David is the master at blessing God. He knew Who provided him with help and Who delivered him. Psalm 103:1-5 is a beautiful picture of a man after God's heart. As our series progresses on the "numbers" which can be found in Scriptures, I was pointed to the seven different ways that David blessed his God.
Psalm 103:1-5, [A Psalm of David.] Bless the LORD, O my soul: and all that is within me, bless his holy name. (1) Bless the LORD, O my soul, and forget not all his benefits: (2) Who forgiveth all thine iniquities; who healeth all thy diseases; (3) Who redeemeth thy life from destruction; who crowneth thee with lovingkindness and tender mercies; (4) Who satisfieth thy mouth with good things; so that thy youth is renewed like the eagle's. (5)
David sure had a way in blessing the Lord in song and in word, didn't he? I suppose that the Book of Psalms is near and dear to my heart because I love poetry and I love to write about my God. I noticed that David's style of writing is all from his heart. His life's experiences and how God brought him through are at the center of each psalm. As I meditate on his songs, I can truly relate to many of them. Although I will never go through the same experiences as David, I do experience some of the same results.
While I studied out the five verses this morning, I was so totally blessed! David opens this beautiful Psalm of praise with blessings to God. He was preparing his heart - focusing it on the Creator and what God had done for him. He did not dwell on his simple needs being met because he knew God would provide. Instead, he focused his entire being on blessing God. Notice in verse one how David says "and all that is within me, bless his holy name." Every fiber of David's being was singing out to God for His provision and benefit. Could an earthly father ignore a child who would approach him in this manner? I doubt it! Our Heavenly Father desires this passion from His children. This display must bless our Father!
There are seven different things David praised and blessed God for.
(1) Who forgiveth all thine iniquities.: David knew the depth of his sin and was deeply remorseful. Noah Webster defines remorse as:
The keen pain or anguish excited by a sense of guilt; compunction of conscience for a crime committed.There is no finer example of this type of remorse than in David's own life. What a beautiful lesson for the believer! David knew from where his salvation and forgiveness came. When we read the account of David and his hand in Uriah's death in 2 Samuel, we see a David who totally repented of his sin. David was remorseful, David repented and David changed. There are no more accounts of David falling into sin. His repentance brought forth righteous fruit. This is not to say that he never sinned again, but he did not remain in sin. David was able to write about his experiences in Psalm 103. He was able to pen such beautiful words and pour out from his heart a beautiful picture of a repentant man who loves his God. [A Psalm of David, Maschil.] Blessed is he whose transgression is forgiven, whose sin is covered. (Psa 32:1) David did not take this lightly! He knew who provided his forgiveness and his blessings!
(2) who healeth all thy diseases;: Who his own self bare our sins in his own body on the tree, that we, being dead to sins, should live unto righteousness: by whose stripes ye were healed. (1 Pet 2:24) Diseases are a by-product of Adam and Eve's sin. Once this happened, death came to us spiritually as well as physically. Everything Adam planted was now subject to weeds and pestilence. However, God loves His children and He provided a way for us to be healed spiritually. Can He heal us physically? Absolutely! Does the Word promise that God will heal us from all physical problems? No! The effect of sin is sickness and disease. As long as we are in these earthly vessels, we will be sick because we sin. If we say that we have no sin, we deceive ourselves, and the truth is not in us. (1 Joh 1:8) Only when we are Raptured will we receive our glorified bodies, free from sin and the disease it brings. 1 Cor. 15:50-54, Now this I say, brethren, that flesh and blood cannot inherit the kingdom of God; neither doth corruption inherit incorruption. (50) Behold, I shew you a mystery; We shall not all sleep, but we shall all be changed, (51) For this corruptible must put on incorruption, and this mortal must put on immortality. (53) So when this corruptible shall have put on incorruption, and this mortal shall have put on immortality, then shall be brought to pass the saying that is written, Death is swallowed up in victory. (54)
(3) who redeemeth thy life from destruction;: David lived what he believed. He knew that God would keep him. The LORD redeemeth the soul of his servants: and none of them that trust in him shall be desolate. (Psa 34:22) We are not desolate because we have a Redeemer who stands ready to petition the Father on our behalf. For their redeemer is mighty; he shall plead their cause with thee. (Pro 23:11) Christ stands ready to mediate on our behalf. My little children, these things write I unto you, that ye sin not. And if any man sin, we have an advocate with the Father, Jesus Christ the righteous: (1 Joh 2:1) How beautiful our Bible is - so complete from cover to cover. Even David penned that his Redeemer would plead his cause with the Father! Our Redeemer, our Advocate, our Attorney stands before God on our behalf! Ole slew foot stands before God and says, "Look what Kate did! You're a Holy God - Surely You cannot allow her entrance!" And our Beautiful Saviour and Advocate responds, "Father, she is one that I hold in the palm of my hand. My blood covers her sin because she has asked me to be Saviour of her soul!" What a beautiful, beautiful picture! No wonder David was so grateful! No wonder he was so passionate about it! After that, how can you not be?
(4) who crowneth thee with lovingkindness;: The epitomy of kindness can be seen in John 3:16, For God so loved the world, that he gave his only begotten Son, that whosoever believeth in him should not perish, but have everlasting life. Noah Webster defines kindness as:
Good will; benevolence; that temper or disposition which delights in contributing to the happiness of others, which is exercised cheerfully in gratifying their wishes, supplying their wants or alleviating their distresses; benignity of nature. Kindness ever accompanies love.When you look at the definition in this light and compare it with Christ's act of love driving Him to the cross, do you not just want to explode with gratitude? God loves us so much that He displayed this act of kindness while we were yet sinners! But God commendeth his love toward us, in that, while we were yet sinners, Christ died for us. (Rom 5:8) Christ delighted in contributing to our happiness! Christ exercised cheerfully in going to the cross for our benefit! Christ cheerfully supplied our wants and alleviated our distress of hell! The One who loves as no other can, displayed the ultimate kindness to us! Oh that we should be like David and bless the Lord!
(5) who crowneth thee with tender mercies;: Oh my ... tears cannot be held back at this point! Thank You, Lord, for your tender mercies! The phrase "tender mercies" appears ten times in the Book of Psalms alone. David knew the mercy of God. He knew what he deserved. We deserve hell, but praise God that Christ died for us! But God, who is rich in mercy, for his great love wherewith he loved us, (Eph 2:4)
(6) who satisfieth thy mouth with good things;: Only God can satisfy our soul! At the moment we are born again, we are complete. We are one in Him. That they all may be one; as thou, Father, art in me, and I in thee, that they also may be one in us: that the world may believe that thou hast sent me. (Joh 17:21) We fill ourselves with the Word of God which renews us day by day. For which cause we faint not; but though our outward man perish, yet the inward man is renewed day by day. (2 Cor 4:16) The Word says God allows it to rain on the just as well as the unjust in Matthew 5:45. However, the unsaved soul cannot be satisfied. David knew how to thank God for satisfying his spiritual needs!
(7) thy youth is renewed like the eagle's.: This seventh blessing was one of perfection and completion. His spiritual strength had been renewed and he was now ready to soar as an eagle. His strength had been made new. He was rejuvenated and able to take on life because he knew from where his strength came. My help cometh from the LORD, which made heaven and earth. (Psa 121:2) He had a new purpose! He took what God taught him and he was able to help many through the years with the words that God gave him to pen.
Do you know how to bless your God? Does your prayer life include this type of prayer time? Do you bless God in the course of your day for what He has done for you? These seven blessings are a good lesson in how to bless our God. [A Psalm of David.] Bless the LORD, O my soul: and all that is within me, bless his holy name. (Psa 103:1)
Words: Scottish Psalter, 1650, alt.
O thou my soul, bless God the Lord;
And all that in me is
Be stirred up His holy Name
To magnify and bless.
Bless, O my soul, the Lord thy God,
And not forgetful be
Of all His gracious benefits
He hath bestowed on thee.
Such pity as a father hath
And shows his children dear,
Like pity shows the Lord to such
As worship Him in fear.
Yea, unto them that fear the Lord
His mercy never ends;
And to their children’s children still
His righteousness extends.
To such as keep His covenant
Nor from it go astray,
Who His commandments bear in mind
And faithfully obey.
Devotional by Kate Plourde
60 Day Devotional Series: Numbers In The Bible
For more studies that use passages in the Psalms as the springboard: