Of David. Bless the LORD, my soul; all my being, bless his holy name! Bless the LORD, my soul; and do not forget all his gifts, Psalms 103:1-2 NABRE
The psalmist of Psalm 103 is thanking God for among other things, restoring him to good health. He reveals his inmost feelings and we see God’s love for his people. The psalmist provides thanks for five blessings: the forgiveness of sins, the healing of illnesses, recuse from the Pit, admittance to a blessed life and eternal enjoyment of God’s beauty in heaven. The psalmist invites himself to bless the Lord, then he gives the reasons for his praise (the five blessings) and finally he calls on angels, all creation and himself again to join in praising God. The opening line of the psalm in many translations begins, “Bless the LORD, O my soul.” It is repeated three times in the psalm and two more times in the psalm that follows. A Hebrew scholar interprets the line as the psalmist thanking God for giving humankind a soul, the greatest gift of all, the human soul. It separates us from other creatures of the kingdom and leads us in being created in the image of God Himself. But it is not just the soul that is singing God’s praise, every part of the body joins!
This psalm is a beautiful hymn that praises God for many personal benefits, it recognizes God’s mercy toward all people. Even sin cannot destroy the mercy of God, for God knows the fragility of people and their weakness leaning toward their sinful nature. In the gospels Jesus instructs us to forgive “not seven times but seventy-seven times.” (Matthew 18:22) and we should, but we should also recognize that God’s forgiveness and mercy have no limits.
Do you bless God, and bless God’s holy name? Do you recognize the gifts, kindness and mercy God provides for you in your life?Even sin cannot destroy the mercy of God, for God knows the fragility of people and their weakness leaning toward their sinful nature. Click To Tweet
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