Pastors Letter – March 23, 2020 – His Mercy Endures Forever

O give thanks unto the Lord; for he is good: for his mercy endureth for ever.

Psalm 136:1

With the governor declaring a shelter-in-place order for Ohio it becomes harder for us to engage with each other. No matter how this ends, we know all things are in the Lord’s hands. So today let’s think about what kind of hands those are.

In Psalm 136 the phrase “his mercy endures forever” is repeated twenty-six times. This is a psalm of thanksgiving, for we are told in the first three verses to “give thanks.” This command to give thanks is followed by the next twenty-three verses which tell us why we should.

  • Verses 4-9, because He is the creator.
  • Verses 10-15, because He is the redeemer of Israel from Egypt.
  • Verses 16-22, because He led the people through the wilderness and gave them the land of Canaan.
  • Verses 23-25, because He remembers us, redeems us, and provides for all his creatures.
  • Verse 26 ends with the same command that we started with, to give thanks.

I guest the question is, is thankfulness possible during these troubled days? The answer doesn’t depend on the troubled days. Giving thanks has always been a matter of faith. Things are ever changing. Crisis times come and go, sometimes it’s just the individual that goes through it, sometimes a family, sometimes a community, and sometimes a nation. Yet, all the while the Lord is merciful and we are commanded to be thankful. He is still working, protecting, redeeming, and providing.

Today I’m going to add a link to Dr Osterbrock’s article, A Christian’s Response to National Panic. Take a moment to read through his recounting of Thomas Brook’s response to the great London fire of 1666. I think you’ll find some wonderful devotional thought there about how we should respond to our neighbors and to the Lord during a time of national crisis.

Music today is by our own Joy Chadwell.

Prayer Requests: The Southern Baptist Convention has a brand new Facebook page just for prayer. Check it out. You’ll have to join the group but it’s not difficult, just three questions.

Catechism: The Principles of the Christian Religion.

  • Question 10: Who is the first of these persons?
  • Answer: The Father who begetteth the Son.
  • Question 11: Who is the second?
  • Answer: The Son, begotten of the Father.
  • Question 12: Who is the third?
  • Answer: The Holy Ghost, proceeding from the Father and the Son.

Hope to see you all soon. All my best to you and yours.

O give thanks unto the God of heaven: for his mercy endureth for ever.

Psalm 136:26

Published by David B. Smith

Author, podcaster, pastor, and Big Pappa to my grandchildren.

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