Psalm 33:2 - Take 2
Monday June 5, 2023
This week, Psalm 33:2 – Take 2.
Because when I wrote this reflection, I had forgotten that I had written one about this verse already… ;) So here is another take on the same words:
“Give thanks to the Lord with the lyre;
make melody to him with the harp of ten strings!”
It appears that music has always been a part of the created universe. Perhaps it existed even before the creation of this world that we know. Because it wouldn’t surprise me if music is a part of God Himself, part of who He is in His being.
Obviously, there is music on earth. In fact, we are almost always surrounded by it: by sounds, by voices, by instruments and by songs in all their kinds and styles. There is simple music and complex music – there is transcendental and inspiring music, and there is vulgar and depressing music – there is music that lifts the heart and the spirit up to heaven in praise and thanksgiving, and there is music that brings the soul down to death, spiritually and literally speaking.
Through God’s Word we know that, just as on earth but no doubt infinitely more beautiful and glorious, there is and there will be music in heaven and for all eternity – at least with harps (Revelation 5:8 and 15:2) and with voices:
“Then I heard every creature in heaven and on earth
and under the earth and in the sea,
and all that is in them,
“To the one seated on the throne
and to the Lamb
be blessing and honor and glory and might
forever and ever!”
The Bible tells us that the angels sing.
- The angels sang when the world was created:
“Where were you when I laid the foundation of the earth?
Tell Me, if you have understanding…
When the morning stars sang together
and all the sons of God shouted for joy?”
- They sang when Jesus was born in Bethlehem:
“And suddenly there was with the angel
a multitude of the heavenly host
praising God and saying,
“Glory to God in the highest
and on earth peace
among those with whom he is pleased!”
- And angels will sing at the end of time, in the revelation of the scroll of life and of the seven seals – the scroll of Jesus Christ, the Lamb and the Lion of the tribe of Judah, the only One worthy to take the scroll and break its seals:
“And when he had taken the scroll,
the four living creatures and the twenty-four elders
fell down before the Lamb,
each holding a harp…
And they sang a new song…
Then I looked, and I heard
around the throne
and the living creatures
and the elders
the voice of many angels,
numbering myriads of myriads
and thousands of thousands…”
And not just the angels sing: all of creation makes music unto God.
“All the earth worships you
and sings praises to you;
they sing praises to your name.”
Psalm 148 is an exhortation for all of creation to exalt and to praise God: the angels – the sun, moon and stars – the sea creatures – lightening, hail, snow, fog and wind – the mountains and trees – all the animals in the air and on the earth – kings, princes and rulers of the nations – the young, the old, and children…
We all know, of course, the daily morning song of the birds. But there are insects, frogs, rats, bats, and some squirrels and whales that also sing – perhaps not for the human ear, but definitely for the supernatural ears of God.
But there is more: modern science is just beginning to discover that even the inanimate things of creation, the very skies for example, make music. Radial astronomy is learning that the sky is filled with stars that emit signals – signals that, when received by a radio, produce incredible music similar to the sound of certain whales.
That is why it should not surprise us if the words from Psalm 96:11-12 could be understood quite literally:
“Let the heavens be glad, and let the earth rejoice;
let the sea roar, and all that fills it;
let the field exult, and everything in it!
Then shall all the trees of the forest sing for joy.”
If today’s scientists are discovering that the skies and stars make music, why not the fields and the trees too?
So, if music appears to be in God’s heart – if we know that it has existed at least since the beginning of creation, if not before – if we understand that there will be music in heaven for all eternity – if all created beings and things, whether angels or animals or even the inanimate, make music and sing with joy and in praise of their Creator… then, how much more are we, human beings here on earth, called to make music and to sing in adoration to our God! Whether it be with a lyre or a ten-stringed harp of old, or with our modern-day instruments accompanying the music of our human voices: may everything that we are, and have and do make music in praise to our God!
Let’s memorize these words today! And let’s live them this week!+ REFLECTIONS