Summary: Exposition of Psalms 33 regarding reasons for us to praise the Lord.
Text: Psalm 33:1-12, Title: More Than a Suggestion, Date/Place: NRBC, 2/28/11, AM
1. Opening illustration: The church has surrendered her once lofty concept of God and has substituted for it one so low, so ignoble, as to be utterly unworthy of thinking, worshipping men…the gravest question before the church is always God Himself, and the most portentous fact about any man is not what he at a given time may say or do, but what he is his deep heart conceives God to be like…the man who comes to the right belief about God is relieved of ten thousand temporal problems…for the one single burden of eternity begins to press down upon him with a weight more crushing than all the woes of this world piled one upon another…the essence of idolatry is the entertainment of thoughts about God that are unworthy of Him.”
2. Background to passage: This psalm comes on the heels of Psalm 32; some manuscripts even put them together. And it picks up where the other left off exhorting the righteous to worship God. And after the call to worship, he uses a little word “for” and commences to give us a justification for praise due our God.
3. Main thought: written in verses, the psalmist gives eight reasons for us to praise the Lord.
1. Goodness (v. 4-5)
1. The first reason that we can willingly obey the command to praise the Lord is the goodness of God. It is said here to fill the earth. It is a word that describes the mercy of God that comes running to the aid of His people when they are in pain. He is a God who does not does not take pleasure (enjoy) the death of the wicked, but even more so His care for His people when they are hurting is unyielding. And so He is constantly sending mercy upon them, because He is loving-kindness; He is tender mercies.
3. Illustration: translates as “mercy” 149 times, “kindness” 40 times, “loving-kindness” 30 times, “goodness” 12 times, read Chuck Swindoll, The Mystery of God’s Will, p. 132 about the “relief” of chesed,
4. The Lord definitely has great purposes for pain in your life, and is accomplishing great things through it, but He also hurts for you, and desires to comfort you. You may be a witness to the small encouragements of life that seem to carry you through the valleys. It’s those times when the darkness is thick, but peace simply overwhelms you. Even when you think that these tender mercies are not present, they are; they are His character. Know that they will be revealed again and again. Ask God to open your eyes to their presence, and your heart to receive them. If we are not careful, bitterness, anger, self-pity, hopelessness will consume us. Some of you have experienced God’s loving kindness in awesome ways, and you should give Him glory by testifying of that grace shed upon you. You also may be the means for these mercies.
Power (v. 6-7)
1. Here the psalmist gives two examples of the power of the Lord. First he speaks of creation, and the fact that creating the entire universe was created by the breath of His mouth. God created every known (and the billions of galaxies, sub atomic particles, and every unique snowflake and fingerprint) as easily as you and I breathe. That which we do every moment of every day and night without even a thought and while doing a thousand other things simultaneously, God created anything/everything that is/was/is to come. And the waters gathered. Think on that!
3. Illustration: “God possesses what no creature can: an incomprehensible plentitude of power, a potency that is absolute…Omnipotence is not a name given to the sum of all power, but an attribute of a personal God…and the worshipping man find this knowledge a source of wonderful strength for his inner life. His faith rises to take a great leap upward into the fellowship of Him who can do whatever He wills to do for whom nothing is hard or difficult because He possesses power absolute. Since He as at His command all the power in the universe, the Lord God omnipotent can do anything as easily as anything else. All His acts are done without effort. He expends no energy that must be replenished. His self-sufficiency makes it unnecessary for Him to look outside of Himself to for a renewal of strength. All the power required to do all that He wills to do lies in undiminished fullness in His own infinite being.” “The greatest single distinguishing feature of the omnipotence of God is that our imagination gets lost when thinking about it” –– Blaise Pascal