Author: Asaph – might have been used during the Feast of Tabernacles
Verse 1 – Sing aloud to God our strength; make a joyful shout to the God of Jacob.
Verse 2 – Raise a song and strike the timbrel, the pleasant harp with the lute.
Verse 3 – Blow the trumpet at the time of the New Moon, at the full moon, on our solemn feast day.
Verse 4 – For this is a statute for Israel, and a law of the God of Jacob.
Verse 5 – This He established in Joseph for a testimony, when He went throughout the land of Egypt, when I heard a language that I did not understand.
God had set up specific times for certain celebrations. The Feast of Tabernacles, also known as the booths of in-gathering, was one of 3 great festivals of the Jewish year, kept from the 15th to the 22nd of the 7th month. All the crops had been harvested.
Every Jewish male was required to attend and everyone born an Israelite was required to live in temporary booths made from trees and palm branches. Sacrifices were made each day. It reminded the Israelites of their wandering in the desert and that life rested on God’s redemption.
Verse 6 – “I removed his shoulder from the burden; His hands were freed from the baskets.”
Verse 7 – “You called in trouble, and I delivered you; I answered you in the secret place of thunder; I proved you at the waters of Meribah.” Selah
Although Asaph wasn’t present during the Exodus events, the past was clearly understood by those present. The Lord freed Israel from the burden of Egyptians bondage. The baskets mentioned were what was used to carry bricks and construction materials under Pharaoh’s orders. So when Asaph wrote this for singing, it reminded the people that they had been delivered by God Himself.
Why do you think there was so much written about the Jews in Egypt and then their deliverance? I think it’s because; God doesn’t want any of us to forget how much He loves those who are His. As believers, when He placed His spirit on the inside of us, He gave us that same power that raised Christ from the dead (Romans 8:10, 11) to be delivered from bondage.
John 14:12 – “Most assuredly, I say to you, he who believes in Me, the works that I do he will do also; and greater works than these shall he do, because I go to My Father.” All those miracles that God wanted us to read about, Jesus says we also shall do too.
Verse 8 – “Hear, O my people, and I will admonish you! O Israel, if you will listen to Me!
Verse 9 – There shall be no foreign god among you; nor shall you worship any foreign god.
Verse 10 – I am the Lord your God, who brought you out of the land of Egypt; open your mouth wide, and I will fill it.”
Verse 11 – “But My people would not heed my voice, and Israel would have none of Me.
Verse 12 – So I gave them over to their own stubborn heart, to walk in their own counsel.”
When God said He let them go to their own counsel, He means He let them go blindly, stubbornly, and selfishly, when they should have been obeying God and desiring what He desired. Sometimes God will let us go in our own ways until we come to realize, “This ain’t working!” Hopefully we will learn important lessons while we walk in rebellion, enough to return back to God.
Verse 13 – “Oh that My people would listen to Me, that Israel would walk in My ways!
Verse 14 – I would soon subdue their enemies, and turn My hand against their adversaries.”
God had promised in His covenant to restore Israel if they would walk in His ways. The biggest sin they did was to fall into the trap of believing these foreign gods were better than the God of Israel.
Verse 15 – The haters of the Lord would pretend submission to Him, but their fate would endure forever.
Verse 16 – He would have fed them also with the finest of wheat; and with honey from the rock. It would have satisfied you.
Wouldn’t you hate to think that you missed the best God has for your life because you settled for less? God always wants the best possible outcome for His children. However, sometimes we get tired of waiting for things to turn around and quit too soon. How sad to stop trying before you see your promise, it might be today, or even this evening. Don’t ever give up on where God is wanting to take you. Jeremiah 29:11 – For I know the thoughts I think toward you, says the Lord, thoughts of peace and not of evil, to give you a future and a hope.