By James Boice
Theme: Amen and Amen
In this week’s lessons we see that there is a connection between how we treat other people and what we want the Lord to do for us.
Scripture: Psalm 41:1-13
Verse 12, the last verse of Book 1 of the Psalter, is a final outbreak of praise. Significantly, it is how each of the five books end. Books 1, 2 and 3 end with the phrase “Amen and Amen.” Book 4 ends with the words “Let all the people say, Amen! Praise the LORD” (or “Hallelujah”). Book 5 ends with a double “Praise the LORD.”
How can it be any other way? As we have made our way through these first psalms in this great book of psalms, we have been reminded of all the Lord has done and does for his people. Psalm 1 tells us that God blesses those who root themselves in his word, and he watches over them. Psalm 2 assures us of the final victory of the divine Messiah, our Lord Jesus Christ. Psalms 3 and 4 teach that God is with us in the morning and evening. Because he watches over us. we can lie down and sleep in peace, and we can rise up rejoicing. Psalms 6 and 32 tell us that God is willing and able to forgive sin. Psalm 7 speaks of God’s justice, and Psalm 8 of his majesty. Psalms 9, 20, 34, 35 and 40 speak of deliverance from enemies and of the preservation in trouble of both the king and nation. Psalm 14 exposes the folly of spiritual fools.
The sixteenth psalm is a prophecy of the resurrection. Psalm 22 is a prophecy of the cross. Psalms 22-24 are shepherd psalms, Psalm 22 being the psalm of the good shepherd who gives his life for the sheep; Psalm 23 the psalm of the great shepherd who guides and protects his sheep; and Psalm 24 the psalm of the chief shepherd who will return in righteous judgment to reward his sheep.
Psalm 27 teaches that God is our light and salvation. Psalm 28 tells how he answers prayer. Psalm 29 emphasizes God’s glory. In Psalm 30 God is our joy. In Psalm 31 he is our refuge. Because of this, Psalm 37 affirms that we can rest secure in God in all circumstances, and Psalms 38 and 41 explain that God is our help even in sickness or in other trying moments of our lives. No wonder we say, “Praise be to the LORD, the God of Israel, from everlasting to everlasting. Amen and Amen.”
- What is the significance that each of the five books that make up the Psalter end with a declaration of praise?
- Review some of the major themes we have studied throughout Psalms 1-41. What have you learned about both yourself and the Lord?
Application: Praise God for his mercy toward you in the Lord Jesus Christ, and pray for ways to show mercy to others in need.
The Alliance of Confessing Evangelicals is member supported and operates only by your faithful support. Thank you.
Think and Act Biblically from James Boice is a devotional of the Alliance of Confessing Evangelicals. It is supported only by its readers and gracious Christians like you. Please prayerfully consider supporting Think and Act Biblically and the mission of the Alliance.