Scripture reading – Psalm 93; 1 Chronicles 7
1 Chronicles 7 – Six Tribal Genealogies
I encourage my readers to avoid the danger of becoming bogged down with the many unfamiliar names found in 1 Chronicles 7. While there are a few significant names, the majority established the genealogical line of some prominent families within the tribes of Israel.
1 Chronicles 7 presents six brief genealogies. We have the genealogies of the tribes of Issachar (1 Chronicles 7:1-5), Benjamin (1 Chronicles 7:6-12), Naphtali (1 Chronicles 7:13), the half-tribe of Manasseh (1 Chronicles 7:14-19), Ephraim (Manasseh and he were the sons of Joseph, whom Jacob adopted as his sons and were the fathers of tribes bearing their names, 1 Chronicles 7:20-29), and Asher (1 Chronicles 7:30-40).
Psalm 93 – The Sovereignty and Omnipotence of God
Neither the author nor the occasion for writing Psalm 93 was given. Some scholars believe it was written after the Babylonian captivity when the Jews returned from exile (Ezra 1).
For perspective, after only 70 years in captivity (Jeremiah 29:10), Israel witnessed the implosion of Babylon, arguably the first great world empire. Unlike other countries assimilated into the Chaldean culture, the Jews maintained their identity. As the LORD’s chosen people, the Hebrews were distinguished by God’s Law and Commandments. Following the captivity, the Jews returned to their homeland and began rebuilding the Temple, followed later by the city of Jerusalem. The setting gave the author of Psalm 93 cause to ponder three great doctrinal truths regarding the God of Israel.
The Majesty and Sovereignty of God (Psalm 93:1-2)
Contrasting earthly kings with the LORD of Heaven, the psalmist wrote: “The LORD [Jehovah; the Eternal, Self-Existent God] reigneth, he is clothed with majesty [exalted]; the LORD is clothed with strength [power; might], wherewith he hath girded [encircled; clothed] himself: the world also is stablished [anchored; immovable; firm], that it cannot be moved [brought down].” 2 Thy throne is established [anchored; immovable; firm] of old [since time began]: thou art from everlasting [eternal; forever]. (Psalm 93:1-2)
A study of history yields the reality that even the greatest nations rise and fall. Every country that has taken its place on the stage of human history inevitably evidences corruption and the decay of character and morality (nations of our day are no exception). Such is not the case with the LORD, for He is sovereign over His creation. He is majestic, all-powerful, and unwavering (Psalm 93:1). Nations rise and nations fall, kings rule, and presidents preside for a season, but the reign of the LORD is everlasting (Psalm 93:2).
God is Greater than Your Circumstances. (Psalm 93:3-4)
The psalmist painted a picture of natural catastrophes and wrote: “The floods [rivers; streams] have lifted up [taken or carried away], O LORD, the floods have lifted up their voice [noise; sound; thunder]; the floods lift up their waves [i.e., pounding, crashing waves]. 4 The LORD on high [above; i.e., sits in the highest place] is mightier [glorious; majestic] than the noise [sound; thunder] of many [great; much] waters, yea, than the mighty [glorious; majestic] waves [breaking, pounding waves] of the sea.” (Psalm 93:3-4)
The COVID pandemic brought home to many the reality of trials and troubles that might suddenly rush into our lives like the waves of the mighty ocean crashing upon the ever-present seashore. Cancer, sickness, or the stress of family problems can sweep over us like floodwaters (Psalm 93:3). The psalmist, however, reminded his readers that “The LORD on high is mightier” (Psalm 93:4).
The LORD is mightier than the pounding waves of the sea, and He is more powerful than the circumstances that threaten and overwhelm. He is stronger than the sorrows and disappointments threatening to bring us low.
God is Faithful: His Word, Testimonies, and Promises are Sure. (Psalm 93:5)
Imagine the unshakeable memories of the Temple burning as the people were led away to Babylon. The city of Jerusalem was reduced to rubble. What hope could the people have of ever returning from captivity? Indeed, there were times God’s people felt they were forsaken and forgotten by God. Yet, the psalmist wrote, “Thy testimonies [witness] are very sure [established; firm; faithful; enduring]: holiness [sacredness] becometh [befits] thine house [temple; residence], O LORD, for ever [continually]” (Psalm 93:5).
Seventy years passed, and then the LORD moved on the heart of Cyrus, king of Persia, and he made an incredible proclamation saying, “The Lord God of heaven hath…charged me to build him an house at Jerusalem…3Who is there among you of all his people? his God be with him, and let him go up to Jerusalem, which is in Judah, and build the house of the Lord God of Israel” (Ezra 1:2-3).
The LORD promised never to forsake Israel, and He remembered His people! Yet, who could imagine God would move on the heart of Cyrus, the heathen idol-worshipping king of Persia, to rebuild His Temple in Jerusalem?
Take heart, friend, for God’s promises are enduring (Psalm 93:5a). Because He is immutable, you can be sure the LORD is the same yesterday and forever (Psalm 93:5b).
Whatever storm you are facing, be assured, “The LORD on high is mightier!” (Psalm 93:4)
Questions to consider:
1) The kings of the earth are clothed in rich apparel, but what clothes the LORD? (Psalm 93:1)
2) Newsmakers and politicians stoke the fears that the world will end if we do not do something. Yet, what does the Bible tell us about the world and God’s created order? (Psalm 93:1)
3) Why should you trust God? (Psalm 93:5)
Copyright © 2023 – Travis D. Smith
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