Praying Psalm 107: Praise And Thanksgiving For America’s Past And Future Deliverances
Thank You For Answering Our Call “LORD, Help!”
Our LORD has delivered America from many trials. And here we are again, in the midst of unprecedented evil that is threatening not only the government, but our basic freedoms and way of life.
We continually praise and thank the LORD God for redeeming us through past adversities.
And we pray in advance for continued deliverance, based on Jesus’ word “whatever you ask in prayer, believe that you have received it, and it will be yours” (Mark 11:24). We pray believing we have received complete deliverance from the pure evil of the Marxist/Socialist movement, unified with Democrat Party leaders, tyrannizing and trying to destroy the American way of life.
A Few Words About Psalm 107
Psalm 107 shows us all kinds of ways that God has delivered people in need whether spiritual, psychological, or material. In fact, the permanent significance of Psalm 107 lies in the variety of ways in which, and from which, the LORD redeems His people –
- from all kinds of afflictions
- not restricted by special or temporal limits
- delivers from distress (NLT), adversity, foe, or trouble
- whatever the nature of “distress”, the LORD is able to redeem
Psalm 107’s emphasis lies on God’s goodness in spite of the fallenness of mankind. From vv. 4-32’s experiences of those being “redeemed” (“rescued” in the NLT; other major versions “delivered”), it is clear that not all are believers. Yet, because God desires that all people know Him, the Psalmist calls on all people who have experienced an act of God’s redemption to be wise by confessing that He is good, loving, and faithful (v. 2).
For unbelievers, witnessing to the grace of God leads to the knowledge of God, which can lead to belief and the worship of God, which is the beginning of wisdom (Psalm 111:10, Proverbs 1:7, 9:10; Ecclesiastes 12:13). For those in Christ, confessing God is part of our Christian call to proclaim the Gospel (Matthew 4:17, 28:19-20; Luke 4:43; Revelation 12:11, 19:10). Additionally, this includes believers sharing the reasons for their hope (rescue/deliverance are great reasons for hope!).
But in your hearts regard Christ the Lord as holy, always being prepared to make a defense to anyone who asks you for a reason for the hope that is in you. 1 Peter 3:15
LORD, Help! In Our Distress
During each section of the psalm, people cry out “LORD, help!” God hears the prayer of “distress” and answers. His deliverance is full of surprises and wonderful blessing from the LORD, and He supplies all the needs of His people.
Accordingly, God is the object of thanksgiving because He manifests His “unfailing love”. Again, mercy is not limited to the covenant people because the Sovereign LORD, Creator God, is kind to all mankind. And, since He is so gracious to all peoples, how much more to His own covenant children!
Darkness, Gloom, Despair – LORD, Help!
In vv. 10-12, the suffering is a form of captivity. The language used is darkness, gloom, and iron chains which connote despair, deprivation of rights, and judgment of God.
The current rioting, burning, looting, marauding takeover of cities, and other reprehensible acts carried out by violent Marxist soldiers and activists on behalf of the Democrat Party and the mainstream media are deep darkness. This violent extremism has caused the deprivation of rights for many citizens and much despair for others.
The psalm makes clear the misfortune of darkness and despair is not accidental but resulted from an intentional breach of faith with the Lord. The breach was made by unbelievers who are in rebellion against God’s Word as well as some of God’s own people who have rebelled against His authority and counsel.
Roar Of Many Waters – LORD, Help!
The section dealing with sailors on the sea (vv. 23-32), depicts once again, that God rescues all people—believers and unbelievers—in their distress. The Psalmist stated earlier (v. 2) that all people should confess the good things God has done for them.
The sea section complements and contrasts the earlier desert section (vv. 4-9). Both denote the farthest regions of the earth, indicating that there is nowhere God will not go to rescue His Creation (cf. Psalm 139).
Sing to the LORD a new song, his praise from the end of the earth, you who go down to the sea, and all that fills it, the coastlands and their inhabitants. Let the desert and its cities lift up their voice, the villages that Kedar inhabits; let the habitants of Sela sing for joy, let them shout from the top of the mountains. Isaiah 42:10-11
Remarkably, the psalm describes the sea merchants observing the marvels and powers of God’s Creation. But, as the ship is tossed about, the sailors are helpless, and become dispirited and terrified. As the sailors are tossed about onboard, they try to hold on to something solid, like drunken men who stagger and try to find some stability (v.27). Their navigation skills, i.e. worldly wisdom, can’t save them so they become desperate, “at their wit’s end” which is literally “all their wisdom was swallowed up.” This desperation is similar to the Egyptians’ experience in Isaiah 19:3.
And the spirit of the Egyptians within them will be emptied out, and I will confound their counsel; and they will inquire of the idols and the sorcerers, and the mediums and the necromancers. Isaiah 19:3
Realizing the failure of worldly wisdom to save them, the sailors prayed, and the Lord responded favorably. To prevent us from missing what has just happened, the Psalmist confirms that the sailors were glad when they saw the powerful working of the Lord (vv. 28-30). Their joy brings them to expressions of devotion to the Lord (vv. 31-32; cf. Jonah 1:16).
Roar Of Many Mobs – LORD, Help!
This section is especially helpful for our situation in America today. The “roar of many waters,” “roar of the sea,” “roar of the waves” is sometimes used as a metaphor for the loud, riotous, and overwhelming voices of many people or nations (cf. Psalms 65:6; Isaiah 17:12-13; Jeremiah 51:55).
In our distress, amid the loud waters of chaos, Christ Jesus is our stability, i.e. our anchor (Hebrews 6:19). But what about unbelievers? What is their stability? The Psalm teaches that even they become desperate to the point of having nowhere to turn. Yet, God is merciful and works on their behalf in powerful and mysterious ways.
Applying this to normal, peace-loving unbelievers is easy. And who knows how the Lord will use the current crisis to work in their lives?
But what about the anarchists running wild in the streets, defying civil order and basic respect for others? What about the Democrat leaders, federal, state, and local, who not only allow this vile behavior, but encourage, fund, and applaud it?
As difficult as it may be to pray for the uncivilized mobs burning down U.S. cities, Jesus says to pray for our enemies (Matthew 5:44). And these people are not only enemies of America, they are enemies of God.
Asking God to bless our enemies, or for the peace of Christ to enter their lives, can work wonders. And praise God who works out the circumstances in which He answers prayers for our enemies—be it deliverance from a storm on the sea or whatever.
Praise God Because He Hears When We Cry “LORD, Help!”
This section ends with the seafarers praising God for deliverance and transitions beautifully into 107:33-42 which lists the reasons for praising God. In particular, vv. 33-35 credits the Lord God with the power to change things. His authority is limitless, extending over water, fruitful land, desert, and parched ground.
This glorious declaration of God’s character—the Creator God who is a mighty and merciful Redeemer—is an encouragement to the “needy” (1 Samuel 2:8; Job 5:15; Psalm 14:30; 35:10; 72:4, 12-13; 113:7; 132:15; 140:13; Isaiah 14:30; Jeremiah 20:13), those who wait for the Lord (vv. 41-42). They receive comfort from seeing the justice of God. (Amen!?!)
In his power He blesses them and silences the ruthless power and great evil of “the wicked”. (Amen on that too!?!)
LORD, Help! Give Us Wisdom
Psalm 107 ends (v. 43) with an appeal to the wise to observe these “things”, the redeeming work of the Creator God and Sovereign Lord.
The righteous will become wise by studying the acts of the Lord in the affairs of mankind (cf. Psalm 111:10, Proverbs 1:7, 9:10; Ecclesiastes 12:13). Even in adversity, mankind will learn to know their God better and to trust that He will make all things well. His acts of love are constant.
The fool rages against God, but the wise will keep these things in their hearts.
Psalm 107 should give us great hope for the future. The psalm encourages the godly to observe wisely how great God’s love is for His creation and especially for His own people.
Give thanks to the LORD, for he is good! His faithful love endures forever.
2 Has the LORD redeemed you? Then speak out! Tell others he has redeemed you from your enemies.
3 For he has gathered the exiles from many lands, from east and west, from north and south.
4 Some wandered in the wilderness, lost and homeless.
5 Hungry and thirsty, they nearly died.
6 “LORD, help!” they cried in their trouble, and he rescued them from their distress.
7 He led them straight to safety, to a city where they could live.
8 Let them praise the LORD for his great love and for the wonderful things he has done for them.
9 For he satisfies the thirsty and fills the hungry with good things.
10 Some sat in darkness and deepest gloom, imprisoned in iron chains of misery.
11 They rebelled against the words of God, scorning the counsel of the Most High.
12 That is why he broke them with hard labor; they fell, and no one was there to help them.
13 “LORD, help!” they cried in their trouble, and he saved them from their distress.
14 He led them from the darkness and deepest gloom; he snapped their chains.
15 Let them praise the LORD for his great love and for the wonderful things he has done for them.
16 For he broke down their prison gates of bronze; he cut apart their bars of iron.
17 Some were fools; they rebelled and suffered for their sins.
18 They couldn’t stand the thought of food, and they were knocking on death’s door.
19 “LORD, help!” they cried in their trouble, and he saved them from their distress.
20 He sent out his word and healed them, snatching them from the door of death.
21 Let them praise the LORD for his great love and for the wonderful things he has done for them.
22 Let them offer sacrifices of thanksgiving and sing joyfully about his glorious acts.
23 Some went off to sea in ships, plying the trade routes of the world.
24 They, too, observed the LORD’s power in action, his impressive works on the deepest seas.
25 He spoke, and the winds rose, stirring up the waves.
26 Their ships were tossed to the heavens and plunged again to the depths; the sailors cringed in terror.
27 They reeled and staggered like drunkards and were at their wits’ end.
28 “LORD, help!” they cried in their trouble, and he saved them from their distress.
29 He calmed the storm to a whisper and stilled the waves.
30 What a blessing was that stillness as he brought them safely into harbor!
31 Let them praise the LORD for his great love and for the wonderful things he has done for them.
32 Let them exalt him publicly before the congregation and before the leaders of the nation.
33 He changes rivers into deserts, and springs of water into dry, thirsty land.
34 He turns the fruitful land into salty wastelands, because of the wickedness of those who live there.
35 But he also turns deserts into pools of water, the dry land into springs of water.
36 He brings the hungry to settle there and to build their cities.
37 They sow their fields, plant their vineyards, and harvest their bumper crops.
38 How he blesses them! They raise large families there, and their herds of livestock increase.
39 When they decrease in number and become impoverished through oppression, trouble, and sorrow,
40 the LORD pours contempt on their princes, causing them to wander in trackless wastelands.
41 But he rescues the poor from trouble and increases their families like flocks of sheep.
42 The godly will see these things and be glad, while the wicked are struck silent.
43 Those who are wise will take all this to heart; they will see in our history the faithful love of the LORD.
In The Redeeming and Mighty Name of Jesus Christ, Amen.
Willem A. VanGemern, Psalms, Proverbs, Ecclesiastes, Song of Songs. The Expositor’s Bible Commentary. Volume 5 (Grand Rapids: Zondervan, 1991), 681-688.
A great area of distress in the U.S. is members of the Body of Christ, including pastors, preachers, and seminary professors (!), advocating for, and compromising with, committed followers of the atheistic, collectivist, and socialistic ideology of Marxism.
Socialism, Communism, Nazism, Maoism are all ideological children of Karl Marx’ sinister philosophy, which manifests itself by illegitimately melding with the culture it is trying destroy. History, past and contemporary, tells us that the ideologues decry Christianity as the main thing that impedes the successful eradication of a country’s laws and culture, in our case, our founding documents and the American way of life.