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Give thanks to the LORD, for he is good; his love endures forever
Psalm 118

Please join me in this refrain "GIVE THANKS TO THE LORD, FOR HE IS GOOD; HIS LOVE ENDURES FOREVER"

This morning we are going to take a look at Psalm 118

-Psalm 118 is bracketed by this call to worship "Give thanks to the LORD, for he is good; his love endures forever"
-This Psalm has the tone and theme of jubilation. It is one of rejoicing in God for a great act of deliverance
-It is a Psalm of personal rejoicing, but is also features corporate worship
-It is a Psalm that has in intent the goal of stirring up our love for God who is declared to be good and loving. We are invited in this Psalm to join in the refrain "HIS LOVE ENDURES FOREVER"
-It is a Psalm that encourages faith and trust in God. i.e In v. 6 - which is a favorite of mine- the Psalmist writes "The LORD is with me; I will not be afraid. What can mere mortals do to me?" THIS IS A GREAT VERSE TO MEMORIZE
-It is a Psalm that was used in the time when Jesus was on the earth- being sung at Passover- in the Temple, when the lambs were being sacrificed, and during the Passover meal that was held in people's homes


Psalm 118 finds its ultimate fulfillment in Jesus Christ

In Psalm 118:22 it says; "The stone the builders rejected has become the cornerstone"

While originally referring to David (who is widely regarded to be the author of this Psalm) and the rejection he experienced - God lifted him up and made him and his line right in the centre of his redemptive plan -His plan to save us from our sins and the judgment to come.

This connects to Jesus in Acts 4:8-12 which reads; 'Then Peter, filled with the Holy Spirit, said to them: "Rulers and elders of the people! 9 If we are being called to account today for an act of kindness shown to a man who was lame and are being asked how he was healed, 10 then know this, you and all the people of Israel: It is by the name of Jesus Christ of Nazareth, whom you crucified but whom God raised from the dead, that this man stands before you healed. 11 Jesus is "'the stone you builders rejected, which has become the cornerstone.' 12 Salvation is found in no one else, for there is no other name under heaven given to mankind by which we must be saved."

Another verse that connects this Psalm directly to Jesus is Psalm 118:26-27 wherein it says; "Blessed is he who comes in the name of the Lord. From the house of the Lord we bless you. 27 The Lord is God, and he has made his light shine on us. With boughs in hand, join in the festal procession up to the horns of the altar."


On two separate occasions this verse connects to Jesus

1. When Jesus rode into Jerusalem on a donkey as her king (in fulfillment of prophecy) in John 12:13, Luke 19:38, Mark 11:9; Matthew 21:9

John 12:13 says; "They took palm branches and went out to meet him, shouting, "Hosanna!" "Blessed is he who comes in the name of the Lord!" "Blessed is the king of Israel!"

2. Jesus quotes it directly in Luke 13:34-35 as he weeps over Jerusalem and their rejection of him and the salvation he brought ""Jerusalem, Jerusalem, you who kill the prophets and stone those sent to you, how often I have longed to gather your children together, as a hen gathers her chicks under her wings, and you were not willing. 35 Look, your house is left to you desolate. I tell you, you will not see me again until you say, 'Blessed is he who comes in the name of the Lord.'"

The point: Jesus is the Messiah. Jesus is the King of Kings. Jesus is God. He is the Lord. He is the Savior. All will acknowledge this- as the Scriptures say "...Every knee will bow and every tongue will confess that Jesus Christ is Lord, to the glory of God the Father" Philippians 2:9-11

READ TEXT

LESSONS, PRINCIPLES, OBSERVATIONS, APPLICATIONS OF THE TEXT


1. God is Good! His love endures forever

The main point of our text is given to us in v.1-4 and again in v.29. Furthermore, it expanded upon in the account given

God is Good. His love is real and enduring. These are lessons we must not forget

In case we are in danger of forgetting, we should regularly ponder His works and remember what He has done for us- never letting go of the greatest example of the Love and goodness of God- Jesus dying on the cross for us, taking the punishment we deserve, that we might have the forgiveness of sins and eternal life.

Some great verses from Romans 8:35-39

Who shall separate us from the love of Christ? Shall trouble or hardship or persecution or famine or nakedness or danger or sword? 36 As it is written: "For your sake we face death all day long; we are considered as sheep to be slaughtered." 37 No, in all these things we are more than conquerors through him who loved us. 38 For I am convinced that neither death nor life, neither angels nor demons,[k] neither the present nor the future, nor any powers, 39 neither height nor depth, nor anything else in all creation, will be able to separate us from the love of God that is in Christ Jesus our Lord.


2. Whatever challenge or trouble comes our way, we should it take it to the LORD- for Him nothing is too hard v.5,7, 8-9

David was hard pressed. The enemies were closing in. His end was their goal-- "swarmed around him like bees" v.12 He was "pushed back and about to fall" v.13 His was a bleak situation

So what did David do? He called upon the LORD. He asked God for help. He put his trust in God-- and because the LORD was gracious and because David was a follower of the LORD- God came to his aid. God defended David, God saved him, God brought him out of the tight spot he was in to a spacious place (out of the kill zone and into open ground) v.5

Song: It is no secret chorus "It is no secret what God can do, What he has done for others,
He'll do for you. With arms wide open, He'll pardon you It is no secret what God can do."


Key thing to note: The futility and foolishness of trusting in anyone or anything else than the LORD . See v.8-9

"better" - infinitely better in all ways for people are unreliable and weak. To trust in man is to trust in a broken reed. To trust in God is to go a rock that cannot be moved.

Inspirational verse "Now to him who is able to do immeasurably more than all we ask or imagine, according to his power that is at work within us, 21 to him be glory in the church and in Christ Jesus throughout all generations, for ever and ever! Amen." Ephesians 3:20-21


Something interesting: David traced the trouble he experienced to himself...

"The Lord has chastened me severely, but he has not given me over to death." v.18

The Bible tells us that God disciplines those he loves.

The discernment of David's heart recognized that in this instance the hand of God's chastening- the loving hand that brings disobedient hearts back to him in faith, dependance, trust, and love

Note: Not every difficulty owes itself to our not walking in step with God. Sometimes this is the case though. This requires some soul searching, some reflection, prayer, a discerning heart.

3. When God answers our prayers and showers us with His good gifts, we must respond with enthusiastic and celebratory praise

We need to remember to often say "Thank you God!"

It is fitting for praise and thanks to be on our lips-- not only is right by God, but also is healthy for our minds and bodies- for thankful people are healthier people

In our text both personal praise and an invitation to the community to join corporately in the praise of God

Note v.15-17 "Shouts of joy and victory resound in the tents of the righteous: "The Lord's right hand has done mighty things! 16 The Lord's right hand is lifted high; the Lord's right hand has done mighty things!" 17 I will not die but live, and will proclaim what the Lord has done."

David wanted to go to worship with others----Note also v.19-21 "Open for me the gates of the righteous; I will enter and give thanks to the Lord. 20 This is the gate of the Lord through which the righteous may enter. 21 I will give you thanks, for you answered me; you have become my salvation."

Observe where David went: To the Temple. His praise was not a solitary affair. He belonged to the community of faith. Hence the corporate nature of worship. Hence the importance of we who are the body of Christ not forsaking our gathering together.

4. It's just perfect that our text- which declares and celebrates the goodness and love of God- finds its fulfillment in Jesus, the ultimate expression of the love and goodness of the LORD

Our text is a celebratory text- declaring a great deliverance of the Lord -driven by the love of God

Our text is an anticipatory text- A Messianic text- that looks to the ultimate expression of God's love

1 John 4:9-11 says; "This is how God showed his love among us: He sent his one and only Son into the world that we might live through him. 10 This is love: not that we loved God, but that he loved us and sent his Son as an atoning sacrifice for our sins. 11 Dear friends, since God so loved us, we also ought to love one another.

John 3:16 says; " For God so loved the world that he gave his one and only Son, that whoever believes in him shall not perish but have eternal life."


CONCLUSION

REVIEW

1. God is good! His love endures forever!
2. Whatever challenge or trouble comes our way, we should take it to the LORD- for nothing is too hard for Him
3. When God answers our prayers and showers us with His good gifts, we must respond with enthusiastic and celebratory praise
4. It's just perfect that our text- which declares and invites the celebration of the goodness and love of God- finds its fulfillment in Jesus, the ultimate expression of the love and goodness of the LORD


Song: Cornerstone

Let us once again join in with the saints of old, declaring the goodness and love of God

"GIVE THANKS TO THE LORD, FOR HE IS GOOD; HIS LOVE ENDURES FOREVER"