For the director of music. According to gittith. Of Asaph.
1Sing for joy To GOD our Strength;
shout aloud To The GOD of Jacob!
2Begin the music, strike the timbrel,
play the melodious harp and lyre.
3Sound the ram’s horn at the New Moon,
and when the moon is full, on the day of our festival;
4this is a decree for Israel,
an ordinance of The GOD of Jacob.
5When GOD Went Out against Egypt,
HE Established it as a Statute for Joseph.
I heard an unknown Voice Say:
6“I removed the burden from their shoulders;
their hands were set free from the basket.
7In your distress you called and I Rescued you,
I Answered you out of a thundercloud;
I Tested you at the waters of Meribah.
8Hear ME, MY people, and I Will Warn you—
if you would only listen to ME, Israel!
9You shall have no foreign god among you;
you shall not worship any god other than ME.
10I AM The LORD your GOD,
WHO Brought you Up out of Egypt.
Open wide your mouth and I Will Fill it.
11“But my people would not listen to ME;
Israel would not submit to ME.
12So I Gave them Over to their stubborn hearts
to follow their own devices.
13“If MY people would only listen to ME,
if Israel would only follow MY Ways,
14How Quickly I Would Subdue their enemies
and Turn MY Hand Against their foes!
15Those who hate The LORD would cringe Before HIM,
and their punishment would last forever.
16But you would be fed with the finest of wheat;
with honey from the rock I would satisfy you.”
This Psalm was penned not upon occasion of any particular providence, but for the solemnity of a particular ordinance, either that of the New-Moon in general or that of the Feast of Trumpets on the New Moon of the seventh month, Leviticus 23:24; Numbers 29:1.
When David, by The SPIRIT of Prophecy, introduced the singing of psalms into the temple-service, this Psalm was intended for that day, to excite and assist the proper devotions of it.
The two great intentions of our religious assemblies are answered in this Psalm, which are, to give Glory To GOD and to receive Instruction From GOD, to "behold the Beauty of The LORD and to inquire in HIS Temple;" accordingly by this Psalm we are assisted on our solemn feast days,
I. In praising GOD for What HE Is To HIS people (v. 1-3), and Has Done For them (v. 4-7).
II. In teaching and admonishing one another concerning the obligations we lie under To GOD (v. 8-10), the danger of revolting from HIM (v. 11, 12), and the happiness we should have if we would but keep close To HIM (v. 13-16).
This, though spoken primarily of Israel of old, is written for our learning, and is therefore to be sung with application.