Psalm 136 – a series, 1

I thought I’d do a series of reflections on Psalm 136. I’m not currently inspired to do a book or anything so there probably won’t be much order to it. This Psalm caught my attention a few days ago as a great Psalm for many different situations, personalities and times of Christian growth.

I encourage you to read the entire Psalm 136 first.

Certainly the refrain is obvious, “for His steadfast love endures forever”. As I read this over and over I found myself almost skipping it. I had to go back and read it carefully again. When God repeats a phrase, especially in the same chapter of the Bible, some 26 times then there is surely some deep meaning that He does not want us to miss.

The “His” refers to God, the Lord God, the creator of all the earth, the sustainer of all that is, the savior. When the Lord revealed His name to Moses, He used the Hebrew for “I AM WHO I AM”. This made vivid the eternal and unchangeable nature of God (Exodus 3:14). The Lord’s unchangeable, also called immutable, nature is set prominently in the verses of Psalm 136. He makes careful mention of being “steadfast” in His love. God’s love cannot be moved or altered. His immutable nature extends to His love. Unless we misunderstand and think that God’s immutable love can end, He adds that it “endures”. And again, lest we think that our immutable God with His steadfast and enduring love will at some point become tired, bored or careless, the Lord adds “forever”. The love we now experience as believers saved by God is the steadfast, enduring, unending love of the God who cannot change. Truly we are secure in the love of our Father, God of heaven and earth. We are taken still deeper into this revelation in Romans 8:38-39 where God’s love in Christ Jesus is shown – immutable forever!

For I am sure that neither death nor life, nor angels nor rulers, nor things present nor things to come, nor powers, nor height nor depth, nor anything else in all creation, will be able to separate us from the love of God in Christ Jesus our Lord.