“Joy Comes With the Morning”


Readings: Psalm 30:1-12 (text); John 16:20-24

July 26, 2015 * Download this sermon (PDF)

Dear Congregation of Christ: This last week my wife and I drove from Big Springs Community Church to Escondido and back, a total of 1,600 miles. Brother Jude Atas flew into San Francisco and we gave him a tour of California via I-5. He will start his studies at Westminster Seminary this Tuesday. Please pray that he will have diligence and perseverance to finish his studies in three years, and return to the Philippines to become the pastor of the church there.


For this trip, we had an intermediate stop in Los Angeles, where we stayed at our son’s place. On our way back up to Concord, we started as usual at 4:30 in the morning to beat the L.A. traffic. Obviously, there was no congestion, even though the freeway was already teeming with speeding cars. That is the only way to beat the traffic there. In 45 minutes we were clear of the dreaded metro L.A. congestion and climbing the Grapevine. As we climbed up the mountains, it was still quite dark, but as we neared the top, dawn started breaking.

I love driving towards dawn. In addition to beating traffic congestion, I always enjoy the light slowly breaking into the dark night. The light of day always conquers the darkness of night. And this is one of the pictures in our text today, Psalm 30.

The title says that it was written by King David as a psalm of praise and thanksgiving for the dedication of the temple. How can this be, since David died before the temple was even built? As well, the psalm is a thanksgiving to God for recovery from a grave illness, some are led to believe that the title was an add-on. But David started the preparations for this project, so he knew that his son Solomon would build it. Also, here the Hebrew word for “temple” is also used for an ordinary house, or the king’s house, or the tabernacle. David might have fallen gravely ill as he was preparing for this project, so the dedication might have been delayed.

The psalm is simply structured. There are three exclamations of praise and thanksgiving to the Lord (verses 1, 4, 12). In between these praises, the psalmist tells us why he praises God. So our theme today, then, is “Joy Comes With the Morning”: first, Because the Lord Restores Life; second, Because the Lord Removes Pride; and third, Because the Lord Turns Mourning into Dancing.

Read the rest of the sermon here.