Read Psalm 139
We are spending the week ahead studying a well-known and often-quoted psalm. It’s a psalm that I have found to be used particularly in women’s ministry or when little ones are born. It’s a psalm that we understand to be all about the glory of our own form, the way in which God has knit us together, and the joy that comes from being made in God’s image.
Let me say at the outset: this is not what Psalm 139 is about.
This week we are focusing on a single psalm, Psalm 139. As we’ve traced the theme of supplication and submission in previous psalms, we will do so here as well. But it will look different than we might expect. This week, and with this psalm, we will need to do a little digging to discover what the psalmist is asking of God (supplication) and how he is giving himself over to God (submission).
Read Psalm 139:1-6. What repeated words or themes arise?
If you were to summarize these verses into a single attribute of God’s, what would it be?
David starts his psalm by declaring that God has searched him – God knows him inside and out. God also knows David’s agenda and schedule, how he spends his time, when he leaves his house and when he comes back home. More than that, God knows David’s thoughts – even at a distance! Before David knows what he is going to say, God knows what David is going to say. When David looks behind him, there God is. When he looks up ahead to the horizon, God’s there, too. These verses are an overwhelming recitation of God’s omniscience, the reality that God is all-knowing.
God’s omniscience is one of His incommunicable traits, meaning it is a trait that can be ascribed to God alone. Some of God’s communicable traits – traits that can be ascribed to God and man – are His attributes of mercy, justice, and love. We are called to emulate God’s communicable traits – in fact, it’s what Christian discipleship is about! But God’s incommunicable traits are the traits that God alone possesses, and when we run up against one of them, they should cause us to worship.
How might God’s omniscience in Psalm 139:1-6 cause you to worship?
God alone knows everything. Like David says, there is not an iota of your life that God does not see in His omniscience. God knows you inside and out. God also knows your agenda and schedule, how you spend your time, when you leave your house and when you come back home. More than that, God knows your thoughts – even at a distance! Before you know what you are going to say, God knows what you are going to say. When you look behind you, there God is. When you look up ahead to the horizon, God’s there, too.
Consider your life for a moment and the reality that God knows it intimately. How might you respond in worship?
We can respond with David: Such knowledge is too wonderful for me! It is high – I cannot attain it! We, like, David, can fall at the feet of our God and praise Him for being unlike us in this way – God knows everything, and when we consider the fact that He is all-knowing, our brains can’t keep it in. It’s too weighty for our finite minds, too glorious for our created form. When we dip our toes in the first verses of this Psalm, it’s unmistakable: this Psalm is not about us, but about our glorious God!
Pray & Reflect:
Supplication: Confess to God that you are not all-knowing, that thoughts of Him are far too high for you to comprehend and worshipfully express.
Submission: Praise God for His omniscience! Praise Him that He knows all things, including every detail about you and your life. Thank Him that in His infinite knowledge He has sought out a personal relationship with you.