Day 31 – Psalm 150 – Praise Him

I. Read Psalm 150

Praise the Lord.

Praise God in his sanctuary;
    praise him in his mighty heavens.
Praise him for his acts of power;
    praise him for his surpassing greatness.
Praise him with the sounding of the trumpet,
    praise him with the harp and lyre,
praise him with timbrel and dancing,
    praise him with the strings and pipe,
praise him with the clash of cymbals,
    praise him with resounding cymbals.

Let everything that has breath praise the Lord.

Praise the Lord.

Introduction – In the beginning the Psalms speak of the Law of the Lord and how it serves as a source of nourishment and life to our souls.  In progressing through the Psalms a wide range of human experience is expressed. There is suffering. There is conflict. There is grief and loss. There is great fear and dread.  There is anticipation of the promises of the Lord.  In this last Psalm there is the culmination of all things – the praise of Him who is from and through and to all things. He is center of all life experiences. He is the joy of the journey and He is the end of the journey. The Psalms begin with the picture of a godly person drawing deeply from God through His Word. The Psalms end with the shout: “Hallelujah” (literally, “Praise Yahweh”).  This final chorus calls forth praise with every instrument and every part of ourselves. “Let everything that has breath praise the Lord.”

As you read and meditate on Psalm 150, answer these questions in your own words:

  1. Where can we offer praise to God (verse 1)?
  2. What are our reasons for offering praise to Him (verse 2)?
  3. In verses 3-5 many musical instruments are listed as means of praise (and certainly we should praise God with such instruments). What parts of your body do these instruments require to be skilled in praised?
  4. How can you specifically grow in offering praise to Him? List several actions you can do to praise God more in your daily life and in corporate worship with others.

II. Pray Psalm 150

Write out your own prayer of praise and express your heart to Him.

III. Sing Psalm 150

1  Praise ye the Lord. God's praise within
         his sanctuary raise;
      And to him in the firmament
         of his pow'r give ye praise.
   2  Because of all his mighty acts,
         with praise him magnify:
      O praise him, as he doth excel
         in glorious majesty.
   3  Praise him with trumpet's sound; his praise
         with psaltery advance:
   4  With timbrel, harp, stringed instruments,
         and organs, in the dance.
   5  Praise him on cymbals loud; him praise
         on cymbals sounding high.
   6  Let each thing breathing praise the Lord.
         Praise to the Lord give ye.

 
Page Copyright 2001, Music for the Church of God

 

Advertisements
Posted in Praise, Worship | Tagged | Leave a comment

Day 30 – Psalm 73 – Whom Have I in Heaven

I. Read Psalm 73. 

A Psalm of Asaph.

Truly God is good to Israel,
    to those who are pure in heart.
But as for me, my feet had almost stumbled,
    my steps had nearly slipped.
For I was envious of the arrogant
    when I saw the prosperity of the wicked.

For they have no pangs until death;
    their bodies are fat and sleek.
They are not in trouble as others are;
    they are not stricken like the rest of mankind.
Therefore pride is their necklace;
    violence covers them as a garment.
Their eyes swell out through fatness;
    their hearts overflow with follies.
They scoff and speak with malice;
    loftily they threaten oppression.
They set their mouths against the heavens,
    and their tongue struts through the earth.
10 Therefore his people turn back to them,
    and find no fault in them.
11 And they say, “How can God know?
    Is there knowledge in the Most High?”
12 Behold, these are the wicked;
    always at ease, they increase in riches.
13 All in vain have I kept my heart clean
    and washed my hands in innocence.
14 For all the day long I have been stricken
    and rebuked every morning.
15 If I had said, “I will speak thus,”
    I would have betrayed the generation of your children.

16 But when I thought how to understand this,
    it seemed to me a wearisome task,
17 until I went into the sanctuary of God;
    then I discerned their end.

18 Truly you set them in slippery places;
    you make them fall to ruin.
19 How they are destroyed in a moment,
    swept away utterly by terrors!
20 Like a dream when one awakes,
    O Lord, when you rouse yourself, you despise them as phantoms.
21 When my soul was embittered,
    when I was pricked in heart,
22 I was brutish and ignorant;
    I was like a beast toward you.

23 Nevertheless, I am continually with you;
    you hold my right hand.
24 You guide me with your counsel,
    and afterward you will receive me to glory.
25 Whom have I in heaven but you?
    And there is nothing on earth that I desire besides you.
26 My flesh and my heart may fail,
    but God is the strengthof my heart and my portion forever.

27 For behold, those who are far from you shall perish;
    you put an end to everyone who is unfaithful to you.
28 But for me it is good to be near God;
    I have made the Lord God my refuge,
    that I may tell of all your works.

Introduction – A lot of Psalms are written in the midst of a trial. This psalm however, is written after the trial has past with the psalmist looking back. What does he see when looks back? He sees that he was envious of the wicked men all around him, since they were rich, beautiful, and carefree. By contrast, the psalmist saw his life as one of rebukes followed by bad luck. He desired to be like the wicked, to have what they have. The Covenant God’s existence began to make little difference in the world. This all changes in verse 17, when he went to the sanctuary. In worshiping God, his whole perspective changed. He saw that the wicked are not blessed just because they have material things now, but rather their lives are heading toward destruction and judgment. The psalmist also no longer maintains his innocence and righteousness as he did in verse 11; he  confesses his sinfulness to God (verse 22). What is most striking is his change in attitude toward God. He no longer sees God at fault for not blessing him with material goods. Rather, he understands that having God Himself is the greatest conceivable blessing a person could hope to have. If we have God, how can we be envious of other people? We possess the greatest treasure in heaven or on earth. If we have God and we are in relationship with Him, if he is our loving Father, then what else on earth can we desire?

Reflect on this Psalm by answering these questions in your own words.

  1. What would the Psalmist experience at the sanctuary that changes his perspective?
  2. What are some contemporary examples of wicked people that seem to have nothing but blessings in their lives
  3. Can you recount a time when has God showed His loving presence to you in the midst of your sinful attitude toward Him?
  4. What are some things that might prevent you from praying verse 23 to God? In other words, what are some things you desire besides God?

II. Pray Psalm 73. Use the key ideas in this psalm to write a prayer.

III. Sing Psalm 73.

Contributed by Jared McNabb

Posted in Envy, Worship | Tagged | Leave a comment

Day 29 – Psalm 98 – Sing a New Song

I. Read Psalm 98.

Sing to the Lord a new song,
    for he has done marvelous things;
his right hand and his holy arm
    have worked salvation for him.
The Lord has made his salvation known
    and revealed his righteousness to the nations.
He has remembered his love
    and his faithfulness to Israel;
all the ends of the earth have seen
    the salvation of our God.

Shout for joy to the Lord, all the earth,
    burst into jubilant song with music;
make music to the Lord with the harp,
    with the harp and the sound of singing,
with trumpets and the blast of the ram’s horn—
    shout for joy before the Lord, the King.

Let the sea resound, and everything in it,
    the world, and all who live in it.
Let the rivers clap their hands,
    let the mountains sing together for joy;
let them sing before the Lord,
    for he comes to judge the earth.
He will judge the world in righteousness
    and the peoples with equity. (ESV)

Introduction – Many people are familiar with the first answer of the Westminster Shorter Catechism, which states, “Man’s chief end [main purpose] is to glorify God and enjoy him forever.” We can glorify God in many ways. We can do so by obeying Him and by performing good deeds. One very important way we can glorify Him is through our worship. Psalm 98 speaks of putting our whole being into our worship of God. We are to use all means of expression. We are to sing. We are to play music. We are to shout. The shouts are to be filled with joy and the songs are to be jubilant. We are to be energetic and enthusiastic in worshiping Him because He has done marvelous things. The word ‘enthusiastic’ comes from the Greek word “enthous” which means to be possessed by a god. He is worthy of our worship and when we worship Him we are fulfilling that for which He created us. God is not only calling us to worship Him, but for all nations to do so. His revelation of Himself in Christ is to the nations, to the very ends of the earth. He will judge the whole world and bring justice or equity to the nations. Therefore, all the world is called to praise and worship our God.

Answer the questions in your own words:

  1. What are the characteristics of the worship we are to offer God?
  2. What are the foundational truths upon which our worship is based?
  3. What can you do to bring your personal and corporate worship up to a higher level?

II. Pray Psalm 98. Write out a short prayer of praise and worship to Him.

III. Sing Psalm 98.

1  O sing a new song to the Lord,
         for wonders he hath done:
      His right hand and his holy arm
         him victory hath won.
   2  The Lord God his salvation
          hath caused to be known;
      His justice in the heathen's sight
          he openly hath shown.
   3  He mindful of his grace and truth
         to Isr'el's house hath been;
      And the salvation of our God
         all ends of th' earth have seen.
   4  Let all the earth unto the Lord
         send forth a joyful noise;
      Lift up your voice aloud to him,
         sing praises, and rejoice.
   5  With harp, with harp, and voice of psalms,
         unto Jehovah sing:
   6  With trumpets, cornets, gladly sound
         before the Lord the King.
   7  Let seas and all their fullness roar;
         the world, and dwellers there;
   8  Let floods clap hands, and let the hills
         together joy declare
   9  Before the Lord; because he comes,
         to judge the earth comes he:
      He'll judge the world with righteousness,
         his folk with equity.

 
Page Copyright 2001, Music for the Church of God

 

Posted in Praise, Worship | Tagged | Leave a comment

Day 28 – Psalm 110 – Jesus Reigns

I. Read Psalm 110.

A Psalm of David.

The Lord says to my Lord:
“Sit at My right hand
Until I make Your enemies a footstool for Your feet.”
The Lord will stretch forth Your strong scepter from Zion, saying,
“Rule in the midst of Your enemies.”
Your people will volunteer freely in the day of Yourpower;
In holy array, from the womb of the dawn,
Your youth are to You as the dew.

The Lord has sworn and will not change His mind,
“You are a priest forever
According to the order of Melchizedek.”
The Lord is at Your right hand;
He will shatter kings in the day of His wrath.
He will judge among the nations,
He will fill them with corpses,
He will shatter the chief men over a broad country.
He will drink from the brook by the wayside;
Therefore He will lift up His head.

IntroductionThe first verse of Psalm 110 is directly quoted or referred to at least 21 times in the New Testament—more than any other Hebrew Scripture verse. Including references to the later verses of the psalm in Hebrews (Heb. 5:6, 7:17, 7:21, 5:10, 6:20, 7:11, 7:15), it is cited at least 28 times in the New Testament. Why so? Because the Apostles concluded that this psalm was the direct fulfillment of the Ascension of Jesus. For example, on the Day of Pentecost Peter preached: “This Jesus God raised up, and of that we all are witnesses. 33 Being therefore exalted at the right hand of God, and having received from the Father the promise of the Holy Spirit, he has poured out this that you yourselves are seeing and hearing. 34 For David did not ascend into the heavens, but he himself says, ‘The Lord said to my Lord, “Sit at my right hand, 35 until I make your enemies your footstool'” (Acts 2:32–35). Paul wrote, “For He must reign until He has put all His enemies under His feet. The last enemy that will be abolished is death” (1Cor. 15:25-26). This means that Jesus is reigning from the right hand of the Father. He will subdue all of His enemies and then will come the Resurrection at the end of history. In the mean time the Kingdom advances as people “volunteer freely in the day of Your power” through the grace offered in the gospel. There are so many, His “youth” are like counting the drops of “dew” on the grass. This King is a priest like Melchizedek who gives bread and wine. The language about shattering kings and corpses is simply the picture of overwhelming victory (vv 5-6, e.g., all His enemies under His feet). But there is another allusion in the final verse to the way He wins the battle. “He will drink from the brook by the wayside; Therefore He will lift up His head.” This is an allusion to the 300 men chosen by Gideon who drank standing from their hands (rather than kneeling) (Jdg. 8). He only selected 300 because God wanted to show His power, rather than letting the victory be due to a large army (Jdg. 7:2). So it is with Christ’s reign and His victory through the gospel. It is not through the might and power of men that Christ’s enemies fall and the kingdom advances.

Reflect on this psalm by answering these questions in your own words.

  1. From your knowledge of Christian history, what are a examples of advances in the Kingdom Reign of Jesus (from the Ascension until now)?
  2. The last enemy to be overthrown at the Resurrection is death. Name a few current “enemies” (ideologies, practices, powers) of Christ in the world?
  3. If Christ is now reigning as a Priestly King with assured victory, how should this affect your attitude in daily life as you face challenges?
  4. Christ is ruling, but He accomplishes His victories (often) along side His people (e.g., 300 of Gideon). What are some battles that God may be calling you to?  Are there areas of darkness in the world, sinfulness, “kingdom enemies” in which God desires your service in His army?

II. Pray Psalm 110. Using the main ideas of Psalm 110, write a prayer.

III. Sing Psalm 110. Use the musical resources below to sing Psalm 110.

 

Posted in Death, Kingdom, Messianic | Tagged | Leave a comment

Day 27 – Psalm 51 – Sin, Repentance, and Restoration

I. Read Psalm 51.

For the director of music. A psalm of David. When the prophet Nathan came to him after David had committed adultery with Bathsheba.

Have mercy on me, O God,
    according to your unfailing love;
according to your great compassion
    blot out my transgressions.
Wash away all my iniquity
    and cleanse me from my sin.

For I know my transgressions,
    and my sin is always before me.
Against you, you only, have I sinned
    and done what is evil in your sight;
so you are right in your verdict
    and justified when you judge.
Surely I was sinful at birth,
    sinful from the time my mother conceived me.
Yet you desired faithfulness even in the womb;
    you taught me wisdom in that secret place.

Cleanse me with hyssop, and I will be clean;
    wash me, and I will be whiter than snow.
Let me hear joy and gladness;
    let the bones you have crushed rejoice.
Hide your face from my sins
    and blot out all my iniquity.

10 Create in me a pure heart, O God,
    and renew a steadfast spirit within me.
11 Do not cast me from your presence
    or take your Holy Spirit from me.
12 Restore to me the joy of your salvation
    and grant me a willing spirit, to sustain me.

13 Then I will teach transgressors your ways,
    so that sinners will turn back to you.
14 Deliver me from the guilt of bloodshed, O God,
    you who are God my Savior,
    and my tongue will sing of your righteousness.
15 Open my lips, Lord,
    and my mouth will declare your praise.
16 You do not delight in sacrifice, or I would bring it;
    you do not take pleasure in burnt offerings.
17 My sacrifice, O God, is a broken spirit;
    a broken and contrite heart
    you, God, will not despise.

18 May it please you to prosper Zion,
    to build up the walls of Jerusalem.
19 Then you will delight in the sacrifices of the righteous,
    in burnt offerings offered whole;
    then bulls will be offered on your altar.

Introduction – When was the last time your sin caused you or someone else great pain and loss? Sin is a destructive force. In our modern age of toleration we often fail to hate sin. We lose sight of the harm it does. In this psalm David was hit with the full force of what he had done. The wise prophet Nathan cleverly presented the truth of the situation to David by telling him the story of the man who owned a lamb and of his neighbor who coveted the lamb. As David’s anger burned against the covetous neighbor in the story Nathan revealed to him that he was in truth that neighbor. This psalm reflects repentance. This is the true spirit of deep sorrow and regret over sin we have committed as we see the damage it has done to others and to our relationship with a holy God. In repentance we can truly seek grace and forgiveness and we can find it. Explore the heart of repentance as you read this psalm and meditate on it.

Answer the questions in your own words.

  1. When was the last time you grasped how your sin hurt others or damaged your relationship with God?
  2. In reflection of your own sin, which verses of this psalm most connect with your feelings of repentance?
  3. How does this psalm reflect the fruits of repentance?
  4. What fruits of repentance come forth in your own walk with God?

II. Pray Psalm 51. Write out a brief prayer of repentance in your own words using Psalm 51 as an example.

III. Sing Psalm 51.

1 After thy loving-kindness, Lord,have mercy upon me:For thy compassions great, blot outall mine iniquity.2 Me cleanse from sin, and thoroughly washfrom mine iniquity:3 For my transgressions I confess;

my sin I ever see.

4 ‘Gainst thee, thee only, have I sinned,

in thy sight done this ill;

That when thou speak’st thou may’st be just,

and clear in judging still.

5 Behold, I in iniquity

was formed the womb within;

My mother also me conceived

in guiltiness and sin.

6 Behold, thou in the inward parts

with truth delighted art;

And wisdom thou shalt make me know

within the hidden part.

7 Do thou with hyssop sprinkle me,

I shall be cleansed so;

Yea, wash thou me, and then I shall

be whiter than the snow.

8 Of gladness and of joyfulness

make me to hear the voice;

That so these very bones which thou

hast broken may rejoice.

9 All mine iniquities blot out,

thy face hide from my sin.

10 Create a clean heart, Lord, renew

a right sp’rit me within.

11 Cast me not from thy sight, nor take

thy Holy Sp’rit away.

12 Restore me thy salvation’s joy;

with thy free Sp’rit me stay.

13 Then will I teach thy ways unto

those that transgressors be;

And those that sinners are shall then

be turned unto thee.

14 O God, of my salvation God,

me from blood-guiltiness

Set free; then shall my tongue aloud

sing of thy righteousness.

15 My closèd lips, O Lord, by thee

let them be opened;

Then shall thy praises by my mouth

abroad be publishèd.

16 For thou desir’st not sacrifice,

else would I give it thee;

Nor wilt thou with burnt-offering

at all delighted be.

17 A broken spirit is to God

a pleasing sacrifice:

A broken and a contrite heart,

Lord, thou wilt not despise.

18 Show kindness, and do good, O Lord,

to Zion, thine own hill:

The walls of thy Jerusalem

build up of thy good will.

19 Then righteous off ‘rings shall thee please,

and off ‘rings burnt, which they

With whole burnt-off ‘rings, and with calves,

shall on thine altar lay.


Page Copyright 2001, Music for the Church of God
Posted in Confession, Forgiveness | Tagged | Leave a comment

Day 26 – Psalm 145 – Bless the Name

I. Read Psalm 145.

A Psalm of Praise, of David.

I will extol You, my God, O King,
And I will bless Your name forever and ever.
Every day I will bless You,
And I will praise Your name forever and ever.
Great is the Lord, and highly to be praised,
And His greatness is unsearchable.
One generation shall praise Your works to another,
And shall declare Your mighty acts.
On the glorious splendor of Your majesty
And on Your wonderful works, I will meditate.
Men shall speak of the power of Your awesome acts,
And I will tell of Your greatness.
They shall [c]eagerly utter the memory of Your abundant goodness
And will shout joyfully of Your righteousness.

The Lord is gracious and merciful;
Slow to anger and great in lovingkindness.
The Lord is good to all,
And His mercies are over all His works.
10 All Your works shall give thanks to You, O Lord,
And Your godly ones shall bless You.
11 They shall speak of the glory of Your kingdom
And talk of Your power;
12 To make known to the sons of men Your mighty acts
And the glory of the majesty of Your kingdom.
13 Your kingdom is an everlasting kingdom,
And Your dominion endures throughout all generations.

14 The Lord sustains all who fall
And raises up all who are bowed down.
15 The eyes of all look to You,
And You give them their food in due time.
16 You open Your hand
And satisfy the desire of every living thing.

17 The Lord is righteous in all His ways
And kind in all His deeds.
18 The Lord is near to all who call upon Him,
To all who call upon Him in truth.
19 He will fulfill the desire of those who fear Him;
He will also hear their cry and will save them.
20 The Lord keeps all who love Him,
But all the wicked He will destroy.
21 My mouth will speak the praise of the Lord,
And all flesh will bless His holy name forever and ever.

Introduction – This Psalm’s structure is not visible in the English version, but in the original Hebrew it is an acrostic based on the alphabet, like Psalm 119. The first verse begins with Aleph (a), the second with Beth (b), Gimel (c), and so forth. It extolls the attributes and salvation works of the LORD (Yahweh, the “Covenant Lord”) from A to Z, or from Aleph to Tav (Hebrew letters). It is in a parallel structure as well:

A – The Greatness of His Redemptive Works (1-10)
….B – The Glory of His Redemptive Kingdom (11-13)
A’ – The Goodness of His Redemptive Character (Name) (14-21)

The greatness of our heavenly King is recognized by the redeemed and we are to “say so.” We must speak of His greatness to the next generation. You must speak to your kids about His redemptive works (“mighty acts”), after you  take time to “meditate” on His character and work (v5).  In verses 11-13, the kingdom means when “God reigns as king.” The kingdom of His rule is glorious and cannot be stopped. Especially in the light of fulness of the Resurrection and Ascension, we are to be hopeful and optimistic. Jesus reigns regardless of our national or personal problems! It is in seeing the glory of this reign that we may have the confidence to endure all manner of hardship. The Lord’s goodness has already been asserted (v9), but in 14-21 His compassionate deliverance is described. He raises the lowly and feeds the hungry. He satisfies the needy. He is kind and fulfills the desires of those who cry to Him. He “keeps” (guards) us. We are to bless His Holy name forever.

Reflect on this psalm by answering these questions.

  1. Are you eager to speak of His greatness since you have been redeemed (v7)? Look for opportunities to give praise to God today.
  2. Do you grumble about life or do you glory in the kingdom?
  3. What would you do differently today if you were to walk in the spirit of blessing  His name (character) for His kindness?

II. Pray Psalm 145. Turn this Psalm into a prayer.

III. Sing Psalm 145.  Use these musical examples to sing Psalm 145.

Posted in Blessing, Kingdom, Praise | Tagged | Leave a comment

Day 25 – Psalm 128 – Blessings

I. Psalm 128.

A Song of Ascents.

Blessed is everyone who fears the Lord,
    who walks in his ways!
You shall eat the fruit of the labor of your hands;
    you shall be blessed, and it shall be well with you.

Your wife will be like a fruitful vine
    within your house;
your children will be like olive shoots
    around your table.
Behold, thus shall the man be blessed
    who fears the Lord.

The Lord bless you from Zion!
    May you see the prosperity of Jerusalem
    all the days of your life!
May you see your children’s children!
    Peace be upon Israel!

Introduction – This is the quintessential picture of what it means to be blessed by God. The blessed man will prosper from his own labor (Deut. 28:1-6). His wife will be a bringer of joy like wine to the home (Ps. 104:15), and the mother of his children. These children will be lively and full of promise and hope for the future, and like olive oil, they will be an anointing of blessing and glory to you. This is not to say such blessings come automatically, for this picture is itself the result of fearing God and walking in His ways. Hard work, loving your spouse, and faithfully training your children in the ways of God is what the family life of a blessed requires. These are the blessings from Zion/Heaven. May these blessings overflow from our own homes to the whole city of God – New Jerusalem, and may we see this prosperity all the days of our life. God’s covenant blessings extend to many generations, blessing us with the gift of grandchildren. A long life and a large family are great blessings from God. With such multi-generational covenant faithfulness and blessedness, shalom (Peace/Wholeness) will indeed be upon God’s people.

Reflect on this psalm with these questions:

  1. Think deeply on fearing God and what that means for your obedience. Does the fear of God enable you to walk in His ways more, or do you live like a practical atheist?
  2. This statement is true and faithful: Happy Wife, Happy Life. Husbands, what are some practical ways you could love your wife better so that she naturally brings joy and fruitfulness to the home?
  3. Children are a blessing and heritage from the Lord. Our cultures’ general outlook on children is a negative one. Do you see your children as a blessing from God? Take the time right now to pray for your children’s future faithfulness, and your children’s children.
  4. Pray that the church would fear God, walk in His ways, and that God will bless all the families of the church (Peace be upon the new Israel).

II. Pray Psalm 128. Write a prayer based on Psalm 128.

III. Sing Psalm 128.

Contributed by Michael Shover, M.Div.

Posted in Blessing, Rest | Tagged | Leave a comment