Opening Prayer: Psalm 47.5, 6
God has gone up with a shout,
The LORD with the sound of a trumpet.
Sing praises to God, sing praises!
Sing praises to our King, sing praises!
Sing Psalm 47.5, 6
(Truro: Shout, for the Blessed Jesus Reigns)
God has ascended with a shout, the Lord with sound of trumpet bold!
Sing praise to Him, let praise ring out! Let praise through all the world be told!
Read Psalm 47 (don’t forget the superscription!); meditate on verse 1
1. How would you describe the mood of this psalm?
2. What is the central focus of Psalm 47?
What a contrast between this psalm and the previous one! In Psalm 46, the sons of Korah celebrated God as Immanuel – with them, in their midst, a very present Help. Here, in Psalm 47, they are whooping it up at God being ascended into the heavens and gathering all the nations and peoples of the world to Himself. In Psalm 46 He was “in our midst”; in Psalm 47 He is “LORD Most High” (v. 2). What a glorious contrast and mystery!
In theological terms, Psalm 46 celebrates the immanence of God, while Psalm 47 extols His transcendence. Both are true, and true at all times. God is always with us and He is always high above us. He is always available to help us in our times of need, and He is always reigning over all things, arranging everything for our good (Rom. 8.28).
Believers today don’t think much about the ascension of King Jesus to the right hand of God – what He might be doing there as He awaits the day of His return. The sons of Korah give us a glimpse into the reign of Immanuel-LORD-Most-High, so that maybe we, too, will feel like whooping it up a bit more over the fact that Jesus has ascended and is enthroned in glory, and He rules over all the nations of the earth.
Even as He continues to be our very present Help in times of trouble. Amazing!
Treasure Old and New: Matthew 13.52; Psalm 119.162
What does it take to make you want to clap your hands?
What has to happen to make you want to shout for joy?
The dictionary defines the word clap as: to strike the palms of one’s hands together repeatedly, typically in order to applaud someone or something.
And shout: to utter a loud call or cry, typically as an expression of a strong emotion.
God, above all, is worthy of our applause. Clap!
And God, in all His glory – the fear of Him and His extraordinary love – should cause the strongest emotion our hearts can ever feel. Shout!
So yes, all people, should clap and shout for the LORD Most High!
He is The King over all the earth.
He is our King.
We serve Him.
We love Him.
We honor Him.
We adore Him.
“For our citizenship is in heaven…” (Phil. 3.20).
“For here we have no continuing city, but we seek the one to come. Therefore by Him let us continually offer the sacrifice of praise to God, that is, the fruit of our lips, giving thanks to His name” (Heb. 13.14, 15).
“Then a voice came from the throne, saying, ‘Praise our God, all you His servants and those who fear Him, both small and great!’” (Rev. 19.5).
That’s a lot to clap and shout about, so “whoop it up!” for the Home Team!
1. The emotion in this psalm seems very strong. Why? Do you ever feel this kind of emotion in the Presence of the Lord?
2. Why is the ascension of Jesus so important to our faith?
3. Why is it so important to keep both the immanence and the transcendence of God in mind?
We sing this psalm in praise to God, that he is with us and wonderfully sustains his Word and Christendom against the gates of hell, against the raging of all the devils, fanatical spirits, the world, flesh, sin and death. Martin Luther (1483-1546), Summaries of the Psalms (1531-1533)
Closing Prayer: Psalm 47.7-9
Praise God for His sovereign rule and Kingdom. Ask Him to help you in gathering the nations to Him, to exalt and praise His Name.
Sing Psalm 47.7-9
(Truro: Shout, for the Blessed Jesus Reigns)
God is the King of all the earth, sing praise to Him with glorious psalms!
He rules the nations by His worth, and on His throne receives their alms.
Princes of peoples gather all to Abraham and to our God.
Exalt the Lord, and on Him call. The earth is His, so praise our God!
T. M. and Susie Moore
You can listen to our summary of last week’s study by clicking here.
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Except as indicated, all Scriptures are taken from the New King James Version. © Copyright 1982 by Thomas Nelson, Inc. Used by permission. All rights reserved. For sources of all quotations, see the weekly PDF of this study. All psalms for singing are from The Ailbe Psalter (Williston: Waxed Tablet Publications, 2006), available by clicking here.