May 21, 2010
The Greatness of God Today
“Great is the LORD, and highly to be praised, and His greatness is unsearchable.”
Psalm 145:3, Page 997
I watch the ocean almost every day, and sometimes I focus upon the far blue horizon, and sometimes I just sit and feel the cool breeze off the water. In many ways, the ocean changes every day, from giant foaming waves to a placid calm. Sometimes the water seems blue, and other times it can be brown, cool green, or slate gray. It changes day by day and I love to see it in all its glory. In Psalm 145, verse 3, God tells me about His greatness, greater and more powerful than any ocean, and more unsearchable than the deepest sea.
In verse 3, God links His greatness to a particular name for God, “LORD.” If you use the study Bible (see the Bible Pages link on the menu on this page), look at page “vi” in the front of the Bible. There, the translators of the New American Standard Bible tell us that they translated the Hebrew word “YHWH” as LORD, notice the all caps. God uses different words in the Bible to describe Himself as God, such as “God,” “Yahweh,” “El-Shaddai,” “Lord,” “God Almighty,” and many others. So, we should be attuned to the exact word God used in a particular passage to describe Himself.
When God describes Himself as Yahweh (“LORD”), He emphasizes His personal relationship to individuals, and His covenant relationship with people. In Exodus 3:15-17, page 91, Moses asked God how he should tell Israel that God had sent him to lead Israel out of the slavery of Egypt. Moses had doubts about the people of Israel really believing that God had sent him. So God said, tell the sons of Israel that “I AM has sent me to you.” Furthermore, Moses should tell them that “the LORD, the God of your fathers, the God of Abraham, the God of Isaac, and the God of Jacob, has sent me to you. This is My name forever, and this is My memorial-name to all generations” (Exodus 3:16, page 91). David lived about 500 years after Moses, and David knew the same God that Abraham (living about a thousand years before David), Isaac and Jacob knew and worshipped. In the New Testament, Jesus quoted this passage in Exodus and explained that Yahweh is the God of the living, not of the dead (Luke 20:37-38, page 1642). Jesus meant that Abraham, Isaac and Jacob still lived with God, and all live with God. God had done great things for Abraham, and gave him the promised land. God had done great things for the people of Israel in the time of Moses, by breaking the bonds of slavery in Egypt and returning them to the promised land. David himself had seen God anoint him as king, and establish a mighty kingdom for Israel. David knew both historically and personally about the greatness of Yahweh.
As we pray, we should focus upon the greatness of Yahweh, the personal God of the living. We should praise Yahweh for His greatness in our lives. Have you noticed the many ways that God displays His greatness in your lives? Throughout the Bible, God emphasizes his personal interest in individuals. God has personal interest in you today, and cares about how your day goes today. Acknowledge His greatness first, and then see Him display His power in your life. God also said His greatness is unsearchable.
As I look out upon the ocean, I know I am only looking at the surface. I do not see all the things that live and move through the water in front of me. Sometimes I see schools of fish splash through the water, with birds diving from above. I get indications of the things below the surface, but I know I am only seeing a small part of all the activity. Yahweh tells me that His greatness is unsearchable. By His design, He tells me some things about Himself, but because He is eternal, infinite, and everywhere at the same time, I simply must confess that He is unsearchable in every way. Yet, in the same verse He emphasizes His personal relationship with me.
Application for Today
Yahweh loves Abraham, Isaac, Jacob, David and you and me. Today I will offer my high praise to God because of His personal relationship with me. No matter how great my challenges may be for today, God tells me He is greater. In fact He wants me to know today that His greatness is unsearchable. While God has shown me He is great, He also reminds me that I will never search out the ends of His greatness. He remains infinitely great and I will praise Him for it.