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Israel's Anthem (1 Ch 16:34, ...)

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David declared God's goodness and love to Israel in 1 Ch 16:34. This became a national anthem for Israel down through the ages.

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1 Chronicles 16:34 ESV
34 Oh give thanks to the Lord, for he is good; for his steadfast love endures forever!
First usage: .
1 Chronicles 16:34 ESV
34 Oh give thanks to the Lord, for he is good; for his steadfast love endures forever!
First usage: .
“For he is good, for his steadfast loves endures forever” Variation -
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“Give thanks to the Lord, for his steadfast love endures forever” Variation -
“Give thanks to the Lord, for his steadfast love endures forever” Variation -
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Combined: ,
Combined: ,
"Steadfast love endures forever" is repeated multiple times in , .
"Steadfast love endures forever" is repeated multiple times in , .
A nation’s national anthem is often song that causes that nation’s people to pause and reflect.
Many times it is reflection on:
- the values of that nation.
- the history of that nation.
- and the blessings of being apart of that nation.
When we think of our own national anthem, we often reflect on those things.
Tonight, I would like us to pause from our study in Psalm to look at what may be called the national anthem of Biblical Israel.
Clarification: I don’t mean to suggest that it was officially called that, but in many ways it functioned in the same way.
1 Chronicles 16:34 ESV
34 Oh give thanks to the Lord, for he is good; for his steadfast love endures forever!
1 Chronicles 16:34 ESV
34 Oh give thanks to the Lord, for he is good; for his steadfast love endures forever!
This song is a line repeated through the history of Israel. It became a national anthem for them and a treasured song in Israel.
This song is a line repeated through the history of Israel. It became a national anthem for them and a treasured song in Israel.
Let’s look at the history and meaning of that song.
History and Meaning of the Song:
- Ark brought to the temple, sung in public praise
- After Yahweh’s Glory cloud filled the temple. (v. 6 uses the thanksgiving formula)
, , , , ,
- Enemy consisting of Moabites, Ammonites and some Meunites attack Israel under Jehoshaphat; sung in public praise.
Read .
1 Chronicles 20:1–4 ESV
1 In the spring of the year, the time when kings go out to battle, Joab led out the army and ravaged the country of the Ammonites and came and besieged Rabbah. But David remained at Jerusalem. And Joab struck down Rabbah and overthrew it. 2 And David took the crown of their king from his head. He found that it weighed a talent of gold, and in it was a precious stone. And it was placed on David’s head. And he brought out the spoil of the city, a very great amount. 3 And he brought out the people who were in it and set them to labor with saws and iron picks and axes. And thus David did to all the cities of the Ammonites. Then David and all the people returned to Jerusalem. 4 And after this there arose war with the Philistines at Gezer. Then Sibbecai the Hushathite struck down Sippai, who was one of the descendants of the giants, and the Philistines were subdued.
So in verse 21, all of Judah sings this song before God.
- Dedication of the repaired/rebuilt Temple mount after the exile. ( notes this goes back to David in ).
- Describes the fully restored future nation of Israel singing this song as an anthem. (Combined song like ).
It is also repeated in the Psalms
It is also repeated in the Psalms
The Psalms:
Introductory Praise:
, , , and .
"Steadfast love endures forever" is repeated multiple times in , .
- Recounts God’s goodness to Israel in history.
- Recounts God’s goodness to Israel in history.
Conclusions:
- God’s goodness to the nations through Israel.
“Give thanks to the Lord, for his steadfast love endures forever” Variation -
Now I would like us to think about the context of it’s first use,
1 Chronicles 16:34 ESV
34 Oh give thanks to the Lord, for he is good; for his steadfast love endures forever!
This began as a praise of David.
At some point, the complete and original tabernacle was lost during the time of Judges.
Therefore,
David prepared a place for the ark,
hoping ultimately to make a proper temple for the ark.
describes this event.
1 Chronicles 16:1 ESV
1 And they brought in the ark of God and set it inside the tent that David had pitched for it, and they offered burnt offerings and peace offerings before God.
As part of that dedication,
David gave a song of which our ESV bibles describe as “David’s Song of the Thanks”.
There is much that is said in this song about God’s goodness to Israel.

1 Chronicles

Psalms

16:8–22

105:1–15

16:23–33

96:1b–13a

16:34–36

106:1b–c, 47–48

David probably took his earlier songs and poems to make this “Thanksgiving Song”.
Bible Knowledge Commentary:
1 Chronicles Psalms
16:8-22
16:23-33
16:34-36 ,
In the middle of this, he states our verse.
1 Chronicles 16:34 ESV
34 Oh give thanks to the Lord, for he is good; for his steadfast love endures forever!
This statement became near to the heart of Israel.
Why?
Summary statement that recounts Israel’s history
- The great King David said it.
- King David said it directly related to their history.
God choose them. (1 Ch 16:8-13)
God gave them the Abrahamic Covenant. ()
God’s blessing and protection despite they were small, weak, insignificant people of Israel ()
And so much of the remaining middle section of this song is about a challenge to Israel to praise God in thanksgiving, ending in v. 34.
is the concluding and summary line of this song.
And so much of the remaining middle section of this song is about a challenge to Israel to praise God in thanksgiving, ending in v. 34.
It recounts their history, by one of their most favored and famous people.
And what does it say,
The
Contents of the Summary Line:
a. Give thanks to God.
It is a song calling for thankfulness for God’s work. The proper response for Israel was to thank God.
Why?
The line gives two reasons God deserves our praise.
And may I suggest that these two reasons are actually also attributes of God.
b. For he is good!
“Good” in this passage could be translated for what we might call kindness.
God is good in that he is kind.
He was certainly kind by being merciful and gracious to Israel blessing them well beyond what they deserve.
As we recounted the use of this summary statement we recall
- the undeserving selection of Israel.
- the rebellious nature of Israel.
- The future restoration of Israel despite rebellion.
a. God has been kind to Israel.
b. Likewise, God has been kind to us.
In fact, is a Psalm written to Gentiles calling us to declare his Goodness to the nations through Israel.
Psalm 100:5 ESV
5 For the Lord is good; his steadfast love endures forever, and his faithfulness to all generations.
The praise of spoke specifically of the blessing of Israel during the Theocratic Kingdom, but we understand from redemptive history that it goes well beyond that.
God has been good to us, Gentiles, through Israel.
God has been good to us, Gentiles, through Israel.
We receive salvation and the riches of Salvation through Jesus. Jesus was born a Jew.
As believers in the Gospel, can we not say that God has been good.
“when we evaluate things in the way God created us to evaluate them, we will also approve what God approves and delight in things in which he delights” (Wayne Grudem)
c. His Steadfast love forever.
The 2nd reason Israel should be thankful to God is his love has been shown to be unconditional.
God will forever love humanity, Israel and Gentile.
The Old Testament over and over speaks of God’s longsuffering and forgiveness of Israel.
We see this in God’s love for us.
The classic verse, .
John 3:16 ESV
16 “For God so loved the world, that he gave his only Son, that whoever believes in him should not perish but have eternal life.
, .
We ought to be thankful that:
Combined: , .
our sin
"Steadfast love endures forever" is repeated multiple times in , .
our failures
The First declaration: .
our apathy
does not change God’s love.
God is steadfast, loving us forever.
may be a national anthem of Biblical Israel, but what great great truth does it give.
Might we tonight repeat this words in our prayers.
1 Chronicles 16:34 ESV
34 Oh give thanks to the Lord, for he is good; for his steadfast love endures forever!
1 16:34
Response: We ought to be thankful for God’s kindness and love toward’s us, rebellious sinners before God.
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