Ascribe to the Lord glory and strength...

Psalm 29 awakens the slothful and sentimental postmodern soul. Have you read it recently?

A Psalm of David. Ascribe to the Lord, O sons of the mighty, Ascribe to the Lord glory and strength. Ascribe to the Lord the glory due to His name; Worship the Lord in holy array.

The voice of the Lord is upon the waters; The God of glory thunders, The Lord is over many waters. The voice of the Lord is powerful, The voice of the Lord is majestic. The voice of the Lord breaks the cedars; Yes, the Lord breaks in pieces the cedars of Lebanon. He makes Lebanon skip like a calf, And Sirion like a young wild ox.

The voice of the Lord hews out flames of fire. The voice of the Lord shakes the wilderness; The Lord shakes the wilderness of Kadesh. The voice of the Lord makes the deer to calve And strips the forests bare; And in His temple everything says, “Glory!”

The Lord sat as King at the flood; Yes, the Lord sits as King forever. The Lord will give strength to His people; The Lord will bless His people with peace. (Psalms 29)

We can consider the reference to the flood as simply another so-called "natural" event of cataclysmic proportions and stop there, or we can see God calmly presiding over the death of all living creatures as one man's family and a few dumb beasts rode the waves in their ark. It seems clear the universal flood of judgment is also to come to mind.

So thunder and lightning and floods and the Flood and judgment and flames of fire and deer calving and forests stripped bare--this is the glory and strength of our God! Did our worship this morning, the music and prayers and preaching, have this in mind? Seeing His majesty, every last one of us must cry out "Glory!"

Jonathan Edwards tells us before conversion his soul used to tremble at thunder, but afterwards thunder was something he found peculiarly comforting; even delightful. But when the Roman Emperor Caligula heard thunder, he crawled under his bed.

Comments

What an encouragement to His righteous ones, to those who fear His name!

I was just talking with my seven-year-old daughter at bedtime last night about how in general in the church in our nation, we are perfectly willing to have our God be a blathering fool making empty boasts if it means *we* don't have to have people thinking we're odd. The topic was physical idolatry, and the example I gave was how we say Leviathan must be a crocodile or a whale, being perfectly willing to make God a ranting idiot for boasting as He does about him in Job, just because we refuse to endure the ridicule we'd get if we call a fire-breathing dragon what it is.

My daughter giggled as she answered, "Yeah, and they say Behemoth is a hippo, knocking trees over with his stubby little tail!"

I love her giggles. When a man loves God, he must fight against arguments of faithlessness. But when a little girl loves God, she gets to giggle at them. What an awesome God we serve! And what a privilege to be His.

I don't know if the connection of my previous comment to this post was clear, but here it is: if we're unwilling to suffer ridicule because of the Word of God (creation, hell, Leviathan, sodomy, patriarchy...) then Psalm 29 is just another series of empty boasts by a blathering fool God to us.

It is only for those who love Him, who tremble at His Word, that Psalm 29 is a comfort.

Last August, after a violent storm early on a Sunday morning, I chose and read Psalm 29 as the call to worship, emphasizing to the children that God is mightier than the thunderstorm. Then that very afternoon, driving in another storm on my way to the evening service, my car was hit by lightning and totally fried. Hehe, flames of fire indeed!

Just another good reason to sing through the Psalms in family worship...

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