Hello, I’m Daniel Westfall on the channel “Pray with Me”.
Psalm 135 celebrates God as creator and redeemer. About God as creator, the poet says,
The Lord does whatever he pleases,
in the heavens and on the earth,
in the seas and all their depths.
He makes clouds rise from the ends of the earth;
he sends lightning with the rain,
and brings out the wind from his storehouses (vv. 6-7).
Following an ancient view of the universe, the poet declares that God can do whatever he pleases in all three parts of creation: the heavens above, the earth around, and the waters of chaos beneath. The creator overcame the violent waters below, making them bubble up into the seas and oceans. And then God created an irrigation system with the tamed waters, sending rain clouds with lightning and wind to water the earth. Clearly the creator was and still is in control.
The creator also became redeemer when he intervened in political chaos on earth. Having chosen Israel as his treasured possession (v. 4), he persecuted Pharaoh and his Egyptian slave-drivers until they released his people (vv. 8-12). God then struck down the evil kings of Canaan to create a home for his people.
Creator. Redeemer. This is the God that Israel loved and worshiped!
The poet disparages the gods of the nations, calling them idols of silver and gold who are blind, deaf, and mute. But the poet’s most striking criticism is that the idols can’t breathe. Israel’s creator God breathed the breath of life into humans, but the idols who pose as gods neither breathe nor give the gift of breath.
Our father, with the poet, we praise you as creator and redeemer. Your spirit brooded over the waters of chaos, preparing for creation. Your spirit brooded over the Red Sea, preparing Israel’s great redemption. Your spirit brooded over Jesus’ life and death, preparing salvation for the world. In creation and redemption, you alone are God.
Our father, Israel did not understand why you chose them out of all the nations on earth. And we do not understand why you chose us out of all the people on earth. But we have heard and received your message of freedom and redemption. You have made your home with us, and you have begun to conquer the powers that rule our lives–lust and greed and anxiety and fear.
You who breathe into us the breath of life, teach us to walk in the Spirit. You who send the wind and rain to irrigate the earth, send us the water of life.
You who redeemed Israel through the Red Sea and the thief on the cross through death, redeem us from our wandering and bring us to your eternal home.
I’m Daniel on the channel “Pray with Me”.
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