For the Lord is good, and His mercy endures forever

 

Psalm 103--17

Taken from Psalm 103:17-18, the Verse of the Day for May 29, 2014 makes known this truth:

But the mercy of the Lord is from everlasting to everlasting upon them that fear him, and his righteousness unto children’s children;

To such as keep his covenant, and to those that remember his commandments to do them.

This passage also brings to mind a familiar expression found throughout the Old Testament: “For the Lord is good and his mercy endures forever.”

In I Chronicles 16:34 when the ark of the covenant was brought out from the house of Obededom, David and Levites and those associated with worship offered praise and thanksgiving to God saying,

34 O give thanks unto the Lord; for he is good; for his mercy endures forever.

When the Temple was dedicated, we find a similar expression of praise in 2 Chronicles 5:13-14 which describe what transpired when the Temple built by Solomon was dedicated:

It came even to pass, as the trumpeters and singers were as one, to make one sound to be heard in praising and thanking the Lord; and when they lifted up their voice with the trumpets and cymbals and instruments of music, and praised the Lord, saying, For he is good; for his mercy endures for ever: that then the house was filled with a cloud, even the house of the Lord;

14 So that the priests could not stand to minister by reason of the cloud: for the glory of the Lord had filled the house of God.

Throughout the Psalms we find this familiar refrain of praise. Psalm 118:1 opens with “O give thanks unto the Lord; for he is good: because his mercy endures forever, “while verses 2-4 end with the phrase: “that his mercy endures forever.”

Likewise, the phrase “his mercy endures forever” is the ending refrain of every verse of Psalm 136.

Jeremiah 33:10-12 reveal the awesome power of God to transform a place of desolation into a thriving habitation of abundance, as His people bring forth praise and thanksgiving:

10 Thus says the Lord; Again there shall be heard in this place, which ye say shall be desolate without man and without beast, even in the cities of Judah, and in the streets of Jerusalem, that are desolate, without man, and without inhabitant, and without beast,

11 The voice of joy, and the voice of gladness, the voice of the bridegroom, and the voice of the bride, the voice of them that shall say, Praise the Lord of hosts: for the Lord is good; for his mercy endures for ever: and of them that shall bring the sacrifice of praise into the house of the Lord. For I will cause to return the captivity of the land, as at the first, says the Lord.

12 Thus says the Lord of hosts; Again in this place, which is desolate without man and without beast, and in all the cities thereof, shall be an habitation of shepherds causing their flocks to lie down.

“Oh, that men would praise the Lord for His goodness, and for His wonderful works to the children of men,” says the Psalmist (Psalm 107:1) As I look back over my life, at times I am overwhelmed by the goodness of God. “God is so good”—is all I can say at times. I certainly concur with the Psalmist who declares, “For the Lord is good and his mercy endures forever.”

In reflecting upon that familiar verse, I recognize that the very essence of God is goodness. The word good is derived from “God” who alone is good. Indeed, Jesus Christ said, “There is none good but the Father.” And there is no comparative or superlative with God. There are no “better” days with God. God does not have the “best” day He’s had in a long time in comparison to others. With God everyday is a “Good News Day” because “God is good.” Period! Because God is good, “. . . all things work together for the good, to them that love God, to them that are the called according to His purpose.” (Romans 8:28—my favorite verse in the whole Bible) So no matter how bad the situation may appear to be, it will work together for the good: “For the Lord is good and his mercy endures forever.”

Israel Houghton and New Breed offer this lively rendition of “Lord, You Are Good”

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