Psalm 68: Ascribe Power to God!
March 21, 2022
TODAY'S BIBLE READING:
When you think of God, what comes into your mind? A.W. Tozer once said that the the answer to that question is the most important thing to know about yourself or anyone else. For many people today, when they think of God, the immediate word association is “love.” That is not surprising or wrong, for after all, God is a God of love. Other people—those who are not Christians—when they think of God might think “myth” or “fairytale.” What is unlikely to be thought of God by many today is the word that represents the theme of this psalm. Namely, “power.”
“Summon your power, O God, the power, O God, by which you have worked for us…” (68:28)
“Ascribe power to God, whose majesty is over Israel, and whose power is in the skies…” (68:34)
“The God of Israel – he is the one who gives power and strength to his people.” (68:35)
But beyond the mere literal word “power,” the theme of power, or its verbal equivalent, is represented throughout the psalm. “God shall arise, his enemies shall be scattered” (68:1); “The earth quaked, the heavens poured down rain, before God, the One of Sinai, before God, the God of Israel” (68:8); “The Lord gives the word…the kings of the armies, they flee, they flee!” (68:11-12).” There is even that fearsome moment of wrath: “…that you may strike your feet in their blood, that the tongues of your dogs may have their portion from the foe” (68:23). We tend to associate power or authority with something nefarious, dictatorial, or just plain wrong. But what if there is a kind of power that is not evil but moral, not devilish but divine? God’s authority, his power, is good power.
“In your goodness, O God, you provided for the needy” (68:10).
“You ascended on high, leading a host of captives in your train and receiving gifts among men” (68:18).
That last verse is important. The New Testament tells us that the fulfillment of that promise is the victorious life and death of Jesus, his ascension, and then his gift of the Spirit to his followers (see Ephesians 4:8).
“Blessed be the Lord, who daily bears us up; God is our salvation” (68:19).
The power of God is exercised in a daily support of, care for, “bearing up,” and saving. So this morning, would you “ascribe power to God”? That is, would you believe that God can do anything? That he has the power to save? That through his Word, by His Spirit, God is able to do abundantly more than you can ask or imagine? Would you bow before him and follow what he says in his Word—believing that his authority is a good authority, a good power, and is exercised for your good, to “bear you up”? Ascribe power to God!
ABOUT THE AUTHOR
Josh Moody (Ph.D., University of Cambridge) is the senior pastor of College Church in Wheaton, IL., president and founder of God Centered Life Ministries, and author of several books including How the Bible Can Change Your Life and John 1-12 For You.
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