Wednesday, October 19, 2011

Reflecting on the Psalms: Chapter 148

Psalm 148

1Praise ye the LORD. Praise ye the LORD from the heavens: praise him in the heights.
2Praise ye him, all his angels: praise ye him, all his hosts.
3Praise ye him, sun and moon: praise him, all ye stars of light.
4Praise him, ye heavens of heavens, and ye waters that be above the heavens.
5Let them praise the name of the LORD: for he commanded, and they were created.
6He hath also stablished them for ever and ever: he hath made a decree which shall not pass.
7Praise the LORD from the earth, ye dragons, and all deeps:
8Fire, and hail; snow, and vapours; stormy wind fulfilling his word:
9Mountains, and all hills; fruitful trees, and all cedars:
10Beasts, and all cattle; creeping things, and flying fowl:
11Kings of the earth, and all people; princes, and all judges of the earth:
12Both young men, and maidens; old men, and children:
13Let them praise the name of the LORD: for his name alone is excellent; his glory is above the earth and heaven.

14He also exalteth the horn of his people, the praise of all his saints; even of the children of Israel, a people near unto him. Praise ye the LORD.

Chapter 148

I like Matthew Henry's insight on the first few verses: "We, in this dark and sinful world, know little of the heavenly world of light. But we know that there is above us a world of blessed angels. They are always praising God, therefore the psalmist shows his desire that God may be praised in the best manner; also we show that we have communion with spirits above, who are still praising him." I don't have a lot to say about that, but what the first three verses mean to me is that I shouldn't let this dark world keep me from praising Him. I'd say that when I praise Him, I'm not giving into sin and I'm doing the right thing. Also, I can praise and worship Him in many ways, which will result in Him blessing me. I don't glorify Him just to be blessed, though. In verse 4, I'd say the heavens praise God since they declare His glory. I can't see God, but I'm thankful that I can see His glory -- since it emanates from Him -- in His creation. So if I look at the heavens -- or the universe -- I can see the beauty that illustrates all that He is, which is what it means for the heavens to praise Him or for the heavens to declare His glory. In regards to verse 5, I've already talked about the power of God's voice towards His creation, so there's really no need to repeat myself. I don't have a lot to say about verse 6, but what I get out of the "he hath made a decree which shall not pass" is that God's creation -- in the context of verse 5 -- does not go beyond what He commands. I can't relate to verse 7, but I still wanna talk about it. "Dragons" can be translated as "sea monsters." I'd say that the sea monsters praise Him by doing the purpose He created them for. I guess one of their purposes would be defending small fish that are dealing with enemies so God's will can be done in the animal kingdom. I haven't thought too much about God's purposes for sea monsters, so I might explore them at a later time. What I get out verses 7-13 is that His creation was made to praise Him and also that praise isn't just something He gets from man. I'm not exactly sure mountaains and tress and stuff praise Him (v. 9) expect for fullfilling the purpose He created them for. Same goes for verse 10. However, since people are able to praise Him (vv. 11-12) in words and actions, they don't praise Him just by fulfilling His purpose for them. I believe that is one of the ways in which they praise Him, though. What I mean by that is that one of the ways a person praises God is by fulfilling His plan for their life. Not each individual animal has a plan set out by God for its life, so animals are different in that aspect. I believe that every cow has the same purpose and so does every shark just for the sake of using an example. I've already expressed how His creation (vv. 7-12) praises Him (v. 13) and I think the contrast that I noticed is kinda neat. I don't have much to say about verse 14, but here's Henry's insight on it: "May the Lord pardon us, and teach our hearts to love him more and praise him better."

                                                   Source used:

Henry, Matthew. "Concise Commentary on Psalms 148". "Matthew Henry Concise Commentary
on the Whole Bible". <>. 

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