1 For the director of music. A psalm of David. A song.
Praise awaits you, O God, in Zion; to you our vows will be fulfilled. 2 O you who hear prayer, to you all men will come. 3 When we were overwhelmed by sins, you forgave our transgressions. 4 Blessed are those you choose and bring near to live in your courts!
5 You answer us with awesome deeds of righteousness, O God our Saviour, the hope of all the ends of the earth and of the farthest seas, 6 who formed the mountains by your power, having armed yourself with strength, 7 who stilled the roaring of the seas, the roaring of their waves, and the turmoil of the nations. 8 Those living far away fear your wonders; where morning dawns and evening fades you call forth songs of joy.
9 You care for the land and water it; you enrich it abundantly. The streams of God are filled with water to provide the people with corn, for so you have ordained it. 10 You drench its furrows and level its ridges; you soften it with showers and bless its crops.
11 You crown the year with your bounty, and your carts overflow with abundance. 12 The grasslands of the desert overflow; the hills are clothed with gladness. 13 The meadows are covered with flocks and the valleys are mantled with corn; they shout for joy and sing.
God our Saviour and Creator
(Verses 1-4) Zion is not only the ‘city of David’ in Jerusalem. It also pictures the praise of Christians worshipping the Lord today. ‘Praise awaits You, O God, in Zion’.
Those praising God also keep their vows, or promises, to Him, our loving and saving God who hears our prayers. Christians worldwide are included in ‘to you all men [and women!] will come.’ These people were ‘overwhelmed by sins’ once, but now are forgiven by God. That is true of all people who confess their sins to God, turn from them in repentance, and trust the Lord Jesus Christ, as sin-bearer, Saviour and Sovereign. We deserved punishment from God in Hell: Jesus bore it in His own body when He died on the cross. He rose again. He lives now. By the Holy Spirit, He enters the lives of all who personally trust in Him. He chose us and brings us close to Him in prayer, praise and worship. God’s blessings fill us when we come to Christ.
(Verses 5-8) The God who answers us changes us from within. We find righteous living for Him to be ‘awesome’ since we came to know Christ. We might have thought it was ‘irksome’ before knowing ‘God our Saviour’ He is also the almighty God of creation: God created the universe including this world. We see Him in the stormy and roaring ‘farthest seas’ – but our mighty God can calm even them. The huge mountains were formed by His power. The ‘turmoil of the nations’ is also under God’s control – and already in His timetable of what will happen and when.
Wise people treat God’s wonders with ‘fear’ (this kind of ‘fear’ means ‘godly reverence’). ‘The fear of the LORD is the beginning of wisdom’. (Psalm 111:10) As each day dawns and each night closes worldwide, God’s goodness causes ‘songs of joy’ across His world.
(Verses 9-13) God abundantly supplies our needs. He waters the land. No life could flourish otherwise. Grain decorates the valleys. Many other crops grow, too. God’s design is that His creation sustains all life, animal and human. Harvest comes each year in abundance: God is generous. Grass in the meadows feeds the flocks. They, in turn feed human life. Let us join with the valleys in grateful joy and song to Him!
Our loving, caring God also gives bountiful supplies spiritually to all who are ‘born again’ (John 3:3) by faith in Jesus. Thank God for : the Holy Spirit to fill and guide us; the Bible, God’s Heavenly bread, to feed us daily as we read it; the gift of praying – come daily to God with your ‘sorry-thankyou-please’ prayers; Christian fellowship in Bible studies and prayer; and worship together on the Lord’s day.