Listen: Angels From the Realms of Glory
Read: Psalm 29
I want to draw our attention to the directive David gives us in verse 2 of our Psalm reading. “Worship the LORD in the beauty of holiness.” Let’s ask two questions. First, what is meant by holiness? Second, what is meant by beauty? Undoubtedly, we don’t have nearly enough space in this small devotional to do justice to these terms. So then, let’s try to just scratch the surface, because there is gold here to be collected even without digging. Don’t let that stop you from digging, because the mine only gets richer as you get deeper.
What is holiness? In the context of speaking about God’s holiness, we are not primarily focused upon His moral goodness that is perfect. No, when God is called Holy, what the Scripture first and foremost seeks to declare is what we might describe as God’s “otherness.” God is completely outside of our capacity to define. He is in a category all His own. So in our Christmas carol for today, we sing about this “otherness” in the form of our Trinitarian theology of the “eternal three in one.”
What is beauty? We might define beauty as pleasurable to behold. What makes one thing beautiful over and against another thing? Often a distinguishing mark of beauty is symmetry. So let’s use this idea as we consider the beauty of God’s “otherness.” God is both perfectly merciful and perfectly just. He has perfect love and perfect hate. He is simultaneously incomprehensible and knowable. Come to the manger and behold this wonder. Look upon the newborn baby who is the Eternal God. Let your heart leap for joy and tremble in fear.
Worship Him in the beauty of His holiness. The Just law giver came to be the Justifying law fulfiller and payment. The Source of all life has come to taste death. Worship Christ the newborn King.