Read: Psalm 98
Bible in a Year: Ezekiel 18–19; James 4
Shout for joy to the LORD, all the earth, burst into jubilant song with music.—Psalm 98:4
Back when I was searching for a church to attend regularly, a friend invited me to a service at her church. The worship leaders led the congregation in a song I particularly loved. So I sang with gusto, remembering my college choir director’s advice to “Project!”
After the song, my friend’s husband turned to me and said, “You really sang loud.” This remark was not intended as a compliment! After that, I self-consciously monitored my singing, making sure I sang softer than those around me and always wondering if the people around me judged my singing.
But one Sunday, I noticed the singing of a woman in the pew beside me. She seemed to sing with adoration, without a trace of self-consciousness. Her worship reminded me of the enthusiastic, spontaneous worship that David demonstrated in his life. In Psalm 98, in fact, David suggests that “all the earth” should “burst into jubilant song” in worship (v. 4).
Verse one of Psalm 98 tells us why we should worship joyfully, reminding us that “[God] has done marvelous things.” Throughout the psalm, David recounts these marvelous things: God’s faithfulness and justice to all nations, His mercy, and salvation. Dwelling on who God is and what He’s done can fill our hearts with praise.
What “marvelous things” has God done in your life? Thanksgiving is the perfect time to recall His wondrous works and give God thanks. Lift your voice and sing! —Linda Washington
Lord, thank You for who You are and for what You’ve done.
Worship takes the focus off us and places it where it belongs—on God.
INSIGHT: Psalm 98 is jubilant in its invitation to praise God. In verses 4-6, the psalmist exalts God as King. He enlists the harp, trumpets, and horn to accompany the human voices lifted in praise and adoration of the sovereign King. In verses 7-9, God is praised for being the righteous Judge. Marvelous word pictures are used to magnify His justice. The fullness of the sea is to roar, the rivers are to clap their hands, and the mountains are to be joyful together. Voice, instruments, and nature join in to praise God. We too can enter into this same spirit by joyfully worshiping the Lord for His mighty power and holy character.
Today ponder how you can worship God who is both our Creator and righteous Judge. Dennis Fisher