Read Psalm 96 this morning. Is there anywhere else in the Scriptures where so many exclamation marks are packed into one short chapter? I don’t know; I haven’t done that research. But I do know the Lord Almighty deserves every one.
This psalm is David’s exuberant response to everything God is and has done.
Worship the Lord in all his holy splendor,
Let all the earth tremble before him.
Tell all the nations, “The Lord reigns!”
We constantly use the title Lord to refer to or speak to God. When the word leaves our lips, do we think of what we’re saying?
Jesus used it when He prayed to His Father: “O Father, Lord of heaven and earth…” (Matthew 11:25)
“Lord” is one of those words we’ve thrown about so much and so carelessly that I fear we’ve lost the weight of it. I don’t think Jesus used it just out of habit, as we so often do. I think Jesus’ use of the word Lord was acknowledgment and worship of the One who rules. Dictionary.com has a powerful reminder for us today. It defines lord as “A person who has authority, control, or power over others; a master, chief, or ruler.”
The Apostle John was given a vision of a door standing open in heaven, and he was invited to come, take a look. “And I saw a throne in heaven and someone sitting on it,” he wrote. (see Revelation 4:1,2).
A glimpse into heaven’s throne room!
There John saw the holy Lord God, the Almighty, worshipped by creatures representing all of creation. Everything and everyone falls down and worships the One on the throne.
Who is God? He is the One on the throne.
He is the Creator. He existed before our world, before our time. He always was and always will be. All of creation—all we know of it and all we have yet to discover—was created because it pleased Him to do so. This is His world. It is not simply a speck whirling through time and space. The Lord of heaven and earth has a plan for His creation, and He will carry it out. And His plan, by the way, includes a coming day when everyone and everything will bow before His throne and acknowledge Him as Lord.
Oh, to have a glimpse into that heavenly throne room! To have the door opened, just enough for us to catch even a smidgeon of awe at God’s rule and sovereignty! Our eyesight is so clouded and dull. Too often, all we can see is the world right in front of us.
But God, in His grace, does give us glimpses. In His created nature. In His Word, as the Spirit uses it to speak to our souls. Through other children of God, who live in His Spirit. Psalm 111: 2-3 says that everything the Lord does reveals His glory and majesty. “All who delight in the Lord should ponder His amazing works.” We do catch sight of the One on the throne.
Our hope knows that He is Lord.
Today, Lord of heaven and earth, give your children a glimpse into your throne room and remind our hope that You alone are on the throne.
Who is God?
In Athens, Paul noticed the altar to “An Unknown God.” He introduced the Athenians to God. Our God is the same God.
“He is the God who made the world and everything in it. He himself gives life and breath to everything and satisfies every need.
He created all the nations throughout the whole earth. He decided beforehand when they should rise ad fall, and he determined their boundaries.
His purpose was for the nations to seek after God and perhaps feel their way toward him and find him — though he is not far from any one of us.
Now he commands everyone everywhere to repent of their sins and turn to him.
For he has set a day for judging the world with justice …”
(from Acts 17:24-31)
That’s the God on whom our hope rests.
For you are great and perform wonderful deeds.
You alone are God.
For MORE glimpses of the One on the throne: Exodus 34:5-7; Deuteronomy 4:35, 39; 1 Samuel 2:2-3; Job 41:11; Psalm 22:27-29; Psalm 24:1-2; Psalm 29; Psalm 33:6-15; Psalm 46:8-10; Psalm 86:8-10; Psalm 96; Psalm 100:3; Psalm 102:25-27; Psalm 103:19; Psalm 111:2-3; Psalm 115:3; Psalm 119:55: Psalm 135:5-6; Psalm 148:5-6, 13; Isaiah 40:12-31; Isaiah 42:8; Isaiah 44:24; Isaiah 46:1-4, 9-10; Isaiah 48:12-13; Isaiah 51:6; Isaiah 55:8-9; Isaiah 66:1-3; Jeremiah 10:1-16; Hosea 14:8-9; Zechariah 12:1; Acts 17:22-31; Romans 11:33-36; Romans 12:11-12; 1 Timothy 1:17; Hebrews 4:13; Jude 1:25; Revelation 1:8; Revelation 4:1-2.