[ 3 minutes to read ]
“Blessed be the name of the LORD
from this time forth and for evermore.”
~ Psalm 113:2
This whole Psalm is one of pure devotion. From beginning to end, the Psalmist mingles prayer with praise—a concoction that sends up a most sweet aroma. After reading it, one could easily begin to meditate on the thousand mercies that attend our way every day. Every point of mercy is a condescension of the Lord who is “high above all nations, and his glory above the heavens” (Psalm 113:4). This Psalms exalts the Lord God with amazement: “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!” (Psalm 113:5-6).
The first direction in our verse is to bless His name, “Blessed be the name of the LORD.” A reference to His “name” exists in each of the three opening verses of this Psalm. The name of the Lord speaks to us of power, authority, wisdom, etc. The mention of His “name” exhorts us to contemplate all of His attributes, all of His names.
A name is an identifier and a way that God reveals Himself to us. He is jealous of His name, “I am the LORD: that is my name: and my glory will I not give to another, neither my praise to graven images” (Isaiah 42:8), and so should we be jealous of His name. In this regard, may we have the testimony of Phinehas, of whom it is written, “He was zealous for his God” (Numbers 25:13). Though a rose may smell just as sweet by another name, we cannot presume to change the name of God and offer to Him a sweet savor.
To give God a new name would be to worship a false god. We often give names to the people around us. These may be derogatory or complementary and usually reflect something that we presume about the person we have so labeled. To approach God this way would be for the creature to find out the Creator rather than the Creator revealing Himself to the creature. This is man’s attempt to define, and thus limit God. God is not boxed in by man. He is the “high and lofty One that inhabiteth eternity, whose name is Holy” (Isaiah 57:15).
The godhood of God is in His name and anything other than receiving His testimony concerning Himself is idolatry. This is discomfiting to the egalitarian feminists, humanists, evolutionists, postmodernists, et al. However, they have “set themselves . . . against the LORD,” and consequently, “the Lord shall have them in derision . . . speak unto them in his wrath, and vex them in his sore displeasure” (Psalm 2:2, 4-5). Except these repent of their idolatry, they will finally be made to bow at His name and be cast from His presence forever (Revelation 20:12-15).
The direction to bless is set in a perpetually present day—“from this time forth.” Each day is the day of blessing the name of the Lord. The birth of every new day is a reminder of the covenant faithfulness of our God, who vowed, “While the earth remaineth, seedtime and harvest, and cold and heat, and summer and winter, and day and night shall not cease” (Genesis 8:22). It should sober us to think of how we cannot today praise God yesterday. That opportunity is gone, but while it is yet today, we may praise Him.
This should be our daily activity. “From the rising of the sun unto the going down of the same the LORD’s name is to be praised” (Psalm 113:3). “This is the day which the LORD hath made; we will rejoice and be glad in it” (Psalm 118:24). Let us continue in blessing the name of the Lord “from this time forth and for evermore.”