Praise the Lord, O my soul!
Scripture reading for June 22nd: Psalms 98-103
Praise and worship must be in spirit and in truth. (John 4:24) We must worship from our spirit man and from a mind renewed with the truth. I have used Psalms 101 and 103 often in my personal life and in ministering to those in various kinds of troubles.
Psalm 101 praises God for His love and His justice. Both of these character traits work together to bring wholeness or holiness to God’s character. Love without justice is some sentimental emotion that lacks integrity. Justice without love is harsh and bitter. Balanced as they are in God’s character, we worship Him and sing praise!
The holy fear of God’s justice caused the psalmist to be careful with his life and character. He sought to live a blameless life because he did not know when God might come in judgment. He vowed to keep his eyes from vile things. He knew this would defile his heart. He hated evil and sought to live in truth and surround himself with those who were faithful. He promised to eliminate from his house any who were false or wicked. I have Psalm 101:3 on my computer to remind me of my need to keep my eyes on what is good!
Psalm 103 begins by praising God for all of His benefits. First of all God forgives us all of our sins! (Psalm 103:3) He not only forgives our sins, but forgets them and removes them far away! (Psalm 103:12) God also heals all of our diseases and sicknesses, and our God does not change! God redeems our life from the pit–a place of destruction and punishment! We must bless Him from the depths of our soul! He also renews our youth and satisfies our desires with good things from His house! He works righteousness and justice for all who are oppressed. He is full of love and abounds in mercy and compassion. God is a loving Father and we are His special children. His love promises us that though our life is short and fragile, we who fear Him will enjoy His love forever and ever! (Psalm 103:14-17)
Psalm 103 ends with David exhorting a chorus of angels to praise the Lord. The heavenly hosts are called upon to praise Him as well as all His works in the whole universe! We joyfully join in: “Praise the Lord, O my soul!”