October 19 2023
Today, Thursday October 19
“Forget Not All His Benefits”
A Psalm of David.
1 Bless the LORD, O my soul; And all that is within me, bless His holy name!
2 Bless the LORD, O my soul, And forget not all His benefits:
3 Who forgives all your iniquities, Who heals all your diseases,
4 Who redeems your life from destruction, Who crowns you with lovingkindness and tender mercies,
5 Who satisfies your mouth with good things, So that your youth is renewed like the eagle's.
I started doing these Pastor Chats in March 2020 when the world was hit with the Covid pandemic, and we were locked down in isolation. The whole world was overwhelmed with fear as daily reports were broadcast of how many people were dying every day. I wanted to connect with as many people as I could with the purpose to connect them to God’s Word and the comfort and strength that we find in it during difficult days.
Today, we are living in one of the insecure and fearful times in the history of the world. In my lifetime I’ve never experienced the anxiety and fear that exist everywhere because of the current tension in the world and especially the Middle East. It appears that the whole world is about to collapse into a global conflict between the forces of evil and good. Jesus prophesied that in the last days that “men’s hearts would be failing them for fear…” (Luke 21:26).
If there was ever a time we needed to connect to the LORD in our personal lives and in our families, it is now! I’m convince that the way to seek and find God, is through His Word and remembering Who He is and what He has already done for us in the past. That is exactly what Psalm 103 helps us do today! In these first six verses of Psalm 103 David is remembering all Jehovah’s personal benefits that he has experienced and enjoyed over his lifetime.
First, David encourages us to "bless the LORD". This means to delight God’s heart by expressing love and gratitude for all He is and all He does. Parents are pleased when their children simply thank them and love them, without asking for anything. True praise comes from a grateful heart that sincerely wants to glorify and please the Lord. It is so sad that today we live in a culture that emphasizes “entitlement” and “rights” rather than “responsibility” and “gratefulness”.
Romans 1:21-25 describes exactly what happens to our culture or society when we do not have grateful hearts: “Because, although they knew God, they did not glorify Him as God, nor were thankful, but became futile in their thoughts, and their foolish hearts were darkened. Professing to be wise, they became fools, and changed the glory of the incorruptible God into an image made like corruptible man--and birds and four-footed animals and creeping things. Therefore God also gave them up to uncleanness, in the lusts of their hearts, to dishonor their bodies among themselves, who exchanged the truth of God for the lie, and worshiped and served the creature rather than the Creator, who is blessed forever. Amen.”
David said that he was going to “bless that LORD with all that is within me". This means that all of our inner being is focused on the Lord. This includes and encompasses our heart, soul, mind, and strength (Mark 12:28-31). It also means that we are prepared to obey His will after our praise has ended.
The word "all" is found at least nine times in the psalm (vv. 1-3, 6, 19,21-22), for the psalm is a call for total commitment to God. We give thanks to the Lord before we receive our food, and this is right, but the Jewish people were also to give thanks after they had eaten and to remember that the Lord had given them their food (Deut. 8:7-20). At least fourteen times in the book of Deuteronomy, Moses admonished the people to remember the Lord and what He did for them, and nine times he cautioned them not to forget. (See Deut. 32:18.)
It was when the third generation of Jews came on the scene and forgot the Lord that the nation began to decay (Judg. 2:7-3:7). It appears that is what has happened in America and most of the world today! And sadly, many of us have forgotten too.
Today we need “to remember” and delight ourselves in the LORD and “not forget all His benefits”!