Psalms 103 Commentary

Psalm 103 God’s great love

Realizing how easily people forget God, David reminds himself of the many blessings, physical and spiritual, that God has given him. Gratefully, he praises God for them all (1-2). Sin, sickness and the prospect of a hopeless death have been replaced by forgiveness, good health and a renewed enjoyment of life (3-5).

The constant love of God for his people is seen in the history of Israel. He cares for the oppressed and shows mercy on sinners (6-8). If God acted only according to his justice, all sinners would perish. But to his justice he adds his mercy, by which sinners may be forgiven (9-12). God understands human weakness and he is kind to those who fear him (13-14).

Life is short and uncertain, but people can enjoy the everlasting blessings of God’s steadfast love if they are faithfully obedient (15-18). God requires submissive obedience not only of earthly beings, but also of heavenly beings (19-21). In fact, all created things are to praise God. But in the midst of this universal praise, each individual has special cause to praise him (22).

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