|How Great Is Our God
Having grown up near the ocean, endless hours were spent in the sand, observing the waves crashing upon the beach.¬† As long as there has been pails and shovels there has also been children along with their parents playing at the waters edge.¬† Sand castles, forts and sand retaining walls were always being constructed along the beach in an attempt to hold back the water from destroying the children's handiwork.¬† Eventually a large wave would crash upon the shoreline and utterly destroy everything that was built in the sand.
And the rain descended, and the floods came, and the winds blew, and beat upon that house; and it fell not: for it was founded upon a rock.
26¬†And every one that heareth these sayings of mine, and doeth them not, shall be likened unto a foolish man, which built his house upon the sand:
It should not be of any surprise then that God exhorts His people, via the Scriptures, to not build or make a foundation of anything upon the sand.¬† In fact God goes as far to say that one who chooses to build in the sand is foolish knowing full well that sand cannot hold back the water.¬† But is that really true?¬† The fact that sand cannot stand against the raging waters for man is well documented, however, when it comes to Almighty God this is not the case.¬† The book of Jeremiah has something very interesting to say regarding this subject.
Fear ye not me? saith the LORD: will ye not tremble at my presence, which have placed the sand¬†for¬†the bound of the sea by a perpetual decree, that it cannot pass it: and though the waves thereof toss themselves, yet can they not prevail; though they roar, yet can they not pass over it?
Why can sand hold back the waters for God but not for man?¬† Well it has to do with the greatness of our God and His almighty power.¬† You see when God placed (set, appointed, put in place, directed) the sand as a border between the dry land and the sea it defied what the property of sand was able to withstand.¬† The tiny particles of sand, which are no match against the turbulent waves of the ocean, are exactly what God renders as a suitable barrier to contain the violence of the sea.¬† God was challenging the contempt of the people against Him.¬† He calls them foolish, without understanding, void of sight and hearing.
Hear now this, O foolish people, and without understanding; which have eyes, and see not; which have ears, and hear not:
All of these powers of perception the people possessed but they were not utilizing them.¬† What a wonderful lesson for all of us.¬† Any time we begin to entertain the thought that we know more than God or that our ways are better than His ways then take a moment and explain how He holds back the oceans with sand.
Verse 22 declares that the sand holds back the water by God's perpetual decree. ¬†If something is perpetual it then has continuing existence, long duration and is for evermore.¬† The word decree refers to, a statute, a prescribed task or a civil enactment by God ( Strong‚Äôs).¬† When you put the two definitions together you get, an everlasting civil enactment prescribed by God.¬† He said it and that's the way it is going to be regardless of the fact that man cannot do the same or duplicate the results.
The verse also tells us that although the waves toss (shake up, convulse) and roar (murmur, howl, growl, cry aloud, rage, make noise, be clamorous, be in uproar) that they cannot prevail overcome, endure, have power or have strength in victory.
God knew exactly what He was doing back in Genesis chapter 1.
And God said, Let the waters under the heaven be gathered together unto one place, and let the dryland¬†appear: and it was so.
10¬†And God called the dry¬†land¬†Earth; and the gathering together of the waters called he Seas: and God saw that¬†it was¬†good.
The gathered waters, by His spoken Word, produced dwelling places for mankind, the dry land.¬† This dry land would be protected and bordered by an unlikely substance to cause separation between it and the sea and that substance would be the sand.¬† Not only did God set it up that way but when looked at His work He proclaimed that it was good !
When he gave to the sea his decree, that the waters should not pass his commandment: when he appointed the foundations of the earth:
How great is our God that the seas obey Him?¬† Should not we obey as well?¬† He knows exactly what He is doing and it would prudent for us to obey with joy in our hearts.¬† He makes the impossible become possible with His decrees.
Then the LORD answered Job out of the whirlwind, and said,
2¬†Who¬†is¬†this that darkeneth counsel by words without knowledge?
3¬†Gird up now thy loins like a man; for I will demand of thee, and answer thou me.
4¬†Where wast thou when I laid the foundations of the earth? declare, if thou hast understanding.
5¬†Who hath laid the measures thereof, if thou knowest? or who hath stretched the line upon it?
6¬†Whereupon are the foundations thereof fastened? or who laid the corner stone thereof;
7¬†When the morning stars sang together, and all the sons of God shouted for joy?
8¬†Or¬†who¬†shut up the sea with doors, when it brake forth,¬†as if¬†it had issued out of the womb?
9¬†When I made the cloud the garment thereof, and thick darkness a swaddlingband for it,
10¬†And brake up for it my decreed¬†place, and set bars and doors,
11¬†And said, Hitherto shalt thou come, but no further: and here shall thy proud waves be stayed?
The waters can pound all they like but will never prevail against anything the God has decreed.
Rejoice in the LORD, O ye righteous:¬†for¬†praise is comely for the upright.
2¬†Praise the LORD with harp: sing unto him with the psaltery¬†and¬†an instrument of ten strings.
3¬†Sing unto him a new song; play skilfully with a loud noise.
4¬†For the word of the LORD¬†is¬†right; and all his works¬†are done¬†in truth.
5¬†He loveth righteousness and judgment: the earth is full of the goodness of the LORD.
6¬†By the word of the LORD were the heavens made; and all the host of them by the breath of his mouth.
7¬†He gathereth the waters of the sea together as an heap: he layeth up the depth in storehouses.
8¬†Let all the earth fear the LORD: let all the inhabitants of the world stand in awe of him.
9¬†For he spake, and it was¬†done; he commanded, and it stood fast.
Next time we need a reminder of how great our God is, take a trip to the ocean, look down upon the sand and behold the perpetual decree of Almighty God.¬† When we do we will rejoice in His majesty and love for us all.
By Bob Faller