I read today’s psalm in a number of translations and I think you can’t beat the Authorised Version for this particular psalm!
1O sing unto the LORD a new song: sing unto the LORD, all the earth.
2Sing unto the LORD, bless his name; shew forth his salvation from day to day.
3Declare his glory among the heathen, his wonders among all people.
4For the LORD is great, and greatly to be praised: he is to be feared above all gods.
5For all the gods of the nations are idols: but the LORD made the heavens.
6Honour and majesty are before him: strength and beauty are in his sanctuary.
7Give unto the LORD, O ye kindreds of the people, give unto the LORD glory and strength.
8Give unto the LORD the glory due unto his name: bring an offering, and come into his courts.
9O worship the LORD in the beauty of holiness: fear before him, all the earth.
10Say among the heathen that the LORD reigneth: the world also shall be established that it shall not be moved: he shall judge the people righteously.
11Let the heavens rejoice, and let the earth be glad; let the sea roar, and the fulness thereof.
12Let the field be joyful, and all that is therein: then shall all the trees of the wood rejoice
13Before the LORD: for he cometh, for he cometh to judge the earth: he shall judge the world with righteousness, and the people with his truth.
Psalm 96 (KJV)
I thought it might be interesting to try something different and practical today using this Psalm. The psalms are the prayer or song book of the Jews – Jesus would have known them by heart. When we are finding it hard to pray it’s often a good idea to turn to the psalms – there’s almost a psalm for every mood!
Many of the verses in this psalm begin with an imperative – a command. Some of our own hymns are like this – we encourage each other as we sing and sometimes hymns teach us truths about God. As you consider praying today or this week, perhaps you would like to use these imperatives from this psalm to structure your prayers:
Singing is a wonderful gift from God. You may well be singing some carols this week. Remember to whom you’re singing when you sing those familiar carols! Do you have a ‘new’ song to sing to God? What do you think this means?
What can you give to God?
What can I give him, poor as I am?
If I were a shepherd, I would bring a lamb,
If I were a wise man, I would do my part,
Yet what I can I give him, give my heart.
How can you worship God this week? You might attend church but perhaps, as St Teresa of Avila said, you might ‘find God among the pots and pans‘? (Preparing Christmas dinner anyone?!)
Who can you tell the Christmas story to? Who can you share your faith with this week?
What requests have you of God this week? Bring them before Him.
If you’re struggling to connect with this Psalm you might enjoy listening to this modern worship song which is based on it: