Vs. 1 gives praise to “the LORD;”
Vs. 2-9 point to His works as evidence;
Vs.10 gives the conclusion for those who praise Him.
This Psalm seems to call to mind why Israelites, particularly, should “praise the LORD.” Another reminder of God’s works for them appeals to their gratitude. There is a corresponding reminder for Christians today in these words, also.
Verse 1: “Praise the LORD” (or Hallelujah) with the “whole heart” (nothing held back), in the “assembly” (small gathering), and “congregation” (larger, more public gathering).
Verses 2-9: “The works of the LORD” are: (verse 2) “great” (impressive), “studied” (sought out), by those who serve the LORD wanting to know more (Judges 2:7); (verse 3) “honorable and glorious” (His perfection) “righteous” (always the right thing to do); (verse 4) designed “to be remembered” (Ecclesiastes 3:14), even His grace and compassion (bringing Israel out of Egypt, Exodus 6-14, or saving sinners through Jesus’ cross, Hebrews 2:1-4); (verse 5) God provides for those who “fear Him” (having gone through the wilderness, Deuteronomy 8:1-9; or becoming a member of the kingdom of Christ, Matthew 6:25-33; 1 Timothy 6:6-8), always true to His “covenant” (to preserve Abraham’s descendants until Jesus Christ, Exodus 2:24-25; or fulfill His covenant with salvation through Jesus Acts 3:24-26); (verse 6) God gave “His people” their Promised Land taken from “the nations” in Canaan (Joshua 21:43-45; or Christians making disciples “of all the nations,” Matthew 28:18-19); (verse 7) all God does is based upon “verity” (truth) and “judgment” (justice) and are “sure” (never needing to be appealed); (verse 8) God’s plans, purposes, and precepts “stand fast forever” (are above any failure or “shadow of turning,” James 1:17); (verse 9) He has given “redemption” to His people (Israelites, Exodus 15:11-13, Christians, Colossians 1:13-14), hence “His name” is in a category to itself (at the burning bush for Israel’s deliverance, Exodus 3:1-15, for sinners today, Acts 8:12-17).
Verse 10: Respect for God (“fear of the LORD,” Proverbs 1:7; 14:27; 22:4) is “the beginning of wisdom.” Little wonder, therefore, how unintelligent people become who keep God out of their classrooms, governments, businesses, or homes (Ephesians 4:17-20). Everyone who searches the works of the LORD finds praising God easily done!
Thought: In the King James Version, Psalm 111:9 used a Latin word “reverend,” the only time that word is used of God. Actually, the word, which is translated “awesome” in the New King James Version is used many other times in the Scriptures, but still mostly only of God and His works. Just as the word “reverend” has been profaned by false teachers in religion, so the word “awesome” has now become commonly used for mundane things. It is a never-ending struggle to keep some word, or words, reserved for God, alone, but wholly worth it! Christians must “sanctify the Lord God in your hearts, and always be ready to give a defense to everyone who asks you a reason for the hope that is in you, with meekness and fear” (1 Peter 3:15).
All Scriptures and comments are based upon the New King James Version, unless otherwise noted.