1 Praise the Lord, all you servants of the Lord who minister by night in the house of the Lord. 2 Lift up your hands in the sanctuary and praise the Lord. 3 May the Lord bless you from Zion, he who is the Maker of heaven and earth.
This is a psalm to be sung by pilgrims as they approached the temple in Jerusalem.
Pilgrimages used to be a big thing: leaving the place they were comfortable; taking a difficult and costly journey, possibly a dangerous journey to God’s house. Here they are at the end of that journey. Coming up through the city gates, along the winding streets, they would have been able to see the temple up ahead, towering over the city. As their excitement builds, they would have sung this psalm as encouragement to the Levites who served day and night in the temple (perhaps more tired than excited).
Now the world wide church is God’s temple (1 Cor 3:16). He makes is home with us rather than us needing to go on a journey to His house.
But I am on a journey – from where I was separated from God into His presence; from what I was to what I’m becoming: a life long journey. I need to remember not to get too comfortable, but to push on, like Paul in Philippians 3:12-14.
Sometimes I can relate to the Levites. Sometimes living in God’s house (His church) can become routine, even hard work. Like them, I sometimes need encouragement. I need reminding of the excitement of arriving in the place where God is. (New Christians can be such a blessing!)
I need to remember that I am indeed blessed by the Lord who made heaven and earth. I need to lift my hands in praise of Him.
And I need to remember to encourage those wonderful people who serve the church.
A short psalm, but so much in it.
Written By David Cornell