Praying the Gospel – Gospel in Life
Sermon

Praying the Gospel

Tim Keller |  March 19, 2000

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Topics:
  • Prayer & Meditation
  • Understanding the Gospel
Duration:
40:24
Scripture:
Psalm 103:1-22
SKU:
RS 111-5

Overview

The book of Psalms is the preeminent place to see how to deal with your emotions and the conditions of the heart. Psalms, in a certain sense, is almost God’s counseling case book — not his counseling textbook, but his case book. Not a place where you have lots of principles laid out, but lots of actual cases of people struggling with anger and loneliness and doubt and emptiness and grief and fear and anxiety and shame and guilt, every condition the human heart struggles with and wrestles with.

Yet, in the Psalms, you occasionally have a psalm like this — it shows us how to handle life in general. David lays out the basic key to deal with all conditions, all circumstances of life, any situation. That’s what this psalm is about. We’re going to learn here 1.why we need to remember, 2. where we need to remember, 3. what we need to remember, and 4. how we need to remember. This is the key to handling life.

Psalm 103:1–22

David’s song gives us a universal plan for dealing with life’s difficulties. It highlights the importance of remembering what God has done for us. This doesn’t apply to a specific problem or enemy, but to all of life’s challenges. The key to understanding how to handle life’s issues is exploring why, where, what, and how we should remember.

1. Why we need to remember

Remembering God isn’t just about bringing Him to mind; it’s essential for our spiritual growth and for letting go of past mistakes. If we forget about God, we might start feeling afraid and lose sight of what’s right. Because of how our hearts work, we can easily focus more on the bad than the good. That’s why it’s so important to be thankful and keep our attention on the good things. Even though we sometimes want to forget about God and be our own bosses, we are naturally made to remember. We need God’s help to make sure we remember the right things.

2. Where we need to remember

Psalm 103 shows us that the problem of forgetting is deep inside us. We need more than just a mental acceptance of God—we need a practice of deep thinking and reflection. This isn’t just about feelings or thoughts, but a mix of prayer, study, reflection, and a sincere connection with our hearts, using truth as our guide. Doing this can cause real change in our emotions, desires, and minds, instead of just surface-level changes.

3. What we have to remember

The good news, or the gospel, is the foundation of our faith. It reminds us that God’s love for us is not because of what we’ve done, but because of His kindness. To truly understand this love, we have to remember the sacrifice of Jesus on the cross. He was abandoned so that we never have to be. When we fully accept this truth, it can remove our fears and change us from the inside out.

4. How we need to remember

The gospel helps us deal with our struggles and fears. It offers forgiveness for our guilt, healing for our despair, and honor and compassion for our feelings of shame or criticism. The fear of death is eased by the promise of life after death. By the help of the Spirit and by remembering the story of the gospel, we can face any problem and experience deep change. God’s never-ending memory of us is a constant comfort.

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May Book Offer

Share the reason for the hope within you!

In The Reason for God, Tim Keller examines literature, philosophy, real-life conversations and reasoning to present how faith in Christ is a sound and rational belief with intellectual integrity.