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Thursday, November 24, 2011

Speak Well of Him

It has become my personal tradition to read Psalm 103 every Thanksgiving. For me, this Psalm  expresses what we truly ought to be thankful for. I know that today we are thankful for many people and for that which is valuable to us. But the question is who are we thankful to? Are we thankful to them? Are we thankful to ourselves? or are we thankful to God? As a Christian, of course I am thankful to all those who are part of my life, but ultimately it is He who I speak well of today. It is to Him that I say,

"Bless the LORD, O my soul,
   and all that is within me,
   bless his holy name!
Bless the LORD, O my soul,
   and forget not all his benefits," (ESV)

It is interesting to not that the word "benefits" in verse 2 above, in Hebrew,  is the same used ("gamal") in verse 10 where it says, "He does not deal with us according to our sins, nor repay us according to our iniquities." This was intentional.  The writer of this Psalm wanted to make clear that we enjoy God's benefits because he doesn't deal with us according to what we deserve. 

 I stopped to think about this: "God withholding what we really deserve, is a benefit in of itself. Wow! And he doesn't do it just for me but for all of humanity. They enjoy his benefits."

The Psalm has a list of benefits that God has bestowed upon us: forgiveness of ours sins, health, physical strength, daily provision, mercy, everlasting steadfast love, patience and fatherly compassion. He gives us these benefits because of his own steadfast love in spite of our own sinfulness.  He knows us quite well because He made us. He knows that our life is short and what we really are, clay! 

The Psalm ends by urging everyone ought to bless Yahweh (the Lord) even angels.  

Today we should continually say,

"Bless the LORD, O my soul: and all that is within me, bless his holy name.
 2Bless the LORD, O my soul, and forget not all his benefits:" - KJV

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