The Psalms are filled with praise to God. Of the 150 sacred hymns found in the Bible, over 70 of them are attributed to David, and he is especially fond of praising God in every imaginable situation, even when he is the innocent victim of unjust persecution.
Psalm 30 is one of these psalms of exaltation. David pours out his heart to God. Over and over he finds reason to lift up God for His manifold acts of mercy. God answered David’s prayers for deliverance from his enemies, and here we read a compelling description of God’s saving grace in the life of this devoted saint.
Let’s take a journey through this psalm and make a list of the many “praise statements” found here. Note the simple yet powerful way the psalmist describes what God has done for him. That is the focus of this hymn – the might acts of God on behalf of David.
The opening verse resounds, “I will exalt you, O LORD.” Then David immediately begins his list of reasons for exaltation. The key word in verse one is “for” – which simply means “because.” David loves to proclaim, “I’m going to praise my God, and here are the reasons why.”
It’s as if David is saying, “Why should I praise You, my God? Let me count the ways.”
Reason #1: You lifted me out of the depths (1b)
Reason #2: You did not let my enemies gloat over me (1c)
Reason #3: You healed me (2b)
Reason #4: You brought me up from the grave (3a)
Reason #5: You spared me from going down to the pit (3b)
Those five reasons would be enough for an extended time of praise, don’t you think? Absolutely. So David addresses the audience with a jubilant exhortation to join him in this joyful expression of worship: “Sing to the LORD, you saints of his; praise his holy name. For his anger lasts only a moment, but his favor lasts a lifetime” (Psalm 30:4-5).
David is just getting started, however. There are more reasons to share, and so he resumes his list of God’s wonderful acts of salvation.
Reason #6: You favored me (7a)
Reason #7: You made my mountain stand firm (7b)
In verses 8-10 David takes a short break from his list and takes us back to the prayers he had uttered. He called out to God for a demonstration of grace and faithfulness. “Hear, O LORD, and be merciful to me; O LORD, be my help” (Psalm 30:10). And God responded!
Reason #8: You turned my wailing into dancing (11a)
Reason #9: You removed my sackcloth (11b)
Reason #10: You clothed me with joy (11c)
If you’re looking for a way to increase the quality of your worship, whether individual or corporate, Psalm 30 is a great passage to read and meditate on. Let David’s list be a springboard for your own expressions of adoration. Certainly you can identify with many, if not all, of these reasons. Amen?
Were you to reflect on your own life and all that God has done for you, could you make a list of 10 reasons to praise God? Give it a try. It will thrill your soul and bring tears of joy to your eyes.