God’s Word of Praise and Thanksgiving
Psalm 147: Today’s psalm expands on themes found in yesterday’s reading (Psalm 146). These themes include God’s help and justice for the poor, the importance of trusting in God rather than in human leaders, and the glory of God’s creation. It is a postexilic psalm that praises God for restoring Jerusalem and bringing home those who were living in exile.
In Praise of God the Almighty
1Praise the Lord!
It is good to sing praise to our God;
it is pleasant and right to praise him.
2The Lord is restoring Jerusalem;
he is bringing back the exiles.
3He heals the broken-hearted
and bandages their wounds.
4He has decided the number of the stars
and calls each one by name.
5Great and mighty is our Lord;
his wisdom cannot be measured.
6He raises the humble,
but crushes the wicked to the ground.
7Sing hymns of praise to the Lord;
play music on the harp to our God.
8He spreads clouds over the sky;
he provides rain for the earth
and makes grass grow on the hills.
9He gives animals their food
and feeds the young ravens when they call.
10His pleasure is not in strong horses,
nor his delight in brave soldiers;
11but he takes pleasure in those who honor him,
in those who trust in his constant love.
12Praise the Lord, O Jerusalem!
Praise your God, O Zion!
13He keeps your gates strong;
he blesses your people.
14He keeps your borders safe
and satisfies you with the finest wheat.
15He gives a command to the earth,
and what he says is quickly done.
16He spreads snow like a blanket
and scatters frost like dust.
17He sends hail like gravel;
no one can endure the cold he sends!
18Then he gives a command, and the ice melts;
he sends the wind, and the water flows.
19He gives his message to his people,
his instructions and laws to Israel.
20He has not done this for other nations;
they do not know his laws.
Praise the Lord!
Today’s Key Verse: Psalm 147:5
Great and mighty is our Lord; his wisdom cannot be measured.
Reread verses 12-20. God’s blessings for Jerusalem include secure gates (meaning peace), many children, and good harvests. Verse 19 notes that God has spoken a personal word to his people. God’s instructions and laws are given to Israel. Just as God expects nature to obey his Word, so also does God expect people to obey him. What does it mean for you to obey God?
Praise the LORD! It is good to sing praise to you, O God; it is pleasant and right to praise you. May I find the strength and wisdom to obey your Word and walk in your ways all my life. Amen.
Psalm 148: The universe is called upon to praise God.