteousness and justice, we obtain salvation (Isa 51:4-5). The Bible declares that the very foundation of the throne of God is righteousness and justice (Psa 89:4). Therefore, if God is our King and we are going to approach Him on His throne to be in His presence and vicinity, we must follow righteousness and justice.
What are righteousness and justice?
Righteousness and justice are the worship that God desires (Prov 21:3). God’s people during the Old Testament worshiped Him through burnt sacrifices. This testifies of Jesus Christ who will come as the sacrifice to atone our sins. However, God says, “Doing righteousness and justice is desired more than actual sacrifice” (Prov 21.3). Therefore, righteousness and justice are greater than sacrifice. Our bodies need to be pure, and we need to be a living and holy sacrifice of worship (Rom 12:1-2). Those who are in Christ are in righteousness, holiness, and truth (Eph 4:24). If you practice righteousness and justice, you are offering yourself as a living and holy sacrifice to God and giving true worship. If you are in Christ Jesus, then you are in wisdom, righteousness, sanctification which is holiness; thus you are redeemed (1 Cor 1:30). Also, if you are in Christ, you are children of Abraham and heirs of the promise (Gal 3:29). The Scriptures declare that Abraham will teach his children to do righteousness and justice (Gen 18:18-19). This teaches us that the mission of Abraham and the mission that we all have today is to teach the people of God’s nation righteousness and justice, to walk in His ways by teaching the Word.
The Word is righteousness and justice. Through the Word, we are able to give true worship. Our worship is not like the Old Testament times where it is based on physical sacrifice, but it is actually based off of the very Word of God. Thus, when we take the Word of God with us, we are able to return to the Lord and through our lips, we are giving sacrifice, which is worship (Hos 14:2). This is done not through physical sacrifice but through the very Word of God. When we look at Abraham’s life, we see that Abraham “called upon the name of the Lord” (Gen 12:8; 13:4). Abraham called and cried out; but more than that, Abraham declared the Word of God and established formal worship based on the Word. When you call upon the name of the Lord, He is near to you. The Law of God, His statutes, and His judgments are righteous (Deut 4:7-8). Righteousness is having a standard or the right way to do things, and justice is fairness. Therefore, being able to decipher between what is evil and what is right and from there by seeing the truth, you lay down a judgment. The Law is the Word of God that was given to Moses and this Word is the very covenant of God (Exod 34:27). Thus, the Law of God, the covenant of God, the Word of God biblically are all linked together. Therefore, there is no nation that is so great, so righteous, and so just that has God so close to them as you. We are the spiritual Israel and Jews that make up the Kingdom of God. And this Word of God being near you when you call upon Him applies more to us even now than it has to any other people at any other time in the history of redemption. We learn this from our Father Abraham who was commanded to teach his children and his household righteousness and justice. So we see how the Law is the most perfect, and just, and it tells us how God is nearest to us. Moses in his writings testified about Jesus Christ (John 5:46). When Moses stated back in the Old Testament that the Law is just and righteous, it means that Jesus Christ is just, righteous and perfect. As children of Abraham, we must learn God’s ways by doing righteousness and justice.
Conclusion: The prophet Isaiah prophesied of Israel’s return from exile and says to “look to Abraham your father and to Sarah your mother who gave birth to you in pain” (Isa 51:2-4). God commanded the nation of Israel to pay attention for God is going to give out His Law, which is referring to Jesus Christ (John 5:46). God says He will set His justice for a light (John 1:4). For God’s righteousness is near and His salvation has gone forth (Isa 51:5). In this context, Isaiah is saying look to Abraham. Thus, what must the children of Abraham that are in Christ do? (Gal 3:29). We must learn the Word of God for it is through God’s Word we will learn righteousness and justice and give true worship. God will bring about what was spoken of Abraham that through him, God’s people and Kingdom will be established (Isa 51:16). If you are in Christ, you are descendants of Abraham, and if you are descendants of Abraham you have to be taught righteousness and justice through the Word of God. The most loving thing we can do for our families and children is to bring them to know God through His Word. As God’s family, with God’s Word, this is how we need to offer up our worship.