“Hallelujah! Thank God! And why?
Because He’s good, because His love lasts.” Psalm 106:1 (The Message)
When we hear the word “rehearse”, we conjure up visions of singing, dancing, or acting. A rehearsal is a preparatory event that is performed before the official public performance, as a form of practice. The intent of a rehearsal is to ensure that all details of the performance are adequately prepared and coordinated for presentation. This Psalm is a timely rehearsal for recounting God’s loving protection and provision in our lives.
In Psalm 106, the psalmist rehearses or prepares the Jews who have returned from Exile by recounting the mercies extended by God to the nation of Israel. Can you imagine returning to your hometown after a seventy-year absence? Many of the older Jews had died in captivity; younger Jews had little to draw upon to refresh their memory of God’s love and provision for Israel during her glory days. They arrived to burnt gates and broken walls. Many would have even forgotten God’s reason for allowing them to go into captivity–their habitual, sinful nature and rebellious lifestyle (v.43). It was the psalmist intent to prepare the returning Jews’ hearts and minds for spiritual revival—a return to God.
There are several key learnings to be gained in reading this psalm.
- Confess and repent of your sins to avoid God’s judgment. “We have sinned with our fathers, we have committed iniquity, we have done wickedly.” (v. 6)
- Seek God’s wisdom and acknowledge in all your decision making. “They soon forgot his works; they waited not for his counsel.” (v. 13)
- Eliminate complaints about what you don’t have and express gratitude for God’s provision. “Yea they despised the pleasant land, they believed not his word: But murmured in their tents, and hearkened not unto the voice of the LORD.” (w.24-25)
Even in Israel’s rebellion and sin, God never failed to extend His mercy and grace. “Nevertheless he regarded their distress when he heard their cry. For their sake he remembered His covenant, and showed compassion according to the abundance of his steadfast love” (vv.44-45). God always gives mercy and restoration.
Also read: “God in and among us: The Presence of the Lord”
If the psalmist were to rehearse God’s mercy in our life, what would he write? Would it be similar to Israel’s history reflecting a life pattern of sin and backsliding? If we now walk under the guidance and direction of God’s Spirit, remembrance of our life B.C. (Before Christ) should not be an indictment against us but evidence of the immense love God has for us. While Satan uses our memory to evoke shame and guilt, we can use it in our testimony to others about the saving love of Christ. What God has done for you, He will do for others. There is nothing better than living in God’s A.D. (Abundant Dominion). Let us continually rehearse God’s mercy in our hearts and minds as we prepare for effective service and kingdom building.
SELAH: Do you see evidence of God’s love and mercy? It is through God’s divine love and mercy that we receive care and protection, regardless of the circumstance we may face. Take time to reflect on where you’ve come from and then write your own psalm reflecting when and how God’s love and mercy was extended to you.