Psalm 105 and Psalm 106 are rich with lessons from the history of Israel…lessons that even today we can learn from. Below are a few lessons that I learned and were reminded of as I read through these chapters.
Lesson #1 – It’s easier than we admit to allow this world to pull us away from God
No one is perfect. No one. We all can be enticed and seduced by this world and what it has to offer. There is a lot it has to offer us that our flesh desires, and so it is easy…easier than we like to often admit to ourselves…to turn our eyes from God and toward the things of this world that pull us away from God. No human, not even the strongest of Christ Followers, is immune to that.
Israel had seen God work in their history over and over and over and over and over and over and…you get the idea. Yet they, like us, were easily drawn away from God.
Psalm 106:6 – Both we and our fathers have sinned; we have committed iniquity; we have done wickedness
Psalm 106:14 – But they had a wanton craving in the wilderness, and put God to the test in the desert
Psalm 106:16 – When men in the camp were jealous of Moses and Aaron, the holy one of the Lord
Psalm 106:20 – They exchanged the glory of God for the image of an ox
Psalm 106:25 – They murmured in their tents, and did not obey the voice of the Lord
Psalm 106:28 – Then they yoked themselves to the Baal of Peor, and ate sacrifices offered to the dead
Psalm 106:35-39 – but they mixed with the nations and learned to do as they did. They served their idols, which became a snare to them. They sacrificed their sons and their daughters to the demons; they poured out innocent blood, the blood of their sons and daughters, whom they sacrificed to the idols of Canaan, and the land was polluted with blood. Thus they became unclean by their acts, and played the whore in their deeds
Lesson #2 – God is faithful to us despite our unfaithfulness to him
It’s easy to look at the history of Israel and wonder what they were thinking…that is, until we look at our own history and realize we do the same thing. God takes care of us, provides for us, loves us, offers us grace and mercy, and is there when we run back to him; and he does all of that despite the fact that we are people who sin, make mistakes, stop following God’s leading, and easily complain.
Despite who we are in our worst moments, and the fact that we continue to forget what he has done for us in our past in order to thank and praise him, God remains faithful to us. His love for us is steadfast and he has promised to always take care of us, and he is faithful to his promises.
Yes, we will get angry for a time because he hates sin (Psalm 106:26, 32, 40), and he will allow us to be disciplined (Proverbs 3:11-12)…but even that is out of his love for us.
Psalm 105:8 – He remembers his covenant forever, the word that he commanded, for a thousand generations
Psalm 105:42 – For he remembered his holy promise
Psalm 105:16-17 – When he summoned a famine on the land and broke all supply of bread, he had sent a man ahead of them, Joseph, who was sold as a slave
Psalm 106:8 – Yet he saved them for his name’s sake, that he might make known his mighty power
Psalm 106:10 – So he saved them from the hand of the foe and redeemed them from the power of the enemy
Psalm 106:44-45 – Nevertheless, he looked upon their distress, when he heard their cry. For their sake he remembered his covenant, and relented according to the abundance of his steadfast love
Lesson #3 – Remember what God has done in your past and praise him!
We are very good at wanting to forget the past and move on to what is next. Sometimes because we are ashamed of our past, other times because we don’t want to dwell in the past and miss what’s next. and for some of us it is just our personality to move on and keep reaching for the next dream/goal. Whatever the reason is, the reality is we do it often.
However, we must learn to continue to look at the past, without allowing it to keep us from moving forward, as it can keep us properly grounded and focused for our future. To be more specific, we need to learn to continue to look at what God has done for us in our past, as it can help keep us properly grounded in trusting him and focused on following him and praising him in our future.
Psalm 105:1-2 – Oh give thanks to the Lord; call upon his name; make known his deeds among the peoples! Sing to him, sing praises to him; tell of all his wondrous works!
Psalm 105:5 – Remember the wondrous works that he has done, his miracles, and the judgments he uttered
Psalm 106:1-2 – Praise the Lord! Oh give thanks to the Lord, for he is good, for his steadfast love endures forever! Who can utter the mighty deeds of the Lord, or declare all his praise?
Psalm 106:7 – Our fathers, when they were in Egypt, did not consider your wondrous works; they did not remember the abundance of your steadfast love, but rebelled…
Psalm 106:13 – But they soon forgot his works; they did not wait for his counsel
Psalm 106:48 – Blessed be the Lord, the God of Israel, from everlasting to everlasting! And let all the people say, “Amen!” Praise the Lord!