Wednesday, July 23, 2008

Powerful Praise

“My soul, praise the Lord, and all that is within me, praise His holy name. My soul, praise the Lord, and do not forget all His benefits.” (Psalm 103:1-2 CSB)

All of the psalms are wonderful, but psalm 103 is one of those that soars with a crisp, majestic beauty. It points us to powerful praise that impacts the deepest reaches of our souls. Note the content.

“All that is within me” is to praise the Lord. So, what is in me? This would include my: soul, spirit, heart, personality, thoughts, emotions, attitudes, and values, to name a few. We bring all of this that is within us before the Lord so that all of it may give praise to God.

We also must not forget all of His benefits. Throughout the psalm, the writer points to many of these: forgiveness, healing, redemption, love, compassion, goodness, and strength. All of these God provides to us for building us up in our relationship to Him and in our service to Him.

Note also what the writer says in verse 10, “He has not dealt with us as our sins deserve or repaid us according to our offenses.” Based on His absolute holiness, we deserve death for our sins, so for God to forgive us calls for Him to express a profound compassion. His compassion holds back the requirements of His holiness. We call this “grace.”

The thoughts of this psalm point us to the reality that God is the Source of all that is good in our lives. That makes Him worthy of praise from our viewpoint, but from the viewpoint of reality, God is worthy of praise simply because of who He is.

As God has graced us, so we must grace one another.

Lord, Thank You for allowing us to soar with Your Spirit today through the inspired Word You have provided. We join in Your praise and give thanks to You for the all-encompassing grace You have given us. As we have received Your grace, help us to grace one another as well.

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