Personal note—I am old enough to remember memorizing this Psalm and Psalm 23 in public school. We also memorized the Christmas story from Luke 2. Oh for the good ole days. I still have one of my workbooks from 5th or 6th grade bible class in public school.
Psa. 100:0 A Psalm of praise.
“praise” = adoration, worship, confession, thanksgiving
“adore” = To worship with profound reverence; to pay divine honors to; to honor as deity or as divine…. To love in the highest degree…
“worship” = religious reverence and homage; adoration…
“confession” = acknowledgement of belief
“thanksgiving” = A public acknowledgment or celebration of divine goodness…
Psa. 100:1 Make a joyful noise unto the LORD, all ye lands.
The Hebrew for joyful noise states “to split the ear with sound, shout.” I love music, and I love to sing and play the piano. I think it is wonderful that David, the musician, is encouraging everyone everywhere to praise the LORD boldly whether or not they can carry a tune or play an instrument perfectly. I think, just as regarding our perception of beauty, the LORD has a much different perspective. He looks for beauty that is of the heart; He appreciates music that is from the heart. The expression of praise is music to God’s ears when it springs forth from a heart of love and gratitude.
Psa. 100:2 Serve the LORD with gladness: come before his presence with singing.
Some translations use the word worship instead of serve, which is correct from the Hebrew; but it also means “to work, to labor.” It’s easy to associate gladness (joy, glee, pleasure) with worship, but we are also to be joyful as we do the work of the Lord. The Hebrew for singing included the idea of triumph or success. This made me think of Joshua 1:8:
This book of the law shall not depart out of thy mouth; but thou shalt meditate therein day and night, that thou mayest observe to do according to all that is written therein: for then thou shalt make thy way prosperous, and then thou shalt have good success.
That led me back to defining working for the LORD. It is obeying all that is written in the word of God.
Psa. 100:3 Know ye that the LORD he is God: it is he that hath made us, and not we ourselves; we are his people, and the sheep of his pasture.
The LORD (YHWH) is God (elohim), a reference to the Trinity—Father, Son and Spirit. To further clarify—He is the Creator. Not one person on planet earth would exist without His creative work. I am reminded as I come to the last part of this verse that this Psalm is addressed to all the people on earth—not just the Jewish people. God created us for His pleasure, for special relationship to Him. If we acknowledge Him in faith and serve Him, we are “His” people and the sheep of His pasture. He wants to take care of us as tenderly as the Shepherd cares for His sheep. He wants us to recognize our weakness and helplessness without Him. He wants to feed us with spiritual food to help us grow and become strong in the Spirit.
Psa. 100:4 Enter into his gates with thanksgiving, and into his courts with praise: be thankful unto him, and bless his name.
The first half of this verse is speaking of an enclosed place that is defined as His. This would also imply that the entrance is controlled. Jesus was very clear that He was the only means of entering the presence of the Father.
John 10:7 Then said Jesus unto them again, Verily, verily, I say unto you, I am the door of the sheep.
John 10:9 I am the door: by me if any man enter in, he shall be saved, and shall go in and out, and find pasture.
John 14:6 Jesus saith unto him, I am the way, the truth, and the life: no man cometh unto the Father, but by me.
The wording is clear that all are invited to enter. It is also clear that the invitation is limited to those who are coming with thanksgiving and praise.
Psa. 100:5 For the LORD is good; his mercy is everlasting; and his truth endureth to all generations.
Even as the Psalmist invites the world to join him; he sets the example by closing in praise and thanksgiving to his LORD.
“the LORD is good” – He is the only One that is good.
Matt. 19:17 And he said unto him, Why callest thou me good? there is none good but one, that is, God: but if thou wilt enter into life, keep the commandments.
Mark 10:18 And Jesus said unto him, Why callest thou me good? there is none good but one, that is, God.
Luke 18:19 And Jesus said unto him, Why callest thou me good? none is good, save one, that is, God.
His mercy (kindness, pity) is everlasting (without end).
Lam. 3:22 It is of the LORD’S mercies that we are not consumed, because his compassions fail not.
Lam. 3:23 They are new every morning: great is thy faithfulness.
His truth is also everlasting; it will never change. Jesus is the embodiment of truth (as stated in John 14:6 above), and He will never change.
Heb. 13:8 Jesus Christ the same yesterday, and to day, and for ever.