September 16, 2015.
Daily Reading: Psalm 99-101.
Background: Psalm 96-98.
Concepts and Connections.
The Lord our God is Holy: This is a psalm of praise and identification of the Lord in His holiness. The psalm opens with the reigning Lord, in glorious power, causing the whole earth to quake. Peoples of all nations are called to praise His holy name. Then His attributes of righteousness and justice are exalted as the audience is called to worship Him at His footstool. Some heroic names are mentioned, Moses, Aaron and Samuel, as examples of those who called upon the name of the Lord and were answered. The Lord is both forgiving and a righteous judge, and we are ever called to exalt Him, worshiping Him in His holiness.
A psalm of giving thanks: This psalm is an indirect praise and thanksgiving to the Lord. By calling the audience to do the things that are given here, the psalmist is in essence doing the very thing that he is asking the audience to do, or at least trying to facilitating it. We are called to make a joyful noise to the Lord, coming into His presence with song. The Lord is shown to be the Mighty Maker, and we are His own handiwork, belonging to the Master. We are to give thanks to the very One who gave us existence, for we would not know life if it were not for Him. The Lord is good, and His steadfast love and faithfulness endures throughout the generations. Let us ever give thanks to His name.
Avoiding bad company: This psalm, attributed to David, is based around the fight against evil and the association with bad company. The psalmist sings of the Lord’s love and justice, pondering the way of blamelessness and walking in the integrity of his heart. He makes a conscious decision not to set that which is impure before him, so as to tempt himself with it, and separates himself from those who would have a bad influence on him. As the psalm goes on, not only does the psalmist avoid bad company, but he goes more and more on the offensive, setting his face against the wicked, setting out to cut off the evil doers in the land (which would make sense in the context of the psalmist being the king, as it is attributed to King David). He surrounds himself with the righteous and puts out those who practice deceit and tell lies from his presence. This is good advice for us to take, as we tend to mold traits and characteristics to those who are around us most (see I Corinthians 15:33).
Tomorrow’s Reading: Proverbs 22.
Give thanks to the Lord.