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March 14, 2010
Praise the LORD! Hallelujah!
Psalm 146

Scripture reading: Genesis 27:41-28:27

In Revelation 4:11 it says; "You are worthy, our Lord and God to receive glory and honor and power, for you created all things, and by your will they were created and have their being."

Premise: We need to be reminded from time to time, to praise the Lord and give Him thanks

In Psalm 146, which we are going to study today, the text- at the beginning and the end- joyfully exclaims "Praise the LORD! Hallelujah!". Psalm 146 and the remaining 4 chapters of the Book of Psalms begin and end in the very same way--- and the message is this: Hear the Scriptures call to Praise the Lord!

READ TEXT

Before reading point them to v.5 and the phrase "God of Jacob" Encourage folks to read Genesis 25-50 so that they might appreciate the faith of Jacob that is here recognized and celebrated.

LESSONS OF THE TEXT

1. The eleven fold use the Divine name "LORD" tips us off as to the focus of Psalm 146

Psalm 146 is all about God, the LORD, the Maker of heaven and earth

The Bible tells us that there is one true God who is worthy of our praise, service, and worship.

Psalm 146 answers the question "Who is the one true God who we are to worship?"

Note that 11 times in the text the word "LORD" is used. It is the LORD who we are to worship.

LORD, when it is capitalized in the Bible, indicates the personal name of God-- the name he revealed to his servants. Transliterated, LORD is "Yahweh"

In revealing His Name to us, God in a sense invites us into relationship with him. As we Jacob's God and Abraham's God and Moses' God- by faith, so He can be ours

2. Psalm 146 contains 3 very important commands

Command #1 Praise the LORD

Note: verse 1 is a joyful exclamation "Hallelujah!" (This brackets Psalm 146)

As a whole, Psalm 146 is a call to worship-- it is a call to praise and worship God

The joyful exclamation of verse 1 is followed up with the command to praise the Lord v.1b

Note also that praising the Lord is a commitment v.2
-in good times/bad times, plenty/want, joy/sadness, disappointment, etc

We are to be resolved to be praising the Lord v.2 --our whole life, as love as we live.

Praising the Lord involves our hearts, speech, and singing v.2

Application: Is daily worship part of your life?


Command #2 Do not put your trust in mortal man v.3-4

Why we shouldn't put our trust in people

1. Death ends their influence, authority, and plans
2. Because mortal men/women cannot save (and word here has connotations of deliver, sometimes in a physical sense and salvation, in a spiritual sense)


The command of v.3 raises 2 very important, but related, questions that lead directly into....

Command #3 Put your trust in the LORD

a. If we are not to put our trust in mortal men, who should we put our trust in?
b. Is their one who can save a person spiritually (which is implied in v.4)? Is their one who can save the souls of men?

We are to put our trust in Jesus!

In John 14:1 Jesus says to his disciples and hence to us; "Do not let your hearts be troubled. Trust in God; trust also in me."

Who are we to trust? Jesus tells us to trust him. Jesus tells us to trust him on the basis that he is God. This is his claim and equation when he says "Trust in God; trust also in me."

Why should we trust Jesus? What makes him different? His divine identity makes all the difference. His resurrection from the grave makes all the difference.

Why else should we trust Jesus? He alone can forgive us of our sins. Read Matthew 1:18-25 and the mission of Christ--being to save people from their sins. Jesus came on a rescue mission. Jesus came to save us from ours sins and the judgment to come.

There is no other way. As Jesus says in John 14:6 "I am the way and the truth and the life. No one comes to the Father except through me." Similarly in Acts 4:12 it is written; "Salvation is found in no one else, for there is no other name under heaven given to men by which we must be saved."


Further thought

To put our trust in the LORD, the God of Jacob,the Maker of heaven and earth is ultimately to put our faith and trust in Jesus- for the Scriptures teach us that Jesus was involved in Creation (Proverbs 8, John 1:1-3).


John 1:1-3 says; "In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God. He was with God in the beginning. Through him all things were made; without him nothing was made that has been made."

Note: In v.14 it says "The Word became flesh and dwelt among us"-- indicating that Jesus is the Word and hence God and involved in creation.


3. EACH ONE WHO PUTS THEIR FAITH AND TRUST IN THE LORD and in Christ will be BLESSED v.5-9

When a person becomes a follower of the LORD and puts their faith in Him, He becomes their God and as such under His protection and heir to all of His promises-- each one coming to fulfillment in it's perfect time.

In v.5-9 some of the blessings of the Lord are laid out for us who love and know Him.

Note what God does for those who trust in Him....read v.5-9

Note also the connection of Jesus' announcement of his mission in Luke 4:14-21 (read) with the contents of v.5-9

CONCLUSION

We have a lot to praise the LORD for!

The praise of the Lord needs to be a regular practice of ours!

Psalm 146 begins and ends with a "Hallelujah!"

Is the praise of God regularly on your lips?

The call of the Bible is not to put our faith in vague God that we don't or can't know. The call of the Bible is to put our trust in the LORD- the Maker of Heaven and Earth, the God of Jacob, the God of Abraham, the God of Moses, the God of Elijah and the prophets, the God of David-- the LORD JESUS CHRIST.

Have you put your in the LORD- in Christ? As we have learned today, there is one who saves- Praise the LORD! Hallelulujah for Jesus Christ.

Do not delay. Put your trust in Christ for the forgiveness of your sins and all the blessings of God.



COMMUNION

Read Matthew 1:18ff

Note Jesus' mission "to save us from our sins"

Response to the work of Christ: Hallelujah! Praise the LORD!