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Bible Commentaries
Psalms 96

Bell's Commentary on the BibleBell's Commentary

Verses 1-13

  1. INTRO:
    1. Once again we are given an invitation to come Worship the Lord!
    2. What causes you to sing? When all is going well? Pain & Sorrow?
      1. Remember the song, “I sing because I’m happy, I sing because I’m free, for His eye is on the sparrow, & I know He watches me!”
    3. Civilla Martin, who wrote the lyrics to this hymn, said this about her inspiration to write the song. Early in the spring of 1905, my hus-band and I were sojourning in Elmira, New York. We contracted a deep friendship for a couple by the name of Mr. and Mrs. Doolittle - true saints of God. Mrs. Doolittle had been bedridden for nigh twenty years. Her hus-band was an incurable cripple who had to propel himself to and from his business in a wheel chair. Despite their afflictions, they lived happy Christian lives, bringing inspiration and comfort to all who knew them.
      One day while we were visiting with the Doolittles, my husband commented on their bright hopefulness and asked them for the secret of it. Mrs. Doolittle’s reply was sim-ple: "His eye is on the sparrow, and I know He watches me." The beauty of this simple expression of boundless faith gripped the hearts and fired the imagination of Dr. Martin and me. The hymn "His Eye Is on the Spar-row" was the outcome of that experience.
      1. I asked myself today, Why do blind people always seem to be smiling? (gentleman I saw at Loma Linda today) Down Syndrome kids also!
      2. What causes you to sing?
    4. Our Title to Psalm 96: “I Sing Because!”
    5. Outline:
    6. Sing, Sing, Sing is how the Psalm starts.
      1. Call to joyful worship because all glory belongs to Him.
    7. Give, Give, Give is how the Psalm continues.
      1. ​​​​​​​Call to joyful worship because all gifts belongs to Him.
    8. Let, Let, Let is how the Psalm ends.
      1. ​​​​​​​Call to joyful worship because all government belongs to Him.
    1. ​​​​​​​SING, SING, SING! (1-6)
      1. Call to joyful worship because all glory belongs to Him.
    2. What to sing? (1,2)
      1. New Song! - What needs to take place to tune your heart to sing a new song.
        1. How to harmonize with heavens choir in joyful song.
        2. Come sing a new song because you have a new experience with Him!
      2. Necessary Song! - Told to Proclaim.
        1. A missionary song. “If we had no other verse in the bible but this one to teach us our duty to the lost in pagan lands, this would be enough!”
    3. Where to sing? (3)
      1. Among nations, among all peoples! - among the heathens.
        1. It’s a gospel song!
    4. Why sing? (4-6)
      1. Fear! (4) - When we get to know Him better we love Him, but a healthy fear of the Lord is where it often begins.
      2. Fact! (5) - explain fact here.
        1. The word for idols is like the word for God “el”, it is “el-eel”.
        2. It means no value, good for nothing, things of nought.
          1. ​​​​​​​[They are nonentities]
        3. They are really nonexistent except in the enslaved imaginations of those who worship them.
        4. In contrast, the Lord made the heavens. Here is a motive for song!
      3. Fame! (6) - Honor & majesty; strength & beauty!
        1. Its a song of victory (strength)
        2. Its a song of devotion (revealing His beauty)
          1. Blue Pomegranate - Ex.28:33 & 39:24.
      4. Some things are beautiful but not strong (butterfly; flower);
      5. Other things are strong but not beautiful (concrete slab; steel girder to support, not to be seen).
        1. He desires both to be in His sanctuary, & we are his sanctuary/temple.
        2. He wants us to have the kind of strength that is beautiful & the kind of beauty that is strong! (Wiersbe)
    5. GIVE, GIVE, GIVE! (7-9)
      1. Call to joyful worship because all gifts belongs to Him.
      2. If we can’t go, we can give! Give 3 things:
    6. Wonder! (7,8a) - Acknowledge Him for who He is!
    7. Wealth! (8b) - Bring an offering
      1. Giving is part of the life of faith. We should honor Him with our substance.
      2. Not because he needs it, but because He graciously makes it possible for us to express, in a tangible way, something of the gratitude of our hearts.
      3. Tithe? No not in NT.
        1. God however expects from us proportionate giving (“as the Lord has prospered us”)
        2. Obviously we wouldn’t give less than those “under” the law. {remember: they gave a tithe, plus sacrifices, plus offerings of various kinds; 33%}
    8. Worship! (9) - true holiness will always produce beauty.
      1. True holiness is beautiful; & false holiness is not!
        1. Pharisees had an artificial, manufactured piety.
        2. Jesus had true holiness & it attracted people; Pharisees repelled them.
      2. You become like what you worship: If your god is selfish, you become selfish; If your god is ugly, you become ugly.
      3. The person who worships money becomes hard; the person who worships pleasure becomes soft.
      4. But the person who worships the true & living God becomes beautiful, (i.e. )more & more like Christ!
    9. LET, LET, LET! (10-13)
      1. Call to joyful worship because all government belongs to Him.
      2. When the H.S. throws His omnipotent power behind such urging then there is no power on earth, in the heavens, or in hell itself that can prevent its coming to pass!
      3. When Thy Kingdom Comes, here’s what you will see…
    10. Sovereignty! (10a) - The Lord reigns.
      1. God’s ideal government is not a democratic or a republican form of gov.
      2. It is not government of the people, by the people, for the people.
      3. It is an absolute monarchy with all power concentrated into the capable hands of His dear Son. (great to be reminded of around election time) :-)
    11. Security! (10b) - Not be moved.
      1. No wars, no rebellions, no uprisings, no crime syndicates flourishing in the underworld.
      2. It will be a reign of just, holy, impartial, universal law.
    12. Sanctity! (10c) - Judge righteously.
      1. No corruption of the legal process. No partiality, no injustice, no biased laws.
        1. These are principles of government!
    13. All Nature! (11-13a) –
      1. Heavens, earth, sea, field, trees, woods –
      2. I think this is what Paul had in mind in Rom.8:19-22 (read)
        1. The whole creation is on tip-toe to see… (i.e. waiting) (Phillips Trans.)
    14. All Nations! (13b) –
      1. Earth, world, people –
      2. The predominant thought behind judgment here is not punishment, but peace & praise & perfect government.
    15. End: While the day still tarries, let Him establish that kind of government in our hearts & lives!
Bibliographical Information
Bell, Brian. "Commentary on Psalms 96". "Bell's Commentary". https://studylight.org/commentaries/eng/cbb/psalms-96.html. 2017.
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