May all who seek you rejoice and be glad in you!
May those who love your salvation say evermore,
“God is great!” Psalm 70:4
We throw the word great around a lot: great food, great thoughts, great people, great catch, great church and so forth. But do we really stop to think about what the word means, or is it just a word of comparison that we use without much thought? Noah Webster’s first dictionary sheds light on how we should think about this adjective: “The sense of great is to be understood by the things it is intended to qualify. Great pain or wrath is violent pain or wrath; great love is ardent love; great peace is entire peace; a great name is extensive renown; a great evil or sin is a sin of deep malignity.” Webster lists a total of 24 ways in which the word great is used. He mentions God in reference to the following senses:
#8 – Chief; of vast power and excellence; supreme; illustrious; as the great God; the great Creator.
#9 – Vast; extensive; wonderful; admirable. Great are thy works, Jehovah. Milton.
How do you think of God as great? What comes first to your mind? Anything or much?
Elihu, Job’s only helpful counselor other than God, says clearly that God is great and alludes to the truth that we don’t know Him as we should:
“Remember to extol his work, of which men have sung. All mankind has looked on it; man beholds it from afar. Behold, God is great, and we know him not; the number of his years is unsearchable. Job 36:24-26
David prayed for those who love God’s salvation to voice the truth that God is great: “May all who seek you rejoice and be glad in you! May those who love your salvation say evermore, ‘God is great!’?” Psalm 70:4 When is the last time you told someone of God’s greatness? Would you agree that the key to being able to tell another of God’s greatness depends on if you are seeking Him as the first part of verse 4 indicates? The implication is that if you seek God you will rejoice and be glad in Him. It is really hard not to speak, sing, or shout out about what you rejoice in. What great attribute of God can you rejoice in today?
Asaph composed a hymn at a time when God seemed to have abandoned His people to challenge himself and the nation to focus on God’s greatness:
Then I said, “I will appeal to this, to the years of the right hand of the Most High.” I will remember the deeds of the LORD; yes, I will remember your wonders of old. I will ponder all your work, and meditate on your mighty deeds. Your way, O God, is holy. What god is great like our God? Psalm 77:10-13
Will you seek to know God and His greatness this year and find the blessings of joy, comfort, and peace that God our Savior has for you? I know that choice is before me and I want to make that choice for this year of 2015. How about you?
With Prayer, Mark © December, 2014
Scripture quoted: ESV Emphasis added