Psalm 66 Devotional
by Pastor Lawrence
This is clearly and evangelistic psalm. Notice how the psalmist is continually addressing “all the earth” and “the peoples” or nations. He is showing them the wondrous works of God through the medium of song. Of course, the Jews themselves were also taught to sing this song, thus they were being taught to have an evangelistic focus and a missionary heart as well. He is exhorting both groups to shout and sing of God’s glory, of his might, and of his salvation.
At times he desires to put the exact words into their mouths that they might share in his joy. He exhorts them: “Say to God, ‘How awesome are your deeds! So great is your power that your enemies come clinging to you. All the earth worships you and sings praise to you; they sing praises to your name.” I would encourage you to take this exhortation literally, and to say these words out loud to yourself a few times and to meditate upon their meaning as you pray these things back to God. It is wonderful sometimes how the simple Word of God works as a means of grace for us to increase our faith.
Notice, also how the psalmist is so excited to share the good news with his hearers, he says: “Come and see what God has done.” This enthusiasm reminds me of Phillip’s excitement to tell Nathanael about Christ. When Nathanel first hear about Jesus being from Nazareth, he said, “Can anything good come out of Nazareth?” And Phillip said to him, “Come and see.” When someone truly adores Christ, he wants to share that adoration with others. He wants others to love the object of his affections. It makes me want to pray that I would adore God in the way that this psalmist does, so that I would be as eager as he is to share the good news with others.
Then, in vv.16-20, the psalmist again says, “Come and hear, all you who fear God, and I will tell what he has done for my soul.” He had already shared in vv.8ff how the Lord had sustained him and his brothers in the midst of great difficulty, but now in these verses, he shares how God had heard and answered his prayers, desiring to share with the Gentiles that the Lord cares for his people, comforts their souls and draws near to all who are humble in heart.
But he also warns the world that if he had cherished iniquity in his heart that the Lord would not have listened to him. Instead he is confident that his prayers would be rejected by a holy God. Here the psalmist is teaching his hearers something about sin and its consequences in how it disrupts any relationship with the Lord.
Even though this is rudimentary in terms of the gospel, it is a clear testimony by a believer that God is both Lord and savior of the nations, that he helps all those who call upon in truth, and that those who do so must acknowledge their sin in order to be heard by him. And he is so excited to share this news of God’s salvation of Israel from Egypt and how God had answered his particular prayers. Now that we have a fuller gospel with the revelation of Jesus Christ and even greater grace and help through the Holy Spirit, we ought to be at least as excited as this psalmist is to share the good news and to sing and shout God’s praise. May the Lord grant to us that grace and that enthusiasm even in our prayers and in our songs.