Bible Insights

David Praises God

Psalm 164 from Beyond Psalm 150

After a fatal first attempt to move the ark of God (1 Chronicles 13:3–14), David successfully brings the ark of God into Jerusalem and places it inside the tent he has prepared for it. David then gives offerings to God and appoints Levites—including Asaph— to lead worship.

The Bible credits Asaph with twelve chapters in the book of Psalms. This may be his thirteenth one, though David could also have penned it.

Regardless of the authorship, here is this psalm of when David praises God to celebrate the arrival of the ark of the covenant.

Oh give thanks to Yahweh.
    Call on his name.
    Make what he has done known among the peoples.
Sing to him.
    Sing praises to him.
    Tell of all his marvelous works.
Glory in his holy name.
    Let the heart of those who seek Yahweh rejoice.
Seek Yahweh and his strength.
    Seek his face forever more.
Remember his marvelous works that he has done,
    his wonders, and the judgments of his mouth,
you offspring of Israel his servant,
    you children of Jacob, his chosen ones.
He is Yahweh our God.
    His judgments are in all the earth.
Remember his covenant forever,
    the word which he commanded to a thousand generations,
    the covenant which he made with Abraham,
    his oath to Isaac.
He confirmed it to Jacob for a statute,
    and to Israel for an everlasting covenant,
saying, “I will give you the land of Canaan,
    The lot of your inheritance,”
    when you were but a few men in number,
    yes, very few, and foreigners in it.
They went about from nation to nation,
    from one kingdom to another people.
He allowed no man to do them wrong.
    Yes, he reproved kings for their sakes,
“Don’t touch my anointed ones!
    Do my prophets no harm!”
Sing to Yahweh, all the earth!
    Display his salvation from day to day.
Declare his glory among the nations,
    and his marvelous works among all the peoples.
For great is Yahweh, and greatly to be praised.
    He also is to be feared above all gods.
For all the gods of the peoples are idols,
    but Yahweh made the heavens.
Honor and majesty are before him.
    Strength and gladness are in his place.
Ascribe to Yahweh, you relatives of the peoples,
    ascribe to Yahweh glory and strength!
Ascribe to Yahweh the glory due to his name.
    Bring an offering, and come before him.
    Worship Yahweh in holy array.
Tremble before him, all the earth.
    The world also is established that it can’t be moved.
Let the heavens be glad,
    and let the earth rejoice!
    Let them say among the nations, “Yahweh reigns!”
Let the sea roar, and its fullness!
    Let the field exult, and all that is in it!
Then the trees of the forest will sing for joy before Yahweh,
    for he comes to judge the earth.
Oh give thanks to Yahweh, for he is good,
    for his loving kindness endures forever.
Say, “Save us, God of our salvation!
    Gather us together and deliver us from the nations,
    to give thanks to your holy name,
    to triumph in your praise.”
Blessed be Yahweh, the God of Israel,
    from everlasting even to everlasting.

1 Chronicles 16:8–36 (WEB)

Reflections on David Praises God

It’s human nature to want to receive credit for what we have done. Though we’re not sure who wrote this psalm—David or Asaph—the author is not the issue. The point is worshiping Yahweh, and this psalm does a superb job at it.

When have we strived to receive recognition for our work and in the process distracted others from worshiping God? Are we willing to set aside our pride so that others can best connect with the Almighty?

As John the Baptist said about Jesus, “He must increase, but I must decrease” (John 3:30).

May we adopt the same humble perspective.

Explore the other psalms—sacred songs of praise, petition, and lament—scattered throughout the Bible in Peter’s book Beyond Psalm 150.

Peter DeHaan writes about biblical Christianity to confront status quo religion and live a life that matters. He seeks a fresh approach to following Jesus through the lens of Scripture, without the baggage of made-up traditions and meaningless practices.

Read more in his books, blog, and weekly email updates.