“The Righteous Have God’s Favor”
Psalm 34:15-17

15  The eyes of the LORD are upon the righteous, and his ears are open unto their cry.

      • The righteous are people who have the right relationship with God which is through faith in Jesus Christ.  The righteous put God first before anyone or anything else.
      • We should never refrain from seeing ourselves as righteous if we have been born again.  Also, being righteous is not the same as being self-righteous.
      • About 1/3 of the world population profess to be Christians.  In other words, 1/3 of the world would be classified as the righteous.
      • The righteous have God’s favor, and God watches over the righteous.  The righteous have God’s eyes constantly upon us and His ears constantly open unto our cry.
      • Those of us who are righteous should live knowing that we have God’s favor even when it does not seem like it. 

16  The face of the LORD is against them that do evil, to cut off the remembrance of them from the earth.

      • The righteous experience God’s favor, but the wicked experience God’s disfavor.  Moreover, God protects the righteous, but God punishes those who do evil.
      • God is “against” those who do evil.  Ultimately, they will not prosper because God brings judgment upon them.  They will eventually experience God’s wrath.
      • “To cut off the remembrance of them from the earth” means God erases from the minds of people the memory of the wicked. 
      • Rather than doing evil, we should choose to be righteous having God’s favor. 

17  The righteous cry, and the LORD heareth, and delivereth them out of all their troubles.

      • God hears and answers favorably the prayers of the righteous.
      • The righteous sometimes suffer, but when we cry to the Lord, He hears us.
      • The righteous sometimes experience trouble, but eventually, God delivers us from all of our “troubles.”
      • When those of us who are righteous are “going through,” we should “cry out” unto the Lord who hears us.  In due time, He will deliver us from all of our “troubles.”

As believers, we are the righteous, and we should praise God that we have His favor!  Although life is at times extremely challenging, because we have God’s favor, we can be assured that the Lord will always protect us and provide for us.  Hence, my beloved, live and enjoy life well knowing that we have God’s favor if HE has transformed us into His righteousness.

Church Responsiveness

1.  Worship Celebrations

We currently have two Worship Celebrations (each is approximately 1 hour and 15 minutes) every Sunday:  9 a.m. at the North Campus and 11 a.m. at the South Campus.  We encourage everyone to arrive at least 10 minutes beforehand to be seated safely and comfortably.  Temperatures are checked, hand sanitizing is urged, social distancing is applied regarding where people shall sit and walk, wearing masks are now mandatory (Contra Costa County requires people to wear masks for indoor gatherings), utilization of restrooms is restricted to 2-4 people at a time (depending on the size of the restroom), and congregating before and after Services is prohibited.  Moreover, our 11:00 a.m. Worship Celebrations are live-streamed (YouTube and Facebook), and a podcast is available each Sunday at 2 p.m. or thereafter via our website (sjmbc.org).

2.  Church School

We encourage everyone to participate in our Church School which convenes online Sundays at 2:00 p.m. and Wednesdays at 7:00 p.m.  For more information, please visit our website at sjmbc.org.

3.  Pastor Edification Month

August is Pastor Edification Month!  I thank God for the monetary gifts and love expressions (in person, mail, and online) that so many of you have shared with me.  I pray that God will bless you abundantly for being such a blessing to me.  By the way, the Bible teaches us to “bless” the pastor.  Paul said in 1 Corinthians 9:11-12a (NIV):  “If we have sown spiritual seed among you, is it too much if we reap a material harvest from you?  If others have this right of support from you, shouldn’t we have it all the more?”

4.  Tithes And Offerings 

Praise God for each of us who have been supporting St. John financially.  We currently give in person during Sunday Morning Worship Celebrations, by mailing or dropping off our Tithes and Offerings at our Administration Building or South Campus, or by giving online through our website (sjmbc.org).  If you are financially able but not supporting St. John financially, allow God to bless you with more by giving today your Tithes and Offerings.  Malachi 3:10 reads:  “Bring ye all the tithes into the storehouse, that there may be meat in mine house, and prove me now herewith, saith the LORD of hosts, if I will not open you the windows of heaven, and pour you out a blessing, that there shall not be room enough to receive it.”

May God bless and sustain each of us.

Your Servant In Christ,


Dr. Kevin B. Hall, Pastor