Psalm 136 can be touted as the “The Psalm of Thanks” or the “Thanksgiving Psalm.” It is a Psalm that is rich in content, apropos the character of God and since each verse in the Psalm is suffixed with “For his mercy endures forever”, it is a Psalm that is easy to read and memorize as well.
In the spirit of Thanksgiving, giving thanks for the ultimate reason of sending us his only begotten Son, we will be looking at each verse in Psalm 136 and glean out the character of God from these verses, which would be reason enough to be grateful and give thanks to our LORD God.
Today we look at Verses 10 and 11.
To him that smote Egypt in their firstborn: for his mercy endureth for ever:
And brought out Israel from among them: for his mercy endureth for ever:
These verses indicate that God is not only a smiter of our enemies, but is one who is a rescuer of slaves. The people of God were in physical bondage and slavery under the rule of the Pharoah in the land of Egypt and God heard their cries. He sent unto them his deliverer, Moses, who with the aid of God, led God’s people of out the land of slavery. During this exodus from Egypt, God’s power was manifested and the unrelenting obstinacy of Pharaoh, brought on Egypt many plagues and calamities, including costing the people of Egypt, their firstborn son.
Points to ponder:
At the onset, it may be easily misunderstood that God was a cruel God, who according to some atheists and anti-theists, was a murdering God, with no compassion for the firstborn. But, let us not forget that in order to save all of mankind from spiritual slavery, being in bondage and under the power of the devil, God did not ever spare his only begotten Son, Jesus Christ. God sent him as the ultimate deliverer from spiritual slavery, to be born of a virgin, in a manger, overshadowed by the Cross. Let us not forget that God smote the adversary, Shaitan (or Satan) and the last enemy which is death (1 Corinthians 15:26), freeing all who believe in him and his son, who was sent to and for us. God indeed is the smiter of our enemy and the rescuer from spiritual slavery and that is all the reason that we can be thankful for.
It is Christmas season and while many focus on Jesus as a baby in the manger, let us not forget to see him as the rescuing Knight that he really is.
Psalm 136:10-11 (KJV)
10 To him that smote Egypt in their firstborn: for his mercy endureth for ever:
11 And brought out Israel from among them: for his mercy endureth for ever: