Eternal Savior Lutheran Church

A member of the Lutheran Church - Missouri Synod

2688 North Park Drive
Lafayette, CO 80026
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November 16 – Praise The Lord All Peoples

“Praise the LORD, all nations! Extol Him, all peoples! For great is His steadfast love toward us, and the faithfulness of the LORD endures forever. Praise the LORD!” Psalm 117::1,2

Devotional Thought For The Day

This is the shortest of all the psalms, and yet its expression is immense. It was written within the time of the kingdom of Israel, and reveals the great extent of God’s will to save and bless “all peoples.” There is ever temptation among God’s people to “hunker down” and to isolate the church from the evil all around us in the world, to “purify” the church from anything that compromises its “holiness.” Of course there are many passages which warn against integrating evil and error into the life of the church, and this was the common sin of the ancient nation of Israel, its accommodation to the idolatries and wickedness of the unbelievers around and amongst them. However, these warnings were not meant to deter the evangelistic fervor of God’s people; Jonah was sent to Nineveh with God’s Word. Jesus sends His people out to witness to the ends of the earth. [Acts 13:47] God does not desire the death of the wicked, but rather that the wicked turn from his way and live. [Ezek. 33:11] We too must remember this.

What is proclaimed is not gloom and doom. The psalmist assumes that the law of God has done its preparatory work of condemnation for sin. [Rom. 3:20] This is difficult work, to destroy our instinctual reflex of justifying our evils and promoting our “goodness.” The resistance to repentance is universal and is both individualistic and corporate. The fact that most of life is “merit based” compels us to defend ourselves and to put the best foot forward. Humanism, the system of thought that glorifies mankind’s capabilities and puts full faith and trust in human beings to solve all problems, is deeply embedded as the foundation of our educational system and our system of government. All of this “propaganda” is aimed at promoting our goodness and denying our need for the grace, mercy, forgiveness, patience, kindness, and salvation of God – and is demonic in nature, utterly deceptive.

Equally difficult is bringing people to assurance of God’s great mercy and love, and the salvation that He promised and then provided for all people in Christ Jesus. So the psalmist asserts what is real and true: “Great is His steadfast love for us, and the faithfulness of the Lord endures forever.” This is the essential basis for peace with God, restoration to His kingdom, and the renewal of heart, mind, and spirit that God desires and wills for every human being – so that we turn from our way and live. Who would confess personal sin and guilt unless assured of forgiveness and mercy?   So it is that the knowledge of God, that He is love, and certainty in regard to His forgiveness and salvation, are essential for walking in the light of truth, having integrity, and rejoicing in the future which God has planned, promised, and prepared for us. God wills this, and has done this, for “all nations” and for “all peoples.” The psalmist proclaims this to us, and invites us to come to faith and to join him in praising God. He also demonstrates the simplicity of the task that God has given to us – to praise God’s steadfast love and faithfulness, and so to invite others to join us in a life of repentance and faith. The incorrigibility of our sinful flesh makes it difficult to repent and believe, but as Jesus taught, “this is the work of God, that you believe in Him Whom He has sent.” [John 6:29] What is impossible with men is possible with God. [Matt. 19:26] And it remains within His power and capability, as the Word of His gracious love goes out into the world.

So we rejoice with the psalmist in a true knowledge of God, and we join in praising the Lord for His steadfast love and eternal faithfulness to us. As we do so we are His witnesses, continuing to call others to be saved and to come to the knowledge of the truth.   May God grant each of us such firm faith and joy, and to continue shining the light of His love in whatever corner of the earth we happen to reside in. He wills all to be saved, and in heaven there abide eternally people “from every nation, from all tribes and peoples and languages, standing before the throne and before the Lamb, clothed in white robes, with palm branches in their hands, crying out with a loud voice, ‘Salvation belongs to our God Who sits on the throne, and to the Lamb!’” [Rev. 7:9,10] By and by we will join them; for now we sing the same hymn of praise and invite others to know God and to join in the praise of God.

Prayer For The Day

Dear Lord Jesus, You have fulfilled the Father’s will to provide salvation for all peoples in Your bitter suffering and death as the Lamb of God offered to take away the sin of the world. You reveal the Father to us, the steadfast love and faithfulness of God. Strengthen our faith and trust in You so that You remain the center of our thoughts and lives. May we sing Your praise winsomely so that others may be blessed to come into Your kingdom through genuine repentance and faith. Give us joy in knowing that You remain with us always, and that You have promised that we will be with You forever. Amen.