“Do I exalt Christ?“
To exalt means to “lift up” – and we want to lift up the LORD. We know that He is up there; we know that He is high above all the clouds and the stars; we know that our Lord Jesus Christ is seated at the right hand of God the Father (Mk 16:19; Acts 2:33; Rom 8:34; Col 3:1; Heb 1:3; 10:12; 12:2; I Peter 3:22), but do we in our own personal lives exalt Christ?
We must make Him as the highest standard of righteousness there ever was, and to strive to be like Him. The other word that can be used to describe exaltation is “magnify” – just like a magnifying glass enlarges that which is small to be perceived larger, so we make our God look really BIG – because He is! The only difference is a magnifier makes something small look big, but when we magnify the LORD, we are putting Him into the proper perspective for all the world to see.
It’s a shame that there are so many distractions in life that we often don’t even think about the LORD much less magnify Him. The first mention of “exalt” is in Exodus 15:
Exodus 15:2 The LORD is my strength and song, and he is become my salvation: he is my God, and I will prepare him an habitation; my father’s God, and I will exalt him.
We can see who is given the first place of exaltation – it’s the LORD! Shortly after Moses and the children of Israel were delivered from Pharaoh and all of their enemies, they began to sing and praise God. He says, “I will exalt him” – in the midst of our rejoicing we ought to give God the credit and lift Him up as the One who is our deliverer and the one who blesses.
Notice also that Moses says, “my father’s God” – is He your God? Little children will follow their parents for the majority of their early life growing up, but at some point they have to make the LORD “MY God”. The reason for this is that God doesn’t just want praise from your parents, He wants to be magnified in your life as well!
Psalm 34:1 ¶ A Psalm of David, when he changed his behaviour before Abimelech; who drove him away, and he departed. I will bless the LORD at all times: his praise shall continually be in my mouth.
Psalm 34:2 My soul shall make her boast in the LORD: the humble shall hear thereof, and be glad.
Psalm 34:3 O magnify the LORD with me, and let us exalt his name together.
Let’s do it together. Let’s not just be in isolation with our Christianity, but let’s assemble together as the body of Jesus Christ and exalt Him together. We have no need to brag about how good the singer is, and how pretty the piano player is today, and how good of a speaker the preacher is, but we need to exalt the Lord Jesus Christ!
Notice it should be, “at all times“. What kind of friends do you pick out? Are they friends who will encourage you in your Christianity and speak with you about the word of God? Or are they someone who wants to talk about “something else”; they want to magnify the world, or the flesh, or some material “god” that they think is more “interesting” than the Lord Jesus Christ.
The most crucial decision any young person has to make is whom they should marry. Are you going to marry someone who will magnify the Lord with you? Or are you going to marry someone who will take you out of the ministry and hinder the Lord from using you ever again? Solomon, the wisest man who ever lived, married women who served other things and wanted to talk about other things, and the testimony of scripture is that they, “turned away his heart” (I Kings 11:3-4).
“Do I exalt Christ?“
Make sure if you make the Lord “my God”, that He stays, “my God”.
Psalm 118:28 Thou art my God, and I will praise thee: thou art my God, I will exalt thee.
Don’t just let other people exalt the LORD. If He’s your God, then praise Him! Sing songs to Him! Pray unto Him and glorify Him to your friends and family!
Isaiah 25:1 ¶ O LORD, thou art my God; I will exalt thee, I will praise thy name; for thou hast done wonderful things; thy counsels of old are faithfulness and truth.
Here we have the reason for exalting the LORD – God is faithful, God is true. Hasn’t He done some wonderful things for you in your life? Hasn’t He provided for all of your needs (not your greed)? Do you have wisdom? Do you have food to satisfy your belly? Do you have a roof over your head? Has God changed your life through the new birth? Then you should exalt Him for all of the wonderful things He’s done! He’s worthy of our praise and adoration!
Let it come out of your mouth, not just the preacher’s.
Psalm 99:5 Exalt ye the LORD our God, and worship at his footstool; for he is holy.
Psalm 99:9 Exalt the LORD our God, and worship at his holy hill; for the LORD our God is holy.
Do you worship the Lord in your heart? Do you get all by yourself and lay down on the floor face down before Him and just praise Him for who He is? Those times are sweet times! It’s really important that you take the time to do so!
Psalm 107:31 Oh that men would praise the LORD for his goodness, and for his wonderful works to the children of men!
Psalm 107:32 Let them exalt him also in the congregation of the people, and praise him in the assembly of the elders.
Exclamation! OH that men would praise Him! People don’t praise the Lord. Mankind doesn’t even recognize His hand in daily affairs. Here is a man who is magnifying the LORD and praising Him, and he considers how few people do so! OH that men would be saved! OH that men would praise the Lamb who is worthy!
Exalt Him in the congregation – instead of stretching out and yawning, and doing your duty to fill the pew, you’re supposed to be exalting Him amongst the congregation, worshipping Him in “spirit and in truth” (John 4:23)!
You have very few options as to whom you can exalt – you can either exalt Christ or you can exalt yourself. You can either brag about the Lord Jesus Christ or you can talk about how smart you are, and how beautiful you are, and how strong you are, and how talented you are, and how “spiritual” you are. Why would you exalt yourself? Have you forgotten how insignificant we are as the “dust of the ground” (Gen 2:7)? Have you forgotten that our days are as a shadow (Job 8:9), our life but a vapour (James 4:14), and our being but frail (Psa 39:4)?
Psalm 49:6 ¶ They that trust in their wealth, and boast themselves in the multitude of their riches;
Psalm 49:7 None of them can by any means redeem his brother, nor give to God a ransom for him:
Psalm 49:9 That he should still live for ever, and not see corruption.
Psalm 49:11 Their inward thought is, that their houses shall continue for ever, and their dwelling places to all generations; they call their lands after their own names.
Why do people call lands after their own name? Because there is something in a man’s heart that wants to live forever. He thinks that he will “live on” by their memory, but this is deception. Their house may outlive them, but it will not last forever. That is why exaltation of self is a futile effort, and why the magnification of our Lord Jesus Christ is so much more fruitful – because He will last forever, and so will His name. But we don’t last forever! When the focus is turned to self, the Lord is left out and forgotten:
Hosea 13:6 According to their pasture, so were they filled; they were filled, and their heart was exalted; therefore have they forgotten me.
For all of the work done out in the field, the harvest, the slaying of cattle and the tending to the house, they gave credit to themselves and their own labour and forgat the Lord. What is the fruit of exalting your own ability and labour? Nothing. But the fruit of a lifetime of service to God will reap rewards everlasting.
“Do I exalt Christ?”