“She gave to holy people
The reward of their labors.
She guided them
Along a marvelous way.
She became a shelter to them by day.
She became a starry flame
Through the night.
She brought them over the Red Sea.
She led them through deep waters.
But she drowned their enemies.
She cast them up
From the depth of the sea.
Therefore the righteous plundered the ungodly.
They sang hymns!
To your holy name!
They praised with one accord
Your defending hand.
Wisdom opened the mouths
Of those who were mute.
Wisdom made the tongues
Of infants speak clearly.”
This explanation of the exodus from Egypt is based on the stories from Exodus, chapters 13-15. Once again, it is wisdom that is leading the way. Day and night, wisdom provided shelter and starlight. She had brought them over the Red Sea, so that their enemies had drowned, but they were safe. Then they plundered the Egyptian soldiers. After that they sang hymns (ὕμνησαν) to the holy name of the Lord (Κύριε, τὸ ὄνομα τὸ ἅγιόν σου). Wisdom (ἡ σοφία) opened the mouths of the mute. She made infants speak clearly.
A Psalm of David
I give you thanks
With my whole heart.
Before the gods,
I sing your praise.
I bow down toward your holy temple.
I give thanks to your name.
Because of your steadfast love.
I give thanks to your name.
Because of your faithfulness.
You have exalted your name
You have exalted your word
On the day I called,
You did answer me.
You increased my strength of soul.”
Psalm 138 is a thanksgiving psalm of David as indicated in the title. David gives thanks to Yahweh from his whole heart. He sings his praises in his holy Temple. Yahweh is greater than any of the other gods or angels. He gave thanks to his holy name for his steadfast love and faithfulness. His name and word were to be exalted above everything. On the day that David called, Yahweh answered him. There was no delay here. Thus this strengthened his soul.
Gather us from among the nations!
Thus we may give thanks to your holy name!
Thus we may glory in your praise!”
This is an obvious cry from the captivity when the Israelites were scattered into various Middle Eastern countries. The psalmist wants Yahweh, his God, to save them so that they might give thanks to his holy name and glory in praising God. However, there is no reason why they cannot praise and glory God in the time of their exile. It is however, inconvenient for them.
“O give thanks to Yahweh!
Call on his name!
Make known his deeds among the peoples!
Sing to him!
Sing praises to him!
Tell of all his wonderful works!
Glory in his holy name!
Let the hearts of those who seek Yahweh rejoice!
Seek his strength!
Seek his presence continually!
Remember the wonderful works he has done!
Remember his miracles!
Remember the judgments he has uttered!”
Psalm 105 is usually combined with Psalm 106 to be recited at some major feast, since it recalls all the great events in the life of the Israelites. However this long psalm has no introductory title. The first section is a hymn to Yahweh. Some of the texts have an Alleluia to start this hymn. We give thanks to Yahweh. We call on his name. We tell everybody about him. We sing praises to him. We glory in his holy name. Those who seek Yahweh can rejoice. We seek his strength and his presence continually. We remember his wonderful works, his miracles, and his judgments.
“Yahweh loves those who hate evil.
He guards the lives of his faithful.
He rescues them from the hand of the wicked.
Light dawns for the righteous.
Joy comes for the upright in heart.
Rejoice in Yahweh!
O you righteous!
Give thanks to his holy name!”
This psalm ends with the righteous rejoicing in Yahweh. Yahweh loves those who hate evil. He guards the lives of the faithful. He rescues them from the hands of the wicked. Light shines for the righteous as joy comes to their heart. The righteous are to rejoice in Yahweh. They are to give thanks to his holy name.
“With a freewill offering
I will sacrifice to you.
I will give thanks to your name!
For it is good.
He has delivered me from every trouble.
My eye has looked in triumph on my enemies.”
This short psalm ends with a thanksgiving. David was going to give a free will offering that was described in Numbers, chapter 15. David was going to sacrifice to Yahweh by giving thanks to his holy name. Yahweh had been good to him, as he rescued and delivered David for all his troubles with King Saul. Now David’s eye looked in triumph at the defeat of his enemies, in particular King Saul.
“Sing praises to Yahweh!
O you his faithful ones!
Give thanks to his holy name!
His anger is but for a moment.
His favor is for a lifetime.
Weeping may linger for the night.
However, joy comes with the morning.”
The faithful ones have to sing praises to Yahweh. They have to give thanks to his holy name. Yahweh’s anger was only temporary but his favor lasted a lifetime. As this is the true understanding of love. There is always a momentary jarring or problem, but the love lasts a lifetime. While there was weeping at night, joy came with the morning. A good night’s sleep helps to solve a lot of problems.