Psalm 106 begins with a word of praise and thanks, reminding us of Gods steadfast love which endures forever. The Hebrew word used here is “checed” which is frequently used in the Old Testament to describe God’s faithful, steadfast mercy and kindness; God’s enduring love that never ends. We really have no word that is exactly like this word “checed” in our English language.
While the psalm seems to begin in a similar fashion to the previous two psalms we quickly notice that suddenly this psalm begins to describe the way God’s chosen people have failed God. This psalm is about the mercy and grace which God provides for God’s people in spite of their sins. The psalmist recognizes that “we have sinned”, even as our fathers before us have sinned. Then the litany of sins begins, and notice this psalm is much longer than the previous ones. Why is it longer? Well, it does take longer to list all of the sins of the forefathers, and of us. 🙂
The list is long. The people gave no thought to God’s miracles and they rebelled by the sea. In spite of the sins of the people, God saved them through Moses. Once again we ask why, and we see the answer embedded in verse 8; for “His name sake, to make his powers known.”
The list of sins and rebellion continue, the people worshipped an idol calf, they did not believe the promises of God. They yoked themselves with the Baals (local false god of the land) and they sacrificed their children to demons. Yet God still had mercy and grace for them.
Sometimes we want to ask, “How could the people have rejected God so much?” then we realize that we have done the same things. We too reject God on a regular basis by the daily decisions we make. If we look closely we can see that we too have a long list of sins that we have done by omission or commission. We too are guilty, and what do we do? We call out to God to save us!
That is exactly what God did. God rescued us, God sent the savior, His only begotten son, Jesus. The work of Jesus on the cross is God’s solution to a rebellious people, which includes you and me. We too can cry out the last verse, “Praise be to the LORD, the God of Israel, from everlasting to everlasting you are full of grace and mercy for all your people. Let all the people say , “Amen!”