Praise ye the Lord. Praise the Lord, O my soul. While I live will I praise the Lord: I will sing praises unto my God while I have any being. Put not your trust in princes, nor in the son of man, in whom there is no help. His breath goeth forth, he returneth to his earth; in that very day his thoughts perish. Happy is he that hath the God of Jacob for his help, whose hope is in the Lord his God: Which made heaven, and earth, the sea, and all that therein is: which keepeth truth for ever: Which executeth judgment for the oppressed: which giveth food to the hungry. The Lord looseth the prisoners: The Lord openeth the eyes of the blind: the Lord raiseth them that are bowed down: the Lord loveth the righteous: The Lord preserveth the strangers; he relieveth the fatherless and widow: but the way of the wicked he turneth upside down. The Lord shall reign for ever, even thy God, O Zion, unto all generations. Praise ye the Lord. (KJV)
If you are like me and read five Psalms and a chapter of Proverbs a day then you are on the last or second to the last day of the month today. These last five psalms are what I call the Praise Psalms. The reading of Psalm 146 reveals to the readers Christ a picture of the promise King. In Christ the reader would have found hope and help from the burdens that encompassed their lives. He would uphold the cause of the oppressed, and give food to the hungry. He would open the eyes of the blind and restore health to the broken bodies. He would meet the needs of the fatherless and widows, but would frustrate the ways of the wicked. However when he came to earth two thousand years ago, he became the rejected one that was pictured in Isaiah chapter fifty-three.
Who hath believed our report?
And to whom is the arm of the LORD revealed?
For he shall grow up before him as a tender plant, and as a root out of a dry ground:
he hath no form nor comeliness; and when we shall see him,
there is no beauty that we should desire him.
He is despised and rejected of men;
a man of sorrows, and acquainted with grief:
and we hid as it were our faces from him;
he was despised,
and we esteemed him not.
Surely he hath borne our grief, and carried our sorrows:
yet we did esteem him stricken, smitten of God, and afflicted.
But he was wounded for our transgressions,
he was bruised for our iniquities:
the chastisement of our peace was upon him;
and with his stripes we are healed.
All we like sheep have gone astray;
we have turned every one to his own way;
and the LORD hath laid on him the iniquity of us all.
He was oppressed,
and he was afflicted,
yet he opened not his mouth:
he is brought as a lamb to the slaughter,
and as a sheep before her shearers is dumb, so he opened not his mouth.
He was taken from prison and from judgment:
and who shall declare his generation?
for he was cut off out of the land of the living: for the transgression of my people was he stricken.
And he made his grave with the wicked,
and with the rich in his death;
because he had done no violence,
neither was any deceit in his mouth.
Yet it pleased the LORD to bruise him;
he hath put him to grief:
when thou shall make his soul an offering for sin,
he shall see his seed,
he shall prolong his days,
and the pleasure of the LORD shall prosper in his hand.
He shall see of the travail of his soul, and shall be satisfied:
by his knowledge shall my righteous servant justify many;
for he shall bear their iniquities.
Therefore will I divide him a portion with the great,
and he shall divide the spoil with the strong;
because he hath poured out his soul unto death:
and he was numbered with the transgressors;
and he bare the sin of many,
and made intercession for the transgressors.
As the readers after the time of Christ look back on the Savior and his work we have a detail history of his walk found in the Gospels. We are also given the promise of his return. However, with this return we also will see the doing away with the ways of the wicked. With this hope in mind how can we not praise the Lord.
This promise of the Lord’s return is very important for Christians as they make a stand for Christ in the world today. As I read the Lord’s words concerning his kingdom found in Matthew chapter twenty-five I ask myself these questions: am I a wise or foolish virgin, a profitable or unprofitable servant, a sheep or a goat. The answer depends upon which phrase would I want to hear. “Depart from me, ye cursed, into the eternal fire which is prepared for the devil and his angels” or “Come, ye blessed of my Father, inherit the kingdom prepared for you from the foundation of the world”. Peter informs us that if we have the correct view of the Second Coming of the Lord it will help us from being carried away by the error of the wicked. Knowing this are you looking for that coming day?