Blessed be Yahweh (Ps 103:1-103:5)

A psalm of David                 

“Bless Yahweh!

O my soul!

All that is within me,

Bless his holy name!

Bless Yahweh!

O my soul!

Do not forget all his benefits!

Who forgives all your iniquity?

Who heals all your diseases?

Who redeems your life from the Pit?

Who crowns you with steadfast love?

Who crowns you with mercy?

Who satisfies you with good

As long as you live?

Thus your youth is renewed like the eagles.”

Psalm 103 is simply a thanksgiving psalm of David. In the opening verses, he repeats the same phrases. Yahweh is to be blessed from his soul. Then David pointed out all the benefits of Yahweh with a series of questions. Yahweh forgives iniquities. He heals all diseases. He saves people from the pit or the grave. He crowns us with steadfast love, mercy, and goodness. He sustains our lives so that we remain young eagles.

Blessed be Yahweh (Ps 89:52-89:52)

“Blessed be Yahweh forever!

Amen and Amen.”

This third book of the psalms comes to end with this doxology praising Yahweh. He is to be blessed forever, with the usual “Amen” as the last word ending this psalm and this psalm book.

Blessed be Yahweh (Ps 72:18-72:19)

“Blessed be Yahweh!

The God of Israel!

He alone does wondrous things.

Blessed be his glorious name forever!

May his glory fill the whole earth!

Amen and Amen!”

This psalm naturally ends with a cry of blessing to Yahweh, the God of Israel. He alone has done wondrous things. Clearly Yahweh is superior to the king. The glory and name of Yahweh should last forever and fill the whole earth. This seems to add to the preceding verses that made the king seem almost divine. This was a reminder that Yahweh was the only God of Israel, not the king. This psalm ends with the rousing “Amen” twice.

Blessed be Yahweh (Ps 34:1-34:3)

A psalm of David, when he feigned madness before Abimelech, so that he drove him out, and he went away

Aleph 

“I will bless Yahweh at all times!

His praise shall continually be in my mouth.

Bet      

My soul makes its boast in Yahweh.

Let the humble hear and be glad.

Gimel 

O magnify Yahweh with me!

Let us exalt his name together!”

Psalm 34 is a long sapiential psalm about what happened to David in 1 Samuel, chapter 21. It is also an acrostic or alphabet psalm as each verse starts with another letter of the Hebrew alphabet like Psalms 9, 10, and 25. In the 1 Samuel story, David pretended to be deranged when he appeared before the Philistine King Achish at city of Gath. David had spit all over his beard and started to scratch at everything around him. However, the king’s name was not Abimelech, who was another Philistine King of Gerar around the time of Abraham and Isaac. However, this psalmist did not use this name within the psalm, so that it might have been a title misidentification. However, the story in 1 Samuel did have David pretend that he was mad so that he was dismissed by the Philistine king of Gath as a crazy person and not David. This psalm actually makes very little reference to that story. David or the psalmist began by blessing and praising Yahweh as he boasted in Yahweh. He wanted his name to be magnified. He wanted the humble ones to hear and be exalted.

Blessed be Yahweh (Ps 31:21-31:22)

“Blessed be Yahweh!

He has wondrously shown

His steadfast love to me,

When I was beset

As a city under siege.

I had said in my alarm.

‘I am driven far from your sight.’

But you heard my supplications,

When I cried to you for help.”

Yahweh was blessed. He had shown his steadfast love to David, especially when he was like a city under siege. David thought that he was far from the sight of Yahweh. He was alarmed and cried for help from Yahweh. When he cried, Yahweh came to help him. Yahweh was truly his blessed help.

Blessed be Yahweh (Ps 28:6-28:7)

“Blessed be Yahweh!

He has heard the sound of my pleadings.

Yahweh is my strength!

Yahweh is my shield!

In him my heart trusts!

So I am helped!

My heart exults!

With my song

I give thanks to him.”

Yahweh is to be blessed. He has heard the sounds of his pleadings. Yahweh is his strength and shield against all enemies. His heart trusts in Yahweh since he has been helped. This is more thanksgiving than pleading. His heart exalted so that he could sing a song of thanksgiving.

Blessed be Yahweh (Ps 18:46-18:48)

“Yahweh lives!

Blessed be my rock!

Exalted be the God of my salvation!

God gave me vengeance.

He subdued peoples under me.

He delivered me from my enemies.

Indeed,

You exalted me above my adversaries.

You delivered me from the violent ones.”

Once again like 2 Samuel, chapter 22, Yahweh lives as David’s rock of salvation. Yahweh should be blessed. Yahweh gave him vengeance against his enemies. He exalted him above all his adversaries. Yahweh delivered David from all the violent people against him. Yahweh had given David vengeance.