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Psalm 48

June 4, 2009

This psalm is dedicated to the great and almighty God who dwells in the city on Mt. Zion, Jerusalem, and in the temple on Mt. Moriah next to Mt. Zion. It appears to be written by a Levite who lived south of Jerusalem, probably in the Judean desert such as Hebron or Beersheba.

The psalmist begins by praising God who dwells in the beautiful city of Zion, Jerusalem. As one approaches Jerusalem, you look up and see the city on a hill glistening in the sun. This is the home of the great King, the Lord God. It is a fortified city, a strong city, a city protected by God Himself.

Many kings and dignitaries have visited and been amazed at its beauty and strength. They left in fear recognizing its’ power and wealth all because those who lived there worshipped a powerful God, the true and living God. No doubt this was written after Solomon built the temple and his palace. Israel was so great at this time in her history that other nations considered her to be invincible [vs. 8].

The psalmist’s visit to the temple is recalled beginning with verse 9. Upon visiting, he is reminded of God’s love and kindness. God is worthy of all praise because He is righteous. The greatness of God, His dwelling place, and His city must be told to the generations to come. God redeemed Israel from slavery and has prospered them. God has been their guide. He is their God, the true God. Great is His Name in all the earth.

P.S. There is another point of view in reading this psalm and that is to consider it written during Hezekiah’s reign when Jerusalem was under siege by Sennacherib’s army. Verse 5 would relate to their fleeing and being destroyed. Verses 9-14 would reflect the joy in Judah of being spared by God for God, not Judah, was responsible for saving Jerusalem. It still was written by a Levite in the south who understood Jerusalem was under siege and became aware of God’s hand in it’s salvation. Perhaps he was on duty in the temple during this difficult time.

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