Psalm 116: 7 Return unto thy rest, O my soul; for the Lord hath dealt bountifully with thee. 8 For thou hast delivered my soul from death, mine eyes from tears, and my feet from falling. 9 I will walk before the Lord in the land of the living. 17 I will offer to thee the sacrifice of thanksgiving, and will call upon the name of the Lord. 18 I will pay my vows unto the Lord now in the presence of all his people. 19 In the courts of the Lord’s house, in the midst of thee, O Jerusalem. Praise ye the Lord.
There are many views of what church means to people. If I asked we’d each say something a little different but with the same basic thought. This morning I preached that there is no place like hell. On the flip side, we can sit in heavenly places in the house of God. We’ve experienced it, but it won’t compare to the glory to come. We know our loved ones gone on are with the Lord. John 14 tells us let not your heart be troubled: ye believe in God, believe also in me. In my Father’s house are many mansions: if it were not so, I would have told you. I go to prepare a place for you. And if I go and prepare a place for you, I will come again, and receive you unto myself; that where I am, there ye may be also.
Until we get there, the most precious place is God’s house. One thing stands out. When a church is founded on Jesus Christ we can find rest there. There have been times when I left worse off than when I came but those are few. We find rest when we come. I’ve seen people not doing very well come in with a smile. This is a special place created to the glory of God. David had a dream to build a house for God. As king he lived in a palace and thought God should have more than a tent at the tabernacle. God told David that because his kingdom was one of war that his son Solomon would build the house of God. It was a magnificent temple. Whether a tent or an awesome temple or a rock as it was with Jacob, we can have our Bethel, our house of God.
Our forefathers built this house. Jesus said where his people gather he will be there. Anywhere the people of God built an altar to God he met with them. His presence makes it a house of God and not just an empty church house. The tabernacle was mocked by others because it was just a tent. God was there. He wasn’t in competition with the gods of other nations.
Our freedom is in danger. True places of worship are in danger. Never take it for granted. This house was built for God, not us. He should get the glory. A church means an assembly. When I got saved I found rest in the house of God. If I find anything to complain about I need to look in the mirror at this old house. If God is willing to come down to this house, the least we can do is come meet him here. We have so many shut-in’s who would love to be here. We should come while we can. We ought to worship God each service—Sunday morning, Sunday night and Wednesday night. Be as excited and involved with God as he is with us.
We weren’t born here but we were born again here. We have a place in the house of God. How privileged we are! Until we enter in to the sanctuary above, this is our Father’s house. When David talked about rest in verse 7 he was talking about the place where the tabernacle of God was not his bed at home. Let’s make sure we return to the rest. We’ll have it through the person of rest—Jesus—and that’s why we call it our place of rest.
We don’t deserve to walk through the doors but God showed us grace. We’ll never be worthy of the blessing to sit before the Lord in his house. Remember it is his house first and he allows it to be ours. When the trumpet sounds we’ll dwell in the house of the Lord forever. Let’s treat it right. Treat each other right. Nothing is more precious than the church.