Groups

Today’s FDR is Psalm 149 and can be read by clicking the blue text in this sentence or by selecting the same text in the right hand side-bar.

This Psalm is the second last in the Psalter, or book of Psalms, and also the second last in that group of various psalms that are said by scholars to make up the group of psalms that are worship or praise psalms.

As I pre-read to prepare for today’s writing some things were not so opaque, others more so.  But we’ll get to that bit.

Verses 1 to 3 call on us to praise God with singing and dancing and melody and instruments.  We are called as the people of Israel, in new covenant times, those who are redeemed by God.  We are called as the children of Zion, so not just the redeemed but the whole company of God’s beings.  Yes we are called firstly in groups to praise our gracious redeeming God.  Not just as earthly beings, but also as the whole company of God’s creation.

Verses 4 to 6 notes the Lord takes pleasure in His people’s praise and we are graced with salvation and we should exult in glorifying Him.  Even to singing on our beds.  (Then this psalm takes a turn that might be disturbing.)  We are to praise Him with our double-edged swords in our hands.

What?  Lets read that again:

6 Let the high praises of God be in their throats and two-edged swords in their hands.

Then there is more.  To execute vengeance, and punishments.  To bind with chains and fetters. To execute the written judgement.

Then this section concludes in the end of verse 9:

9b   This is honour for all his godly ones. Praise the Lord!

So what of this double-edged sword.  Today, on this side of Jesus birth and redeeming resurrection for you and I perhaps these Hebrews 4 verses provide us with our best interpretation.  (Here’s also a little context to help.)

11 Let us, therefore, make every effort to enter that rest, so that no one will perish by following their example of disobedience.

12 For the word of God is alive and active. Sharper than any double-edged sword, it penetrates even to dividing soul and spirit, joints and marrow; it judges the thoughts and attitudes of the heart. 13 Nothing in all creation is hidden from God’s sight. Everything is uncovered and laid bare before the eyes of him to whom we must give account.

So we are to keep the word of God, the double-edged sword, with us as we praise Him so to carefully judge for ourselves what is of God and what is of sin and  Satan.

Perhaps you see this second part of this psalm (v6-9) in a different or more clarifying light.  Your views would be welcome here.  (Just use the reply option below.)

Finally, as you enjoy worship today with your church’s brothers and sisters or, you do so with another church while away from your regular worship place, in a small but important way you are carrying out this psalm’s charge.

1 Praise the Lord.

Sing to the Lord a new song,
    his praise in the assembly of his faithful people.

Perhaps you are not able to attend worship with a group this Sunday, through work, illness, transport or inability, please take today’s and everyday’s opportunity to Praise our Lord.

May God bless you today as you worship Him and glorify His Name.

Glenn

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2 thoughts on “Groups

  1. Thank you Glenn. The last verse caught my attention,” This honour is for all His godly people. Hallelujah! There is no greater compliment that we can give to another Christian than by calling them, ‘godly’. But what does it mean to be,’godly’? A great read is a book by Jerry Bridges titled, “The Practice of Godliness”. In order to live godly lives, we need an inward foundation of God-centerdness. (from the back cover). For those looking for a good read over the summer break I can recommend this and the companion book,The Pursuit of Holiness and The Joy of Fearing God. Good solid food for the start of a new year – along with your Bible of course!!

    I am off this week overseas for 3&1/2 weeks. Please pray for us to have travelling mercies. This world is full of unrest and it can be a little unsettling travelling long distances in these troubled times.

    • Thanks Connie, good suggestions for reading further. Have a safe journey and we’ll look forward to hearing from you when you are home. Prayers and blessings, Glenn.

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