Clevedon Presbyterian Church
Kawakawa Bay
Clevedon Kidz

Taste and see

September 22, 2019
Tony Andrews

TASTE and SEE.

Psalm 34 V 8

Oh taste and see that the Lord is good, Blessed is the man who trusts in Him.

I have known this verse for a long time.  And sometimes we read it or sing it , but never understood, never put thought into this verse .

But you will notice something very unusual in this verse.

Because notice that it doesn't say see and taste, but it says taste and then see.

Then it gives you a idea to close your eyes first.

My wife she done this a couple of times to me, with her hand behind her back.

She said Tony close your eyes.  I say why!!!. Come on close your eyes. Because your wife asks you and you want to keep the peace in your house, so you close your eyes.

Then she says open your mouth taste it., but don’t see it .Why does she do that, because she knows that if I see it first I probably don’t want to try to taste it.

But I need to trust her. The level of trust depends on whether you want to taste it or not.

Why do we want to close our eyes, because we are presented with something we are not familiar with .

But you need to taste it, because if you open your eyes you probably do not want to taste it.

May be you don’t have the guts to taste it.

Just like when overseas in asian country, they have so many good foods. But often we have problems getting friends to try them or children or ourselves, because when you see presentation it's weird to them, so they don’t want to taste it.

They miss something that’s very delicious. Because it takes faith to the taste food.

But faith is what God requires from us, it takes faith to follow Jesus,  It takes faith to taste without seeing it first..

Faith it is the language that God understands,  faith is the password for God to respond, to

your prayer and needs.    Faith is the realm where God operates, while fear is the realm where the devil operates.

Faith is the realm where you find wonders and miracles.

2 Corinthians 5 v7

For we walk by faith, not by sight.

John 20 .v24-29

Jesus said to Thomas, because you have seen me, you have believed.

Blessed are those who have not seen and yet have believed.

To follow God you need to be able to trust God. To follow God to trust God.

And trust is the foundation of every relationship , including your relationship with God.

Now God has no problem trusting us, he has no problem . He knows who we are, he created us, he knows what we can do.   The problem is with us.

Often times we have problems trusting Him on a consistant basis.

The biggest problem with our relationship with God is to get ourselves to trust God to a level that he wants us to trust Him

To achieve that level of trust God has to bring us through a process, to achieve the kind of level that he wants us to trust him. God has to bring us through a process.

I know that some of you have just started your Christian walk ,some are in the middle of that process ,some of you towards the end . Like me

What we need to taste is this, God's Goodness, we need to taste

We need to know and experience it ourselves  that God is Good.

Matt ch 19 v 16-22

A rich young ruler came to Jesus.  He came to Jesus with this question “ Teacher what good deed must I do to to have eternal life”

So Jesus said to him “why ask me about what is good'  “ There is only ONE who is good . GOD”

But to answer your question if you want to receive eternal life keep the commandments.

Which ones .And Jesus replied , You must not murder ,you must not commit adultery, you must not steal, you must not testify falsely.

Honour your father and mother, love your neighbour as yourself

Ive' obey all these commandments, the young man replies “ What else must I do”

Jesus told him” If you want to be perfect , go and sell all your possessions and give this money to the poor ,and you will have treasure in heaven. Then come, follow me!

But when the young man heard this , he went away very sad ,for he had many possessions.

This young man called  Jesus good obviously not from his own conviction but failed to taste the goodness of God. Because Gods' goodness came to him in an unfamiliar way.  Because Jesus asked him to sell all of his possessions.

Instead of following the instructions of faith, or in our context today, instead of just closing his eyes and tasting.  He opened his eyes and saw.   And started to think that what Jesus has asked of him didn't make any sense to him and he went away.

He didn't have the guts to taste what Jesus had offered him   He called Jesus good but he didn't have that revelation, he didn't have that relationship with him .  He refused Jesus's invitation to follow him, to find out if Jesus is really good according to what he said or not

He failed to taste the goodness of God because he failed to trust Jesus.

To follow Jesus is to trust him. To follow Jesus is to trust him no matter what the situation is you are in.  Whatever the difficulties you are in.

You need to settle it in your heart, deep down in your heart.

That you know it, that you know it, without a shadow of doubt that God is good.

Not only is he good for everybody, but he is good for you.

Can you say “God is good for me”, Say it like you mean it.

Our level of trust cannot go deeper if we are not sure that he is good or not.

Ecclesiastes Ch 3 v 11

He has made everything beautiful in its time. He has also  put eternity in their hearts, except that no one can find out the work or fathom  that God done from the beginning to end.

That's our problem isn't it, we cannot comprehend the work of God from the beginning to the end.

Many times we fail to understand how God works. Especially in the beginning stages,

Because to us it doesn't make sense, we are not familiar with what is presented to us .

Let me give you a illustration , I have a picture of a tree that bears many fruits.

If you want this in the end.  If you pray to God for the tree that will bear much fruit.

In the beginning it could will look just like this. A Seed!

This is the answer to your prayer. You asked for that tree, and God heard your prayer .He wants to give you what you request    .And this is what you may get.

If you fail to understand what it is and the potential that it has, you will throw it away!!

Because this is very unfamiliar.  Because you asked for that tree.

So this young ruler will never know how his life could have turned out , if he obeyed Jesus .

Had he not given up ,he would have seen the goodness of God in the end .

Like Job's life and what happened to him. The good thing with Job he endured to the end.

And I want you to look at what he said in the end

JOB 42 v 5-6   Really interesting

Job said ”I had only heard about you before, but now I have seen you with my own eyes”

I take back everything I said and I sit in dust and ashes to show my repentance,

Obviously he said something that was not pleasant to God, but God was not upset with what he said .  And you see that God gives Job twice as much as before, at the end.

Job V 16-17   that Job died an old man 140 yrs living to see 4 generations of his children and grandchildren. He had lived a long full life .

Job may not have understood in the beginning but he endured until the end.

He had stayed and seen the goodness of God .

Psalm 119 v 68

David speaking to God 'You are good ,and do good .Teach me your statutes.'

We need to know God is good and he only can do good . Good is inherent in God's character

It is His nature.

James 1 v 17

It says “ Every good gift and very perfect gift is from above and comes down from the Father of lights, with whom there is no variation  or shadow of turning away.

So I know you all know the story of Joseph

Joseph was Jacobs favourite son , His brothers hated Joseph because their father loved him ,more than them .

Pretty bad parenting ah.

Joseph had 2 dreams and he told them and they got more jealous and they wanted to kill him.

Finally they sold Joseph into Egypt .There he was sold to Potiphar the captain of the guard

Can you image how Joseph felt after being sold into slavery.

Then Joseph was put in prison because Potiphar wife accused him of fooling around with her .

While in prison he had a second dream for Potiphar himself.  And little did he know that he would become the second man in command. Joseph was put in charge of all Egypt.

Genesis 41 v 46

He was thirty years old when he began serving in the court of Pharaoh King of Egypt

It had taken him 17yrs to become 2rd man in Egypt.

It took him some years to realise he was in the plan and purpose of God

The story goes on about 7 yrs of plenty and then 7yrs of famine. And it's the famine that brought Josephs brothers to Egypt to buy grain

Joseph asked the brothers to bring Benjamin his little brother next time they came to buy grain. The brothers didn't realise the man they were dealing with was Joseph.

Genisis 45 v 1-4

Joseph could stand it no longer .He asked all the people out of the room. So he could tell them who he was. Then he broke down and wept, so loudly the Egyptians could hear him, this was told back to Pharoh.

I am joseph is my father still alive. The brothers were speechless.

They were stunned can you imagine that!!

Asking them to come closer, I am the brother you sold into Egypt. What an awkward moment, what was Joseph going to do to them,  Revenge.

But look at this Genesis 45 v 5-7

But don’t be upset, and don’t be angry with yourselves for selling me to this place. It was God who set me here ahead of you to preserve your lives.

This famine that has been 2 yrs will last another 5 yrs. God has sent me ahead of you to keep you and your families alive and preserve many survivors.

So joseph tried to explain his renewed mind, His new perspective about the whole situation.

God is eternal he is the Alfa and Omega He is the beginning and the end God see's the end from the beginning. He can see your future from now, he is even better than a todays GPS. He sees far beyond,  he has prepared everything you need for your future..

but what you need to do is follow the process, in the process you need just to trust Him.

Genesis 45 v 8

Joseph said,  So it was God who sent me here, not you, he said to his brothers

God who made me an adviser to Pharaoh, manager of the entire palace and governors to Egypt .

If we Reported this say in modern times

See the news of the earth it would say “ Joseph Sold into Egypt by his brothers.

But the news from heaven says “ God sent Joseph to Egypt”

Same situation.  Two different perspectives.  Two different news.

But God and heaven is always full of good news!!! Amen

Romans 8 v 28

And we know that all things work together for good to those who love God, To those who are called according to his purpose

In some bibles they say “ And we know NOW that all things work together

Why Now because we understand .We didn't understand then, in the beginning, but we understand it Now

Just like Joseph , if we are faithful and keep our faith until the end we will see God's glory.

We will see the victory . We can LOOK BACK AT THE BEGINNING AND WE CAN SAY I AM GLAD I CLOSED MY EYES. I am glad I tasted and now I got it. Now I got it.

And if you experience this and you have tasted God, your level of trust in God goes deeper, and your perspective of God. You see the stages, you become more mature in life and you understand how God works.   All things work together for good.

You may be in that situation that curtain things are happening in your life or in your past

When bad things happen, in those situations, you try to make sense of it all, but the more you think of it the more you realise, more confused ,the more you ask questions  WHY.

But you must make the decision to just close your eyes and believe that this unfamiliar situation, that presented right in front of you .Is the beginning of something very good. You might not understand.

But I know that I know that I know that God is good and God is good for me.

So just close your eyes, trust in Jesus.

Don’t try to make sense of it all.

Have faith God is good for you. Time to develop your trust in Him.

If God let you see everything that you would have to go through, you would probably say NO,  

No thank you , find someone else, not me.

Ecclesiastes ch 3 v 11

He has made everything beautiful in its time.

God knows no time, he is Eternal.

Then he says he has put eternity in their hearts

He has put eternity into every persons heart, whether they are Christians or not . It's in their hearts. In their DNA.

It's like a piece of software so to speak, he installed in our hearts that enables God to connect to you and I, and feel his presence.

I know people who have come to church knew nothing of God. But when they began to worship and praise God .They felt something, they felt peace, they could not explain it, I felt it, that peace. When I was in England at a  Anglican church singing in a choir, before I gave my heart to God in NZ .When I sung I felt good ,didn't know why . But NOW I know

That eternity in my heart was there.

LETS PRAY.

We pray today that software in your heart, that eternity will help you to feel God's presence, that you may sense his love, sense his mercy

We pray that the eternity in your heart will catch this message this morning, that God is good,  that God never leaves us or forsakes us..

I pray that this will help you to move forward another step, not to give up, To hold fast, until your faith sees the end, follow the process,  God trusts you . But he also wants you to trust him, to the level he wants you to have . To the same level he trusts you.

He wants you to meet him there, together

I pray for all of you today, that you can indeed say  “GOD IS GOOD”.

And say  'I have heard it from my friends ,  but Now I have experienced it .

The Lord is Good.

Amen.