Psalms of Honesty and Truth
True worship begins and centers on the Lord and not on us, our personal problems, or our “felt needs.” We praise God for who He is–His glorious attributes–and for His wonderful works, what He has done, is doing and will do. God’s very name is a synonym for God’s person and presence. He is indeed “a very present help in trouble” (Ps 46:1), and when God’s people call on the Lord, we know He will hear us.
The Psalmist teaches us the “order of worship” in this next passage if you look for it and think about it:
Psalm 75, New Living Translation
For the choir director: A psalm of Asaph. A song to be sung to the tune “Do Not Destroy!”
1 We thank you, O God!
We give thanks because you are near.
People everywhere tell of your wonderful deeds.
2 God says, “At the time I have planned,
I will bring justice against the wicked.
3 When the earth quakes and its people live in turmoil,
I am the one who keeps its foundations firm. Interlude
4 “I warned the proud, ‘Stop your boasting!’
I told the wicked, ‘Don’t raise your fists!
5 Don’t raise your fists in defiance at the heavens
or speak with such arrogance.’”
6 For no one on earth—from east or west,
or even from the wilderness—
should raise a defiant fist.[a]
7 It is God alone who judges;
he decides who will rise and who will fall.
8 For the Lord holds a cup in his hand
that is full of foaming wine mixed with spices.
He pours out the wine in judgment,
and all the wicked must drink it,
draining it to the dregs.
9 But as for me, I will always proclaim what God has done;
I will sing praises to the God of Jacob.
10 For God says, “I will break the strength of the wicked,
but I will increase the power of the godly.”
We Begin with an Invocation of Praise (v. 1). We thank the Lord for all He has done, and we tell others about His wonderful works. Though God wants us to bring our burdens to Him and seek His help, worship begins with getting our eyes of faith off the circumstances of life and focusing them on the Lord God Almighty.
We Hear the Lord’s Message (vv. 2-5). If we expect the Lord to receive our words of praise, we must pay attention to His Word of truth as it is read, sung, and preached. The message delivered here was twofold: a word of encouragement for believers (vv. 2-3) and a word of warning to the godless (vv. 4-5).
We Apply God’s Message Personally (vv. 6-8). How easy it is to hear God’s message, leave the meeting, and then forget to obey what we heard! The blessing doesn’t come in the hearing but in the doing of God’s Word (James 1:22-25).
We Close with Praise and the Fear of the Lord (vv. 9-10). “As for me” (v. 9) indicates decision on the part of the psalmist. Asaph had participated in the sanctuary worship and helped lead the music, but he, too, had to make a decision to obey the Lord and tell others about Him. Witness and praise go together.
This is not only food for thought for our worship service corporately, but for a daily attitude of worship. FIRST FOCUS and worship God alone for He IS worthy of all our praise. Begin to list your praises as soon as you rise from sleep, write them down if you have to, then praise God for all He has done, is doing and will do in your life. It’s what I do each morning in these writings. God is slowly but surely transforming me to be more of who HE intended for me to be in the process of praise to Him.
I PRAISE GOD FOR YOU!
I praise God for all of you who spend moments of your precious time each day to read God’s Word together and be blessed by what He has to say. Thank you!