Psalm 95 - Do not harden your hearts
I love this psalm. It seems the 2nd 1/2, verses 8-11 do not go with the 1st 1/2. At first I enjoyed the 1st 7 verses in a light way, but did not enjoy the last 4 verses much. After memorizing it and singing it many times, I enjoy the last verses more than the first.
The 1st 7 verses of this psalm are a delightful song. I continued the rest of the psalm in the same irregular tune. Here is my poor voice singing it.
- LXX has heading: " A Praise, a Song Through David. MT has no heading. I believe the LXX heading is correct because Hebrews 4:7
says that this Psalm is the Holy Spirit's speaking through David.
- When the Chilean miners
were rescued in 2010, this verse was on their T-Shirts.
- The first 5 verses are a joyful noise. Now in v6, the tone changes to be solemn, indicated by kneeling. When we are singing joyfully, we should have the freedom to follow the Spirit to become solemn before the Lord and vice-versa.
Some Jewish teachers teach that Jews should not kneel to God when we worship Him. They say that is a heathen practice of the Christians. But the Old Testament as well as the New tells us to kneel before the Lord.
Verses 1-7 are David speaking of God in the 3rd person. The remaining verses 8-11 are God's speaking in the 1st person.
In the midst of praising the Lord with a joyful noise and then and bowing down and kneeling before Him, the Lord speaks to us a warning to not harden our hearts, especially when we hear His voice. What does it mean to harden our hearts when we hear his voice? In my experience, it means to reject a thought out of hand because of teachings I have bought into. If a thought or question comes to me that may be the Lord's speaking, I need to seriously consider whether it is true or not. Is there anything in the Bible to support it? If there are verses in the Bible against it, am I sure they really mean what I thought.
- Do not trust that something is true because your church fathers or natural fathers taught it. You must know the failures of your history as well as the triumphs.
- The Lord wants us to know His ways, not just His works. We should not only keep the Lord's commandments, but also understand why the Lord gave such a commandment. This is to be brought on to maturity (Hebrews 6:1
v11 - What a sober way to end the psalm. There is no joyful word following so that we remember the sober admonishing.
If we listen to the Lord's speaking and know His ways, not just His works, we will enter into His rest. This should be our goal.
- updated 7/20/2015
-copyright Steve Miller 5/10/2011
Psalm 95 - A Praise, A Song through David
Oh come, let us sing unto the LORD.
Let us make a joyful noise
to the Rock of our salvation.
2 Let us come before His presence
and make a joyful noise unto Him with psalms.
For the LORD is a great God,
and a great King above all gods.
In His hand are the deep places of the earth.
The strength of the hills is His also,
5 the sea is His, and He made it,
and His hands formed the dry land.
O come, let us worship and bow down.
Let us kneel before the LORD, our Maker,
7 for He is our God, and we are
the people of His pasture,
and the sheep of His hand today,
if you will hear His voice.
Do not harden your hearts,
as in the provocation,
as in the day of trial
in the wilderness,
when your fathers tried Me
by testing Me,
and saw My work forty years.
with this generation,
and I said they are a people
that go astray in heart,
and they have not known My ways,
11 to whom I swore in My wrath
that they shall not enter
into My rest.
Ps 8:5 You lowered him then a little below gods.
You crowned him with glory and honor.
and clothe him with honor.
Heb 2:7 Thou hast made him some little inferior to the angels; thou hast crowned him with glory and honour, and hast set him over the works of thy hands;
Ps 97:7 All serving idols shamed shall be,
all that of idols boast.
Heb 1:6 and again, when he brings in the firstborn into the habitable world, he says, And let all Godís angels worship him.
Heb 3:7 Wherefore, even as says the Holy Spirit, To-day if ye will hear his voice,
8 harden not your hearts, as in the provocation, in the day of temptation in the wilderness;
9 where your fathers tempted me, by proving me, and saw my works forty years.
10 Wherefore I was wroth with this generation, and said, They always err in heart; and *they* have not known my ways;
11 so I swore in my wrath, If they shall enter into my rest.
15 in that it is said, To-day if ye will hear his voice, do not harden your hearts, as in the provocation;
16 (for who was it, who, having heard, provoked? but was it not all who came out of Egypt by Moses?
17 And with whom was he wroth forty years? Was it not with those who had sinned, whose carcases fell in the wilderness?
18 And to whom sware he that they should not enter into his rest, but to those who had not hearkened to the word?
19 And we see that they could not enter in on account of unbelief;)
Heb 4:7 again, He specifies a certain day--today--speaking through David after such a long time, as previously stated:
Today if you hear His voice,
do not harden your hearts.
Heb 6:1 Therefore, leaving the elementary message about the Messiah, let us go on to maturity, not laying again the foundation of repentance from dead works, faith in God,
-copyright Steve Miller 5/10/2011