Daily Thought for: 11th March
Psalm 148. 1-14
Psalm 148 is part of the Spirits Hallelujah Chorus. Each of the last five psalms begins and ends with Praise ye the Lord, otherwise translated Hallelujah. In its first six verses, the psalm calls all creatures in the heaven of heavens to praise Jehovah. It then includes the celestial heavens with their stars, the sun and the moon. The atmospheric heavens, the waters above the firmament, join the chorus next. The following six verses address the terrestrial realm. From the deeps to the winds in the sky, from the mountains to the trees, from the beasts to the fowls, from the kings to the children, all should join the chorus. The sweep of creation has gone from the first to the sixth day of creation. His glory evokes awe and praise. All that He is and has revealed of Himself, His name, towers above all else; His name alone is Excellent.
Excellent emphasizes being exalted to honour. The word used for this in the Septuagint translation appears often in the New Testament. When the right hand of God exalted Him, Acts 2. 33, He and the Father, in essential unity, sent the Spirit, John 14. 26; 15. 26; 16. 7. Exalted by that same right hand, He is a Prince and a Saviour, Acts 5. 31. In fact, the expression highly exalted, Phil. 2. 9, is the same word with a strengthening prefix. Combining these passages from the Old and New Testaments points to our Lord Jesus deity and equality with the Father.
Touchingly, three times the Lord uses this word in the gospel of John when He foretells His being lifted up on the cross. He whose glory is above all creation was lifted in shame above the crowd of His creatures at their worst. He who is solitary in His proper exaltation was lifted up, numbered with transgressors. He whose name alone is Excellent was lifted up as a rejected impostor. He who shares the name most highly honoured was lifted up on an accursed tree.
The closing verse of Psalm 148 employs the word exalted. The supremely exalted Excellent, has exalted Israel so they are near unto him. But He has exalted us far higher. We are seated together with Him. We are one with Him.