Summary of sermon by Erlo Stegen, 17 May 2015
1 A Psalm of David. The Lord is my light and my salvation; whom shall I fear? The Lord is the strength of my life; of whom shall I be afraid?
2 When the wicked, my enemies and my foes, came on me to eat my flesh, they stumbled and fell.
3 Though an army should camp against me, my heart shall not fear; though war should rise against me, in this I am trusting.
4 One thing I have desired from the Lord, that I will seek after: that I may dwell in the house of the Lord all the days of my life, to behold the beauty of the Lord, and to pray in His temple.
On a wedding day everyone is happy, it’s like heaven. But it’s not a small thing. One can compare it to a high mountain. If you as a bridegroom don’t have deep roots, you will be uprooted. And that applies to the bride too. It’s very deep and one of the most important decisions you will ever make.
In our text we read that the Lord is my light, and we need that light as well as His salvation. As you go through life you will meet with many difficulties where all you can do is cry to the Lord, “please save me from this”. As you meet up with things enough to make you afraid you will need the Lord to be your fortress. And when the wicked come up against you and those that hate you oppose you, then you will need the Lord to be with you that you can overcome. The devil comes in many different ways, not only with his horns and hooves and tail, but also as an angel of light. David goes on to say that even if an army encamps against him he won’t be afraid for he is trusting in God.
In central Africa there was a missionary Charles Studd. God called him and sent him out to be a missionary. At first he went to China, and then later to Africa. He was a frail man at that time and many advised him not to go for Africa was known as the graveyard of the missionaries, because of all the diseases. He said that he found that his missionary young men were sharp until they got married, and then they would become blunt. And it’s similar with the women. What causes that? How can a young man be on fire for God and then becomes blunt once he gets married. One thing is this, when you’re married you just think of your wife and forget your calling. You forget what the Lord Jesus has called you to. But no, when you get married you must remember what God has called you to and not become slack.
When Moses fled from Egypt he got married to the daughter of a priest. God blessed them with children and then the problems started. Moses said the boy must be circumcised, but his wife would not agree, for whatever reason, whether it maybe wasn’t their tradition or something else. Moses listened to his wife and did not circumcise the child. Later God spoke to Moses to go to Pharaoh and tell him to let Israel go. On the way to Egypt, God met him and he became extremely ill unto death. His wife realised that her husband was about to die because of their disobedience and she circumcised the child right there and threw the foreskin at his feet, calling him a blood-husband (Ex 4:25). Moses knew exactly what God’s calling and command was, but because of his wife he disobeyed God and almost died. The Bible says that in all the earth there was no one as meek as Moses. He was a humble man (Num 12:3).
Even today there are people who die because they are disobedient to God. If you want life then obey God. If you disobey Him He will turn against you.
Someone said that this thing of asking God for whom to marry is nonsense. He said that he will look for the most pretty peach and then tell the minister that God led them to marry. And that is what he did, and they got married. About two months after their marriage, the mother of the bridegroom came to rev Stegen very concerned that the bride was very sick and must have cancer for her belly is swelling up. The daughter didn’t want to go to the doctor, for she said that she lived by prayer. But rev Stegen told her to fetch her daughter in law, go and see the doctor together with her to hear what the doctor says. The doctor gave them the news that she was already three months pregnant although they were only two months married. She was pregnant by another man. Rev Stegen called the young man and broke the news to him. He became as white as a sheet. His beautiful peach had a worm inside. Do you see what happens if you choose your own wife without God leading you?
There will always be those that go against God and His ways, but God has His ways of dealing with them. Woe to the one who goes into marriage by his own idea, and it’s not God leading him.
If God has led you to get married, it’s wonderful. But don’t forget the calling God has given you, otherwise a great woe will come upon your life. And you as a wife must be a help to your husband and not a stumbling block.
David also says, “one thing have I desired of the Lord that I may dwell in the house of the Lord all the days of my life”. This is a wonderful verse. He only desired one thing; he wasn’t double minded. The New Testament teaches us so well, that God doesn’t dwell in a house made with bricks, but in the living stones of His children (1Pet 2:5). You are the temple wherein God dwells (1Cor 3:16; 6:19). Remain in the fellowship of the children of God. The temple of God are those who have a relationship with God. Don’t part with God’s children, stay close to them. Before God there is no male or female, black or white. That is irrelevant. What matters is whether you walk with God and have a relationship with Him.
Many start off well but end badly, because they forget their calling. Woe to you if you stand before God and you haven’t been faithful to what God has called you to.