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Psalm 149

June 5, 2009

We continue these “psalms of praise” with another having two sections. It begins and ends with “Praise the Lord”. The first section, verses2-5, encourages Israel to praise the Lord. It assumes all Israel believes and trusts in God. It is believed to be post-exilic but it could also have been written for the occasion of bringing the Ark to Jerusalem at the beginning of David’s reign. The people of God are encouraged to praise God, their Creator, openly and publicly with music and instruments. The Lord God is their Savior because they have humbled themselves before Him. They praise God continuously even on their beds. Praising God is normal and it delights the Lord. They not only praise God but they have been given a sword. The second section, verses 6-9, tells of their second purpose. Their first purpose is to praise the Lord and their second purpose is to dispense the Lord’s justice. Israel has the sword; a fighting instrument and the Word of God. Israel has the Truth. One of their purposes is to be an instrument of the Lord giving vengeance, punishment, and binding to those nations and their leaders who refuse to acknowledge and/or praise God.

The tribes of Israel were to fight and drive out the Canaanites when they entered the Promised Land. They never finished that job because they fell away from praising and worshipping God. David took up the fight after the Judges but soon Israel stumbled once again and eventually went into exile as captives. The Church has now replaced Israel and we are to take up these two important responsibilities. We are to praise God and tell of His wonders and His plan of salvation through faith in His Son Jesus Christ. We are to do battle with God’s enemies, those who refuse to acknowledge God, who refuse to accept His Word, and those who refuse to obey Him. We are charged with the responsibility of fighting error with the Truth of God’s Word. We are in a battle. We are God’s warriors against Satan’s followers. We have two offensive weapons; praising the Name of God and presenting the Word of God. This is the Gospel, the good news that Jesus is God incarnate, that Jesus died for our sins, that Jesus conquered death, and that Jesus Christ lives and reigns with God the Father in heaven. God’s true saints, His Church, must take these two responsibilities seriously. I trust you are a member of God’s army of saints and not one of Satan’s followers.

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