Robert Morris — His Instrument
All right, I want you to turn to two passages of Scripture, Isaiah 14 and Ezekiel 28. This week, you may kind of wonder where I'm going. It'll be a little different, but the title of the message is, "His Instruments". "His Instruments", and I'm going to talk about instruments, not just us as instruments, but musical instruments. And I want to know if you've ever thought about how much of a part music plays in our culture and in our society and around the world? And how much of a part music is in our worship services? And worship to God? And so we're going to talk about instruments and I'm going to take you back, give you a little bit of history. Biblical history about instruments, alright?
So, I have three questions for you. Here's the first question: Why did Satan fall? Most believers know that Satan is an angel, but he is a fallen angel, and he fell from heaven and a third of the angels fell with him. But, why did he fall? In one word, if you were to say one word, why did he fall? Now, you might use the word pride, and that's a good word, but actually, I believe that the one word to describe why Satan fell is worship, and I want to show it to you in Scripture. In Isaiah 14, beginning in Verse 12, "How you are fallen from heaven, O Lucifer, son of the morning! How you are cut down to the ground, you who weakened the nations"!
Now before we go on, let me just say, you're going to see what we theologians would call the five "I wills" of Satan, the five things that he said in his heart that caused him to fall from heaven. All of these, though, have to do — I want you to watch — it will probably just blow you away. All of them have to do with being lifted up, or exalted. Which would be worship. We praise the One Who is the most high. All of these have to do with worship, so watch how many of these words have to do with being lifted up, or exalted, or high, or above, all right?
So, Verse 13. "For you", talking to Lucifer now, "you have said in your heart, I will ascend," well, that's go up. I want to go up higher, "into heaven". Remember, he was already in heaven. He wanted to go higher into heaven. "I will exalt," there's a word to talk about being lifted up, "exalt my throne above", not below, above, "the stars of God. I will also sit on the mount". The mount would be the highest part of a mountain. "The mount of the congregation, on the farthest sides of the north". North is up on the map. Verse 14, "I will ascend," that's go up, "above the heights," that's high, "of the clouds". Clouds are up, they're high. And then, notice the word he uses to refer to God, because we're talking about being high, or up, or lifted up, or exalted. "I will be like the Most High". He didn't say the most holy, which he could have said, or the most loving, or the most compassionate, or the most just. He decides to use the word high. "I will be like the Most High".
Watch God's response, Verse 15. "Yet you shall be brought down to Sheol, to the lowest depths," opposite of heights, "of the Pit". Satan wanted to be lifted up. He wanted to be exalted. He wanted to be, if you want to just put it straight out, he wanted to be worshipped. He wanted to be God. He wanted to be like God. He wanted people to draw attention to him. He wanted people to honor him. Now, you've probably heard theologians say, or pastors say "We're all born with an Adamic nature". 'Adamic' means 'like Adam.' A nature like Adam's. I don't want to disappoint you: we were born with an Adamic nature, but if you only go a little bit further, Adam was not the original sinner: Satan was.
Again, I know this is going to be tough. You didn't come to church to hear this, but you were actually born with a Satanic nature. isn't that great for the pastor to tell you that? We were born with a nature that wanted to be lifted up. Wanted — we wanted to be exalted. We wanted people to look at us, we wanted people to talk about us, we want people to compliment us. That's our old nature.
Now you're lookin' at me like, "Hmm... I don't know". Okay. I'll prove it to you, since you asked. One simple question: Who's the first person you look for in a group picture? Huh? And if you don't look good, the whole picture's bad. Don't look at that picture! That's a bad picture, that's a bad picture. Satan always wants to turn the conversation to himself. Did you realize Jesus always turned the conversation to His Father or the Holy Spirit? Always. They said to Jesus, "Well, we love the miracles that you do," and He said, "I don't do anything unless I first see the Father do it". They said, "Well, okay, we love the teachings that you give". "I don't say anything unless I first hear the Father say it". "Well, the works that you do are great"! "Well, the One coming after me is going to do greater works". He just always turned that attention. Listen, the more you become like Christ, the more you turn the conversation to Christ and others, and off of yourself.
So, Satan's plan has been, and is, and will be in the future, to steal worship from God. As a matter of fact, this is amazing to me. He actually tried to get Jesus to worship him. Matthew 4:8-9, "Again, the devil took Him up on an exceedingly high mountain, and showed Him all the kingdoms of the world and their glory, and he said to Him, 'All these things I will give You if You will fall down and worship me". That's amazing! He even tried to get Jesus. If you don't think he wants worship, he tried to get Jesus to worship him. But I want you to notice how he phrased it, "If you will fall down and worship me".
Listen to me carefully. Worship is always expressed; always. See, he didn't just say if you'll worship me, he said "If you will fall down". The reason worship is always expressed is because worship is love, and love is always expressed. You have to express your love. The reason I'm saying this is because there are many people that will come to church and not express their worship. Men. And they say things like this. Well, I'm just not an expressive person. But, Sunday night when the Cowboys come on and some big guy carries a pig across a chalk line, and you start going, whoo! Don't tell me you're not expressive. Can I just say one more time, men. Your kids are watching you. And when you come to church, they need to see that a real man expresses his love. They need to see that.
So, why did Satan fall? He fell because he wanted to be worshipped. Here's number two. Who created instruments? Well, I want you to know that Satan did not create instruments, but God created instruments. And I'm going to show you something shocking, right there in Isaiah 14. We started at Verse 12 a moment ago. This is talking to Lucifer, no doubt about it. Look at Verse 11. It says, "Your pomp is brought down to Sheol, and the sound of your stringed instruments". There it is, right in your Bible. "And the sound of your stringed instruments". Some versions say harps. "Brought down to Sheol".
Now, look at Ezekiel 28, look at Verse 11. "Moreover the Word of the Lord came to me, saying, "Son of man, take up a lamentation for the king of Tyre, and say to him, "Thus says the Lord God, you were the seal of perfection". Okay, this is talking about Lucifer before the fall, not talking about the king of Tyre. Watch. "Full of wisdom and perfect in beauty," and here's how you know for sure it's talking about Lucifer. Verse 13, "You were in Eden, the garden of God".
Okay, just so you know, biblically, historically speaking here, the king of Tyre lived 3.400 years after Eden, the garden of God. "You were in Eden, the garden of God". The king of Tyre was not in Eden. There were four persons in Eden: Adam, Eve, God, and Satan. "You were in Eden, the garden of God". Watch. "Every precious stone was your covering. The sardius, topaz, diamond, beryl, onyx, and jasper, sapphire, turquoise, and emerald with gold. The workmanship," we'll come back to this later. "The workmanship of your timbrels and pipes was prepared for you on the day you were created," not born, created. Now, watch Verse 14. "You were the anointed cherub who covers".
Look at me just for a moment. What's a cherub? An angel, and an anointed angel who covered, or who had authority. There are three archangels, or ruling angels, in heaven; Michael, Gabriel, and Lucifer. Of course, Lucifer fell. Let's keep going here. It says, "You were the anointed angel who covered," who had authority. "I established you. You were on the holy mountain of God. You walked back and forth in the midst of fiery stones. You were perfect in your ways from the day you were created, till inequity was found in you". That's Satan. "By the abundance of your trading," I'll come back and explain the word trading, "you became filled with violence within, and you sinned. Therefore I cast you..". Satan's the one that got kicked out of heaven. "I cast you as a profane thing out of the mountain of God, and I destroyed you, O covering cherub," angel, "from the midst of the fiery stones". This is talking about Lucifer. He says the reason you were kicked out is because of your trading. Old King James says merchandising.
Let me explain to you what this word means from the Hebrew. Let's just say that I owned a men's clothing store, and Pastor Todd worked for me at the men's clothing store, and you came in to buy a suit, and you got fitted for a suit, and he said, that'll be $300, and you gave him three $100 bills. He put two $100 bills in the cash register, and he put a $100 bill in his pocket. That's merchandising. That's what this Hebrew word means. It means that he's not the owner of the store, that that money does not rightfully belong to him, it belongs to the owner of the store. It was only supposed to pass through his hands, and yet he reached out and grabbed some of it.
That is exactly what Satan did. Satan was the worship leader in heaven before the fall, and the worship was supposed to pass through his hands to the rightful owner, and he reached out and took some of it, and when he did it was a cosmic violation, and immediately, he was kicked out of heaven, because God is the only One worthy to be worshipped. And the reason I say he was the worship leader is because he was created with instruments. Remember, I said there are three archangels, Gabriel, Michael, and Lucifer. There are three pillars on which the church is built — the Word, prayer, and worship.
Every time we come together as a congregation, we're going to have worship, we're going to pray, and we're going to have the Word, right? When you have a quiet time, you should have worship, you should pray, and you should read the Word. When you look at these three archangels — When you look at Michael, every time you see Michael in Scripture, he's answering prayer. Daniel 10, he comes to answer the prayer of Daniel. Helped the prayer get through. So, he's answering prayer. He rules over prayer. Every time you see Gabriel in scripture, he's bringing the Word of the Lord. He brought the Word of the Lord to Mary, the mother of Jesus. He brought the Word of the Lord to Zechariah, the father of John the Baptist. He brings the Word of the Lord. So, Michael rules over prayer, Gabriel over the Word. Lucifer used to rule over worship, but he got kicked out, and here's how I know he ruled over worship.
Do you remember in Isaiah 14 it said, "The sound of your stringed instruments," and look at Verse 13 of Ezekiel 28. It says, "The workmanship of your timbrels and pipes was prepared for you on the day you were created". "The workmanship of your timbrels and pipes". Okay, this is easy to figure out what the first word means; Timbrels. What would be an English word for a timbrel? A tambourine. You've seen them, a tambourine. A timbrel is a percussion instrument. That's what it means here. Pipes means wind instruments. Pipes, something you blow through to make a sound, like a clarinet, or a flute, or a trumpet.
Now, listen. Here we have, in Isaiah 14, strings, and here in Ezekiel 28 it says the workmanship of your percussion instruments and your wind instruments were created, were prepared for you, on the day you were created. I don't know if you ever thought about this, but you have all three of those instruments in you. And those are the three classifications. All instruments fall into one of those three classifications. All instruments. All instruments, they're either strings, percussion, or wind. All instruments. And wind, we divide between brass and reed, but it's still wind. You have to blow through it to make it make a sound. But all instruments, all of 'em, either have strings, or they're percussion, or they're wind. And you were create — Satan was created with all three of those instruments in him. You saw it, Isaiah 14, Ezekiel 28. "The sound of your stringed instruments," and "The workmanship of your timbrels and your pipes was prepared for you on the day you were created".
But I'm telling you, you have all three of those instruments in you. You have percussion instruments. I'm pretty good at that. Okay. You have percussion. You say, okay, let me think about the others. Strings? Oh, I have vocal chords. You have strings in your throat, right? And then, well, what about wind? Well, how do those strings operate? How do those chords operate? They operate when wind passes over them. Ahhh! That's pretty good, isn't it? Now you see why I don't sing on the worship team, because the rest of the worship team, they'd just be so intimidated! You know, they'd just. It wasn't that funny! All right, it might have been. Listen to me. I want you to catch this! Satan was created with instruments, but he fell. And then God created you, with instruments. That's amazing to me. There's more that happens when musical instruments are played and we sing than what you think.
Let me just read you a couple of Scriptures. 1 Chronicles 13:8, "David and all Israel played music before God with all their might, with singing, on harps, on stringed instruments," there are strings, "on tambourines," there's percussion, "on cymbals," percussion, "and with trumpets," there are the wind instruments. And here's an amazing one, 2 Chronicles 5:13-14. "Indeed it came to pass, when the trumpeters and the singers were as one," and you've probably experienced this in a worship service, "to make one sound to be heard in praising and thanking the Lord, that when they lifted up their voice with the trumpets, and the cymbals, and the instruments of music, and praised the Lord, saying, 'For He is good, for His mercy endures forever," that the house, the house of the Lord, was filled with a cloud, so that the priests could not continue ministering because of the cloud, for the glory of the Lord filled the house of God".
Let it be! Let it be! That's what we want to see in church! We want to see God's glory fill the house of God, and it happens when you worship and praise Him with instruments. Instruments are more important than you think. And here's point number three, what did God do? What did God do? Well, He did probably a little more than you think He did. Genesis 1:2 is a real strange verse. It doesn't seem to go with Verse 1, it doesn't seem to go with Verse 3. Lots of theories about it, one called the gap theory. But it just doesn't go at all, because this is what it says. It says, "God created the heavens and the earth". And then it says, "The earth was without form and void, and darkness covered it".
Okay, most theologians believe that that is when God threw Satan to the earth. And Satan brought — "without form" in the Hebrew means chaos. He brought chaos. Void means emptiness. He brought emptiness, and of course, he brought darkness. So, he brought chaos, and emptiness, and darkness. Let me tell you what God did. God said, let's take care of these three things. First of all, "Let there be light". And the first thing He did was he dispersed and dispelled the darkness. He said, "Let there be light". And then He said, let's bring some form. Let's have a light at day and a light at night, and let's put some stars in the sky, and let's have some land and some sea, and He began to bring form to the earth.
And then He said, and let's fill this emptiness, and he created plants, and mountains, and trees, and flowers. And then He created living creatures, and birds that sing, and animals, and He created all and He brought fullness to the emptiness. He took care of the darkness, He took care of the chaos, and He took care of the emptiness. There was one thing missing, and I think it went something like this. I think Lucifer said to Him, "Yeah, You've got all of this, but who's going to give You praise? Who's going to give You honor? Who's going to give You glory? Who's going to be Your worship leader now"? And God reached down, grabbed a handful of dirt, squeezed it, blew in it, and said, "That is my new worship leader! That's my worship leader". "And furthermore, Satan, that is going to crush your head"!
Only one problem. Satan showed up to the new worship leaders, who also had instruments in them, and said the exact same thing that caused Satan to fall. He said, "You can be like God". Remember what he said in Isaiah 14? "I'm going to be like the Most High". And Adam and Eve bought it, and chaos, and emptiness, and darkness came back into the world. But, 2.000 years ago, God said again, "Let there be light," and sent His Son into the world, the light of the world.
God created you in His image, and He created you with instruments to worship and to praise the Lord. And I'm telling you, when you worship Him, and you praise Him, and you use your instruments, the glory of the Lord will fill this house, and your house, and this house. Instruments are much, much more important than you think. Isn't it amazing? We are God's new worship leaders. God created us to love Him and be in relationship with Him, and one of the ways that we live in His presence, live in relationship with Him, is to learn to praise Him and worship Him, and He gave us instruments. He gave us percussion instruments, and strings, wind. We can praise the Lord. And I want to encourage you, even if it's not your personality to maybe be outward or demonstrative in your praise, I want to encourage you to praise God, because He's worthy of our praise, and, when we praise Him, we live in His presence.