Thoughts for the Day

Wednesday, 15th May 2024: The voice of the Lord

World Authority Power Psalm 29 God

Reading : Verses from Psalm 29

Electric thunderstorm

Ascribe to the Lord, O heavenly beings,
ascribe to the Lord glory and strength.
Ascribe to the Lord the glory of his name;
worship the Lord in holy splendour.

The voice of the Lord is over the waters;
the God of glory thunders,
the Lord, over mighty waters.
The voice of the Lord is powerful;
the voice of the Lord is full of majesty.

The voice of the Lord breaks the cedars;
the Lord breaks the cedars of Lebanon.
He makes Lebanon skip like a calf,
and Sirion like a young wild ox.

The voice of the Lord flashes forth flames of fire.
The voice of the Lord shakes the wilderness;
the Lord shakes the wilderness of Kadesh.

The voice of the Lord causes the oaks to whirl,
and strips the forest bare;
and in his temple all say, ‘Glory!’

The Lord sits enthroned over the flood;
the Lord sits enthroned as king for ever.
May the Lord give strength to his people!
May the Lord bless his people with peace!

(Lectionary, New Revised Standard Version)


The word "ascribe" means to say that something is caused by someone else - in this case, God. So David ascribes all the things he sees in his world to God's power. Having sung this psalm for much of my life it's one that I love. It reminds me of times like the great storm of 1987 that felled 15 million trees in the UK when whole swathes of forests and some of my favourite trees disappearing; or the big-freeze of 1963 when the snow was piled higher than the buses, but I had to cycle from home to work, along the main road; or the great storm surge of 1953 in eastern England that forced 30,000 people to be evacuated from their homes and thousands of hectares of land to be destroyed. For those living elsewhere who receive these 'Thoughts' you may also identify with other natural disasters in your area.

This wonderful psalm describes the strength and power of God. It repeats the name of the Lord (Yahweh) eighteen times and uses the phrase "the voice of the Lord" seven times. In each, the strength and character of God is expressed through His voice, and the words he speaks are so powerful that they possess strength and authority, so that seas will rise, forests be destroyed, and a wilderness can be shaken.

Psalm 29 is a song of utter praise. We are not called to respond in any way, because when we sing or say these words we are already praising God. David reminds all of us whatever our position in life, that it is God who has the power. It is He who commands nature. We may succeed in damaging our world, but ultimately it is God who is in charge, and as such God can and does give strength to His people. He comes to them to bless and comfort them, not just as an earth shattering storm.


Lord God Almighty,
whose name is Yahweh,
that is, "I am who I am",
we praise You and worship You
for Your power and strength
as seen in our world.
We ask Your blessing this day,
and Your comfort to all who need it.
Help us to learn how to care for
Your world and its creatures
as guardians of this treasure.

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