2 April 2002

Today we would pose a question to all: "Is there a benefit in serving God: is there a benefit in going to God's house; is there a benefit in reading His word; is there a benefit in prayer; in private devotions; to Christian living?" How do you feel about it? What is your opinion? We pose the question not to condemn those who would answer in the negative. Rather, we pose the question as an encouragement to those who feel in their hearts that there is a benefit in serving God for there are times of wonder and amazement when we notice as Job did that, "The tabernacles of robbers prosper". In times of wonder and trials let us not become discouraged and forget the Lord's benefits. David wrote a song for his people to remind them of the many benefits of the Lord for he knew quite well that they might look at the world and begin to envy those who knew not their God, "Bless the LORD, O my soul, and forget not all his benefits"-Psalm 103:2. The first benefit he writes of is dear to us all, "Who forgiveth all thine iniquities; who healeth all thy diseases". There is no greater topic to the Christian than the forgiveness of sin. It is the benefit most cherished. Worldly treasures found in the tabernacles of robbers will never compare to this benefit for they will perish with time. God's gifts are everlasting. Forgiveness is the out-flowing of redemption, the cross, the blood of Christ, the covenant of grace. I have heard the preachers say, "There are only two kinds of sinners: those who know they are sinners and those who know not." Those whose eyes have been opened appreciate the benefit. Let us not forget it. Let it be as sweet to us today as when we first learned that Jesus was the friend of sinners. We love the word ALL: "healeth all thy diseases." Surely, the psalmist refers to our iniquity as he writes of disease for many physical maladies haunt the souls of God's people today. Physical disease is a result of Adam's transgress while the healing of all sin is the result of Christ's obedience. Every germ of sin has been taken care of by the Master Physician. Let us consider the benefit of God's spiritual health care plan for His redeemed family. David continues to write, "Who redeemeth thy life from destruction; who crowneth thee with lovingkindness and tender mercies". Kindness is appreciated from all of society, but lovingkindness is a benefit from one who knows His children well. Lovingkindness is the motivation behind redemption. It is the crown the great King places upon the head of all of His children that Paul spoke of, a crown equal for all and boasted by none but the giver. Surely, it is a tender mercy, a benefit that we should remember daily. He also wrote of the Lord's daily benefits, :"Blessed be the Lord, who daily loadeth us with benefits, even the God of our salvation. Selah"-Psalm 68:19. Every day, there are benefits both known and unknown to God's people. If we only knew how many times we or our loved ones have been saved from an accident, a disease, wickedness and even our own selves we would be surprised at the daily benefits. Though we may see the fun and frolic in the lifestyle of the rich and famous, yet, in the Christian home I see benefits of far greater value. Yes, there is great benefit in serving God. He is "a rewarder of them that diligently seek him." Today, we encourage all who call upon the name of Jesus Christ our Lord to press into the kingdom, fight the good fight of faith, contend for the faith once delivered to the saints, endure hardness as a good soldier. Our King is coming back and His reward is in His hand! Think upon His benefits and ask, "What shall I render unto the LORD for all his benefits toward me?"-Psalm 16:12. Come and worship with us at Harmony Primitive Baptist Church, at Donaldson, where God is sovereign, and salvation is by His abundant and amazing grace. Services begin at 10:30 each Sunday morning. By His mercy and grace, Neil Phelan, Jr., Pastor.