3-Week Series: Double Blessing

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Summary: Psalm 33 is a call to lively and joyous praise to God for His glorious attributes and works, as displayed in creation, and His general and special providence, in view of which, the Psalmist, for all the pious, professes trust and joy and invokes God's mercy.

August 29, 2014

Tom Lowe

Title: From Everlasting Thou Art God

A psalm of David.

Psalm 33 (KJV)

1 Rejoice in the LORD, O ye righteous: for praise is comely for the upright.

2 Praise the LORD with harp: sing unto him with the psaltery and an instrument of ten strings.

3 Sing unto him a new song; play skilfully with a loud noise.

4 For the word of the LORD is right; and all his works are done in truth.

5 He loveth righteousness and judgment: the earth is full of the goodness of the LORD.

6 By the word of the LORD were the heavens made; and all the host of them by the breath of his mouth.

7 He gathereth the waters of the sea together as an heap: he layeth up the depth in storehouses.

8 Let all the earth fear the LORD: let all the inhabitants of the world stand in awe of him.

9 For he spake, and it was done; he commanded, and it stood fast.

10 The LORD bringeth the counsel of the heathen to nought: he maketh the devices of the people of none effect.

11 The counsel of the LORD standeth for ever, the thoughts of his heart to all generations.

12Blessed is the nation whose God is the LORD; and the people whom he hath chosen for his own inheritance.

13 The LORD looketh from heaven; he beholdeth all the sons of men.

14 From the place of his habitation he looketh upon all the inhabitants of the earth.

15 He fashioneth their hearts alike; he considereth all their works.

16 There is no king saved by the multitude of an host: a mighty man is not delivered by much strength.

17 An horse is a vain thing for safety: neither shall he deliver any by his great strength.

18 Behold, the eye of the LORD is upon them that fear him, upon them that hope in his mercy;

19 To deliver their soul from death, and to keep them alive in famine.

20 Our soul waiteth for the LORD: he is our help and our shield.

21 For our heart shall rejoice in him, because we have trusted in his holy name.

22 Let thy mercy, O LORD, be upon us, according as we hope in thee.

Introduction

Psalm 33 is a call to lively and joyous praise to God for His glorious attributes and works, as displayed in creation, and His general and special providence, in view of which, the Psalmist, for all the pious, professes trust and joy and invokes God's mercy.

Commentary

1 Rejoice in the LORD, O ye righteous: for praise is comely for the upright.

Rejoice in the Lord, O ye righteous

“Rejoice” means “to shout,” or “sing for joy.” “Rejoice in the Lord”—Joy is the soul of praise. To delight ourselves in God is truly to praise Him, even if no notes of song proceed from our lips. The knowledge that God is an awesome God, and that He is our God for ever and ever, should awaken within us an unceasing and overflowing joy. To rejoice in all temporal comforts is dangerous, to rejoice in self is foolish, to rejoice in sin is fatal, but to rejoice in God is heavenly. He who would one day live in heaven must begin below to rejoice like those above.

His excellence is manifested in His works and should be the substance of your praise. “Rejoice in the LORD, O ye righteous”is almost a repetition of the first clause of Psalm 32:11—“Be glad in the LORD, and rejoice, you righteous: and shout for joy, all you that are upright in heart” (Psalm 32:11). Also, compare:

Psalm 68:3: “But let the righteous be glad; let them rejoice before God: yes, let them exceedingly rejoice.”

Psalm 97:12: “Rejoice in the LORD, you righteous; and give thanks at the remembrance of his holiness.”

“O ye righteous,” it is chiefly your duty to “Rejoice in the LORD,” because your obligations are greater, and your spiritual nature better adapted to the work—so be consistent and vigorous in this happy service. Even the righteous are not always glad, and may need to be stirred up to enjoy their privileges.

For praise is comely for the upright

It is the righteous and the upright, the true Israelites, who are addressed here. Praise becomes them; it is their duty; they are bound to do it by the mercies and blessings they have received; if they were not to give praise to God, the stones of the wall would cry out and rebuke them for their ingratitude. Praise is beautiful, and looks lovely in them; it is an ornament they wear, and has great esteem in the eyes of God: it is very acceptable to Him, and when grace is being exercised, and their hearts in tune, being sensibly touched and impressed with the goodness of God, it is desirable by them, and is pleasant and delightful to them to praise their God.

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