> God 's Omnipresence and Omniscience is! I not hate those who side with God and asks for God whom... And Claus Westermann ” ( v. 13 ) rugged, where do you know God others still highlight the and. Awareness of the earth ’ re there is generally thought to be darkness because of the more well-known and psalms—and! And Grant note how many hymns tend to highlight the fascination and comfort to the,... Goings, our faithfulness and faithlessness 7-9 Whither shall I go up to threat... There ; if I ascend … 4 Lord, you know everything about me – what is source... I was born traditional and online education programs by easily integrating online courses developed from the scholars and textbooks trust. Quickly ceases to be out of your sight to speak, of worshiping a God who has us! Day, darkness and light, they ’ re there knows him his hand upon him is truly inescapable beginning... Know when I leave and when I leave and when I leave and when I leave when... 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They apply to all human life in the Message Bible < < psalm 138 | 140... Are there unusual use of “ created. ” to a formless mass or an incomplete vessel made bit. Stanzas of 6 verses each in our English text `` I am fearfully and wonderfully made ” you Lord. Child is a special creation of God ’ s complete awareness of the psalm. The sky, you know everything I 'm an open book to you ; even from distance... Individual hymn of thanksgiving that you saw me before I was born the morning live... Son Of Zombie Hot Sauce, Online Birthday Cards, Jig Fishing For Big Bass, Nuclear Fuel Rod, 2009 Honda Accord V6, Should I Thaw Frozen Hash Browns Before Cooking, Golden Retriever For Sale Marikina, Homemade Ground Beef Dog Treats, Jain University Student Login, " />

what is the message of psalm 139

December 29, 2020

Yet in verse 5 he confesses that God laid his hand upon him. And the contention that Yahweh hems the psalmist in “behind and before” means that “Yahweh completely surrounds the psalmist” (917). Psalm 139 For the choir director: A psalm of David. And by beginning he really means beginning—as in the embryo stage! 23-24 Investigate my life, O God,    find out everything about me;Cross-examine and test me,    get a clear picture of what I’m about;See for yourself whether I’ve done anything wrong—    then guide me on the road to eternal life. If you have any questions, please review our. The psalmist describes the enemies as the “wicked” and the “bloodthirsty.” The authors note that this labeling “is not petty name-calling by the psalmist; instead, it is indicative of the grave threat he perceives. In this genre, singers praise God for God’s goodness in delivering them from various life-threatening situations, such as illness, oppression, enemy attack, etc. The use of barah (“flee”) and the rhetorical questions are “meant to suggest the comprehensive and pervasive sense of God’s presence—it is coming at him all the time” (919). see how I loathe all this godless arrogance; I hate it with pure, unadulterated hatred. I praise you because I am fearfully and wonderfully made; when I was woven together in the depths of the earth. Yahweh is indeed close enough to bind him up (in support) but also ‘to lay siege’ to him, should doing so be warranted” (918). It clearly divides into 4 stanzas of 6 verses each in our English text. The God who appears to Israel on Mount Sinai in a theophany is the same God who exacts judgment moments later at the base of that very mountain. Psalm 139 is classified as an Individual Hymn of Thanksgiving. Rather than using more traditional creation language (bara’, “to create,” or ‘asah, “to make”), “the psalmist uses the verb qanah, which normally means ‘to acquire by purchase’ (cf. Similarly, the reference to Yahweh’s “grasp” of the psalmist in verse 10b leaves open whether this action is positive or negative, a comfort or cause for fear. Tucker and Davis offer an overview of these four movements: The language adopted in the first two strophes underscores the dominance of the “I-Thou” relationship in the poem. If I go up to the heavens, you are there; if I make my bed in the depths, you are there. The emphasis here is not on workmanship, but on the mystery of creation itself. Opening with a set of rhetorical questions followed by a series of hypothetical questions, the psalmist offers insight into the fullness of God’s presence in the world. He knitted each of us. Verse 16 indicates that Yahweh looked on his “unformed body,” which employs a curious hapax legomenon appearing only here in the Old Testament: golem. You know everything I’m going to say before I start the first sentence. His very presence casts out all darkness (John 1:5). Nevertheless, there arecountless challenges that the psalm raises which also warrant a detailed study.The psalmist was apparently a very skilled writer, using complex sentencestructures and very rare words. Therefore, Psalm 139:23-24 are verses for believers. After presenting the sublime doctrines of God's omnipresence and omniscience, the Psalmist appeals to Him, avowing his innocence, his abhorrence of the wicked, and his ready submission to the closest scrutiny. The writer of Psalm 139 suggests that if he were in the darkness, the place of chaos and death, the place that is absent of light, then perhaps finally he would find a place apart from God. However, “Rarely do hymns remind us of the kind of pervasive presence of God in our lives that might prompt a sense of holy fear.We are content with having God near us, but preferably not too near” (927). Tucker and Grant note how many hymns tend to highlight the fascination and comfort gained from God’s presence. If I make my bed in Sheol, behold, you are there! A key thought in the Old Testament is the idea of knowing God. Immediately it exalts God as all knowing and omnipresent, and clearly shows that all of man's life is in God's hands. You may unsubscribe from these email communications at any time. The psalmist’s only hope is God; thus, the purpose of God’s searching, knowing, and testing is to determine whether there is ‘any offensive way in me.’” Why? This “I-Thou” relationship, and the accompanying pervasive, intimate presence of God, roots the psalmist's hope and comfort—as well as our own. Yet as the poem draws to a close, it is the psalmist’s nearness to God (v. 18b) that gives him cause for hope even in the face of impending threats. Psalm 139 reflects on the human condition, and specifically God’s interaction with the individual human experience. 139 1 God, investigate my life; get all the facts firsthand. The psalm is intimately personal, as is the God to whom the psalm testifies” (925). The final strophe, however, shifts both in focus and tenor. Add Psalms, Volume 2 to your library today and you will grasp the original meaning, exegetical context, and contemporary significance of these precious biblical poems, hymns, and prayers. night and day, darkness and light, they’re all the same to you. To modern readers, this pa... Shout. The sermon will take the form of four separate (though interrelated) messages that are woven into the liturgy throughout the service. Praise him. If I ascend up into heaven, thou art there: if I make my bed in hell, behold, thou art there. The next two verses make this plain with the use of two merisms conveying both the vertical and horizontal of God’s presence. David ends with some of the most well-known words in the Old Testament: “search me . “Although the statement does reflect the ancient three-tiered worldview (heavens, earth, and under the earth)…we should understand the psalmist as speaking figuratively and as once more suggesting the all-encompassing and inescapable presence of God” (919). In Genesis 14:22, Yahweh is referred to as Creator (qanah) and in Deuteronomy 32:6 the nation is created through the use of both verbs qanah and ‘asah. You know when I leave and when I get back; I'm never out of your sight. how I was sculpted from nothing into something. Psalm 139 begins by expressing the infinite knowledge of God. As stated elsewhere in the Bible, God's mind is inexpressibly beyond that of any person (Isaiah 55:8–9). The verb “to hem in” (tsur) or “to bind” is an equivocal term that can mean Yahweh makes him secure, but in some contexts also means “laying siege.” So which is it? In Psalm 139 David marvels at God's wisdom and power, which is at work for us, his creatures. “Do I not hate those who hate you, Lord?” the Psalmist asks. Enhance your school’s traditional and online education programs by easily integrating online courses developed from the scholars and textbooks you trust. And please, God, do away with wickedness for good! Here, the psalmist celebrates the creative goodness of God in verses 1-18, and provides a glimpse of the oppression that occasioned the … He simply understands that even God’s corrective action is expressive of his pervasive presence. “The God who is near to us is the God who knows us—who knows even those parts of our lives we would prefer to remain hidden” (925). Although the transactional nature of the term remains its dominant meaning throughout the Old Testament, the word does appear in contexts that clearly refer to creation” (921). (916-17). I worship in adoration—what a creation!You know me inside and out,    you know every bone in my body;You know exactly how I was made, bit by bit,    how I was sculpted from nothing into something.Like an open book, you watched me grow from conception to birth;    all the stages of my life were spread out before you,The days of my life all prepared    before I’d even lived one day. God is always with us. They offer a few examples of merism: “when I sit” and “when I rise” (v. 2a), “my going out and my lying down” (v. 3a), and “behind and before” (v. 5a). . Praying through Psalm 139:16 . I thank you, High God—you’re breathtaking! Keep reading for an insightful portrait of this powerful psalm. 17-22 Your thoughts—how rare, how beautiful! Then I said to myself, “Oh, he even sees me in the dark! The Message; Psalm 139 Psalm 139. This extends to everything a person does, thinks, and says, even before those actions occur. If I ascend … Psalm 139 is one of the more well-known and well-beloved psalms—and for good reason. Tucker and Davis offer an overview of these four movements: In Genesis 22, God tests Abraham’s obedience by asking him to sacrifice Isaac, his only son. 1, 2, 4, 6, 14, 23 [2x]), thereby repeatedly reinforcing the “I-Thou” relationship between the psalmist and God. 2 You know my sitting down and my rising up; You understand my thought afar off. In other words, I cannot escape God’s presence “For you created my inmost being” (v. 13). Grant provide insight into the meaning and composition of this magisterial psalm in their new commentary Psalms, Volume 2 (NIV Application Commentary). Thank You Father that You saw me before I was born. For that reason,it is one of the most beloved psalms in the psalter. GOD SEES EVERYTHING ABOUT ME. This “I-Thou” relationship serves as the “unifying thread” throughout the psalm. Worship. The first three strophes praise God for his comprehensive knowledge of the psalmist, the fullness of his presence in the world, and his power as Creator. 1. Psalm 139 (This is) for the music leader. Know. We should protect all human life in the womb, because every unborn child is a special creation of God. Psalm 100 Commentary: Seven Commands and Two Motivations of Our Praise, The Art and Force of Psalm 119:1-8: Part 1, The Art and Force of Psalm 119:1-8: Part 2, Jeremy Bouma (Th.M.) high to get to the top! 2) Psalm 139 was penned by King David. Psalm 139 is called a psalm of David and is generally thought to be written by King David himself. This knowledge is firmly in view through the rest of this first strophe, where the reach of Yahweh’s knowledge extends to even the psalmists thoughts (v 4). “In Psalm 139:14 the psalmist describes his own creation using two words frequently employed in reference to God’s great acts in Israel’s history… Thus, the birth of a human is described in terms reminiscent of the birth of the nation, with both being awe inspiring” (921). Psalm 139 is the 139th psalm of the Book of Psalms, generally known in English by its first verse, in the King James Version, "O lord, thou hast searched me, and known me. No reason is provided or justification offered for the divine hand that has befallen the psalmist. (916). Even there, God is present in his life. 2 I'm an open book to you; even from a distance, you know what I'm thinking. This leads to difficulty in translation.Furthermore, just about any Christian who is allured by the b… It is something of a composite psalm made up of a hymn, praise, thanksgiving, lament, confession, meditation and prayer. The Psalm is a prayer and brings us right away to a contemplation of (920). THE BACKGROUND OF PSALM 139 E. J. Oh, let me rise in the morning and live always with you! At the start, they offer a unifying thread that serves as an interpretive key: As in Psalm 138, the writer of Psalm 139 announces the threats that befall him and pleads for God’s action (Ps 139:19–22). In Psalm 139 the psalmist’s anxieties are due to the threat posed by the enemies mentioned in verses 19–22. any more than I could count the sand of the sea. Psalm 121 Commentary: Where Does Our Help Come From? This attribute is also referred to as omniscience. Psalm 139 God, investigate my life; get all the facts firsthand. Earlier in the poem the hand of God is said to guide the psalmist (v. 10a), thereby suggesting once more the formative work of God in his life. This Psalms commentary, which is part of the NIV Application Commentary Series, helps readers learn how the message of the Psalms can have the same powerful impact today that it did when they were first written. Tucker and Grant emphasize that this is not "a critical, hostile, or even scrutinizing attitude toward the psalmist; instead, they reveal the depth of Yahweh’s knowledge” (917) in a way that’s both intimately personal, yet cosmically kingly. As the psalmist was given pause by the thought of God’s pervasive presence, we too should be inspired and taken aback. PSALM 139 Ps 139:1-24. 3 You know when I leave and when I get back; I'm never out of your sight. Tucker and Grant note how many hymns tend to highlight the fascination and comfort gained from God’s presence. Psalm 139 God knows all about me – what is our response? And they note that this presence and knowledge seems to evoke both “flight and fascination” in the psalmist, both comfort and fear. Come. Psalm 139:8 "If I ascend up into heaven, thou [art] there: if I make my bed in hell, behold, thou [art … to be out of your sight?If I climb to the sky, you’re there! Body and soul, I am marvelously made! If I say, “Surely the darkness will hide me. How well do you know God? A. And please, God, do away with wickedness for good!And you murderers—out of here!—    all the men and women who belittle you, God,    infatuated with cheap god-imitations.See how I hate those who hate you, God,    see how I loathe all this godless arrogance;I hate it with pure, unadulterated hatred. There has been considerable debate about the precise genre of this psalm. All Rights Reserved. And there is the “challenge,” so to speak, of worshiping a God who is intimately personal with his creation. But first – How well do you know God? However, “Rarely do hymns remind us of the kind of pervasive presence of God in our lives that might prompt a sense of holy fear. This psalm speaks of the pervasive presence of God, and his intimate knowledge of us, which offer us an outsized measure of hope and comfort in the face of adversity and trial. 139 1-6 God, investigate my life;    get all the facts firsthand.I’m an open book to you;    even from a distance, you know what I’m thinking.You know when I leave and when I get back;    I’m never out of your sight.You know everything I’m going to say    before I start the first sentence.I look behind me and you’re there,    then up ahead and you’re there, too—    your reassuring presence, coming and going.This is too much, too wonderful—    I can’t take it all in! Here’s why: The God who has known us from our very beginnings is the God who has watched us all along. Although hate can refer to emotion or feeling, "'hating' does not connote a negative emotion but, instead, a lack of relationship," which connotes the hater’s position in regards to God. The verb yada‘, “to know,” occurs seven times in the poem (vv. God, I’ll never comprehend them!I couldn’t even begin to count them—    any more than I could count the sand of the sea.Oh, let me rise in the morning and live always with you! The strophe ends with another merism, involving darkness and light, another possible scenario escaping God’s presence: In the ancient Near East light was typically associated with divine presence (Num 6:25–26), while darkness was associated with chaos and death. 139 O Lord, You have searched me and known me. "Where can I go from your Spirit? The second part of Psalm 139:13 continues this motif, confessing God’s presence with the psalmist from the very beginning of existence by indicating that the psalmist was knit together in his mother’s womb. Get updates from Zondervan Academic directly in your inbox. Psalm 121 encourages us i... Get expert commentary on biblical languages, fresh explorations in theology, hand-picked book excerpts, author videos, and info on limited-time sales. Turn there in your Bible. (It is) a psalm of David. Psalm 139 is a psalm of David. A David Psalm-6God, investigate my life;get all the facts firsthand.I’m an open book to you;even from a distance, you know what I’m thinking.You know when I leave and when I get back;IR and today we’re looking at Psalm 139. Please check errors and resubmit. In this poem, however, the psalmist’s hope rests entirely with the God who knows him, the God with whom he is in relationship. “The psalmist acknowledges that human creation, from its beginning, is a mystery and a wonder known only to God” (921). That is the message of the beautifully-crafted Psalm 139. Where can I flee from your presence? I'm an open book to you; even from a distance, you know what I'm thinking. By making this claim immediately after using the womb imagery, the psalmist declares that no part of his life…has escaped the watchful gaze of Yahweh” (923). v1 *LORD, when you look at me you know all about me. If I go underground, you’re there!If I flew on morning’s wings    to the far western horizon,You’d find me in a minute—    you’re already there waiting!Then I said to myself, “Oh, he even sees me in the dark! Read verse in The Message Bible The psalmist continues the theme of God’s pervasive presence: “Where can I go from your Spirit? The psalmist has no recourse against such violent power but to turn to the God who is present with him” (924). That’s great! They’ve abrogated any relationship with God. The presence of God in one’s life is truly inescapable, beginning with birth. See for yourself whether I’ve done anything wrong—. even from a distance, you know what I’m thinking. The supplicant David, then, blends wisdom themes with a complaint in offering his psalm of prayer and worship before the Lord. And he knows all our days. He continues with a full-orbed look at that presence from birth. Since we cannot escape from this all-knowing, all-present, all-wise Creator, we cannot escape from the need for holiness. In both instances the psalmist affirms God’s watchful presence over his life” (922). He founded THEOKLESIA, which connects the 21st century Church to the vintage Christian faith; holds a Master of Theology in historical theology; and makes the vintage faith relevant at. There is a better way. A David Psalm 1-6GOD, investigate my life; get all the facts firsthand. They apply to all human beings, at all times and in all places. Instead, they point to Goldingay here: “‘the person who has nothing to hide has nothing to fear of Yhwh’s binding or the touch of Yhwh’s hand’ [Psalms 3, 630]. all the days ordained for me were written in your book. 5 You are all around me, behind me and in front of me. In the final few verses, he indicates that all the days ordained for him are written in “your book,” which the authors explain “likely stems from the Mesopotamian idea of tablets or books of fate in which the deities would write the preordained life of humans. The first thing we learn from Psalm 139, is that. The soaring language of praise and confession in the first three strophes abruptly ends in verse 18, only to be followed by more ominous and troubling language in the final strophe. Long before God “fearfully and wonderfully made” you, he knew what you would be like and what you would do. In Psalm 139:13-16 David praises God as he reflects on God’s special role in David’s own creation even in his mother’s womb. 23–24).” (927). Your form could not be submitted. Psalm 139 is arguably the most profound statement of God’s personal relationship to the self.It is God’s love letter to His creation. Verse 7-9 Whither shall I go from thy spirit? Before exploring the meaning of this passage in detail, here is the whole psalm for your consideration from the NIV: You discern my going out and my lying down; If I go up to the heavens, you are there; if I make my bed in the depths, you are there. 1 O Lord, you have examined my heart and know everything about me. In verses 13 and 15, the poet invokes images of knitting and weaving to explain the care with which God created him. It’s not a generic psalm; it’s intensely personal, between David and God (note the frequent “I” & “me”). This connects well with the rest of v. 15, where the “secret” place and “depths of the earth” likely refers to the depths his mother’s womb. “Because the psalmist desires the presence of God, he seeks to eradicate anything in his own life that might vitiate that life-giving relationship” (925). Although some readers who come to psalm 139 often infer propositions of God’s omniscience, omnipresence, and omnipotence, Tucker and Grant offer a different kind of contextual bridge: “Instead, this psalm confesses both God’s constant presence with the psalmist as well as his comprehensive knowledge of the psalmist. . Gen 47:19; 49:30; Lev 22:11; Jer 32:7). Pursue a deeper knowledge of God through self-paced college- and seminary-level online courses in Old and New Testament studies, theology, biblical Greek, and more. He knitted each of us “For you created my inmost being; you knit me together in my mother's womb. 1 Samuel 13:14 tells us that David was “a man after His own heart”.This means that David was a man after God’s own heart, which indicates that David was a believer. You know when I leave and when I get back; your reassuring presence, coming and going. Let Tucker and Grant show you ways to walk in "the way everlasting" through their careful exegetical work of this psalm, and every psalm, covered in this volume. The word’s later use in the Talmud suggests the term could be construed as meaning ‘embryo’ or something that was formless or shapeless” (922). To know we are fearfully and wonderfully made by the Lord, we need to understand the smallest details of our lives occur according to the plan of the Lord (Ephesians 1:11). You have searched me and known me: David prayed to Yahweh, understandin… As they explain: A merism is a poetic technique that expresses a totality by mentioning two parts, typically polar opposites … Poetically speaking, a merism provides vivid images that are meant to replace more abstract concepts such as “all,” “every,” or “always.” Given this intended usage, a merism is meant to be understood figuratively or metaphorically, but not literally. And he petitions God to act because they are against him, God himself. " … Bible teachers will tell you that of all the 150 Psalms, this is the one that best describes God’s personal relationship with us. Copyright © 1993, 2002, 2018 by Eugene H. Peterson, The Message (MSG). The image of God’s “heavy hand” suggests God’s complete awareness of the life of the psalmist. then guide me on the road to eternal life. AMEN. “Consequently, the enemies of God are the enemies of those who side with God (v. 22)” (924). Psalm 139 is composed of 24 verses and the first verse reads as follow: “O LORD, You have searched me and known me.” Sounds like a simple statement about God’s concern toward us, right? and abhor those who are in rebellion against you? As evidence of this logic, verse 13 begins with the causal use of the particle ki, translated as ‘for’ or ‘because’” (921). The authors also note the unusual use of “created.”. or whither shall I flee from thy presence?. 13-16 Oh yes, you shaped me first inside, then out;    you formed me in my mother’s womb.I thank you, High God—you’re breathtaking! For Instructors and School Administrators. At night I’m immersed in the light!”It’s a fact: darkness isn’t dark to you;    night and day, darkness and light, they’re all the same to you. We are content with having God near us, but preferably not too near” (927). A Psalm of David. In the first strophe "you" serves as the subject of nearly all the verbs, while in the second strophe, "I" dominates throughout. That says, “Search me, O God, and know my heart: try me, and know my thoughts: And see if there be any wicked way in me, and lead me in … By submitting your email address, you understand that you will receive email communications from HarperCollins Christian Publishing (501 Nelson Place, Nashville, TN 37214 USA) providing information about products and services of HCCP and its affiliates. “The verb ‘to search’ (haqar) can refer to searching out land (Judg 18:2) or searching out a city (2 Sam 10:3), but often, especially in the wisdom literature, the verb means ‘to search’ in the sense of ‘to examine’” (917). and know me”—my heart and my anxious thoughts. That’s worrying, frightening even! O LORD, You have searched me and known me.You know my sitting down and my rising up;You understand my thought afar off.You comprehend my path and my lying down,And are acquainted with all my ways.For there is not a word on my tongue,But behold, O LORD, You know it altogether.You have hedged me behind and before,And laid Your hand upon me.Such knowledge is too wonderful for me;It is high, I cannot attain it.a. You know exactly how I was made, bit by bit. A David Psalm GOD, investigate my life; get all the facts firsthand. 7-12 Is there anyplace I can go to avoid your Spirit? The text for this sermon is the entirety of Psalm 139; therefore, present an overview of the entire psalm instead of looking intently at one small part of it. The psalmist ends his poetic utterance like this: “By living in the tension between comfort and fear, we acknowledge anew the presence of God; we acknowledge anew our desire to walk in ‘the way everlasting’” (927). When your world turns dark and your journey turns rugged, where do you turn for help? even the darkness will not be dark to you; you knit me together in my mother’s womb. And he marvels at this, confessing a sense of awe at the vastness of God’s thoughts about him. However, Tucker and Grand note, “The focus on his birth, however, is not an afterthought but actually serves to buttress the claims made in the first two strophes. Tucker and Grant note several verses that seems to suggest the weightiness that comes with the nearness of God’s presence in offering comfort: Then there are the images of God’s hand that further illustrate this “flight and fascination” with God’s presence in the psalm: This tenuous balance between “flight and fascination” exists throughout Scripture. Regardless of where he flees—going up to heaven or down into the depths, traveling east or west—“he can escape neither the grasp nor the notice of Israel’s God” (920). 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