A Song for the Journey
The people used today’s psalm to welcome Jesus. Welcome his presence with you now.
Read PSALM 118:1-29
 Give thanks to the LORD, for he is good; his love endures forever.  Let Israel say: “His love endures forever.”  Let the house of Aaron say: “His love endures forever.”  Let those who fear the LORD say: “His love endures forever.”  In my anguish I cried to the LORD, and he answered by setting me free.  The LORD is with me; I will not be afraid. What can man do to me?  The LORD is with me; he is my helper. I will look in triumph on my enemies.  It is better to take refuge in the LORD than to trust in man.  It is better to take refuge in the LORD than to trust in princes.  All the nations surrounded me, but in the name of the LORD I cut them off.  They surrounded me on every side, but in the name of the LORD I cut them off.  They swarmed around me like bees, but they died out as quickly as burning thorns; in the name of the LORD I cut them off.  I was pushed back and about to fall, but the LORD helped me.  The LORD is my strength and my song; he has become my salvation.  Shouts of joy and victory resound in the tents of the righteous: “The LORD’s right hand has done mighty things!  The LORD’s right hand is lifted high; the LORD’s right hand has done mighty things!”  I will not die but live, and will proclaim what the LORD has done.  The LORD has chastened me severely, but he has not given me over to death.  Open for me the gates of righteousness; I will enter and give thanks to the LORD.  This is the gate of the LORD through which the righteous may enter.  I will give you thanks, for you answered me; you have become my salvation.  The stone the builders rejected has become the capstone;  the LORD has done this, and it is marvelous in our eyes.  This is the day the LORD has made; let us rejoice and be glad in it.  O LORD, save us; O LORD, grant us success.  Blessed is he who comes in the name of the LORD. From the house of the LORD we bless you.  The LORD is God, and he has made his light shine upon us. With boughs in hand, join in the festal procession up to the horns of the altar.  You are my God, and I will give you thanks; you are my God, and I will exalt you.  Give thanks to the LORD, for he is good; his love endures forever. Scripture taken from the Holy Bible, NEW INTERNATIONAL VERSION. Copyright © 1973, 1978, 1984 International Bible Society. All rights reserved throughout the world. Used by permission of International Bible Society.
ReflectHow would you describe the theme of this psalm?
The psalm would originally have been used by worshipers processing to the temple in Jerusalem. It was a real celebration song. At v. 19 they reach the door, and carry on up to the altar (27), with v. 29 shouted out at the end!
As Jesus rode into Jerusalem the crowds used this psalm to welcome him (26), as the one God had promised to send. Jesus reminds them (see Mark 12:10) that v. 22 will also be fulfilled as he is rejected, yet used to fulfill God’s purpose. There are so many ways in which we can use the Bible. It tells us the story of how God has worked with his people over the years. Sometimes one part of the Bible helps us to understand another, just as this psalm helps us to see how Jesus was part of a plan God had always had. It can speak to us about God, about our own life and our relationship with him. And we can make the words our own in our worship, shouting out to God in praise; rejoicing, mourning, wondering, and speaking with worshipers across the ages.
Use some of the words of this psalm to make your own “song” of praise to God today.
Lord, open my heart to see afresh why You are so worthy of my praise—and help me offer it.
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