Text: Psalm 96
Theme: The reasons we should worship God are personal, profound and plentiful!
Key verses: “Sing to the LORD; praise his name. Each day proclaim the good news that he saves. Publish his glorious deeds among the nations. Tell everyone about the amazing things he does. Great is the Lord! He is most worthy of praise! He is to be feared above all gods. The gods of other nations are mere idols, but the LORD made the heavens! Honor and majesty surround him; strength and beauty fill his sanctuary. O nations of the world, recognize the LORD; recognize that the LORD is glorious and strong. Give to the LORD the glory he deserves! Bring your offering and come into his courts. Worship the LORD in all his holy splendor. Let all the earth tremble before him. Tell all the nations, ‘The Lord reigns!’ The world stands firm and cannot be shaken. He will judge all peoples fairly” (v. 10). “Let the fields and their crops burst out with joy! Let the trees of the forest sing for joy before the LORD, for he is coming! He is coming to judge the earth. He will judge the world with justice, and the nations with his truth” (v. 12-13).
What God said to me: Not much yet–so quit typing, and start meditating on this passage…Ok, now you’re ready to write because you stopped long enough to read and grasp my written Word. Now you’ve put yourself in a position to hear from me through my Word and through the Holy Spirit teaching you. Dwayne, this psalm is chugged full of great reasons to praise me. Let’s walk through them together…
Salvation: I saved you from the fiery pit, from hell where the worm doesn’t die and the fire isn’t quenched. I saved you from a horrible, eternal separation from my love and presence. I saved you although you did nothing to deserve being saved. You are saved–let that sink into your soul. Shout it from the rooftops! So what if some think you’re crazy? Every day you should tell others what I have done for you–so they too can be saved.
Creation: You could invest a lifetime studying the tiniest living organisms and the farthest stars and galaxies. Yet, you still couldn’t explore, much less comprehend, all I have formed and fashioned by my own hands. I am the Creator. I made the heavens and the earth. There is nothing I can’t handle or do. I am worthy of worship from my creations.
Greatness: I am most worthy of praise. I am to be feared above all gods. Fear is an unpopular topic, but it is cannot be underestimated how vital it is to have a healthy fear and reverence of me, your great Lord.
Beauty: My sanctuary is filled with beauty. The Psalmist imagined how beautiful my dwelling place must be. I love beauty and love creating beauty. Think about the sunrise you saw yesterday, with its thousands of colors and hues. Creation represents the One who created it. Be enthralled by my beauty.
Strength: There is no one like Jehovah. Nothing is impossible with me. I am glorious and strong. Never lose site of that. I am greater than any mountain that you can or cannot see.
Holiness: Be holy for I am holy. I am set apart from sin. I will not indulge sin or allow my children to wallow in sinful behavior. You cannot dwell in my presence, Dwayne, if you regard iniquity in your heart. My Word divides the very soul and spirit and will reveal any sinful acts or motives you think you are hiding. When you worship me, it must be in my holy splendor.
Joy: The fields, the crops, the trees all have good reason to be joyful in their praise. If plants in my creation praise me with such exuberance, shouldn’t my children praise me with even more joy? I created you too. I redeemed you out of the pit and set your foot on a rock and gave you a firm place to stand. Your life is hidden in me. My Son died to save you from hell. You have plenty of reason to praise me with lots of joy!
Judgment: Creation praises me “for” I am “coming to judge the earth.” Judgment is not just a negative thing. The positive side to judgment is that I will finally set everything right again, as it was in the Garden, as it should be, as I originally designed everything to function and thrive. I will judge the world with justice and the nations with truth. Lies, misconceptions, deceptions and selfish, greedy motives won’t hold a candle to my righteous judgment. You can rejoice in that, Dwayne. You should rejoice in that. The truth will set you free. I am the Truth who is coming to set things right.
What I said to God: Holy Father, please forgive me for days when I don’t take ample time to dwell on Your Word and in Your holy presence. What truth You have shown to me today. What glorious reasons to praise You! I know You haven’t left me on this earth to only praise you in private. Please help me be the light You have called me to be to the nations and my neighbors today. My soul will make its boast in the Lord; please let the helpless and afflicted hear and be glad.