17/09/2017: BLESS THE LORD OH MY SOUL
Psalm 103 (NRSV)
Thanksgiving for God’s Goodness
1 Bless the Lord, O my soul,
and all that is within me,
bless his holy name.
2 Bless the Lord, O my soul,
and do not forget all his benefits—
3 who forgives all your iniquity,
who heals all your diseases,
4 who redeems your life from the Pit,
who crowns you with steadfast love and mercy,
5 who satisfies you with good as long as you live
so that your youth is renewed like the eagle’s.
6 The Lord works vindication
and justice for all who are oppressed.
7 He made known his ways to Moses,
his acts to the people of Israel.
8 The Lord is merciful and gracious,
slow to anger and abounding in steadfast love.
9 He will not always accuse,
nor will he keep his anger forever.
10 He does not deal with us according to our sins,
nor repay us according to our iniquities.
11 For as the heavens are high above the earth,
so great is his steadfast love toward those who fear him;
12 as far as the east is from the west,
so far he removes our transgressions from us.
13 As a father has compassion for his children,
so the Lord has compassion for those who fear him.
14 For he knows how we were made;
he remembers that we are dust.
15 As for mortals, their days are like grass;
they flourish like a flower of the field;
16 for the wind passes over it, and it is gone,
and its place knows it no more.
17 But the steadfast love of the Lord is from
everlasting to everlasting on those who fear him,
and his righteousness to children’s children,
18 to those who keep his covenant
and remember to do his commandments.
19 The Lord has established his throne in the heavens,
and his kingdom rules over all.
20 Bless the Lord, O you his angels,
you mighty ones who do his bidding,
obedient to his spoken word.
21 Bless the Lord, all his hosts,
his ministers that do his will.
22 Bless the Lord, all his works,
in all places of his dominion.
Bless the Lord, O my soul.
Our theme last week was “In all things give thanks”.
This week, the Psalmist invites us to join him on a journey of _____________and _____________ – a fitting way, I believe, to bring our Thanksgiving Celebrations to a close.
- Don’t Forget What God has Done for You! (1-5)
- Read “Bless the LORD, O my soul” in the context of “Don’t _________________ God has done.”
- What we should never do – is ______________________
- The psalmist reminds us of that God gives: forgiveness, healing, saving from hell (“the Pit”), he is the God of ____________________ (Hebrew, hesed) and mercy.
- (vs.5): It is God “who satisfies you with good as long as you live so that your youth ________________________”
- Thanksgiving is all about – Amazing Grace (6-18)
This section falls into three parts, each part contains the word hesed, (NRSV as “steadfast love”, other translations as “loving kindness” see vs. 8,11,17) and for me this translates to “Amazing Grace“!
(vs.6) Amazing grace is:
(vs.7) Amazing grace has:
(vs.8-10) God’s steadfast love is a _____________ love.
This Grace is “________________” and all encompassing. The Hebrew word translated as “mercy” in (vs. 4), “merciful” in (vs. 8), and “compassion” (twice) in (vs. 13) means “__________” So, this amazing grace is the kind of love and internal care a mother has _______________________________________.
(vs. 10) God’s steadfast love is ________________________.
2.2 (11-14) The nature of amazing grace that we celebrate is that God’s love is as ______as the sky and _______as the distance from east to west! It is a _______________for his children; [Prodigal Son and the image of God as the “waiting Father” in Luke 15]. This hesed, this loving kindness, this amazing grace, loves us knowing that we are weak and insignificant; and _________made from _________________!
2.3 (15-18) God’s steadfast love is ___________, in contrast to our lives which are _________.
“We blossom and flourish like leaves on the tree, and wither and perish, but naught changeth thee.”
(Immortal, Invisible, God Only Wise; H&Ps 9 vs.3)
- (19-22) Don’t forget – God is the Heavenly King!
God, is the heavenly king, he rules over _____that exists (vs.19). God rules over ____________ of heaven (“his hosts”) are called to praise God; on the earth, the call is for ________________________________ to praise (vs. 22); and then the Psalmist ends as he began, he too, must always “______________________________________!”.
PRAYER THOUGHTS FOR THIS WEEK
- In all things give thanks to the Lord.
- Bless the Lord o my soul!