Blessed is the nation whose God is the Lord, the people...
Psalm 33 from the daily reading in the One Year Bible
Sing for joy in the Lord, O you righteous ones;
Praise is becoming to the upright.
2 Give thanks to the Lord with the lyre;
Sing praises to Him with a harp of ten strings.
3 Sing to Him a new song;
Play skillfully with a shout of joy.
4 For the word of the Lord is upright,
And all His work is done in faithfulness.
5 He loves righteousness and justice;
The earth is full of the lovingkindness of the Lord.
6 By the word of the Lord the heavens were made,
And by the breath of His mouth all their host.
7 He gathers the waters of the sea together as a heap;
He lays up the deeps in storehouses.
8 Let all the earth fear the Lord;
Let all the inhabitants of the world stand in awe of Him.
9 For He spoke, and it was done;
He commanded, and it stood fast.
10 The Lord nullifies the counsel of the nations;
He frustrates the plans of the peoples.
11 The counsel of the Lord stands forever,
The plans of His heart from generation to generation.
12 Blessed is the nation whose God is the Lord,
The people whom He has chosen for His own inheritance.
13 The Lord looks from heaven;
He sees all the sons of men;
14 From His dwelling place He looks out
On all the inhabitants of the earth,
15 He who fashions the hearts of them all,
He who understands all their works.
16 The king is not saved by a mighty army;
A warrior is not delivered by great strength.
17 A horse is a false hope for victory;
Nor does it deliver anyone by its great strength.
18 Behold, the eye of the Lord is on those who fear Him,
On those who hope for His lovingkindness,
19 To deliver their soul from death
And to keep them alive in famine.
20 Our soul waits for the Lord;
He is our help and our shield.
21 For our heart rejoices in Him,
Because we trust in His holy name.
22 Let Your lovingkindness, O Lord, be upon us,
According as we have hoped in You.
Today’s reading actually begins at verse 12 of Psalm 33, which says: Blessed is the nation whose God is the Lord, The people whom He has chosen for His own inheritance. Currently our nation, the U.S. has many gods, I’m not sure where the Lord ranks among them. We worship the god of convenience. You need to look no farther than at the hundreds of thousands of abortions done each year, not because of a health risk to the mother, not because there is an apparent birth defect which would affect the life of the child, but simply because a baby would cause inconvenience upon the mother or someone else. We worship the god of self indulgence. You need to look no farther than to see the thousands of children neglected while their parents satisfy their own lusts. You need to look no farther than the billions of dollars spent on entertainment, movies, concerts, sports venues. We worship the god of physical beauty, millions spent on gym memberships prioritizing appearance over health. Billions of dollars are spent in tanning salons, tattoo parlors and on cosmetic surgeries. We worship the god of materialism with 4000+ square foot houses with more bathrooms than people, with formal dining rooms which are never used because we ear out or order in. We worship gods of human philosophies and ideologies, people decry religion yet they themselves are very religious about their own priorities and beliefs. The list of gods we worship and serve is extensive, but as a nation surely we cannot say that the Lord is our God.
I am reminded of what Paul said to the people of Athens in Acts 17:22-26 So Paul stood in the midst of the Areopagus and said, “Men of Athens, I observe that you are very religious in all respects. For while I was passing through and examining the objects of your worship, I also found an altar with this inscription, ‘TO AN UNKNOWN GOD.’ Therefore what you worship in ignorance, this I proclaim to you. The God who made the world and all things in it, since He is Lord of heaven and earth, does not dwell in temples made with hands; nor is He served by human hands, as though He needed anything, since He Himself gives to all people life and breath and all things; and He made from one man every nation of mankind to live on all the face of the earth, having determined their appointed times and the boundaries of their habitation, Many people don’t know who or what their gods are. The psalmist says: The Lord looks from heaven;He sees all the sons of men;From His dwelling place He looks outOn all the inhabitants of the earth,He who fashions the hearts of them all,He who understands all their works. For those who wish to deny God and creation, supposing we are here merely through a sequence of accidents, what hope is there in life? Their existence and hope for the future is reduced to the continuing outcome of more accidents. For the believer there is confidence that the God of creation indeed watches over us and understands even what we cannot.
Whether they will admit or not, everyone believes in something greater than themselves. Those who believe that a government, a political leader or an army will save them will be disappointed, likewise those who trust in other human institutions or ideologies. The psalmist says: The king is not saved by a mighty army; A warrior is not delivered by great strength. A horse is a false hope for victory; Nor does it deliver anyone by its great strength. In Psalm 20:7, the psalmist says: Some boast in chariots and some in horses, But we will boast in the name of the LORD, our God. It’s no wonder so many people are insecure and live lives filled with stress and anxiety, to believe we are here through a series of accidents and to trust in others who also are a result of and subject to the ongoing accidents of the universe leaves them knowing only that things will change. God on the other hand is unchanging. While our circumstances may change, God does not. His love, His mercy, His grace, along with His righteousness and justice are forever unchanging.
Behold, the eye of the Lord is on those who fear Him, On those who hope for His lovingkindness, To deliver their soul from death And to keep them alive in famine. Our soul waits for the Lord; He is our help and our shield. For our heart rejoices in Him, Because we trust in His holy name. Let Your lovingkindness, O Lord, be upon us, According as we have hoped in You. Today’s text began: Blessed is the nation whose God is the Lord, The people whom He has chosen for His own inheritance. We cannot choose God as Lord of our nation. But if we as individuals will make the Lord our God we individually and collectively will be blessed. It says, blessed is the nation, but it is the individuals who have the inheritance. If God is our Lord, He cannot be one of our gods. If He is Lord at all He must be Lord of all.
Heavenly Father, Lord Jesus Christ; precious Holy Spirit it is indeed my prayer that You would be the Lord and God of this nation. Begin with me I pray. In all things, in all ways I yield and submit to You. I worship You and trust in You. I am no accident. I was created by You on purpose and for a purpose. I am blessed and so may I be a blessing. Amen.