Ascended and Enthroned (5)
Opening Prayer: Psalm 47.7, 8
For God is the King of all the earth;
Sing praises with understanding.
God reigns over the nations;
God sits on His holy throne.
Sing Psalm 47.7, 8
(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.
Read Psalm 47.1-8
1. How do you see our exalted God and King in these verses? How does He appear to you?
2. What is His relationship to the nations of the world?
We can draw from this and previous psalms by the sons of Korah to help flesh out the picture glimpsed here.
Jesus has been exalted to the right hand of God (Ps. 47.5). His throne is a glorious cacophony of shouting, clapping, and singing to celebrate His triumph and reign (Ps. 47.1). He is the fairest of all men; every word He speaks or command He gives is all of grace (Ps. 45.2). He refreshes and sustains His people with an unfailing stream of gladness (Ps. 46.4). He holds a scepter that declares the purpose of His rule: Uprightness! (Ps. 45.6). He goes forth from that throne by His Spirit and Church to advance His rule on earth as it is in heaven (Ps. 45.3, 4; Rev. 6.1, 2; Matt. 6.10). He intervenes in the activities and plans of nations to restrain their wickedness and further His peace (Ps. 46.8, 9). And everywhere among the nations, He works to ensure that His Name is exalted in all the earth (Ps. 46.10).
His throne is holy, thus symbolizing the character of His realm and of all who are called into it (1 Pet. 2.9, 10). He rules from holiness by holiness and unto holiness; and we can know that we are properly in submission to His rule as holiness (righteousness) increases in us unto peace and joy (Rom. 14.17, 18).
Our God reigns! Jesus is an active King. He acts through His Word, His Spirit, and His Church. Set your mind on Christ, exalted in glory (Ps. 16.8; Col. 3.1-3), then live for Him in holiness.
Treasure Old and New: Matthew 13.52; Psalm 119.162
“For God is the King of all the earth;
sing praises with understanding” (Ps. 47.7).
Do we really understand or grasp that the God we serve is King of all the earth?
Do we understand His power? The power to give life and to take it away? (Matt. 10.28)
Do we comprehend His creation? Everything that we see on the earth and the galaxies far away? (Gen. 1.1)
Do we see that everything holds together by a word from Him? (Heb. 1.3)
Do we get it that each breath that we take is a gift from Him? (Acts 17.25)
Unless we strive to understand God and all His attributes and majesty and glory and power, we will never be able to praise Him properly. Ever.
And how will we ever begin to understand?
In His Word. It is there that we search out knowledge of Him.
“Trust in the LORD with all your heart, and lean not on your own understanding;
in all your ways acknowledge Him, and He shall direct your paths” (Prov. 3.5, 6).
“He who gets wisdom loves his own soul;
he who keeps understanding will find good” (Prov. 19.8).
“Consider what I say, and may the Lord give you understanding in all things” (2 Tim. 2.7).
“Who is wise and understanding among you? Let him show by good conduct that his works are done in the meekness of wisdom” (Jms. 3.13).
God promises to give us understanding and wisdom. He wants us to be able to praise Him with understanding. Real, Spirit-filled, open-minded, and authentic understanding.
“If any of you lacks wisdom, let him ask of God, who gives to all liberally and without reproach,
and it will be given to him” (Jms. 1.5).
Humanly speaking, we all like to be understood. We like to be known. It makes life more real and abundant.
And if someone praises us for something but doesn’t know us or even understand why we did the thing we are being praised for; well, it lacks meaning and substance. Meh.
So also, our Royal King, Omnipotent Creator, King of kings and Lord of lords, wants praise with our full understanding. The more we understand Him, the more we will delight in Him, and the more praise will flow naturally from us. And if we truly understand that our God reigns now and eternally, we will submit to His leadership and follow Him obediently.
1. How should you practice setting the Lord always before you (Ps. 16.8)?
2. What can keep you from setting your mind with understanding on the things that are above (Col. 3.1-3)? How can you work through these obstacles?
3. Why is holiness such an important aspect of living in submission to King Jesus?
God, in stretching forth his hand to subdue men, and bring them to submit to his authority, evidently shows that, from his heavenly throne, he reigns over men. John Calvin (1509-1564), Commentary on Psalm 47.8
Closing Prayer: Psalm 47.1-4
Rejoice in and praise the Lord for His exalted power, beauty, greatness, and love. Immerse yourself in these as you prepare to seek His Kingdom and righteousness in the day ahead (Matt. 6.33).
Sing Psalm 47.1-4
(Truro: Shout, for the Blessed Jesus Reigns)
O clap your hands, you peoples all, with joy to God your songs intone!
Shout out to Him, and on Him call, He is the mighty, sovereign One!
High is the Lord, O, fear His Name! He rules, a King o’er all the earth.
Nations and peoples He has tamed, the heritage of His holy worth.
T. M. and Susie Moore
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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.