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Ye that fear the Lord , praise him; all ye the seed of Jacob, glorify him; and fear him, all ye the seed of Israel.
Psalms 22:23 KJV

Psalm 22

It seems strange that this verse calls us to simultaneously fear and praise the Lord. We don’t tend to associate praising someone with being afraid of them. But think of it as like a young child who fears their father’s wrath if they do wrong, but praises their consistent love.

The Psalmist calls the offspring of Jacob to glorify God. We might assume that the offspring of Jacob refers to the Jewish people, and it probably does. But Biblically, Jacob symbolises and represents sinners who are nonetheless loved by God. Surely that is cause enough for us all to glorify God.

Next, the offspring of Israel are called to stand in awe of the Lord. Again, it could be taken literally, to refer to Israelite people. But “Israel” is a spiritual nickname that God gave Jacob after wrestling with Him and insisting on a blessing.

Israel perhaps needed to learn a lesson in the awe of the Lord, who only needed to touch his hip to dislocate it, and refused to share His name because it was too wonderful. Still, God blessed him. And God will bless us too if we hold Him in the awe that He deserves.

“Lord, we fear, praise, glorify and stand in awe of You. Thank You for being our God and blessing us, even though we don’t deserve it. In Jesus’ name, amen”

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