Tuesday, December 15, 2009

Psalm 148 - 150 - Exuberant Praise!

by Becky

Psalm 148, Psalm 149, Psalm 150


We finish reading the Old Testament today and these three psalms are the perfect way to do it!

The book of Psalms ends with praise and so does our reading of the Old Testament. If we think through all we have read and meditated on, we will praise God. We won't be able to keep it in!

These last three psalms all praise the LORD, but they each approach praise from a slightly different angle. We can learn from them.


In Psalm 148 all creation sings a hymn of praise to God, the Creator. There is a kind of counter movement of praise in the psalm that provides balance and harmony. In the beginning of the psalm, praise begins in heaven with the angels and works its way down through the created order in the heavens (verses 1-6). In verse 7, praise from earth begins with the sea monsters and ocean depths and works its way up through creation from the elements of weather, to mountains and hills, to trees, to animals and birds - ending with people who live between heaven and earth . The psalm tells all people to praise the LORD: kings, princes, judges, young men, maidens, old, young... Why? Because HIS NAME is supreme. He rules all that is. The last verse singles out one special group to praise God: His people, the godly ones, those who are called by His Name (v 14). He is near to us and has made us strong. We are looking ahead to the New Testament and are in the Advent season as I write this. It seems to me that this psalm looks forward to Jesus, God with us. God came in the flesh to be near us, to make us strong through His death and resurrection. That is why we, His children, have special reason to praise Him!

So Psalm 149 focuses on the praise of God's people. We praise Him with songs and musical instruments and with dancing. God has saved those who are humble! He takes pleasure in us! God's people are to adore God with swords in hands, prepared for battle. I love this image! We are to praise God before we see all made right. We are to be alert and ready for His call to serve Him. Someday all will be made right. Those who raise themselves up in pride against Almighty God will be judged.

The last psalm, Psalm 150, is the final culmination of praise - a doxology. God gives us breath to praise Him. There is nothing quiet and still about praise here! Listen to the noise! Imagine the instruments and singing and dancing.

"Let everything that has breath praise the LORD!
Praise the LORD! "


I think the application is obvious! Take time to praise the LORD. Think about what He has done, what He is doing, and what He will do. He is Creator and Sustainer. He is LORD of past, present, and future, the great I AM. He is LORD of heaven and earth. He is LORD of His people and loves us and provides for us and draws near us! He is GOD WITH US!