Psalm 48

 

This Psalm is an amazing mix of a physical event and the spiritual reality behind it.  We see at different points in the Old Testament where Israel’s enemies have gathered and marched on Jerusalem and suddenly flee. It is debated whether 2 Samuel 10:6-19, 2 Kings 16 or 2 Chronicles 14 and 20 (or some other event) describes the exact event described in Psalm 46:4-8.  The Psalmist does not make it clear.  What is clear however, is that is God who has caused the enemies to flee, and he has preserved his people for a specific purpose.

 

1-8

The Psalmist is praising God, and calling for him to be praised, for God is a fortress to his people! The enemies of God’s people had assembled against them, but they suddenly fled in fear at the sight of God’s city.  The ships of Tarshish were great ships, which could make long voyages through rough waters, the Psalm shows God’s power over the creations of man by his destruction of these ships. There is a promise of God establishing his city forever, which may seem untrue if you consider that Jerusalem was besieged by the Romans and the temple destroyed in 70 AD, but the city of God is not merely a physical location, but made of the followers of Jesus Christ, that is the Church. This promise is still true, as seen by Jesus’ words to Peter that the gates of hell would not overcome the church (Matthew 16:18-19)

 

9-14

The purpose of God saving the Israelites (and presently preserving his Church), is now seen.  It is so his Name will be known and he will be praised throughout the whole earth.  This goes back to his promise to Abraham, that all the families of the earth would be blessed through him.  The people of God should praise him for his faithfulness, and protection.  What God has brought them, and now us through should be told to those around us, so that the Gospel will be spread and God glorified.

 

Individually God has saved us from this world through the death and resurrection of Jesus Christ.  He has brought us into the citizenship of his kingdom, which will endure for all eternity! That is better than being a citizen of this earthly nation we live in, which has corruptions due to being run by sinful humans.  It is less of a roller coaster ride than being a citizen of Red Sox nation. God is the same yesterday, today and forever, and he is a perfect and just ruler.

 

Prayer

 

As a church reading this Psalm, we should be in a constant attitude of praise in our prayers.

 

Give praise to God! He has called us to follow Jesus Christ, invited us to be a part of His body on this earth, and to live eternally in their presence.

 

How often we overlook what God has already done for us, think back on the times that God has preserved you through difficult and trying circumstances.  Praise him for those times.

 

If you are going through a difficult time now, take encouragement from this passage about God’s faithfulness to his people.  Praise him, even now, he is faithful.

 

Pray for the strength, and boldness to proclaim what Christ has done to the “next generation”.  Praise God that he will bring more people into his kingdom.

7 Mile Road