“Praise ye the Lord. Praise, O ye servants of the Lord, praise the name of the Lord.
Blessed be the name of the Lord from this time forth and for evermore.
From the rising of the sun unto the going down of the same the Lord’s name is to be praised.
The Lord is high above all nations, and his glory above the heavens.
Who is like unto the Lord our God, who dwelleth on high,
Who humbleth himself to behold the things that are in heaven, and in the earth!
He raiseth up the poor out of the dust, and lifteth the needy out of the dunghill;
That he may set him with princes, even with the princes of his people.
He maketh the barren woman to keep house, and to be a joyful mother of children. Praise ye the Lord.”
In 1789, John Montgomery was inspired by Psalm 113 to pen the words of a hymn. He wrote: “Who is like God? So great, so high; He bows Himself to view the sky; And yet, with condescending grace; Looks down upon the human race.” Psalm 113 is a psalm of praise to God. Praise should be the natural outflow of a life that has tasted of God’s saving grace. It is a proper response to God’s many blessings. Verse 3 reminds us: “From the rising of the sun unto the going down of the same the LORD’s name is to be praised.”
The psalmist asks question: “Who is like unto the LORD our God?” (v. 5). We know that the answer is NOBODY! Nothing or nobody compares to our God. Where are the gods of the Old Testament? Where is Baal and Ashtoreth and Molech? Where are the ancient gods of Egypt and Greece and Rome? Where are Buddha and Krishna and Mohammed? They are dead and gone. And eventually they will all be forgotten. The false deities that man devises do not even come close in comparison to our great God! It is He who is “high above all nations” and whose “glory is above the heavens” (v. 4). It is He who “dwelleth on high” (v. 5). When we think of God, we stand in awe of His greatness and His loftiness. We are amazed at how exalted He is! There is none greater than God!
Yet, the psalmist continues his description of God: “Who humbleth himself to behold the things that are in heaven, and in the earth!” (v. 6). This is remarkable! God is great and there is none like Him! He is above all and over all! Yet, who is like God? There is none like Him in His greatness. But there is also none like Him in His condescension. It reminds me of what David said in Psalm 8:4- “What is man, that thou art mindful of him? And the son of man, that thou visitest him?” When we realize how great God is and also realize how God condescends to lowly creatures like us, what can we do but praise Him? God not only stoops down to behold things on earth, He also cares for the lowly. Consider v. 7- “He raiseth up the poor out of the dust, and lifteth up the needy out of the dunghill.” God takes the poor and lowly and raises him up “that he may set him with princes…” (v. 8a). Is this not what God has done for every believer? “Even when we were dead in sins, hath raised us together with Christ, (by grace ye are saved;) And hath raised us up together, and made us sit together in heavenly places in Christ Jesus” (Ephesians 2:5-6).
There is none greater than God- in greatness or in condescension! Let us live today with praise to God upon our lips and in our lives!