ASCRIBE TO THE LORD GLORY
Father, I belong to you as no other. You are above, around, and in me. I praise your holy name.
Read PSALM 29
A psalm of David.
1 Ascribe to the Lord, you heavenly beings,
ascribe to the Lord glory and strength.
2 Ascribe to the Lord the glory due his name;
worship the Lord in the splendor of his[a] holiness.
3 The voice of the Lord is over the waters;
the God of glory thunders,
the Lord thunders over the mighty waters.
4 The voice of the Lord is powerful;
the voice of the Lord is majestic.
5 The voice of the Lord breaks the cedars;
the Lord breaks in pieces the cedars of Lebanon.
6 He makes Lebanon leap like a calf,
Sirion[b] like a young wild ox.
7 The voice of the Lord strikes
with flashes of lightning.
8 The voice of the Lord shakes the desert;
the Lord shakes the Desert of Kadesh.
9 The voice of the Lord twists the oaks[c]
and strips the forests bare.
And in his temple all cry, “Glory!”
10 The Lord sits enthroned over the flood;
the Lord is enthroned as King forever.
11 The Lord gives strength to his people;
the Lord blesses his people with peace.
New International Version (NIV)Holy Bible, New International Version®, NIV® Copyright ©1973, 1978, 1984, 2011 by Biblica, Inc.® Used by permission. All rights reserved worldwide.
Ascribe to the Father and Son, O sons and daughters of God, ascribe to the Lord the glory due to his name. Worship the Lord in the splendor of holiness.1
Jesus urged us to ‘give … to God what is God’s’.2 This includes exclusive worship, the essence of today’s reading. God is King, enthroned over the chaos (v 10). Remembering Psalm 27, New Testament writers often place ‘Jesus’ in Old Testament passages which use ‘Lord’ (Yahweh). Doing so here, we find ourselves summoned to cry by the Spirit, ‘glory’ (vs 1,2) to God, Father and Son! In verse 1a, the Hebrew bənē ˒ēlîm, literally ‘sons of God’, refers to the heavenly host perpetually worshipping God.3 Now, in Christ, we too are sons and daughters of God! Verses 1 and 2 then urge us to join the eternal praise from the heavenly choir, ascribing to the Lord the glory due his unblemished splendor and holiness.
Verses 3 to 9 focus on God’s voice echoing out from his throne (seven times). When God speaks, his voice is thundering, powerful (v 4), majestic (v 4), destructive (vs 5–8), joy-generating (v 6), full of fire (v 7), earth-shaking (v 8), birth-generating and tree-stripping (v 9). Verses 3 and 10 focus on the primeval chaos of a flooded world (creation, Noah). Even where there is bedlam, God reigns. His word fulfills its purposes.4 It brings judgment and destruction, but also generates life and joy. We, the Temple of God’s presence, together respond, ‘Glory!’ (v 9). We pray for this loving and just God to give us strength and bless us with peace (v 11).
I write in the chaos of the pandemic. I hope that these notes are read in a recovering world. Whatever the chaos, God and his Son reign. Creation and history are shaped. He is with us by his Spirit. We can trust in him to give us strength and peace. He will comfort us.
Read the psalm, knowing that God is Father, Son, and Spirit. Listen to his Word. Obey. Share the insights of this psalm. Praise God again.
Almighty God, I rejoice that you are enthroned as King forever. Although everything around me can be like powerful storms, I claim the promise of this psalm, that you will give your children strength and peace.
1 Ps 29:1,2, adapted 2 Matt 22:21 3 Rev 4 4 Isa 55:11
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