In Praise of Our Awesome God
Scriptures: Romans 14: 1- 13 (live to the Lord)
Psalm 103: 1- 22 (God as David knew His Lord God)
Gospel: Matthew 5: 13- 16 (Be as Salt and Light to the world)
Psalm 103 is an amazing Hymn written by David [you can read David’s life story in 1 Samuel chapters 16- 31, all of 2 Samuel (24 chapters) and 1 Kings 1:1 to 2:12]. These 41 chapters describe Israel’s most famous and cherished King. David is remembered as a shepherd, a musician, and for killing the giant Philistine Goliath with a sling; for his friendship with Saul’s son Jonathan, for not seeking revenge on Saul (who tried to kill him in jealousy), and for his success as a warrior and king for 40 years during a time of relative peace.
However, David is also remembered as a sinner, an adulterer, and a murderer (he had Uriah killed so he could take Bathsheba for his wife). When confronted with his sin, he confessed and repented, and became a ruler who consulted God in prayer before every decision, every challenge, every threat to Israel. God delivered. David then made sure everyone in Israel knew that God was the true King, and he was just God’s right-hand man.
This was why Israel expected a Messiah “like David”, a warrior king, and did not recognize Jesus as the Messiah when He came.
This is the man who wrote Psalm 103. David comes across as one who knew God intimately. He listed the seven things God does (verses 1- 7): God forgives all your sins, heals all your diseases, redeems your life from the pit, crowns you with love and compassion, satisfies your needs and desires with good things, works righteousness and justice for the oppressed, and makes his way known through Moses and the prophets.
Then David listed six aspects of God’s character: God is full of mercy, compassion, and grace; God is slow to anger and abounding in love; God does not treat us as our sins deserve (God forgives and forgets); God’s love is as high as the heavens; God removes our transgressions as far as the east is from the west; God has compassion on us like a parent has for a child. That is the God David came to know in a deep and personal way. He speaks from experience – it’s not just words. He closes this Psalm by telling everyone to worship and praise the Lord! Praise the Lord!
We are blessed to have this psalm and all the others (of the 150, 73 are written by David or about David) for our edification today. But more than that, we have Jesus, God’s Son in the flesh, who has David as His ancestor, as our Living and Loving Lord, to teach us and to show us how to live and how to love. Paul reminds us we are to be witnesses, not lawyers or judges. And Jesus calls us to be salt and light in the world, as He was.
We serve and worship an Awesome God! Let us always Praise the Lord!
Rev. Rudy Plug