“Oh, give thanks to the Lord, for He is good! For His mercy endures forever.”
It has been suggested by many, this psalm was sung by the worship leaders of Israel, with the congregation serving as the choir. The Levites would sing a verse and the people would respond, “For His mercy endures forever.” Imagine thousands of travelers finally arriving in Jerusalem, for one of the great feasts, and the skilled musicians begin to play this psalm. The vocalists join in singing, “Oh give thanks to the Lord, for He is good”, and suddenly an explosion of voices, like the sound of rushing waters, burst forth, “For His mercy endures forever.”
Verse after verse the band leads, and the choir responds, ever being reminded of the mercy of God. I imagine throughout the week you would hear the people whistling, humming and singing this song. The main point of the Psalm, is to remind us of the never-failing nature of the mercy of God.
The writer takes us from creation, through the history of the nation, explaining that God’s mercy has never failed. The mercy that delivered the people from bondage, provided for them in the wilderness, and gave them victory in the battles of life, is the same mercy that is available to sustain them today.
The same is true of us. If we look back on our days, with the eyes of heaven, we will see that every step of our lives has been marked by the mercy of God. It was His mercy that we did not die in our folly, prior to meeting Christ. It was His mercy that led us to realize our need for Jesus. It was His mercy that provided the way for our sins to be forgiven, and eternal life received. It is His mercy that provides daily pardon for our struggles, failures, and even our out-right disobedience. It is His mercy that puts up with our slow growth, and continual backsliding, and it is His mercy that provides everything we need to grow in Christ, and overcome our easily besetting sins. It is His mercy that puts breath in our lungs, strength in our bodies, and provides for our every need. It is His mercy that keeps our marriages going, equips us to raise our children to follow Jesus, and enables us to impact others for Christ.
Years later, Jeremiah would write that the mercies of God are new every morning. Everyday, when you arise, the mercy of God is new again. You cannot overextend it, but you can enjoy it. Instead of spending the day complaining about the difficulties you are facing, or the people who make life hard, why not spend your day extolling God for His infinite mercy? One man wrote,
“When all else is changing within and around,
In God and His mercy no change can be found.”