Wednesday, October 6, 2010

Instruction and Encouragement from Psalms

"For whatever was written in earlier times was written for our instruction, so that through perseverance and the encouragement of the Scriptures we might have hope." Rom. 15:4


The book of Psalms is a collection of songs, poetry and prayers put in its final form in the 3rd century B.C. for use in Zerubbabel's through Herod's temple and synagogues. The primary author was King David; however, writers also included Asaph (David's choir leader), sons of Korah (family of official musicians), Solomon, Moses (Psalm 90), Jesuthun (a Levite and 1 of 3 master musicians appointed by David) and other unidentified writers.

The key verse to the book is Psalm 29:2: "Ascribe to the Lord the glory due to His name; worship the Lord in holy array!".  Dr. Henrietta Mears wrote: "It is a book for all who are in need, the sick and suffering, the poor and needy, the prisoner and exile, the person in danger, the persecuted. It is a book for the sinner, telling him or her of God's great mercy and forgiveness. It is a book for the child of God, leading him or her into new experiences with the Lord. It tells of God's law in its perfection and pronounces blessings upon the one who will keep it."


"Bless the Lord, O my soul, and all that is within me, bless His holy name!"
Psalm 103:1

What an instruction! "Bless God!" What in this world can mere humans do to bless Almighty, Holy God?
3 John 1:4 says, "I have no greater joy than this, to hear of my children walking in truth".  Prov. 23:24 adds, "The father of the righteous will greatly rejoice, and he who sires a wise son will be glad in him." A good conclusion drawn from these passages is that right actions more than right words bless our Heavenly Father.

A little deductive reasoning says, if my soul is comprised of my mind, my will and my emotions and I am to bless God with all my soul, then I am instructed to bless God with all my mind, all my will and all my emotions!

A mind prepared to bless God is renewed ("…do not be conformed to this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind, so that you may prove what the will of God is, that which is good and acceptable and perfect" Rom. 12:2), retrained ("…destroying imaginations and every lofty thing raised up against the knowledge of God, and we are taking every thought captive to the obedience of Christ." 2 Cor. 10:5) and refilled ("…whatever is true…honorable…right…pure…lovely …excellent and…worthy of praise, think on these things." Phil. 4:8).

A will prepared to bless God is demoted ["…(God) must increase, but I must decrease."], submitted ("…God is opposed to the proud, but gives grace to the humble. Submit to God.." James 4:6-7), and humbled ("Therefore, humble yourselves under the mighty hand of God, that He may exalt you at the proper time" 1 Peter 5:6).

Emotions prepared to bless God are controlled by the Spirit ("the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness and self control" Gal. 5:22-23) and comforted by Jesus ["casting all your anxiety on (Jesus), because He cares for you" 1 Peter 5:7].

(Just yesterday anxious thoughts flooded my mind which gave me the opportunity to practice renewing, retraining and refilling my mind.  Although I confess it took 12 hours and many prayers to do it, those anxious thoughts were eventually replaced with God's truth and plans.  Thank You, Lord!)


"Bless the Lord, o my soul, and forget none of His benefits!" (Ps. 103:2)
Be encouraged beautiful one! Your God….
…pardons all your iniquities and removes them as far as the east from the west
…heals all your diseases (either on this earth or in His heaven)
…redeems your life from the pit,
…crowns you with lovingkindness and tender mercies,
…is your satisfaction
…renews your strength like a youth! (Psalm 103:3-5,12)

In remembering the awesome benefits of being a child of the King, let blessing and praise to our Lord well up in our souls and daily pour forth from our lips!

"…the lovingkindness of the Lord is (never ending) from everlasting to everlasting on those who fear Him, and His righteousness to children's children, to those who keep His covenant and remember His precepts do to them!"
(Psalm 103:17-18)

Today, tomorrow and in all our days to come we have hope because God's love and compassion toward us are never ending!  Our hoping in God blesses Him!  Have you blessed God today?

"Bless the Lord you His angels…Bless the Lord, all you His hosts…
Bless the Lord, all you works of His in all the places of His dominion
Bless the Lord, O my soul!"
(Psalm 103:20-22)

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