The Lord, the only true God, has spoken. He has summoned the earth from where the sun rises to where it sets. God shines from Zion, the perfection of beauty.
Our God will come and will not remain silent. A devouring fire is in front of him and a raging storm around him. He summons heaven and earth to judge his people:
“Gather around me, my godly people who have made a pledge to me through sacrifices.” The heavens announce his righteousness because God is the judge. Selah [vss 1-6]
“Listen, my people, and I will speak. Listen, Israel, and I will testify against you: I am God, your God! I am not criticizing you for your sacrifices or burnt offerings, which are always in front of me.
⌊But⌋ I will not accept ⌊another⌋ young bull from your household or a single male goat from your pens.
Every creature in the forest, ⌊even⌋ the cattle on a thousand hills, is mine. I know every bird in the mountains. Everything that moves in the fields is mine.
If I were hungry, I would not tell you, because the world and all that it contains are mine. Do I eat the meat of bulls or drink the blood of goats? [vss 7-13]
Bring ⌊your⌋ thanks to God as a sacrifice, and keep your vows to the Most High. Call on me in times of trouble. I will rescue you, and you will honor me.”
Whoever offers thanks as a sacrifice honors me. I will let everyone who continues in my way see the salvation that comes from God.” [vss 14-15, 23]
A psalm by Asaph.
(Psalms 50:1-15, 23 GW)
"What does God want from me?" People often ask this question as if there's no clear answer.
But there is.
This question is asked many times out of frustration (or irritation) when things don't go well, or don't go as expected or wanted.
Clear instruction is given by God in several places in the Scriptures. God does give insight and instruction about what He desires from people.
It's not complicated, but it's not always what we want to hear.
Our problem—all people, everywhere—is that we want what we want. Each person, no matter how selfless they try to be, is self-centered.
We're focused on our selves because of our self-will. We can't be focused on God unless we align our will with His. Again, it's not complicated, we just need to listen to what God says.
In this psalm, God tells us a few basics that are echoed in other places in the Bible.
- Bring your thanks to God as you would a sacrifice
- Keep your vows, that is, keep your promises to Him and others
- Call on Him when trouble comes (He wants us to)
- When He rescues you, honor and acknowledge Him
- When you offer thanks as a sacrifice, you honor God and He will bless you
These are basics and they carry a promise of blessing. God promises redemption—eternal redemption—when we continue to honor and trust Him with thankful hearts and mouths. ©Word-Strong_2016
What are you thankful for today? Have you expressed this to the Lord?
Are you willing to be thankful even when it seems like a sacrifice?
Would you like a free study guide for your study of Psalms?
I won't cover all 150 Psalms, but do selective devotionals through the rest of Psalms.
So if I skip one that you like... let me know and I'll try to cover it!