Psalm 98 Make a Joyful Noise
What are some of the different ways we can praise God? With our mouths. With our hands. With our bodies. With our minds. With our computers? We can tell others how good God is. By sharing what he done for us with others. Can we praise God by whispering? Can we praise God by shouting? Why should we praise God? In Psalm 98 David gives us three reasons: Because of what God has done in the past. Because of what God is doing in the present. And because of what God will do in the future.
Because Jesus is our Saviour in History
“Sing to the LORD a new song, for he has done marvellous things; his right hand and his holy arm have worked salvation for him. 2 The LORD has made his salvation known and revealed his righteousness to the nations. 3 He has remembered his love and his faithfulness to the house of Israel; all the ends of the earth have seen the salvation of our God. (Psalm 98:1-3)
Notice these verses are written in the past tense. “he has done” … “have worked” … “has made” … “has remembered” … “have seen” This Psalm is talking about Jesus. How do we know? Where does Jesus sit? On the right hand of the Father. What has Jesus done? We are told three times what God has done in Jesus. The word is mentioned in each verse. What is it? Salvation.
Jesus is our Saviour because he died in our place. He came to rescue us from sin and judgement. To forgive our sin and give us His Spirit to enable us to worship God; to become like Jesus; to know God personally for ever and ever. Who did Jesus die for? Everyone in the world. “all the ends of the earth have seen the salvation of our God”. That is why we praise God in Jesus name. In fact, unless we recognise Jesus as our Saviour, God will not accept our praises. We can only come to him through Jesus. Have you accepted Jesus as your Saviour? If you receive him into your life you become a child of God and you will want to praise God because Jesus is our Saviour.
Second reason we should praise God?
Because Jesus is our Lord and King Now
“Shout for joy to the LORD, all the earth, burst into jubilant song with music; 5 make music to the LORD with the harp, with the harp and the sound of singing, 6 with trumpets and the blast of the ram’s horn— shout for joy before the LORD, the King. 7 Let the sea resound, and everything in it, the world, and all who live in it. 8 Let the rivers clap their hands, let the mountains sing together for joy.” (Psalm 98:4-8)
Jesus is not only our Saviour because he died on the cross in our place. He is also our Lord and King in the present – in the here and now. He wants us to get to know him, to talk to him, to listen to him, to follow him and obey him so that we will become like him. That is his plan for your life. One way we get to know Jesus better is through singing songs of worship. In fact that is why David was inspired to write these psalms. We may not know the tune to these songs but they sound pretty loud! How do we know that?
Because he tells us to ‘shout for joy” twice and to use the “blast of the ram’s horn”. Even creation - the sea, the rivers and the mountains are excited to see what God is doing through Jesus the Lord and King of the universe.
One day everyone will have to recognise Jesus as the Lord and King. But for now we can do so because we want to. So the first reason to praise God? Jesus is our Saviour in history.
And the second reason? Jesus is our King now.
And the third reason to praise God concerns the future.
Because Jesus will be our Judge one day soon.
“let them sing before the LORD, for he comes to judge the earth. He will judge the world in righteousness and the peoples with equity.” (Psalm 98:9)
Does this sound a strange reason to praise God? Who ever heard of someone praising a judge! Even one that judges equally.
Are you looking forward to Jesus coming back as judge? I am. Why? Because he will judge all evil. He will punish all wickedness. He will right all wrongs. He will remove all suffering.
Do you know the difference between a slave and a son? A son is afraid when his father leaves. A slave is afraid when his master comes. If you are afraid of Jesus coming as judge, then it is probably because you have not yet accepted Jesus as your Saviour, you probably have not recognised him as your Lord and King. That is why people are afraid of Jesus coming as judge. That is why they cannot praise him now. But if Jesus is your Saviour, your Lord and King, then you need not fear his return to judge because your sin has already been judged by God on the cross. You have already been forgiven. You have eternal life. You can praise him that when he returns. The Book of Revelation tells us what will happen for those who trust in Jesus as Saviour and Lord.
“And I heard a loud voice from the throne saying, “Look! God’s dwelling place is now among the people, and he will dwell with them. They will be his people, and God himself will be with them and be their God. 4 ‘He will wipe every tear from their eyes. There will be no more death’ or mourning or crying or pain, for the old order of things has passed away.” (Revelation 21:3-4)
Three reasons to praise God in Jesus.
Because Jesus is our Saviour in history.
Because Jesus is our Lord and King now.
Because Jesus will be our judge one day soon.