1 Praise the LORD, O my soul. O LORD my God, you are very great; you are clothed with splendor and majesty.
2 He wraps himself in light as with a garment; he stretches out the heavens like a tent
3 and lays the beams of his upper chambers on their waters. He makes the clouds his chariot and rides on the wings of the wind.
4 He makes winds his messengers, flames of fire his servants.
5 He set the earth on its foundations; it can never be moved.
6 You covered it with the deep as with a garment; the waters stood above the mountains.
7 But at your rebuke the waters fled, at the sound of your thunder they took to flight;
8 they flowed over the mountains, they went down into the valleys, to the place you assigned for them.
9 You set a boundary they cannot cross; never again will they cover the earth.
10 He makes springs pour water into the ravines; it flows between the mountains.
11 They give water to all the beasts of the field; the wild donkeys quench their thirst.
12 The birds of the air nest by the waters; they sing among the branches.
13 He waters the mountains from his upper chambers; the earth is satisfied by the fruit of his work.
14 He makes grass grow for the cattle, and plants for man to cultivate bringing forth food from the earth:
15 wine that gladdens the heart of man, oil to make his face shine, and bread that sustains his heart.
16 The trees of the LORD are well watered, the cedars of Lebanon that he planted.
17 There the birds make their nests; the stork has its home in the pine trees.
18 The high mountains belong to the wild goats; the crags are a refuge for the coneys.
19 The moon marks off the seasons, and the sun knows when to go down.
20 You bring darkness, it becomes night, and all the beasts of the forest prowl.
21 The lions roar for their prey and seek their food from God.
22 The sun rises, and they steal away; they return and lie down in their dens.
23 Then man goes out to his work, to his labor until evening.
24 How many are your works, O LORD! In wisdom you made them all; the earth is full of your creatures.
25 There is the sea, vast and spacious, teeming with creatures beyond number living things both large and small.
26 There the ships go to and fro, and the leviathan, which you formed to frolic there.
27 These all look to you to give them their food at the proper time.
28 When you give it to them, they gather it up; when you open your hand, they are satisfied with good things.
29 When you hide your face, they are terrified; when you take away their breath, they die and return to the dust.
30 When you send your Spirit, they are created, and you renew the face of the earth.
31 May the glory of the LORD endure forever; may the LORD rejoice in his works-
32 he who looks at the earth, and it trembles, who touches the mountains, and they smoke.
33 I will sing to the LORD all my life; I will sing praise to my God as long as I live.
34 May my meditation be pleasing to him, as I rejoice in the LORD.
35 But may sinners vanish from the earth and the wicked be no more. Praise the LORD, O my soul.
The theme of this Psalm is stated in verse one, Praise the Lord. The psalmist praises the Lord as the creator and the one whom is fully controlling every aspect in his universe. As I study David’s life as well as the biographies of the great men and women of faith found in the hall of fame of Hebrews chapter eleven, I cannot help but realize that the praises in this psalm set their daily mindset. In their daily walk they wanted their daily meditations to be pleasing to God. So, as you read this Psalm, reflect upon these simple words of praise and remember that God is the creator and controller of this Universe.
But a wise soul might ask, “If God is in control then why does evil happen?” This question is simple to answer, but hard to understand. A reading of Genesis chapter three and an understanding of how sin entered the human race can explain why evil exist in our world. But to try to understand why God has let man become like God and control the world around him is a question that I must focus on during my daily meditations.
This psalm also gets us an illustration the truth of Paul’s words in Acts 17:24, 25 “God that made the world and all the things therein, seeing that he is Lord of heaven and earth, dwelled not in temples made with hands; neither is worshipped with men’s hands as though he needed anything, seeing he gives to all life and breath and all things.” Paul’s message to the men of Athens was to make known to them this unknown God whom they had make an altar. They wanted to make sure they did not leave out one of the Gods. But Paul warned them that God for the time of this ignorance He winked at; but now commanded all man everywhere to repent. On hearing this message some mocked, some wanted to hear more, and a few cleaved to the words of Paul. However, soon after Paul left Athens. It seemed that the center of Greece that prided itself on the search for truth turned its back on truth when they heard it. This was one of Paul’s visits to a city that we do not have knowledge of a church being established. He then went to Corinth soon afterwards.
I believe Paul’s words in I Corinthians 1:18-25 was written in response to the visit he experienced in Athens:
For the preaching of the cross is to them that perish foolishness; but unto us which are saved it is the power of God. For it is written, I will destroy the wisdom of the wise, and will bring to nothing the understanding of the prudent.
Where is the wise? Where is the scribe? Where is the disputer of this world? Hath not God made foolish the wisdom of this world? For after that in the wisdom of God the world by wisdom knew not God, it pleased God by the foolishness of preaching to save them that believe. For the Jews require a sign, and the Greeks seek after wisdom: But we preach Christ crucified, unto the Jews a stumbling block, and unto the Greeks foolishness; But unto them which are called, both Jews and Greeks, Christ the power of God, and the wisdom of God. Because the foolishness of God is wiser than men; and the weakness of God is stronger than men.