Message of the Day: Ascribe Praises To God, For His Mercy Endures Forever!
“Oh, give thanks to the Lord, for He is good!
For His mercy endures forever. Oh, give thanks to the God of heaven!
For His mercy endures forever.” (Psalms 136:1, 26, NKJV)
Two hymns for use in Israel’s public worship appear here side by side. The first is a hymn of praise, the second a hymn of thanksgiving. The two hymns are similar in that they both recall God’s loving acts in nature and on behalf of his people Israel. These acts display God’s incomparable greatness on the one hand and show up the uselessness of the gods of the heathen on the other.
In the Jewish tradition, Psalm 136 was sung after the Hallel at the Passover Feast. In each of verse the leader sings of the greatness of God, and the congregation replies that this is seen in his royal love to his people, a love that will never end.
Israel’s God is good, and he is the only true God (136:1-3). He has perfect wisdom and he made all things (136:4-9). He saved his people from Egypt (136:10-15), gave them victory over their enemies (136:16-20) and led them into Canaan (136:21-22). All this was not because his people deserved his blessings, but because he exercised his steadfast love towards them (136:23-26).
God’s mercy is ever the same; it never changes; it is never exhausted; it is found in all dealings – in all his acts toward his creatures, and ever will be. In view of all that God does in heaven and on earth, we ascribe praises due to him. We do not know exactly what he does in heaven and on earth, but just the same, we ascribe praises to him forever and ever. Our finite knowledge of him and his work, is enough reason to declare again and again that, “His mercy endures forever.”!
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