Saturday, June 4, 2011

Psalm 135

God Has Done Great Things!

Psalm 135 has been called a "mosaic" because it is mainly made up of selections from other Scriptures.  It is a Psalm of praise in which God's relations to His Church, His power in the natural world, and in delivering His people, are contrasted with the vanity of idols and idol-worship.

The first fourteen verses contain an exhortation to praise God for
  • His goodness (v 3),
  • His electing love (v 4),
  • His greatness (v 5-7)
  • His judgments (v 8-12),
  • His unchanging character (v 13),
  • His love towards his people (v 14)
This is followed by a denunciation of idols (Ps 135:15-18), and a further exhortation to bless the name of the Lord. Spurgeon's commentary reminds us that Psalm 135 is a song full of life, vigour, variety, and devotion.

For I know the Lord is great
And our Lord is above all gods.
Ps. 135:5

Suppose someone tested you on verse 5 above - how would you answer the question, "How do you know the Lord is great?"  Spurgeon's commentary notes these ways:
1. By observing nature and providence.
2. By reading His word.
3. By my own conversion, comfort, and regeneration.
4. By my overpowering communion with Him.
What would you say? 
I read somewhere once where someone was asked about their conversion to Christ and proof of the existence of God, and all of the answers the new believer provided were met with cynicism and doubt.  Finally that person simply stated, "I can't deny the change in me."

No region is too high, no abyss too deep, no land too distant, no sea too wide for His omnipotence: His divine pleasure travels post over all the realm of nature, and His behests are obeyed. ~ Spurgeon

Many, indeed, disobey, and sin against the will of His precept; but none ever did, none ever shall, frustrate or obstruct the will of His purpose; for He will do all His pleasure, and in His way mountains shall become a plain.
~ William Slater (-1704)

He makes lightening for the rain,
He brings the wind out of His treasuries.
~ Ps. 135:7
Verse 7 reminds me of that poem Who Has Seen the Wind by Christina Rosetti - did you read it as a child? 
Who has seen the wind?
Neither I nor you.
But when the leaves hang trembling,
The wind is passing through.
Who has seen the wind?
Neither you nor I.
But when the trees bow down their heads,
The wind is passing by.
~ Christina Rosetti

Wind as always intrigued me, partly because it is so powerful yet invisible.  It is as if we could end Rosetti's poem by saying, "when the trees bow down their heads, GOD is passing by" !

  • God is worthy of my praise
  • The Lord is good
  • God's name is pleasant and endures forever
  • God has a chosen people who are His special treasure
  • The Lord is great and above any man-made idol
  • The Lord does whatever pleases Him
  • God's might & power are shown in nature / creation
  • God delivers His people
  • God is Judge
  • God shows compassion to His children
  • I praise God for the way He reveals Himself through His mighty acts of deliverance and through His handiwork in creation.  As I type this, I am at the beach and listening to the roar of the waves crashing on the shore.  I always feel so close to God at the beach, because the power of the ocean is so huge and vast and such a reminder to me of the "bigness" God!
  • I praise God that His chosen ones are His "special treasure" . . . and that includes me!
  • I praise God that I can TRUST His sovereignty over all things, even when I don't understand them
    My God, I will praise and extol Thee with heart and mouth to the utmost of my power. Oh, that without the interruptions which eating, and drinking, and sleep require, I could apply myself to this heavenly calling! Every mouthful of air which I inhale is mixed with the goodness which preserves my life; let every breath which I exhale be mingled at least with a hearty desire for Thy honour and praise. Hallelujah! Ye holy angels, ye children of men, and all ye creatures, praise the Lord with me, and let us exalt His name together.
Amen and amen!
~ Christian Scriver Gotthold,1629-1693

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