Hello, I’m Daniel Westfall on the channel “Pray with Me”.
Psalm 111 is an acrostic poem, in which each line starts with the next letter of the Hebrew alphabet. Its main theme is the mighty acts of God, which elicit praise from the poet’s mind and heart.
The poets describes God’s mighty acts like this:
– Great are the works of the Lord (v. 2)
– Glorious and majestic are his deeds (v. 3)
– He has caused his wonders to be remembered (v. 4)
– He has shown his people the power of his works (v. 6)
– The works of his hands are faithful and just (v. 7)
– He provided redemption for his people (v. 9)
The poet responds to God’s work with statements like these:
– I will extol the Lord with all my heart (v. 1)
– His works are pondered by all who delight in them (v. 2)
– He provides food for those who fear him (v. 5)
– All his precepts are trustworthy (v. 7)
– Holy and awesome is his name (v. 9)
Let’s join the poet in a prayer of praise.
Our father, we praise you for your great redemption. As you delivered the Israelites from slavery, so you have redeemed us from slavery to sin, adopting us into your family.
With the poet, we ponder your works. You work in those we love. Whether they seek or ignore you, they display your image in acts of kindness, in faithfulness to spouse and children, in sensible and honest approaches to life and work. Others we know seek you amid problems of physical and mental health, anxiety and trouble. We have felt the broadening and softening movements of your spirit, changing us from harsh judges to quiet companions as we travel through life, deterring us from becoming curmudgeonly and irritable as we age.
With the poet we fear you. Not with the fear of a slave for a cruel master, nor with the fear of one held at gunpoint, but a fear of respect as your light penetrates the dark places in our minds and hearts. We fear you with awe as we ponder the vast unknowable universe. We fear you with desire, as we hunger to participate in your goodness, and with dismay as we feel our propensity to sin. Receive our fear as the worship that is due you, our praise as our expression of honor.
The poet says,
The fear of the Lord is the beginning of wisdom
All who follow his precepts have good understanding (v. 10).
O Lord, the foundation of our knowledge and understanding is not science that explains the laws of physics, nor artistic exploration that explores human potential. Our modern technologies bring knowledge and entertainment, but not wisdom and understanding. Modern psychology brings insight but not clear moral standards. You alone are the source of wisdom. Understanding follows obedience to your laws. A good life is one that seeks you.
With the poet we conclude:
To you belongs eternal praise (v. 10).
I’m Daniel on the channel “Pray with Me”.