Sunday, 25 July 2021
“Serve the LORD with gladness; Come before His presence with singing.” - Psalm 100:2
Psalms 100 is a Psalm of thanksgiving. In the Old Testament, a thank-offering was to be given to God for blessings and deliverances received. In the New Testament, we are asked to give thanks in all circumstances (1 Thessalonians 5:18)- this is the will of God in Christ Jesus for us.
The Psalm shows us the path into God’s presence. Our hearts need to be filled with joy, worship, praise and thanksgiving, acknowledging Him our Creator, His goodness, love and faithfulness in our lives.
A Joyful Heart (Verse 1)
When we truly realize and acknowledge the wonderful ways of God in our lives we cannot but express our joy and thankfulness to the LORD our God, the one who knew each one of us even before we were formed in our mothers’ womb. All that we are and all that we do is in and through Him. When life becomes tough and difficult and hopeless, it is God who calms the storms of life and gives us hope and a future. We are here because of Him. Because He lives, we can face tomorrow; because he holds the future, life is worth the living. True disciples of Christ acknowledge this and experience joy and peace in their hearts in every circumstance of life.
A Worshipping Heart (Verse 2)
Sincere thanksgiving involves worship. We glorify God by ascribing to Him the honour and adoration due Him because He is God. “Therefore, I urge you, brothers and sisters, in view of God’s mercy, to offer your bodies as a living sacrifice, holy and pleasing to God—this is your true and proper worship.” We are called to offer ourselves as living sacrifices to God. (Romans 12:1&2) Everything we are and in everything we do, we are to honour the LORD. This is offering true worship to God. More than knowing the Bible and more than serving the Lord, a godly man is a worshipper. You must be a worshipper when you have everything and when you have lost everything. To worship God is to give Him everything.
An Acknowledging Heart (Verse 3)
We are able to give thanks and honour God, only when we acknowledge that Jesus is our Saviour, submit to Him and make Him Master over our lives. Trust in the Lord with all your heart and lean not on your own understanding; in all your ways submit to Him, and He will make your paths straight. (Proverbs 3:5&6) If our ways/lives are crooked today, this is the time for us to turn back to God, repent of our sins and trust in the Lord. Be assured that He will make the crooked paths straight. When we acknowledge Him, we remind ourselves as to who God is, and, at the same time, we are reminded of who we are. He is the Creator and we are His creation. He is the shepherd and we are His sheep. He will never leave us nor forsake us.
A Grateful Heart (Verse 4)
We are called to come into the presence of God with thanksgiving, with a heart full of gratitude and reverence for the Lord. Through the gates of thanksgiving, we enter into His courts with praise. God is enthroned in our praises.
The Heart of God (Verse 5)
The Psalmist concludes by reminding us that the LORD is good, He is gracious and kind. His love is eternal. His covenant love to all who believe in his Son Jesus Christ will never be revoked or abandoned and His faithfulness continues to all generations. “The Lord is not slow in keeping his promise, as some understand slowness. Instead he is patient with you, not wanting anyone to perish, but everyone to come to repentance.” (2 Peter 3:9) This is the heart of God. He does not want anyone to perish but he wants all His creation to know Him through His Son Jesus Christ.
We are called to grasp (as feeble as we are), the greatness, holiness, wisdom, goodness, loving-kindness, and truthfulness of God. We are called to seek God’s own heart, filled with His divine goodness, kindness, love, grace and compassion to all around us.
Thought for the Day: “It is only with gratitude that life becomes rich!” –Dietrich Bonhoeffer