Psa. 27:4 ¶ One thing have I asked of the LORD, that will I seek after: that I may dwell in the house of the LORD all the days of my life to gaze upon the beauty of the LORD and to inquire in his temple.
What is your definition of beauty? Is it the symmetry of someone’s face or maybe a sunset that reminds you of some impressionist’s masterpiece? Or maybe beauty to you is the smile of a grandchild or the first steps of your firstborn. As they say, ‘Beauty is in the eye of the beholder’. For the golfer, it is the perfect swing; the fisherman’s beauty is the ‘fight’ in that trophy bass, and for the baseball fan it could be the ‘perfect game’ pitched by the starting pitcher. King David had his own definition and ideas about beauty, he had seen the Artist and Creator of all beauty and recognized anything of beauty in this life is only a shadow pointing to the One Who is altogether lovely. Here are some thoughts from Matthew Henry on David’s view of the beauty of the Lord.
“He would dwell in God’s house, not for the plenty of good entertainment that was there, in the feasts upon the sacrifices, nor for the music and good singing that were there, but to behold the beauty of the Lord and to enquire in his temple. He desired to attend in God’s courts. That he might have the pleasure of meditating upon God. He knew something of the beauty of the Lord, the infinite and transcendent amiableness of the divine being and perfections; his holiness is his beauty, his goodness is his beauty. The harmony of all his attributes is the beauty of his nature. With an eye of faith and holy love we with pleasure behold this beauty, and observe more and more in it that is amiable, that is admirable. When with fixedness of thought, and a holy flame of devout affections, we contemplate God’s glorious excellencies, and entertain ourselves with the tokens of his peculiar favor to us, this is that view of the beauty of the Lord which David here covets, and it is to be had in his ordinances, for there he manifests himself.”
Henry got it, he said ‘His holiness is his beauty, His goodness is his beauty. The harmony of all His attributes is the beauty of his nature’. The beauty of the Lord is spiritual and can only be observed by revelation. We first see His beauty revealed to us in the written Word. From there we see the love shining through His Son, His grace revealed through His sacrificial death, and His life on display and available to us through His resurrection. Once you have seen His beauty then all of the other ‘beauties’ in this life fall in place and gain perspective. All true beauty in this life points us back to the Author, after all He is the Master Artist and is setting His beauty on display all around us.