Praising God In Faith
Heavenly Father, Your greatness is proclaimed in the heavens and on the earth. I lift my whole being to glorify You now.
Read Psalm 148:1-14
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.
“All of life is aimed toward God and finally exists for the sake of God. Praise and thanks articulates our capacity to yield, submit, and abandon ourselves in trust and gratitude to the One whose we are” (Walter Brueggemann).
This psalm is a statement of faith. It declares the kingdom of God and what the world will look like when God’s sovereignty is everywhere acknowledged. The first six verses envisage the whole universe, the heavens and all the powers therein, gladly acknowledging God’s hand in their creation, “Forever singing as they shine, ‘The hand that made us is divine’” (Joseph Addison 1672-1719). Verses 7-13 extend the vision to the world we walk on and depend on, to the structures of society and the whole human family. Every creature is summoned to acknowledge God’s majesty and his revealed nature (his “name”) as Maker and Redeemer.
As yet we do not see the whole universe praising God like this. The whole human family is far from acknowledging God’s rule. The natural world is despoiled and broken, longing to be liberated from its bondage to decay (Rom. 8:20,21), and the New Testament reminds us that even the angels can become “spiritual forces of evil in the heavenly realms” (Eph. 6:12). So the psalm calls us to faith and hope, to believing in God’s kingdom and hoping for God’s kingdom in a world that seems to deny it. It is not an empty hope, because God “has raised up for his people a horn” (14), a strong deliverer. It is not clear what the psalmist had in mind, but we are surely justified in seeing his words fulfilled in Jesus, as the New Testament does. (Luke 1:69). In the death and resurrection of Jesus, the kingdom of God has been inaugurated in a new and decisive manner and, so, we can confidently look forward to a world that fully and gladly acknowledges the kingly rule of God. “Now faith is being sure of what we hope for and certain of what we do not see” (Heb. 11:1).
We should not only give thanks for the good things we have received. We should also praise God for the good we do not yet see. Will you do that?
Father, You are the joy of heaven and the hope of earth. I look forward to the day when all creation acknowledges You.
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