At the time that the ark was brought into Jerusalem, David wrote a psalm of thanks. Either it was a medley of three Psalms (96, 105, and 106), or it was all originally one song and David broke it up into three and added more lyrics to each one later.
Whatever the case, I decided to break them all up and take each psalm one by one. There are minor differences between the passage in Chronicles and the Psalms, but I’ll take the wording from the Psalms.
One of the key themes in this psalm is that God is one who remembers his promises. How God had promised to Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob that he would give them the land of Canaan and make them a great nation. And it didn’t matter what situations they or their descendants faced. God had his hand on them.
When Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob were wandering as strangers in the land, he protected them (12-15). When Joseph was made a slave in Egypt, God caused what he foretold to come true, and made him ruler (17-22). When Egypt oppressed the Israelites, God brought judgment on the Pharaoh and his people (23-38). When the Israelites needed food and in the desert, he provided for them (40-41). And ultimately, God did keep his promises towards them, and that’s what David was celebrating this day.
And God keeps his promises to us. It doesn’t matter what we’re going through. It doesn’t matter what trials we may be facing. It doesn’t matter what struggles we may be going through. God will always keep his promises to us.
And so Paul writes,
18 I consider that our present sufferings are not worth comparing with the glory that will be revealed in us...23 Not only so, but we ourselves, who have the firstfruits of the Spirit, groan inwardly as we wait eagerly for our adoption as sons, the redemption of our bodies. 24 For in this hope we were saved. But hope that is seen is no hope at all. Who hopes for what he already has? 25 But if we hope for what we do not yet have, we wait for it patiently. (Romans 8:18; 23-25)
They day is coming when God will give us rest as he gave the Israelites rest. But until that day, David says this:
1. Remember what the Lord has done, and give him thanks (1,5).
So often we get so caught up in our troubles that we forget to thank him for the good things he’s done for us. And when that happens, our troubles can overwhelm us. But when we remember the good things he has done and give thanks, it helps restore hope and joy to our lives.
2. Sing praise to him. Glory in his name, and rejoice. (2,3)
It is as we praise him and glory in his name that we realize just how big our God is and how small our problems are. And it gets our minds off of our troubles and onto the one who can solve our problems.
3. Look to the Lord and his strength. Seek his face (4)
When life seems too much for you, when it seems there’s no hope, look to the Lord. Seek his face. Ask for his strength. And he will help.
As Paul wrote,
26 In the same way, the Spirit helps us in our weakness. We do not know what we ought to pray for, but the Spirit himself intercedes for us with groans that words cannot express. 27 And he who searches our hearts knows the mind of the Spirit, because the Spirit intercedes for the saints in accordance with God’s will. 28 And we know that in all things God works for the good of those who love him, who have been called according to his purpose. (Romans 8:26-28)
God remembers and keeps his promises towards us. So let us always look to him, remember him, praise him, and seek his face.