Scripture reading – Psalm 147
Psalm 147 is thought to have been written after Israel had returned from the Babylonian captivity; however, neither the occasion or the author is revealed. The mention of the city of Jerusalem being built, and the “outcasts of Israel” being gathered (147:2), gives good cause to believe the psalm was most likely written about the time of Ezra and Nehemiah.
Psalm 147 is a song of worship and praise to the LORD for Who He is, both in His person and divine attributes. We find three distinct calls for the people to worship the LORD (147:1, 7, 12), and the reason for the people to praise the LORD.
Men Should Praise and Worship the LORD (147:2-3)
It was the LORD who made rebuilding Jerusalem possible when it had been destroyed by Babylon; and it was He Who moved the heart of King Cyrus to bless the Israelites, and release them to return to their land (147:2; Ezra 1). The LORD was able to heal the sorrows of the oppressed, and bind up the wounds of the afflicted (147:3).
Who Is the LORD? (147:4-10)
He is the God of heaven, and is able to do what no man can do, for “He telleth the number of the stars; He calleth them all by their names” (147:4). Our God is omnipotent, omniscient, compassionate, and just in His judgments (147:5-6).
We should give thanks to the LORD, and praise Him in both song and with instruments for He is the Creator, and nature bows to His command and will (147:7-11). He is the sustainer of the earth, and paints the clouds in the sky, sends “rain for the earth,” and makes the “grass to grow upon the mountains” (147:8). He provides food, not only for man, but for the beast of the field, and the birds of the air (147:9).
In what does the Creator delight?
God takes no joy “in the strength of the horse,” or in the physical strength of man (147:10). He delights in men who fear and revere Him, and put their hope and trust in His mercy (147:11).
We should praise the LORD! He is Sovereign of the earth, and what He has spoken will come to pass (147:15-18). Nature obeys the Creator’s voice, and He sends the snow, the frost, and the hail (147:16-17). God speaks, and the ice melts, the wind blows, and the streams flow with water (147:18).
The LORD chose Israel and revealed His word to Jacob (the father of the Twelve Tribes of Israel), and His “statutes and His judgments unto Israel” [Law and Commandments] (147:19). He chose and revealed Himself to Israel, and apart from the witness of His people, the heathen had no knowledge of the LORD and “His judgments” (147:20).
Closing thoughts – Believer, the God whom the psalmist praised and worshiped, is your Creator, and the Sustainer of the universe. He knows the number and the names of the stars, and He loves to be revered, and feared by men who worship and praise Him!
Are you stressed, and burdened with many cares? Know it is the LORD Who heals the broken-hearted (147:3), and shows compassion for those who humble themselves. He is just, and will surely judge the wicked (147:6).
What more can be added, than to join the psalmist and shout, Hallelujah, “Praise ye the LORD” (147:20).
Copyright © 2021 – Travis D. Smith