“Abounding in Steadfast Love”
As we near the end of Advent, today we read a celebration Psalm. Psalm 145 is about praising the wonderful greatness of our God. As we have read through the story of Jesus’ birth, we have seen how God is faithful to all of His promises in the sending of Jesus as our savior and redeemer. This psalm gives voice to how great God is in all of His works and how worthy of praise He is in His character: “gracious and merciful, slow to anger and abounding in steadfast love.”
Last week we read a poem in Isaiah about a messenger bringing the good news, that “Your God reigns!”, to a broken and confused people. This week we read a poem that praises the glory of God’s kingdom. “His kingdom is an everlasting kingdom, and His dominion endures throughout all generations.” This was brought to full manifestation in King Jesus. What we celebrate at Christmas is the coming, not just of a baby, but of a Savior and King in Jesus Christ. We can have hope, peace, and joy because we celebrate God’s steadfast love revealed in the first advent of Christ. This helps nurture hope, peace, and joy as we are waiting for the second advent, the coming of His kingdom in its fullness and the redemption of all creation by God’s steadfast love. This is a moment worth waiting for.
33 And his father and his mother marveled at what was said about him. 34 And Simeon blessed them and said to Mary his mother, “Behold, this child is appointed for the fall and rising of many in Israel, and for a sign that is opposed 35 (and a sword will pierce through your own soul also), so that thoughts from many hearts may be revealed.”
36 And there was a prophetess, Anna, the daughter of Phanuel, of the tribe of Asher. She was advanced in years, having lived with her husband seven years from when she was a virgin, 37 and then as a widow until she was eighty-four. She did not depart from the temple, worshiping with fasting and prayer night and day. 38 And coming up at that very hour she began to give thanks to God and to speak of him to all who were waiting for the redemption of Jerusalem.
Great Is the Lord
A Song of Praise. Of David.
1 I will extol you, my God and King,
and bless your name forever and ever.
2 Every day I will bless you
and praise your name forever and ever.
3 Great is the Lord, and greatly to be praised,
and his greatness is unsearchable.
4 One generation shall commend your works to another,
and shall declare your mighty acts.
5 On the glorious splendor of your majesty,
and on your wondrous works, I will meditate.
6 They shall speak of the might of your awesome deeds,
and I will declare your greatness.
7 They shall pour forth the fame of your abundant goodness
and shall sing aloud of your righteousness.
8 The Lord is gracious and merciful,
slow to anger and abounding in steadfast love.
9 The Lord is good to all,
and his mercy is over all that he has made.
10 All your works shall give thanks to you, O Lord,
and all your saints shall bless you!
11 They shall speak of the glory of your kingdom
and tell of your power,
12 to make known to the children of man your mighty deeds,
and the glorious splendor of your kingdom.
13 Your kingdom is an everlasting kingdom,
and your dominion endures throughout all generations.
[The Lord is faithful in all his words
and kind in all his works.]
14 The Lord upholds all who are falling
and raises up all who are bowed down.
15 The eyes of all look to you,
and you give them their food in due season.
16 You open your hand;
you satisfy the desire of every living thing.
17 The Lord is righteous in all his ways
and kind in all his works.
18 The Lord is near to all who call on him,
to all who call on him in truth.
19 He fulfills the desire of those who fear him;
he also hears their cry and saves them.
20 The Lord preserves all who love him,
but all the wicked he will destroy.
21 My mouth will speak the praise of the Lord,
and let all flesh bless his holy name forever and ever.