Psalm Chapter 105:Remember your history: Israel.

Psalm 105 History recounted

Context

This is a psalm of remembrance. The psalmist looks back on Israel’s relationship with YHWH. The historical review began from the time of Abraham’s calling, and God’s Promise to him stated in Genesis 12:2 “And I will make of thee a great nation, and I will bless thee, and make thy name great, and thou shalt be a blessing:” This promise to Abraham included land, and possessions. Abraham’s seed is chronicled from their journey to Egypt, release from enslavement in Egypt by Moses and Aaron. And their wilderness experience and protection. This promise culminated with entrance to the promised land.

Seek my face

The psalmist opens this chapter with words of remembrance, recognition, admonition, worship and praise. He a 1 give thanks unto the Lord; call upon his name: make known his deeds among the people.Sing unto him, sing psalms unto him: talk ye of all his wondrous works.Glory ye in his holy name: let the heart of them rejoice that seek the Lord.Seek the Lord, and his strength: seek his face evermore. Remember his marvellous works that he hath done; his wonders, and the judgments of his mouth; One is reminded that the book of Exodus 19 identifies Israel as And ye shall be unto me a kingdom of priests, and an holy nation. These are the words which thou shalt speak unto the children of Israel.” The psalmist is reminding the nation that they were called to be an example to all people. They are a nation that praises and worships YHWH. Not just in the good times, but at all times. They were coming out of Egypt and looking forward to a new life as a free people.

God’s Judgment
Remember his marvellous works that he hath done; his wonders, and the judgments of his mouth;O ye seed of Abraham his servant, ye children of Jacob his chosen.He is the Lord our God: his judgments are in all the earth. Now that they know they are the "called out nation of God" they are also called to remember all that He has done for them. Why? Because they are Abraham's children. Genesis 12:1-3 states" 

Now the Lord had said unto Abram, Get thee out of thy country, and from thy kindred, and from thy father’s house, unto a land that I will shew thee: And I will make of thee a great nation, and I will bless thee, and make thy name great; and thou shalt be a blessing: And I will bless them that bless thee, and curse him that curseth thee: and in thee shall all families of the earth be blessed.”

They are to remember the acts of YHWH’s mercies towards them. They are the children of Jacob and the patriarchs. The same patriarchs relied on YHWH to feed, provide protection, and shelter for them. This is not simply a call to recall a memory. It is a call to live in the reality of that memory. He is the person in whom they should have nothing but confidence that their hope of realizing the Abrahamic promise will come to pass.

God remembers his covenant with Abraham

He hath remembered his covenant for ever, the word which he commanded to a thousand generations.Which covenant he made with Abraham, and his oath unto Isaac;

In Genesis 12 we read that promises meant not just that Abraham’s descendants would be taken care of and possess lands but that they would also become a great nation. See verses 1-2. Genesis 15 chronicled the promise of the hope/covenant that God made with Abraham. and the fact that He would indeed give the land of Canaan to Abraham and his seed. Genesis 15:18 ” In the same day the Lord made a covenant with Abram, saying, Unto thy seed have I given this land, from the river of Egypt unto the great river, the river Euphrates: It is important to note that the covenant did not end with Abraham. It continued with his son Isaac. See Genesis 26:4. And I will make thy seed to multiply as the stars of heaven, and will give unto thy seed all these countries, and in thy seed shall all the nations of the earth be blessed;10 And confirmed the same unto Jacob for a law, and to Israel for an everlasting covenant:11 Saying, Unto thee will I give the land of Canaan, the lot of your inheritance: And also Isaac’s son Jacob. See Genesis Genesis 28:13-15

13 And, behold, the Lord stood above it, and said, I am the Lord God of Abraham thy father, and the God of Isaac: the land whereon thou liest, to thee will I give it, and to thy seed; 14 And thy seed shall be as the dust of the earth, and thou shalt spread abroad to the west, and to the east, and to the north, and to the south: and in thee and in thy seed shall all the families of the earth be blessed. 15 And, behold, I am with thee, and will keep thee in all places whither thou goest, and will bring thee again into this land; for I will not leave thee, until I have done that which I have spoken to thee of.

As a point of clarification, one must note that Jacob’s name was changed to Israel by YHWH in Genesis 32: 22-32 “And he rose up that night, and took his two wives, and his two womenservants, and his eleven sons, and passed over the ford Jabbok. 23 And he took them, and sent them over the brook, and sent over that he had.24 And Jacob was left alone, and there wrestled a man with him until the breaking of the day.25 And when he saw that he prevailed not against him, he touched the hollow of his thigh; and the hollow of Jacob’s thigh was out of joint, as he wrestled with him.26 And he said, Let me go, for the day breaketh. And he said, I will not let thee go, except thou bless me.27 And he said unto him, What is thy name? And he said, Jacob.28 And he said, Thy name shall be called no more Jacob, but Israel: for as a prince hast thou power with God and with men, and hast prevailed.29 And Jacob asked him, and said, Tell me, I pray thee, thy name. And he said, Wherefore is it that thou dost ask after my name? And he blessed him there.30 And Jacob called the name of the place Peniel: for I have seen God face to face, and my life is preserved.31 And as he passed over Penuel the sun rose upon him, and he halted upon his thigh.32 Therefore the children of Israel eat not of the sinew which shrank, which is upon the hollow of the thigh, unto this day: because he touched the hollow of Jacob’s thigh in the sinew that shrank.”

In 2021 we are living at a time when the ownership of the land that should be occupied by Israel is always being brought into question. The above scriptures should clarify whom God wanted to live there and why.

About the Patriarchs

12 When they were but a few men in number; yea, very few, and strangers in it.13 When they went from one nation to another, from one kingdom to another people;14 He suffered no man to do them wrong: yea, he reproved kings for their sakes;15 Saying, Touch not mine anointed, and do my prophets no harm.
When one reflects on the patriarchs and how many people left Canaan during the famine it is astounding that a nation of people left Egypt when the Exodus began.  Genesis 46:26  declares "All the souls that came with Jacob into Egypt, which came out of his loins, besides Jacob's sons' wives, all the souls were threescore and six; (66 people) left Canaan for Egypt during the great famine.

Joseph and his commission

16 Moreover he called for a famine upon the land: he brake the whole staff of bread.17 He sent a man before them, even Joseph, who was sold for a servant:18 Whose feet they hurt with fetters: he was laid in iron:19 Until the time that his word came: the word of the Lord tried him.20 The king sent and loosed him; even the ruler of the people, and let him go free.21 He made him lord of his house, and ruler of all his substance:22 To bind his princes at his pleasure; and teach his senators wisdom. Do you remember the dream that Joseph had? See Genesis 37.  That dream led to his brothers selling him into slavery. Joseph's purpose in Egypt was revealed in Genesis 37. Pharaoh made Joseph second only to himself. 

Before Abraham died and the great move to Egypt, Jacob and his family were nomads. During their wanderings, YHWH took care of them. He prevented King Abimelek of Gerar from committing adultery with Sarah because Abraham had lied and told him that she was his wife (Gen. 20:3). The psalm refers to Abraham and the patriarchs as prophets in that they were the persons through whom God spoke to His people (v. 15.)

Moses and the Exodus from Egypt

This account of the Children of Israel during the Exodus brings to mind how fruitful the Children of Israel had become while they were in Egypt; Exodus 1:6-7 “And Joseph died, and all his brethren, and all that generation. And the children of Israel were fruitful, and increased abundantly, and multiplied, and waxed exceeding mighty, and the land was filled with them.”

23 Israel also came into Egypt, and Jacob sojourned in the land of Ham.24 And he increased his people greatly; and made them stronger than their enemies. Genesis 1:28, KJV: “And God blessed them, and God said unto them, Be fruitful, and multiply, and replenish the earth, and subdue it: and have dominion over the fish of the sea, and over the fowl of the air, and over every living thing that moveth upon the earth.” It was great for the YHWH’s people to increase in numbers. But the Egyptians were not so happy about that at all. See Exod. 1:11–22. 25  He turned their heart to hate his people, to deal subtilly with his servants.

Moses is Sent

26 He sent Moses his servant; and Aaron whom he had chosen.27 They shewed his signs among them, and wonders in the land of Ham. 28 He sent darkness, and made it dark; and they rebelled not against his word.

The plagues are recounted: see Exodus 8

The Egyptian land was laid bare when all of the plagues were over. All of their gods of fertility, vegetation, and protection were proven worthless before YHWH. See the list of Egyptian Gods here.

  • The plague of frogs (v. 30), 30 Their land brought forth frogs in abundance, in the chambers of their kings.
  • Flies, gnats (v. 31), 29 He turned their waters into blood, and slew their fish. He spake, and there came divers sorts of flies, and lice in all their coasts.
  • Hail that destroyed the crops (v. 32), 32 He gave them hail for rain, and flaming fire in their land. 33 He smote their vines also and their fig-trees, and brake the trees of their coasts.
  • And locusts (v. 34). 34 He spake, and the locusts came, and caterpillers, and that without number,35 And did eat up all the herbs in their land, and devoured the fruit of their ground. The message? YHWH is the God of the land. All of their agriculture was destroyed. He was not finished. The firstborn of everything was destroyed. See Exodus 11:5. This was the most catastrophic of all the plagues. This plague entered the home of Pharaoh himself. There was no escaping the power of YHWH. 36 He smote also all the firstborn in their land, the chief of all their strength. Passover is initiated for the Children of Israel. Note how they left Egypt. Exod. 12:33–36. 37 He brought them forth also with silver and gold: and there was not one feeble person among their tribes. One might surmise that the Egyptians finally paid the Children of Israel for all of the work they had done in Egypt. 38 Egypt was glad when they departed: for the fear of them fell upon them.
His Protection in the wilderness

39 He spread a cloud for a covering; and fire to give light in the night. They remembered the event of protection as notated in Exod. 40:34–38 The psalmist is interested in discussing God’s protection and wants to remind the people that He is still the same God during their lifetime. His promises never fail. He navigated their journey through the wilderness: See Exodus 13:20–21.

  1. He Fed them 40 The people asked, and he brought quails and satisfied them with the bread of heaven. He provided food for them; A. quail (Exod. 16:13; Num. 11:4–35) B. manna (Exod. 16:14–16) OR as some call it, the bread of heaven (Exod. 16:4) because it appeared to fall out of the sky.
  2. He also provided water out of a rock to quench their thirst (Exod. 17:1–7).41 He opened the rock, and the waters gushed out; they ran in the dry places like a river. After the Exodus YHWH protected His people using the elements that were common in Egyptian worship “Amun (Amun-Ra) – God of the sun and air.” See other Egyptian gods here.
They conqueror the promised land.

42 For he remembered his holy promise, and Abraham his servant. Why did YHYH. . .

  1. carry out those mighty acts?
  2. protect and provide for the people?
  3. rescue them from Egypt?

Remember this promise that YHWH made to Abraham? He promised him that He would make them a great nation and would bless them, and through them, the other nations of the earth would be blessed: see Gen. 12:1–3.

43 And he brought forth his people with joy, and his chosen with gladness:44 And gave them the lands of the heathen: and they inherited the labour of the people; See Joshua 13-24. Psalm 105 ends with the conquest of the land. God gave them the lands of the nations who occupied them as they aveled to their final destination. “And houses full of all good things, which thou filledst not, and wells digged, which thou diggedst not, vineyards and olive trees, which thou planted not; when thou shalt have eaten and be full.” Deuteronomy 6:11. Verse 12 details Moses reminding the people to be careful not to ‘forget the LORD, who brought you out of Egypt, out of the land of slavery.’ 45 That they might observe his statutes, and keep his laws. Praise ye the Lord. The psalmist ends with a caution to the people: remember to obey YHWH and worship only Him. These warnings are germane to Christians today. I Corinthians chapter 10 verse 6 reminds us of that very fac. “Now these things were our examples, to the intent we should not lust after evil things, as they also lusted.”

1 Comment (+add yours?)

  1. Trackback: Psalm Chapter 106:Our ancestors sinned and so did we. | You Are Not the Only One

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