Psalm 135

Those who stand in the Lord's house and courts are called to praise 1
The Lord is above all with power over nature and nations 5
His name endures; He will judge His people 13
Idols have no power; those who make and trust them are like them 15
Bless the Lord out of Zion 19


Text
Explanation
Praise for what God had done for His people 1
His name endures forever 13
Warnings about idols made by hands 15
1 ¶ Praise ye the LORD. Praise ye the name of the LORD; praise him, O ye servants of the LORD.
 2  Ye that stand in the house of the LORD, in the courts of the house of our God,
 3  Praise the LORD; for the LORD is good: sing praises unto his name; for it is pleasant.
.4  For the LORD hath chosen Jacob unto himself, and Israel for his peculiar treasure.
  2 - That stand in the house These are the priests and Levites.
  4 - Peculiar treasure Or "personal property." See de0706; 1pe0209. He gave them a message for the world.
.5 ¶ For I know that the LORD is great, and that our Lord is above all gods.
 6  Whatsoever the LORD pleased, that did he in heaven, and in earth, in the seas, and all deep places.
.7  He causeth the vapours to ascend from the ends of the earth; he maketh lightnings for the rain; he bringeth the wind out of his treasuries.
 8  Who smote the firstborn of Egypt, both of man and beast.
 9  Who sent tokens and wonders into the midst of thee, O Egypt, upon Pharaoh, and upon all his servants.
 10  Who smote great nations, and slew mighty kings;
.11  Sihon king of the Amorites, and Og king of Bashan, and all the kingdoms of Canaan:
 12  And gave their land for an heritage, an heritage unto Israel his people.
  6 - Pleased This reflects His creation re0411.
  11 - Sihon He and Og disrupted the travel of the children of Israel toward Canaan. nu2121, de0230, de0301. See early Canaan map.
.13  Thy name, O LORD, endureth for ever; and thy memorial, O LORD, throughout all generations.
 14  For the LORD will judge his people, and he will repent himself concerning his servants.
  13 - The heart of the literary structure of this psalm.
  14b - Better translated as: "He will have pity on His servants."
.15 ¶ The idols of the heathen are silver and gold, the work of men's hands.
 16  They have mouths, but they speak not; eyes have they, but they see not;
 17  They have ears, but they hear not; neither is there any breath in their mouths.
 18  They that make them are like unto them: so is every one that trusteth in them.
  15 - Idols The statements should be obvious to the pagan worshippers. Satan's work which we recognize as the occult often fulfills or answers the appeals to the idols (or in trance meditations). He uses them to destroy people physically and spiritually.
  18  - Like them A person rises no higher than his objects of worship. On the other hand, we may focus on Christ and be restored into the image of God. 2co0318, ge0127.
.19  Bless the LORD, O house of Israel: bless the LORD, O house of Aaron:
 20  Bless the LORD, O house of Levi: ye that fear the LORD, bless the LORD.
 21  Blessed be the LORD out of Zion, which dwelleth at Jerusalem. Praise ye the LORD.
  19 - Bless the Lord ... house of Aaron These were the priests. The "house of Levi" included priests and levites. In verse 21, the praise comes from the largest group which includes the people of God.
General Explanation
   Although not among the six Passover psalms (113-118) this psalm is related. Notice those who stand in the Lord's house (priests) and His court (people). People were called to three of the special feast times at Jerusalem. Passover was apparently the most important.
   Verses 15 to 18 about Idols are essentially the same as 4 to 8 in psalm 115 ps0115.
   The chiastic literary structure appears below. Notice that, in the heart (v13), the Lord is addressed. He is described in the other blocks. The indentation shows the pattern. Where two lines have the same level, like lines 1 and 2 below, they are a block which matches two parts in the mirror block. So line 1 matches line 10 (Houses), not line 11 (Zion) as it would were each line a block.
Chiastic pattern
House of the Lord. Those who stand in it praise Him (v1-3)
Jacob is His treasure (4)
    The Lord is above all Gods (5)
    He has power over nature and nations (6-11)
        The Lord gave the land to His people (12)
           Thy name O Lord endures memorial for all generations (13)
       The Lord will judge His people (14)
    Humans make idols, and are like them (15)
    Idols [have no power] - can't speak, see, hear. No breath (16-18)
Houses of Israel, Aaron, and Levi to bless the Lord (19, 20)
Zion and Jerusalem are His place (21)
Second view of the chiastic pattern
By mistake, I prepared this chapter twice then merged the comments. You can see that the pattern can be viewed differently, picking up on different matching points.
Praise ye the Lord (1)
    Servants in His house to praise Him (Levites serve in the temple) (2)
        Praise and sing. The Lord has chosen Jacob and Israel (3, 4)
            The Lord is above all gods (5)
                The Lord creates; His works are active (6, 7)
                    The Lord punished (judged) Egypt and Canaan. (8-11)
                    He gave their land to His people (no pity) (12)
                        Thy name is forever, a memorial (13)
                    The Lord will judge His people (14a)
                    He will have pity on his servants (14b)
               Humans make Idols; they cannot act (15-17)
            Those who make idols [gods] are equal to them (18)
        Bless the Lord, house of Israel (19a)
    Bless the Lord, you house of Aaron and Levi (19b, 20)
Praise ye the Lord (21)
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