Purpose: To Enjoy God


Scripture Intro

“How Then Shall We Live?”
Chief End of Man?
“The chief end of man is to glorify God and enjoy him forever.”
Psalm 98 (ESV)
1 Oh sing to the Lord a new song, for he has done marvelous things! His right hand and his holy arm have worked salvation for him.
2 The Lord has made known his salvation; he has revealed his righteousness in the sight of the nations.
3 He has remembered his steadfast love and faithfulness to the house of Israel. All the ends of the earth have seen the salvation of our God.
4 Make a joyful noise to the Lord, all the earth; break forth into joyous song and sing praises!
5 Sing praises to the Lord with the lyre, with the lyre and the sound of melody!
6 With trumpets and the sound of the horn make a joyful noise before the King, the Lord!
7 Let the sea roar, and all that fills it; the world and those who dwell in it!
8 Let the rivers clap their hands; let the hills sing for joy together 9 before the Lord, for he comes to judge the earth. He will judge the world with righteousness, and the peoples with equity.


ILL. Think of 5 or 10 things that you really enjoy.
Not a Top 10, so you don’t have to prioritize them.
Just 5-10 things you really enjoy.
A game/hobby
Certain people
Good book
Favorite Movie
Favorite Places to Visit
As you thought of these things,
what feeling came over you?
Some version of tranquility/calming...
You may have smiled,
or just had a nice feeling internally.
And when we enjoy something,
it has that kind of effect on us.
One article written in 2017 tracked the effects that “smiling” had on someone’s life.
Smiling actually makes you feel good,
even if you're not feeling good in the moment.
A 2009 MRI study demonstrated conclusively that the brain's happiness circuitry is activated when you smile (regardless of your current mood).
If you're down, smiling actually prompts your brain to produce feel-good hormones.
Smiling is also a predictor of longer life span.
In a 2010 study, researchers looked at Major League baseball card photos from 1952. They found that the span of a player's smile actually predicted his lifespan--unsmiling players lived 72.9 years on average, while beaming players lived a full seven years longer.
Similarly, a 30-year study out of UC Berkeley examined the smiles of students in an old yearbook, with almost spooky results. The width of students' smiles turned out to be accurate predictors of how high their standardized tests of happiness would be, how inspiring others would find them, even how fulfilling their marriages would end up. Those with the biggest smiles came up on top in all the rankings.
Yet, it terms how much we smile, here are the numbers:
under 14% of us smile fewer than five times a day.
Over 30% of us smile over 20 times a day.
And there's one group that absolutely dominates, with as many as 400 smiles a day: children.
There are so many conclusions to draw from this...
Assuming enjoyment translates into smiles...
then enjoyment itself leads to a longer life and many benefits in life.
Also, we can assume that as children,
we enjoy things far more easily (400 smiles a day).
As adults, only 30% smile more than 20 times a day.
And then God tells us to both Glorify him AND Enjoy him.
Given the findings of that study,
I wonder if we are better at understanding Glorifying God,
more so than Enjoying God.
And this is a unique danger facing God’s people...
Oswald Chambers.
“Beware of anything that competes with loyalty to Jesus Christ. The greatest competitor of devotion to Jesus is service for Him.”
Os Guinness, The Call (pg. 43)
We are not primarily called to do something or go somewhere; we are called to Someone. We are not called first to special work but to God.

We Glorify God BY Enjoying Him

Yes, this notion is borrowed from John Piper.
His book, Desiring God.
Or the cliff notes booklet, The Dangerous Duty of Delight.
To enjoy something… is to delight in something.
ILL. Grandparents with the pictures of grandkids.
Oh, they could show you photos and videos for hours.
They enjoy their grandkids.
They rejoice over their grandkids.
They celebrate their grandkids.
“Showing Photos” is the grandparent version of a joyful noise.
And it helps us understand the true nature of Enjoying/Delighting.

Delighting in God Extends Far Beyond Knowledge about God

What do we know about God from Psalm 98?
“he has done marvelous things”
“worked salvation”
“made known his salvation”
“revealed his righteousness”
“remembered his steadfast love”
“is faithful to his people”
He is “the King, the Lord”
He is the “judge”
You could say that you “see” those things in the text.
But that’s not deep enough...
Jonathan Edwards put it:
God is glorified not only by his glory’s being seen, but by its being rejoiced in. When those that see it delight in it, God is more glorified than if they only see it. (Miscellany, 448)
God is Glorified When He is Our Delight
Notice this is not simply a recounting of knowledge points about God and his work...
This is an overflow of the heart.
Sam Storms restates it with these phrases...
“So the goal of our creation was … that we might be happy…
in beholding God’s own eternal excellencies.”
relishing the breathtaking beauty of Christ and resting in the all-sufficiency of his grace and goodness”

Delight Overflows Into Praise

Delight in God himself, not merely his work.
(v. 1) “sing to the Lord
(v. 4) “joyful noise to the Lord
(v. 5) “sing praises to the Lord
(v. 6) “joyful noise before the King, the Lord
“Joy” in the Lord.
As John Piper has said,
“Joy is the clearest witness to the worth of what we enjoy. It’s the deepest reverberation in the heart of man of the value of God’s glory.”
(see “Joy and the Supremacy of Christ in a Postmodern World,” in The Supremacy of Christ in a Postmodern World, 78).
We Celebrate What We Value
(v. 1) Sing to the Lord
FOR “he has done marvelous things”
(“because”) - a marker of emphasis, a marker of causation
Because “he has worked salvation”
Because “he revealed his righteousness”
“among the nations”
Not simply to his people
Because “he remembered his love and faithfulness”
Because of all of who God is and what he has done...
We sing.
“sing” - an expression of enjoyment.
We celebrate.
We delight in God and his work.
We burst into praise.
Spontaneously… overflow.
CS Lewis:
“Praise not merely expresses but completes the enjoyment.”
(v. 4)
“Make a joyful noise to the Lord”
“break forth into joyous song”
“sing praises”
(v. 5-6)
“sing praises with the lyre (stringed instrument similar to a harp)”
“lyre and melody”
“with trumpets” and the “horn”
“joyful noise before the King”
“joyful noise” (one word in Hebrew)
“raise a shout”, “give a blast”
“a loud public noise”
ILL. How do fans react when the Gamecocks score a touchdown?
Besides being surprised,
they yell.
they cheer.
they shout at the top of their lungs.
Our shouts and joyful noises don’t originate with us.
The worship experience is not what is on display.
Notice that it is reactive to the glory of God.
“marvelous things”
“righteousness in the nations”
“steadfast love and faithfulness”
All of that leads to...
“Make a joyful noise!!!”
John Piper:
“God is not worshiped where He is not treasured and enjoyed… Not to enjoy God is to dishonor Him. To say to Him that something else satisfies you more is the opposite of worship. It is sacrilege” (see John Piper, Desiring God: Meditations of a Christian Hedonist, 22
So the presence of joy is a helpful diagnostic.
What do you cherish?
But the absence of joy might be just as revealing.
Do you lack joy in the presence of the Lord?
Do you lack joy in your worship?
Do you lack joy as you think about prayer and reading the Bible?
App. What is the unique danger in this conversation?
To become so familiar with the things of God that you “lose your awe”. (Paul Tripp)
Have you lost your awe of God?
Exodus 33:18 ESV
18 Moses said, “Please show me your glory.”
Paul Tripp (not on screen),
“Confess the offense of your boredom. Plead for eyes that are open to the 360-degree, 24/7 display of glory to which you have been blind.”

God’s Enjoyment of Us Fuels Our Enjoyment of Him

Remember back in the last point that our response is a response to God’s work.
It is also a response to God’s love for us.
He cherishes us.
He rejoices over us with singing (Zeph 3).
And because of that,
we marvel and enjoy him.
Psalm 98:3 ESV
3 He has remembered his steadfast love and faithfulness to the house of Israel. All the ends of the earth have seen the salvation of our God.
(v. 2) “right hand and his holy arm have worked salvation for him.”
Perry Bowers
“You will never enjoy God until you know how much he enjoys you.”
Psalm 16:11 ESV
11 You make known to me the path of life; in your presence there is fullness of joy; at your right hand are pleasures forevermore.

“God is most glorified in us when we are most satisfied in Him.”

Again, this is a John Piper quote.
And it becomes an entire main point.
what can you do that will bring God the most glory?
Delight in him,
and need nothing else (satisfied).
Psalm 98:7–9 (ESV)
7 Let the sea roar, and all that fills it; the world and those who dwell in it!
8 Let the rivers clap their hands; let the hills sing for joy together 9 before the Lord, for he comes to judge the earth. He will judge the world with righteousness, and the peoples with equity.
“hills sing for joy together”
“the world and those who dwell in it!”
We are designed to find our joy in the Lord.
Yet, we seek it in just about everything else.
We know the physical world can’t give us the life we long for.
Yet, we chase after it anyways.
This world was designed so good that would point us to the One
who can gives us the delights are hearts desire.
How does this type of response become our response to God?
When we have centered our affection on him.
Sam Storms
“The key to living a successful, sin-killing life doesn’t come primarily from trying harder but from enjoying more… Enjoyment empowers effort. Pleasure in God is the power for purity.”
And then, Enjoyment alters our worship.
God alone and Enjoying Him becomes the central theme of our worship.
This type of response displays a satisfaction in God.
Without it, our worship is not defined by delight.
It is defined by an odd mix of duty and “ought to’s”.
“If the essence of worship is satisfaction in God, then worship can’t be a means to anything else… Yet, so often we ‘worship’ to attract crowds; we ‘worship’ to heal human hurts…
we ‘worship’ to improve church morale; we ‘worship’ to give talented musicians an opportunity to fulfill their calling; we ‘worship’ to teach our children the way of righteousness;
we ‘worship’ to help marriages stay together; we ‘worship’ to evangelize the lost among us; we ‘worship’ to give our churches a family feeling…
the degree that we ‘worship’ for these reasons, it ceases to be authentic worship.”
Sam Storms
God alone “is worthy of our joy, zeal, love, devotion, delight, fear, joy, passion, gratitude, and hope.”
Notice what your heart is drawn to...
What are you most zealous about?
What do you spend most of your free time doing?
What do you think about most effortlessly?
What is your heart’s delight?
For what are you most passionate?
In what is your hope grounded?
What you most thankful for?
Closing Song:
“Abide with Me”
“I need Thy presence every passing hour.”

Extra Stuff

“the very nature of praise is the consummation of joy in what we admire.”
Sam Storms
“God’s revelatory manifestation of himself in creation, in providence, in Scripture, and pre-eminently in the face of his Son, Jesus Christ, is designed to evoke within us the breathtaking delight and incomparable joy of which God alone is worthy.”
“To Know God Intellectually, To Admire God in His Beauty, To Delight in God emotionally, To dedicate oneself to God”
Delighting in God Changes Our Worship
Worship Requires Delight
Enjoyment Empowers Obedience
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