The Whole Earth Is Filled with God’s Glory

Be merciful to me, O God, be merciful to me, for in you my soul takes refuge in the shadow of your wings I will take refuge, till the storms of destruction pass by. I cry out to God Most High, to God who fulfills his purpose for me. He will send from heaven and save me; he will put to shame him who tramples on me. Selah. God will send out his steadfast love and his faithfulness! My soul is in the midst of lions; I lie down amid fiery beasts – the children of man, whose teeth are spears and arrows, whose tongues are sharp swords. Be exalted, O God, above the heavens! Let your glory be over all the earth! They set a net for my steps; my soul was bowed down. They dug a pit in my way, but they have fallen into it themselves. Selah. My heart is steadfast, O God, my heart is steadfast! I will sing and make melody! Awake, my glory! Awake, O harp and lyre! I will awake the dawn! I will give thanks to you, O Lord, among the peoples; I will sing praises to you among the nations. For your steadfast love is great to the heavens, your faithfulness to the clouds. Be exalted, O God, above the heavens! Let your glory be over all the earth!” (Psalm 57)

Have you noticed that David, the man after God’s own heart, the author of most of the chapters in the Psalter, who led all the worship processions and led all the choirmasters, and, yet, did so before the land of Israel had any permanent House of Worship? Why such an emphasis on worship without a permanent place for worship? It wasn’t until his son Solomon built the temple that the land would have a place to officially gather for worship.

And since then for thousands of years the church has met in a place – in a location. While there are a handful of churches without a meeting place, most churches have a building or tent to meet within. We gather to worship.

But too often we buy into the notion that we gather to worship and when we drive our cars out of the parking lot, we aren’t worshipping God any longer. This is simply not true. Every action – mundane or not – is an opportunity for worship (I Corinthians 10:31).

When we read Psalm 57, we come to see that David understood something we too often forget. David understood that a house was not essential for worship to take place. Why? Because the whole earth is filled with His glory).

In his book Let the Nations Be Glad, John Piper reminds us,

“Worship is not a gathering. It is not essentially a song service or sitting under preaching. Worship is not essentially any form of outward act. Worship is essentially an inner stirring of the heart to treasure God above all the treasures of the world – a valuing of God above all else that is valuable, a loving of God above all else that is lovely, a savoring of God above all else that is sweet, an admiring of God above all else that is admirable, a fearing of God above all else that is fearful, a respecting of God above all else that is respectable, a prizing of God above all else that is precious.”[1]

Deep, powerful, God-centered worship is to take place everywhere we go because the whole earth is God’s sanctuary.


[1] John Piper, Let the Nations Be Glad: The Supremacy of God in Missions (Ada: Baker Book House, 2010), pgs. 206-207.


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