In Psalm 103, ‘A Creation Hymn of Praise,’ David expresses his “all-pervasive attitude of gratitude to God for the marvelous things He has done in his life, in nature, in his personal salvation experience, and for the redemption of God’s covenant people.” It is said that “praising God for His goodness is the highest form of prayer, and it rises above all petitions and laments” (Andrews Study Bible, p. 752).
In Psalm 103:2-5 (NKJV), the Psalmist says, “Bless the Lord, O my soul, and forget not all His benefits: Who forgives all your iniquities, Who heals all your diseases, Who redeems your life from destruction, Who crowns you with loving kindness and tender mercies, Who satisfies your mouth with good things, so that your youth is renewed like the eagle’s.” It is very clear in these verses David’s reasons for his gratitude to the Lord:
The Lord forgives (our greatest need).
God sustains life and rescues from the grave.
God crowns with love and compassion.
God shows mercy.
God provides for all needs.
God satisfies our deep desires and renews strength.
“God’s benefits enclose the past, the present, and the eternal future. Metaphor for long vitality—eagles were known to live much longer than most other animals” (Andrews Study Bible, p. 752). Reasons to praise God can and should go on and on; that is why the proclamation of the blessings of salvation is so important in these days, during NY13 and until Jesus comes! As His people, may we not only receive these blessings, but dare to share them so that everyone may know and experience them too!
Carlyle C. Simmons is the Atlantic Union Conference executive secretary and director of the Health Ministries, Human Relations, and Prayer Ministries departments.