Psa. 117:1 O praise the LORD, all ye nations: praise him, all ye people.
Psa. 117:2 For his merciful kindness is great toward us: and the truth of the LORD endureth for ever. Praise ye the LORD.
As I read this psalm, I couldnŐt help but think of the following verses in Thessalonians.
1Th. 5:16 Rejoice evermore.
1Th. 5:17 Pray without ceasing.
This psalm seems to be a spontaneous exclamation of praise and gratitude to the Lord. The psalmist is definitely on a spiritual mountaintop. He is so joyful that he doesnŐt understand why everyone else isnŐt expressing the same joy. He is encouraging everyone to praise the Lord.
Verse two indicates that the psalmist has gone through a time in which he had personally experienced GodŐs mercy, His kindness—in fact, to a great degree. He knows he didnŐt deserve it. His reference to Ňthe truth of the LordÓ makes me think that he is referring to one or more of GodŐs promises.
This should be the attitude and expression that is recognized in every child of God by the watching world. I know I far too often take GodŐs blessings for granted. We should be bursting at the seams to share the blessings of God in our life with others. Every time God inspires me with a new poem or gives me a new understanding of scripture that IŐve never seen before, I can hardly wait to share that blessing with others. The truth is I should be eager to share the truth of GodŐs goodness and faithfulness ALL the time.
I was about to end my thoughts on this session, when I decided to check the Hebrew for the word praise. Two different words are used in verse 1. The first praise states Ňto be clear, to shine, to make a show, to boast.Ó The second praise states Ňto address in a loud tone, i.e. (specifically) loud; figuratively, to pacify (as if by words):—commend, glory.Ó The psalmist is basically saying that we shouldnŐt be shy or hesitant in declaring our praise. We should speak with the intent to influence others. I was intrigued by the use of the phrase Ňto pacify.Ó When I looked it up in WebsterŐs, I got the idea that our expression of praise would give us a sense of peace and calm. Again, my life verse comes to mind.
Is. 26:3 Thou wilt keep him in perfect peace, whose mind is stayed on thee: because he trusteth in thee.
You canŐt be truly praising God without having your mind focused on Him in faith.