A New Song of Praise

The Duke of Wellington and Napoleon Bonaparte were both born in the same year, 1769. Each was born on an island, each became fatherless in early boyhood, each had four brothers and three sisters, each attended military school in France and at the same time. Both became lieutenant … More


This psalm could be classified as a military song, as the last part of it speaks of God’s people executing judgement on the unbelieving (v. 7). It starts out with praise and singing by the congregation with a new song that could result in deliverance from captivity (v. 1). Israel was to be joyful in their king and not just in what He had done for them (v. 2). They could be sure as they praised Him that He would be pleased (v. 4). Now that the victory has been won God’s people can relax and rejoice by even singing for joy in bed (v. 5).

While they were praising with their mouth they were to be working with their hands and using a literal “two-edged sword” (v. 6). (In Heb. 4:12 the Word of God is referred to as a “two-edged sword” which we are to use to fight against the evil forces of our day). The Israelites were to count it an honor to carry out the purposes of God by inflicting judgement on the wicked (vv. 8-9). Those who had oppressed and injured the Hebrew people were to receive punishment by the hand of God by those they had wronged.

God calls on Israel not only to praise His name but also to execute vengeance on the nations. The Israelites were to worship Him, yes, but they were also to stand for God’s justice and to put down evil in the world. We are often open to praising God, but we’re not as interested in balancing our worship with a holy hatred of sin. He needs worship leaders but He also needs prophets who will cry out against injustice and sin in our world.


The Israelites carried out the purposes of God in their day. What are some of the ways I can carry out the purposes of God today in (1) my family (2) my work (3) my community and (4) in my world. If I carry out these purposes I can truly sing “Victory in Jesus.”

Psalms 149:1-9 (English Standard Version)

Praise the LORD! Sing to the LORD a new song, his praise in the assembly of the godly! Let Israel be glad in his Maker; let the children of Zion rejoice in their King! Let them praise his name with dancing, making melody to him with tambourine and lyre! For the LORD takes pleasure in his people; he adorns the humble with salvation. Let the godly exult in glory; let them sing for joy on their beds. Let the high praises of God be in their throats and two-edged swords in their hands, to execute vengeance on the nations and punishments on the peoples, to bind their kings with chains and their nobles with fetters of iron, to execute on them the judgment written! This is honor for all his godly ones. Praise the LORD!

View this passage in NIV (Bible Gateway) »