Monday, February 27, 2017

Monday after the Transfiguration

Monday after the Transfiguration, February 27, 2107     Psalm 99:1-5

Psalm 99:1-5 English Standard Version (ESV)

The Lord Our God Is Holy

99 The Lord reigns; let the peoples tremble!
    He sits enthroned upon the cherubim; let the earth quake!
The Lord is great in Zion;
    he is exalted over all the peoples.
Let them praise your great and awesome name!
    Holy is he!
The King in his might loves justice.[a]
    You have established equity;
you have executed justice
    and righteousness in Jacob.
Exalt the Lord our God;
    worship at his footstool!
    Holy is he!

Along with Psalm 93 and 97 this psalm begins with the phrase “The Lord reigns.” It proclaims Him King over all creation; it highlights God’s holiness, which evokes awe, reverence, even fear. He alone is worthy of worship, prayer, and devotion. Although Moses, Aaron, and Samuel are mentioned, the psalm cannot be dated or identified with any particular historical event. These men represent the priestly and prophetic offices of ancient Israel and demonstrate both God’s justice and forgiveness for His people.[1]

The Psalmist mentions twice, “Holy is He!” What makes God different from His creation and His created order is the fact that He alone is Holy. We live in a fallen world, outside of Eden. Because He is Holy God is unique, totally unlike anything else that has been made.

How then is God’s name kept Holy? Luther would remind us in the explanation to the First Petition of the Lord’s Prayer, “God’s name is kept holy when the Word of God is taught in his truth and purity, and we, as the children of God, also lead holy lives according to it.” To this we simply pray, “Help us to do this dear Father in heaven!

Luther goes on to explain, “But anyone who teaches or lives contrary to God’s Word profanes the name of God among us.” To this we simply pray, “Protect us from this, heavenly Father!”[2]

Almighty and everlasting God, who governs all things in heaven and on earth, mercifully hear the prayers of Your people and grant us Your peace through all our days; through Jesus Christ, Your Son, our Lord, who lives and reigns with You and the Holy Spirit, one God, now and forever.[3]

[1] The Lutheran Self Study Bible © 2009 Concordia Publishing House, St. Louis
[2] 1st Petition of the Lord’s Prayer, Luther’s Small Catechism, © 2009 Concordia Publishing House, St Louis
[3] Collect for the Second Sunday after Epiphany, Lutheran Service Book © 2006 Concordia Publishing House, St, Louis
Luther’s Seal © Ed Riojas, Higher Things

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