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Psalm 118:1-2, 19-29

God is our salvation, and this is our song. The truth that is consistently displayed in Psalm 118 is that there is life, powerful victory and unending abundance of goodness in our Lord and Savior. We know that the Psalms are essentially songs full of a variety of expressions or prayers including questions of doubts, convictions, recognition of joyous victories, but above all an affirmation of who God is. Praising has always been a common practice in different forms throughout our human existence. It has been represented or perhaps more heavily practiced in some cultures than others. Still all over the world the practice of praising is an action or discipline that is done most commonly in community, but without a doubt also done individually.

Within this psalm there are individual and communal declarations made throughout the verses. This is indicated by the way that the pronouns of ‘I’, ‘our’ and ‘us, are used interchangeably throughout the text in Psalm 118. For example, in the Jewish context this psalm was used for liturgical purposes in the synagogue as responsive reading. Today, this Psalm is still recited in the practice of the Seder meal. In this act of praise and worship people gather to remember the bitterness of their past, but acknowledge a hopeful future.

When we come together on Sunday, it doesn’t matter where you are in the world, you can typically find a group of people gathering to recognize and proclaim the goodness of God in their lives. These praises and proclamations of thanksgiving are similarly made with interchangeable pronouns. Now, everyone might be literally saying it in a different language or in a unique rhythm, but we’re all essentially singing the same song together. “The LORD is my strengthen and my song; he has become my salvation. Shouts of joy and victory resound in the tents of the righteous; “The LORD’s right hand has done might things! The LORD’s right hand is lifted high; the LORD’s right hand has done mighty things!” (118:14-16, NIV)

Our Lord is forever faithful. Our Lord has brought deliverance. Our Savior has come, and this is the powerful truth and thanksgiving that this song announces. Salvation has arrived; there is no more waiting because He’s here. Jesus, the Messiah, comes to fulfill and grant us all victory. Jesus is Lord! God, who is forever good, extended Himself to us through Jesus Christ and gave us salvation. “Just as the Psalmist was delivered by God, so now Christ empowers us, comforts us, and snatches us out of the realm of death. All this is done… so that we might proclaim the deeds of the Lord.”[1]

“The LORD has done this, and it is marvelous in our eyes. This is the day the LORD has made; let us rejoice and be glad in it.” (118:23-24,NIV) Have we not all witnessed marvelous things the Lord has done for us, or those around us? Have we not experience deliverance? So what are we waiting for? We all desperately need to experience and witness the vast love of God. We have been called to announce His life, death and resurrection as our life proclamation!

We’ve been called to affirm with everything that encircles our lives that we trust and heavily rely in the constant goodness, power, authority and love of God forever; this is our song of praise.   “You are my God, and I will give you thanks; you are my God, and I will exalt you. Give thanks to the LORD, for he is good; his love endures forever.” (118:28-29,NIV)    [1] Commentary, Psalm 118:1-2, 14-24, Nancy Koester, Preaching This Week,, 2010.