Scripture reading for July 3rd: Psalms 146-150
Every one of these last psalms begin and end with “praise the Lord”! That Hebrew word is “Hallelujah” and is familiar to Christians from use in many hymns and choruses. It is fitting that this Hebrew book of worship would end in a crescendo of praise to the awesome God of heaven!
“Praise the Lord. Praise the Lord, O my soul. I will praise the Lord all my life; I will sing praise to my God as long as I live.” (Psalm 146:1-2) This psalm is a personal statement of the psalmist’s choice to praise the Lord personally. It is something that comes from his soul and inspires song. Praise is a life-long pursuit and not optional for those who know Him as “my God”.
“Praise the Lord. How good it is to sing praises to our God, how pleasant and fitting to praise Him! The Lord builds up Jerusalem; He gathers the exiles of Israel. He heals the broken hearted and binds up their wounds.” (Psalm 147:1-3) The nation, as well as individuals, praises the Lord with joy and singing. God builds up Jerusalem, His holy city, filling it with the redeemed who worship Him freely!
“Praise the Lord. Praise the Lord from the heavens, praise Him from the heights above. Praise Him, all His angels, praise Him, all His heavenly host. Praise Him sun and moon, praise Him all you shining stars.” (Psalm 148:1-3) Praise flows from the angels and all of the heavenly creation to God as well. Like a rock dropped into still water, praise resonates from individuals to the nation and then to the heavenly hosts!
“Praise the Lord. Sing to the Lord a new song, His praise in the assembly of the saints. Let Israel rejoice in their Maker; let the people of Zion be glad in their King.” (Psalm 149:1-2) The saints particularly praise their Lord with creativity by composing a “new song”! This song is a joyful song of gladness and praise to God for His mercy in redemption and for the King and their kingdom!
“Let everything that has breath praise the Lord. Praise the Lord.” (Psalm 150:6) The last verse of the last psalm commands everything that breathes to give the Lord praise! All mankind owes its breath and life to the One who breathed life into them. Man alone can give God the praise that is due Him!