Psalm 100: Permission to Make a Joyful Noise
Psalm 100 has a superscription. Therefore, we learn that it is a psalm of thanksgiving. This does not mean that it is only appropriate to be read on Thanksgiving Day even though many preachers preach sermons from it to celebrate the day when most people give thanks.
The psalm is a very short one of only five verses. It can be read, studied, meditated on and obeyed every single day. Unfortunately, a lot of people read it without understanding the deep meaning that the psalmist had in mind.
Even though the writer is not identified, we see that Psalm 100 an exhortation to praise God cheerfully with loud singing for His greatness and for His power. The call to "sing" is mentioned twice in Verses 1 and 2.
Because the very first verses say "Make a joyful noise," people joke about it when others complain about their singing. They say they are making a joyful noise like the Bible commands.
Verses 1: Sing
The first command in Psalm 100 is to make a joyful noise by singing. The first four words of that verse, "Make a joyful noise," is a Hebrew expression that is translated "shout."
To make a joyful noise is to shout like someone who has been victorious. You are to shout so loud that it is possible for your voice to be heard over the lands. Of course, that is a hyperbole (an exaggeration to make a point).
Verse 2: Serve
The command in Verse 2 is to serve the Lord and to do it with gladness. The command to serve the Lord goes out to all of God's people. It is not limited to the preacher or the worship leader to do it. You must do it yourself.
Verse 2 also offers a divine invitation to come to worship God. He wants fellowship and communion with you, and you can do so by being in His presence. He wants you to come into His presence with singing. This is the second time in this short psalm that singing has been commanded.
Verse 3: Know That God is God
Verse 3 is a command to know that God is God, and He is good because He is our Creator. He made us and we belong to Him. God takes care of what is His. Psalm 23 tells us that He is our Shepherd. Shepherds take care of their sheep. They protect them and provide for them so they do not have to want for anything.
When we know that we belong to God, then we are free to worship God the way He wants to be worshipped.
Verse 4: Be Thankful and Bless His Name
The writer commands us in Verse 4 to be thankful. He is emphatic about you not to wait until you get into God's presence before you become thankful. First, enter his gates with thanksgiving, and then enter his courts with praise.
That means you should not leave it up to a worship leader, preacher, music or anything else to prompt you into worshiping God. You should be able to worship God with what's on the inside of you.
Verse 5: Three Reasons to Worship
If you have been keeping count, you will have noticed that there are multiple imperatives in the first four verses telling us how to worship.
The first four verses contain a series of seven imperative verbs.
- Verse 1: Sing
- Verse 2: Serve
- Verse 2: Come into God's presence
- Verse 3: Know
- Verse 4: Enter
- Verse 4: Be thankful
- Verse 4: Bless his name.
Then in Verse 5, the psalmist gives three reasons to worship God.
- For the Lord is good.
- His mercy is everlasting.
- His truth endureth to all generations.
Now, who wouldn't want to worship a God like that?
Did this article help you understand Psalm 100 better?
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