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Psalm 106

June 5, 2009

This psalm was probably written after Israel’s [Judah’s] exile upon returning to their land to rebuild Jerusalem and the temple. The heart of this psalm is verses 1-5 and 48. Verses 6-39 is a corporate confession of sin and verses 40-47 focuses on God’s character providing substance to why we are to praise God.

The psalm begins with “what and why” in verses 1-3. We are to praise and give thanks to God because He is good. He is always loving and kind. His deeds are great and He blesses those who follow Him, who keep justice and practice righteousness.

Verses 4 and 5 are personal, asking the Lord to bless the psalmist with salvation that he might participate in God’s inheritance and riches in His eternal Kingdom.

As stated, verses 6-39 state a corporate confession of sin. It recalls Israel’s sin and rebellion against God from Egypt to their entering the Promised Land and to their exile from that Land. They did not remember God’s kindness. They grew impatient and grumbled. They tempted God and became envious of their leaders. They despised their inheritance. They worshiped and sacrificed to idols. They refused to obey God and accepted the worship practices of the people around them, even sacrificing their children and shedding innocent blood. They had committed adultery against God.

Therefore, God was justified in pruning them during their exodus and becoming angry with them in their land. He let their enemies rule them and scattered them among the nations. But God heard their cry for help, remembered His covenant with their fathers, showed His loving-kindness and compassion, and saved them from among the nations so they could give thanks and praise His Name once again.

The psalm close simply with “Blessed be the eternal God. Amen. Praise the Lord.”

I believe this psalm was written specifically for the dedication of the temple rebuilt by Zurubbabel. If so, it was probably written by Ezra or one of the Levites under his instruction. The message is clear. Praise God for He has done great things and His loving-kindness is everlasting. Call upon the Lord and be saved. Amen. Praise the Lord.

There are two other lessons we should mention. The first is the need and importance of asking God to forgive our sins as a nation. The second is to recognize that the life of Israel mirrors our own lives and recognize that God will forgive and restore us, including redeeming us, if we seek Him and call upon Him.

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