>Ascribing glory, Psalm 96

>Although Psalm 90 may rate as my favorite psalm (see my post of 20 December 2010), Psalm 96 could be designated as my “theme” psalm. Psalm 96 generated the name of this blog and its purpose.

The title of this blog, Ascribelog, has a double meaning:
1) It is a blog that ascribes glory to God (ascribe blog), and
2) it is a journal of a writer (a scribe log).

Every day it is my prayer that God will use me to further his kingdom and bring him glory. I pray daily for him to guide my work, for his creative spirit to spark my creativity, for him to enable me to sing a new song and declare his glory among the nations.

The first three verses of Psalm 96 say:

Oh sing to the LORD a new song;
sing to the LORD, all the earth!
Sing to the LORD, bless his name;
tell of his salvation from day to day.
Declare his glory among the nations,
his marvelous works among all the peoples!

The next three verses (4-6) explain why all believers should want to sing a new song:

For great is the LORD, and greatly to be praised;
he is to be feared above all gods.
For all the gods of the peoples are worthless idols,
but the LORD made the heavens.
Splendor and majesty are before him;
strength and beauty are in his sanctuary.

And the following three verses (7-9) reflect my personal calling and that of all believers:

Ascribe to the LORD, O families of the peoples,
ascribe to the LORD glory and strength!
Ascribe to the LORD the glory due his name;
bring an offering, and come into his courts!
Worship the LORD in the splendor of holiness;
tremble before him, all the earth!

God calls each one of us to give God all the glory in our families and nations, in our work and worship. As the source of all glory and strength, he alone deserves all praise and all glory. Out of our overwhelming gratitude, we offer him our tithes in corporate worship, our donations to kingdom causes, and our entire lives of service. We worship God in the splendor of his holiness, which causes us to tremble.

We may not remain silent; we have a responsibility to proclaim God’s goodness in global contexts:

Say among the nations, “The LORD reigns!
Yes, the world is established; it shall never be moved;
he will judge the peoples with equity”
(verse 10).

God reigns. He is sovereign over all our joys as well as our sorrows, our blessings as well as our adversities, our honors as well as our humiliations.

Despite personal distress and global disaster, God reigns over the people and creation he has established. As long as the earth remains, springtime and harvest, summer and winter shall not cease (Genesis 8:22). He will never leave us or forsake us (Deuteronomy 31:6 & 8, Joshua 1:5, 1 Chronicles 28:20, Hebrews 13:5).

Because God is always with us and continues to care for his world, all of creation can rejoice:

Let the heavens be glad, and let the earth rejoice;
let the sea roar, and all that fills it;
let the field exult, and everything in it!
Then shall all the trees of the forest sing for joy
before the LORD, for he comes,
for he comes to judge the earth.
He will judge the world in righteousness,
and the peoples in his faithfulness
(11-13)
.

Every aspect of creation will rejoice when Christ returns. Just as the morning stars sang at creation (Job 38:7), the trees will sing for joy when the Lord returns to make all things new.

The Lord will come in judgment, but his judgment will be in righteousness and faithfulness. He knows the hearts of every person; he will judge every believer based on the righteousness of Christ. No one can stand on the strength of personal righteousness; we are all sinners who have fallen far short of God’s perfect standard. But repentant sinners have no need to fear God’s just judgment.

Thanks be to God for his great salvation through Christ Jesus! Sing a new song! Ascribe to God all the glory!

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