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Public thanks and praise

God is worthy not only of being thanked or praised in private, but also in public. We see an example of this in today's passage:

I will give thanks to you, O Lord, among the peoples; I will sing praises to you among the nations. For your steadfast love is great to the heavens, your faithfulness to the clouds. (Psalm 57:9-10)

Here, the psalmist commits to giving thanks to his Lord. Notably, he plans on doing it "among the peoples" (v. 9). Whom in particular did he have in mind? We're not told. But David, the author, was anointed to be king, so he would certainly have access to several peoples. We see, in poetic parallelism, what "peoples" means, when we read, "I will sing praises to you among the nations" (v. 9). "Peoples" and "nations" are synonymous here. David intends to thank his Lord before other nations.

Similar to giving thanks in public, David would also sing praises to God in public. He would do it for others to hear.

Why? That's what we find in verse 10: "For your steadfast love is great to the heavens". This word translated "steadfast love" is used often in the Old Testament, and it refers to the love that God had for His people, a love so great that He would go into a covenant with them, even though they were ill-deserving of it. It was an unearned, undeserved love. And it was "steadfast". This love was "great to the heavens". His love was bigger than the heavens.

David thanks and praises God also for His "faithfulness" which was great "to the clouds". His faithfulness was bigger than the clouds.

It was for these reasons that David set his mind on giving thanks to God among the peoples and singing praises to Him among the nations. God deserved public thanks and praise.

What is the point of the public nature of this thanks and praise? To glorify God. To give Him due honor. We understand this when we hear a husband give a toast to his wife or see a newspaper article announcing graduations. The public nature of the thanks and praise gives glory and honor to God, and God deserves it.

God always has and always will be worthy of public thanks and praise. His steadfast love and faithfulness was evident to David then, but it should be even more evident to us now. David had a shadowy understanding of God's plan of redemption, but for us now, it's crystal clear.

God made a promise in the form of a curse to the serpent in Genesis 3. The serpent would bruise the heel of one of Eve's descendants, but that descendant would crush its head. We see it finally fulfilled in Jesus Christ. The serpent, Satan, was successful in seeing Jesus Christ killed (according to God's plan), but in Christ's resurrection--His victory over sin, death, and Satan--the serpent is crushed. Satan is now unable to deceive the nations as the gospel goes forth into the world, this good news that all who trust in Jesus Christ will not perish because of their sins but instead will be given eternal life.

In Christ, we see the ultimate display of God's steadfast love and faithfulness. And because of this, all of God's people should give thanks to Him among the peoples and praise Him among the nations. Is He not worthy?

What does that look like for you? Are you publicly a follower of Christ? Do you delight in Him? And is that evident in how you talk about and sing about Him? He is worthy of your public thanks and praise.

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