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Dave Burnette's Commentary

Psalm Chapter 81

Written By: God through Inspiration
Penned By: David, Asaph, Solomon, Heman, Ethan, Moses, and the Sons of Korah
Date Penned: (1440-586 BC)
Overview: Poetry for the Expression of Praise and Worship to God (c 1-150)
Theme: The Third Book of Psalms (c 73 - 89)
Message: A Holiday Hymn (v 1-16)

Psalms 81 Commentary

(81:1)  Israel's holidays reminded the people of God's great miracles. They were times of rejoicing and opportunities to renew one's strength for life's daily struggles. At Christmas, do your thoughts revolve mostly around presents? Is Easter only a warm anticipation of spring? Remember the spiritual origins of these special days, and use them as opportunities to worship God for his goodness to you, your family, and your church 

(81:1) Music and Worship - David instituted music for the temple worship services (1 Chronicles 25). Music and worship go hand in hand. Worship involves the whole person, and music helps lift a person's thoughts and emotions to God. Through music, we can reflect upon our needs and shortcomings as well as celebrate God's greatness. 

(81:10) A Promise from God - Does this promise from God to give us good things apply to us today? Should we ask God for great favor and blessing on us personally? God wants to bless us as we faithfully follow him. This promise is not a magic formula or an open contract for personal prosperity (though some have abused it for personal gain by teaching that it is. But we can come to our great King with big requests because he is kind, merciful, and generous. He wants to fill us and satisfy us with all the good that comes from his loving hands. 

(81:11-12) We Have a Free Will - God let the Israelites go on blindly, stubbornly, and selfishly when they should have been obeying and pursuing his desires. God sometimes lets us continue in our stubbornness to bring us to our senses. He does not keep us from rebelling. Because we have free will, he wants us to learn the consequences of sin. He uses these experiences to turn people away from greater sin to faith in him. 

(81:13-16) Respond to His Call - God had provided in his covenant that he would restore his people if they would return to him and obey him (Exodus 23:22-27; Leviticus 26:3-13; Deuteronomy. 7112-26; 28:1-14). God also remains faithful in our relationship with him (2 Timothy 2:11-13). If we go astray, he patiently waits for us to respond to his call so he can pour out his blessings on us. Conduct an inventory of your spiritual life right now. Are you listening to God and walking in his path?


Dave Burnette's Life Application

God is Faithful

Each day, we walk through the Bible chapter by chapter, making an application of our text to help us grow in the Lord. Many applications can be made from each day's text. Today, we continue in the Book of Psalms with Chapter 81. In our text today, we see a theme of a holiday hymn celebrating the Exodus from Egypt despite Israel's waywardness. In applying, we see how God is faithful to us even when we are not faithful to Him. Yes, we reap what we sow and miss out on God's best when we disobey, but God still loves us even in our disobedience. How about you? Have you strayed from God? Let us learn from our Psalm and text today to remember that our God is faithful and loves us even when we are not faithful to Him.


Psalm 81

Psalm 81

 1Sing aloud unto God our strength: make a joyful noise unto the God of Jacob.

 2Take a psalm, and bring hither the timbrel, the pleasant harp with the psaltery.

 3Blow up the trumpet in the new moon, in the time appointed, on our solemn feast day.

 4For this was a statute for Israel, and a law of the God of Jacob.

 5This he ordained in Joseph for a testimony, when he went out through the land of Egypt: where I heard a language that I understood not.

 6I removed his shoulder from the burden: his hands were delivered from the pots.

 7Thou calledst in trouble, and I delivered thee; I answered thee in the secret place of thunder: I proved thee at the waters of Meribah. Selah.

 8Hear, O my people, and I will testify unto thee: O Israel, if thou wilt hearken unto me;

 9There shall no strange god be in thee; neither shalt thou worship any strange god.

 10I am the LORD thy God, which brought thee out of the land of Egypt: open thy mouth wide, and I will fill it.

 11But my people would not hearken to my voice; and Israel would none of me.

 12So I gave them up unto their own hearts' lust: and they walked in their own counsels.

 13Oh that my people had hearkened unto me, and Israel had walked in my ways!

 14I should soon have subdued their enemies, and turned my hand against their adversaries.

 15The haters of the LORD should have submitted themselves unto him: but their time should have endured for ever.

 16He should have fed them also with the finest of the wheat: and with honey out of the rock should I have satisfied thee.