Saturday, February 25, 2006

Psalm 138: Open Praise to the God Who Helps

Of David.

1 I will praise you, LORD, with all my heart;
before the "gods" I will sing your praise.

2 I will bow down toward your holy temple
and will praise your name
for your unfailing love and your faithfulness,
for you have so exalted your solemn decree
that it surpasses your fame.

3 When I called, you answered me;
you greatly emboldened me.

4 May all the kings of the earth praise you, LORD,
when they hear what you have decreed.

5 May they sing of the ways of the LORD,
for the glory of the LORD is great.

6 Though the LORD is exalted, he looks kindly on the lowly,
but he takes notice of the proud from afar.

7 Though I walk in the midst of trouble,
you preserve my life.
You stretch out your hand against the anger of my foes;
with your right hand you save me.

8 The LORD will vindicate me;
your love, LORD, endures forever—
do not abandon the works of your hands.


This "psalm of David", a royal psalm, helps us see how God is for us to keep us "more than conquerors" (Romans 8) even when "up against it". Not only is the psalmist surviving the trouble he's seen. He's thriving in it.

It is apparent that God's answer has come to his soul, but the psalmist has yet to see the full answer. But he is confident that God will keep his decree and complete what he has begun.

This confidence is expressed openly and boldly. And with songs of praise to God. The psalmist sensed that God had answered prayer and the fulfillment would come. And he continues to pray.

What about us? We will often find ourselves in the midst of trouble. "In this world you will have trouble," Jesus told his disciples. "But be of good cheer. I have overcome the world." Through Jesus' overcoming, God can help us to overcome everything and be more than conquerors through him who loved us.

Father, Praise your holy name for your greatness and goodness to us. Expressed to us in your Son and brought to us by your Spirit. Let us exalt and be glad, for you will lift us up and help us to walk with you. In your victory. In this world. Amen.

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