“Come, let us sing for joy to the Lord; let us shout aloud to the Rock of our salvation. Let us come before Him with thanksgiving and extol Him with music and song.
For the Lord is the great God, the great King above all gods. In His hand are the depths of the earth, and the mountain peaks belong to Him. The sea is His, for He made it, and His hands formed the dry land.”
The 95th psalm is one of the anonymous ones, although Paul refers to some of its verses in Hebrews 4:7 as belonging to David. As we seek to make resolutions this new year, it is a good time to look afresh at the basics, and resolve to live in victory and in joy in 2011, as we delve into the nuggets of truth in Psalm 95.
The Psalmist encourages us to sing joyfully, and to make a loud noise as we praise God! He calls us to have an attitude of thanksgiving as we give Him high praise (extol Him) and offer Him songs and music as worship.
As I read the words “Rock of our salvation”, I saw in my heart the vision of a drowning man in a stormy ocean suddenly being flung against an island of rock in the middle of the sea, and crawling upon it gratefully as he heaved himself wearily out of the sea. It is a picture of Jesus and what He has done. He is the solid rock upon which we climb. When sin, Satan and Hell have overcome the human soul, and when there seems to be no escape from the stormy seas, suddenly there appears a Rock of salvation! Jesus reached out His hand and set us free. Hallelujah! The man who was nearly drowning climbs upon the rock and kisses it! He is so thankful that in the grey and gloomy ocean of death, there appeared a rock of life! He looks down at the foaming waters of the deep and is filled with life and energy. He jumps for joy that he was delivered from drowning!
If you ever find it hard to praise the Lord,
1) remember what He has done. He gave His life for you and me! He set us free! He broke the power of sin and death and brought us into newness of life in Him. How can we help but shout aloud, and sing for joy to the Rock of our salvation? He has done so much for us that we can never thank Him and praise Him enough, and He continues to hold us in His awesome hands from day to day, nurturing, nourishing, protecting and guiding. He is the perfect Father, the faithful Friend who sticks closer than a brother (Proverbs 18:24). He alone is deserving of our highest praise, and the honest worship of our hearts. He is Jehovah Jireh, Jehovah Raphe, Jehovah Shalom, the eternal, omnipotent ruler over everything!
2) Remember who He is. He is the ‘great’ God, the King of kings and the Lord of lords. He is the name above every name. He is the creator of the universe, and it all belongs to Him, whether the depths of the earth, the oceans, or the mountain tops. He fashioned it all purposefully, as an artist would, and breathed life upon it. He crafted a perfect world for us to live in and enjoy. How could we see the beauty of a sunset and not acknowledge that He is real and alive! How can we watch the ocean at dawn and not give Him thanks. It is not possible to walk in the warm summer rain or hear the thunder roll, or see the glory of a rainbow and not lift up our hands in worship to the One who is greater and higher than all of creation! He is the everlasting God.
For many of us, it may be easier to shout aloud and express our feelings while watching our favorite sport than it would be to lift up our voices to Jesus, the Savior and King. This year, let us resolve to be purposeful about walking in joy, and in thanksgiving, to walk in heartfelt worship! Let us lay down a foundation of praise, upon which to build the months to come. Let us say ‘no’ to the 2 Gs (grumbling and gossiping), and say ‘yes’ to powerful, purposeful, thankful praise. When we praise God, we align ourselves with the Word of God, and affirm the Truth of who He is – the name above every name, and El Shaddai the Almighty, the Rock of our salvation! And get ready for things to change, because when you are thankful for what God has done for you, you will please His heart. When you praise Him for what is to come, you are calling forth those blessings you have been praying for – you will see them manifested one by one in the weeks and months to come! (Romans 4:17). Hallelujah!
May your week be blessed and may you experience the presence of Jesus like never before, as you purpose to walk in praise!