Gazing on the Beauty of God
- Gives a unique insight into the heart of David
- God declared that David was a man after His own heart
- The secret to his power and consistency, his highest goal, the one thing that he is seeking
- This psalm is so important because David tells us the most important thing in his heart:
To Behold the Beauty of the Lord
- The thing he returned to regularly throughout his life. In all of the seasons of his life, through seasons of victory or season of testing.
- Unique drawing in his life by the grace of God to discovering God’s beauty. Unique grace upon him even in the old covenant.
- Beheld God’s beauty in creation, understanding, forgiveness, and redemption, and through the written word of God as he had it in that day.
- David would never say that he did not lose sight of this focus, but he always went back to it, whether the season of victory or the season of testing.
- The center of his life.
- The thing that God drew him back to. The core of truth that David lived his whole life through.
- Desired and Sought—endeavored to exert energy to go after it. It was his lifelong treasure hunt to discover the beauty of God.
The reason we have to seek his beauty:
- God is delighted in hiding His beauty from us. The most powerful force of God is His composite beauty. It conquers all of creation. It conquers all of the hosts, of the angels and all of the redeemed.
- When He progressively unveils His beauty, it entirely subdues us and changes our emotional chemistry, and makes us wholehearted lovers of God.
- The fact of God’s beauty that is fully unveiled at the very end of time, this beauty He has possessed from before eternity, He’s hidden it, and little by little, He unfolds it throughout redemptive history. He’s so secure in his beauty, although His beauty is so obscure He holds it back for reasons that as we seek for it, He reveals it to the very hungriest of heart.
- In the very process of unveiling it, He creates ownership in us of these things. He can just make divine proclamations of His beauty, but He wants us to discover it systematically. In ownership and transformation, our own chemistry changes when not only we desire it but also we go beyond to seek it, we go on a secret journey to discover it.
David’s Secret Weapon: Focus
Although he had many things that occupied his heart and mind on a secondary level, there was one primary preoccupation. Not only did he have one primary focus, but also it was the right one. God’s beauty was David’s one primary focus. Jesus talks about the power of having one thing as our primary focus. Our power and strength is diluted when we let secondary desires rule us.
This is the key to David’s success in his relationship with the Lord. David was right in choosing to have one thing, and he was right in what he chose. We were designed to be a people of one thing primarily.
Luke 10 Martha and Mary
Jesus said that Martha was bothered, anxious, and distracted. He loved her, and loved her heart for Him, but she was so easily distracted. An excellent description of the church today. Martha was not focused on that which was important. She had many other things that had captured her attention. Jesus said that Mary was not bothered because of her focus. Martha had many things that were her primary focus. The many things that Mary had was her secondary focus. She was a woman of one thing. We do well to imitate Mary. We do well to imitate David, and we do well to do what Jesus says about being a people of one thing. When we ignore that one thing which should be primary, we cannot enjoy the other things God gives us.
Abraham Genesis 15:1
God alone is Abraham’s exceedingly great reward. If God isn’t our proper focus all that He has given us will be waste. The very blessing of God so often that was ordained to be secondary becomes primary and it hinders our ability to use and enjoy that blessing. The splendor of God makes us walk in the right way.
Our Exceedingly Great Reward
There is one pleasure that accelerates more than any other pleasure: when God reveals God to human beings.
When secondary things become primary, they begin to choke our lives and us in God: economics, friendships, favor.
Only in seeing the Beauty in God, can you see your own Beauty in God. In redemption, you possess a beauty that is staggering. You possess a beauty in just the fact that you are a created human being. It already separates you from all created order. However, a greater beauty is seen in redemption. When you see God’s beauty, and then you see your beauty in God, it changes the way you think about everything. You must spend time asking God to reveal more of this beauty to you.
You feel powerful when you feel beautiful. You feel powerful before sin when you feel beautiful in redemption. Redemption has beautified the people of God. He’s given you His beauty for ashes. The very beauty of God. Not just beauty, but God’s beauty. God beautifies everything He touches redemptivly.
The Importance of Beauty:
1. Psalm 149:4
- Beautifies His people with salvation
2. Rev. 21:2
- Adorns a bride for His Son
- God, the Father, makes beautiful the people of the church for Jesus
- change the emotions of your heart
- removes shame
- casts away the spirit of heaviness
- can reflect (just a little now, but in our redemptive fullness) the beauty of God
- is already possessed by us a a little bit, spiritual beauty
The angels are awed at our beauty in holy envy. Although they have been adorned by God with beauty the church does not understand, they don’t understand us. They are amazed at the beauty that God has given us. The angels are awed at the beauty that God has given the dust of the Earth.
Designed for Beauty
We hunger for what is beautiful.
We hunger to be beautiful.
We can’t get rid of that hunger,
we can only answer it the right way.
The disorder is that our natural beauty has taken preeminence in our thinking over our spiritual beauty. God wants to reverse those in order that we pursue beauty in the right way. At the end of the age, these two will unite perfectly and there will be no separation between our natural and spiritual beauty. In this age, our natural beauty is to be second, but enhanced when we walk in the reality of our spiritual beauty.
Your natural beauty is not just an issue of your hair, your eyes or your teeth, or body. Your natural beauty is contained in the fact that you have a mind that reasons, a heart that feels, and the capacity to do things in this age that goes past the grave into the age to come. Your capacity for beauty is bigger than your physical appearance.
In our unrenewed mind we make our natural beauty first and the spiritual beauty second. Then we never walk in our spiritual beauty. In our grip, we try to satisfy that hunger for beauty and it leads to all kinds of addictions: sexual, food, social, and emotional addictions. We can never repent of that hunger for beauty; we can only repent for seeking to fulfill that hunger in the wrong way.
The most ironic thing is that your natural beauty really is enhanced by the will of God in the discovery of your spiritual beauty, which only happens in the discovery of God’s beauty. Therefore, David said that it was God’s beauty he desired. He knew the implications; he knew the dominoes that would go down so to speak. When he saw God’s beauty he could see his own beauty, and seeing his spiritual beauty enhanced everything about his life. He felt different about sin. He felt different about trials and tribulations.
Beauty is of God
Some of the holiness camps through the years have misunderstood beauty. They have seen the destruction of putting natural beauty first, but some of them have gone a step too far and undermined the presence and power of natural beauty. They didn’t understand that natural beauty was called and designed by God, and that all of us would reach a pinnacle of natural beauty in the age to come that is staggering because the beautiful God delights in beauty. He makes you according to His own beauty. It’s a powerful reality.
So, it is true that when we pursue natural beauty first it undermines our ability to understand spiritual beauty, but the answer isn’t to disregard it and put it out of the equation entirely. It’s to put it in its right place. Beauty is of God. Beauty is a wonderful thing. The beauty of your heart, the beauty of your mind, is so much the beauty you possess.
It’s such a sad thing that these indescribably beautiful redeemed people, walking on planet Earth today, in this church, are so pained by what they see as an absence of a natural beauty in their face, or in their body, they can’t see the beauty of their mind, they can’t see the beauty of their emotions, they can’t see their future beauty, they can’t see their spiritual beauty. They’re in a downward spiral of captivity and bondage of despair and shame. It is so unnecessary, beloved. God so wants to liberate us and it starts with the gaze of a beautiful God. You begin to reason that a God that beautiful can’t make junk. You’ve seen the bumper sticker. A God that beautiful can only beautify that which He touches.
Designed Delight in Beauty
Therefore, David cries out for the Beauty of the Lord. We don’t want to overreact. Natural beauty is not something that’s wrong. Natural beauty must only be kept in its secondary place. In the pursuit of holiness, people have misunderstood some of God’s natural design of life. Beauty has its place before the Lord. Not only do we have a capacity for beauty to reflect it, not only do we have a hunger for beauty; we have an automatic delight in beauty. Something about beauty exhilarates and captures us. God has built us that way. You have a designed delight in beauty. You will be exhilarated in discovering God’s beauty and your beauty in God. You were designed to resonate in the beauty of God. You were designed to rejoice and exhilarate in the beauty that he has hidden and unfolds for us. We resonate it; it’s our highest pleasure.
Introduces the theme of trouble vs. 5-8
vs. 7 Your face Lord I will seek, do not hide Your face from me.
vs. 8 The Lord explains why vs. 4 is so important. The Lord’s primary strategy for delivering David. To seek the face of God, representing God’s entire personhood. Between my beauty exhilarating you and your beauty making you feel different, you will begin to see circumstances very differently. Deep and lasting solution in attempting to gaze upon the beauty of the Lord. One thing is primary in his life. Pain and shame drives us to the face of God. When God reveals God it is the most powerful pleasure, it is our exceedingly great reward. Eventually, David realigns his heart and is in a position to have a lasting solution against his pain and shame. He was continuously transformed by gazing first on the face of the Lord. God’s faces, number 1, David’s problems, number two. God’s face, and the beauty that God had given David, delivered him more effectively than anything else did.
12 Different Facets of the Beauty of God
- The light and the colors that emanates from God
- His fragrance: God sits upon a mountain of spices
- Music and sounds: God is a musician and a singer. Music flows out of the being of God. Sounds of thunder, display the power and majesty of God.
- The atmosphere around Him: The weight of God’s presence. When the angelic beings get close to God, they collapse, even those who have the greatest capacity to be in the presence of God. There is a very trembling and tenderizing.
- His physical beauty: His resurrected human body has a physical beauty that we cannot comprehend. The form that He dwells in.
- His beautiful face: the brightness of His countenance, His eyes, His smile. It will conquer your heart with love. Eyes of fire, eyes that impart the love of God. He looks at you, and your heart is warmed by the love of God.
- His court: where His throne is set up, and all of the angels are around. Strength and beauty are all around him.
- The city: Revelation 21-22. A person’s expression of beauty is found in their home. The Son of God designed His city, as an extension of His beauty. Radiant like diamonds.
- His partner: The woman He chose. Us! The glory of a man is his wife. The way He has adorned her and made her beautiful in redemption.
- The plans that God has made: The story line of natural and eternal history is stunning in its beauty. The blueprint of creation is unbelievable. His mind is fantastic.
- The manifestations of his power:
- His personality: the gladness, happiness, delight, holiness, kindness, the passion and pleasure of God, and His desire for weak people. When we will look at the compassion of God, we will marvel. We need marvel to enter the Church again. We need awe and wonder!
A People of One Thing
David knew that this revelation would change his emotional chemistry. He knew that it would make him a different man, by gazing on the beauty of God, and his beauty in God. God want us to make first things first in our lives. Yes, there are secondary issues, yes there are many things, but when the many things of life become your many primaries, your focus becomes powerless and anemic. Your are strangled in God. Your power to walk in the blessings is completely nullified, undermined, and diminished. He wants us to be a people of one thing!