Sing praises to the LORD, O you his saints, and give thanks to his holy name. 5For his anger is but for a moment, and his favor is for a lifetime. Weeping may tarry for the night, but joy comes with the morning.

Psalm 30:4-5 

Patiently Wait for the Joy to Come

| Aug 20, 2013

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Sing praises to the LORD, O you his saints, and give thanks to his holy name. For his anger is but for a moment, and his favor is for a lifetime. Weeping may tarry for the night, but joy comes with the morning.—Psalm 30:4–5

When I first started meditating on the Fighter Verse for this week, it struck me with a note of dissonance.

More specifically, after David gives believers positive commands like “Sing praises to Yahweh” and “give thanks to his holy name,” he lists mixed reasons. Sure, there is favor “for a lifetime,” and sure, “joy comes with the morning,” but right now there is God’s “anger” and our “weeping.”

So, why would David give such mixed realities as the foundation on which he declares, “Sing praises to Yahweh and thank Him”? Isn’t that shaky ground?

No. In fact, this ground is actually more stable because it acknowledges the sinfulness and the hardships and the painfulness of this life.

In other words, if David (or Christianity) neglected what is painful to us, he would seem naïve. He would seem apathetic to human suffering.

Instead, he puts such suffering into perspective. Notice how God’s anger is momentary and his favor is what lasts. When we think about God, we delight that he only visits “the iniquity of the fathers on the children and the children’s children, to the third and the fourth generation,” but (for the sake of comparison) that he keeps “steadfast love to the thousandth generation” (Exodus 34:6–7). Again, God prepares vessels of wrath for destruction “in order to make known the riches of his glory for vessels of mercy” (Romans 9:22–23).

Therefore, while we weep during the night because of God’s anger against sinful humanity, we sing praises to him and give thanks to him, knowing that the joy we will have in his presence for all of eternity makes the weeping worth it.

This week, as “his saints,” praise him in song and give him thanks for making you holy. Thank him for his favor. And praise him for the joy.