The Past is Gone
by Ray Harmer
Psalm 103 starts with “Bless the Lord, O my soul: and all that is within me, bless his holy name,” and is used a total of six times in this chapter. For me to think of blessing the Lord is awkward, because I equate blessing from Him. What do I possess that I could bless Him? I do not think I have anything He needs. He blesses our world in a myriad of ways, He blesses His followers and the non believers as well (for reasons only known to Him, but based upon His love for all souls). So what then?
One theologian describes the word “bless,” as applied to God, “means to praise, implying always a strong affection for him as well as a sense of gratitude.” As used with reference to people, the word implies, “ a “wish” that they may be blessed or happy, accompanied often with a prayer that they may be so.”According to this definition, we do have something to offer God-our praise. I think I speak for most folk that if someone does something for me, I would like to be able to return the favor. We have to be very careful here that we do not think our works are worthy of repaying a Holy God. We are reminded in Isaiah 64:6, “But we are all as an unclean thing, and all our righteousnesses(our “good” works) are as filthy rags;…” As Christians we should perform good works for others to demonstrate God’s love through us, but it is in no way working our way to Heaven; otherwise, Jesus died in vain (Mt. 5:16).
So, all we have to offer God is our praise and it is the thing He most desires of us. Should we take a day off from work to search for the great things He has done for us? Sorry, no need for that. Just take a second and read Ps. 103:3-4, “ Who forgiveth all thine iniquities; who healeth all thy diseases; Who redeemeth thy life from destruction; who crowneth thee with lovingkindness and tender mercies.” Now that is “amazing grace”! But, why stop here. “As far as the east is from the west, so far hath he removed our transgressions from us” (Ps. 103:12).
Many of the redeemed have a past they cannot forget. For the most part, we fight the good fight and not dwell on what was done “BC” (before Christ), but Ol Slew-foot never gives up (1 Pet. 5:8). But God has removed our sin. It is gone, out of here, never to return, departed, forgotten as if it never happened-not guilty! Bless the Lord, O my soul! Now that is something to bless God about! Jesus died for all of mankind’s sin and made these truths possible.
December 14, 2018
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