The God of Israel - Jehovah is Celebrated
by Ray Zink 9/14/2009 / Bible Studies
(Exo 15:11 KJV) Who is like unto thee, O LORD, among the gods? who is like thee, glorious in holiness, fearful in praises, doing wonders?
Happy the people whose God is the Lord. They have work to do, temptations to grapple with, and afflictions to bear, and are weak in themselves; but his grace is their strength. They are often in sorrow, but in him they have comfort; he is their song. Sin, and death, and hell threaten them, but he is, and will be their salvation. The Lord is a God of almighty power, and woe to those that strive with their Maker! He is a God of matchless perfection; he is glorious in holiness; his holiness is his glory.
As a God of matchless and incomparable perfection. This is expressed, First, More generally: Who is like unto thee, O Lord, among the gods!
(Exo 15:11 KJV) Who is like unto thee, O Lord, among the gods?....
For the perfections of his nature, for the blessings of his goodness, and for the works of his hands; and especially for the greatness and excellence of his power, seen in the salvation of his people, and the ruin of their enemies: there is none like him "among the mighty ones", as it may be rendered; among the mighty angels, who excel in strength, and are sometimes called gods; or among the mighty ones on earth; or the sons of the mighty, kings, princes, judges, and civil magistrates of every rank and order; especially for the following things:
This is pure praise, and a high expression of humble adoration. - It is a challenge to all other gods to compare with him: "Let them stand forth, and pretend their utmost; none of them dare make the comparison." Egypt was notorious for the multitude of its gods, but the God of the Hebrews was too hard for them and baffled them all,
(Num 33:4 KJV) For the Egyptians buried all their firstborn, which the LORD had smitten among them: upon their gods also the LORD executed judgments.
The princes and potentates of the world are called gods, but they are feeble and mortal, none of them all comparable to Jehovah, the almighty and eternal God. - It is confession of his infinite perfection, as transcendent and unparalleled.
Note, God is to be worshipped and adored as a being of such infinite perfection that there is none like him, nor any to be compared with him, as one that in all things has and must have the pre-eminence,
(Psa 89:6 KJV) For who in the heaven can be compared unto the LORD? who among the sons of the mighty can be likened unto the LORD?
Secondly, more particularly, He is glorious in holiness; his holiness is his glory.
(Exo 15:11 KJV) who is like thee, glorious in holiness?
some understand this of the holy place, either heaven, where Christ is glorious above all created beings; or the church, where he shows himself glorious to his people: others, of holy persons, either holy angels, among whom he was at Sinai, and when he ascended on high, and will be when he comes again, in his own and his Father's glory; or the saints, when he will bring them with him, and be glorified in them; but rather it is to be understood of the attribute of his holiness, which is eminently and perfectly in him; in his person, with respect to both his natures, divine and human; the glory of which is displayed in all the works he has wrought, especially in the great work of redemption, which was undertook both for the honor of the holiness and righteousness of God, and to redeem his people from sin, and make them righteous and holy: it appears in the holy doctrines he taught, and in the holy commandments and ordinances he enjoined his people, and in his judgments on his enemies; in all which it is plainly seen that he loves righteousness and hates iniquity, and there is none like him for it; there is none holy as the Lord among angels or men,
(1Sa 2:2 KJV) There is none holy as the LORD: for there is none beside thee: neither is there any rock like our God.
It is that attribute which angels adore,
(Isa 6:3 KJV) And one cried unto another, and said, Holy, holy, holy, is the LORD of hosts: the whole earth is full of his glory.
His holiness appeared in the destruction of Pharaoh, his hatred of sin, and his wrath against obstinate sinners. It appeared in the deliverance of Israel, his delight in the holy seed, and his faithfulness to his own promise. God is rich in mercy - this is his treasure, glorious in holiness - this is his honor. Let us always give thanks at the remembrance of his holiness.
He is fearful in praises.
(Exo 15:11 KJV) fearful in praises;
or, in the things for which he is to be praised; as the glories and excellencies of his person, the blessings received from him, and through him, both temporal and spiritual; grace, and all the blessings of it here, now communicated, and glory and happiness promised and expected: and many things, for which he is to be praised, he is "fearful", awful, and tremendous in them; there are some things his right hand teaches him, and it does, deserving of praise, which yet are terrible, and such were they which are here literally, referred to; the plagues upon the Egyptians, and the destruction of Pharaoh and his host, called the wondrous works done in the land of Ham, and terrible things by the Red sea,
(Psa 106:22 KJV) Wondrous works in the land of Ham, and terrible things by the Red sea.
and yet these were matter of praise to Israel, and gave occasion for this song; and such are they, in a spiritual sense, which he has done to his and our enemies: when the year of his redeemed was come, it was a day of vengeance in his heart, and he exercised it; he made an end of sin, abolished death, destroyed him which had the power of it, and spoiled principalities and powers; and a dreadful slaughter will be made of antichrist and his followers, when the song of Moses and the Lamb will be sung on account of it; and such dispensations of Providence, and judgments on men, as on Pharaoh and antichrist, as they are terrible to wicked men, they strike an awe on the people of God, at the same time they furnish out a song of praise to them: moreover, this may respect not only the matter of praise, but the reverend manner in which it is performed by good men; who, as they have a concern that they cannot sufficiently praise the Lord, and fear they shall not perform it aright, and sensible of their weakness and imperfection, like the seraphim, cover their faces while they applaud his perfections, particularly that of his holiness, and declare the earth is full of his glory; so they desire to perform this, as all their other services, with a holy fear and trembling, with reverence and godly fear since holy and reverend is his name: it follows:
That which is the matter of our praise, though it is joyful to the servants of God, is dreadful and very terrible to his enemies,
(Psa 66:1 KJV) To the chief Musician, A Song or Psalm. Make a joyful noise unto God, all ye lands:
(Psa 66:2 KJV) Sing forth the honour of his name: make his praise glorious.
(Psa 66:3 KJV) Say unto God, How terrible art thou in thy works! through the greatness of thy power shall thine enemies submit themselves unto thee.
Or it directs us in the manner of our praising God; we should praise him with a humble holy awe, and serve the Lord with fear. Even our spiritual joy and triumph must be balanced with a religious fear.
He is doing wonders, wondrous to all, being above the power and out of the common course of nature;
(Exo 15:11 KJV) doing wonders;
and for which there is none like him; wonders Christ did before his incarnate state, both in eternity, in the goings forth of his heart, in acts of love to his people, in asking for them, and betrothing them, in becoming the surety of them, in proposing to be a sacrifice in their stead, in entering into a covenant with his Father on their account, in taking the care and charge of their persons, and in being the treasury of all grace and glory for them; and likewise in time, being concerned in the wondrous works of creation, which are a wonderful display of divine wisdom, power, and goodness, and in all the affairs of Providence; for there was not any remarkable occurrence, from the beginning of the world to the time of his coming in the flesh, but he was concerned therein; as the drowning of the old world, to whom previously he preached by his Spirit in Noah; the burning of Sodom and Gomorrah, the plagues of Egypt, and the destruction of Pharaoh and his host, the deliverance of the children of Israel, both out of Egypt and Babylon, and many others: and when he became incarnate, how many wonders were wrought by him? the incarnation itself was a wonderful instance of his grace and condescension, to take upon him the nature of man, be made flesh, and dwell among them; and during his incarnate state on earth many wonders were done by him; the doctrines he taught, the miracles he wrought, and especially the great work of our redemption and salvation, which will be for ever the wonder of men and angels; his raising himself from the dead, his ascension to heaven, and his appearance there for his people, as well as his second coming to judgment, are all marvelous things; and on account of all this, and more, he may well be called "wonderful"; for working wonders there is none like him.
Especially wondrous to us, in whose favor they are wrought, who are so unworthy that we had little reason to expect them. They were wonders of power and wonders of grace; in both God was to be humbly adored.
Ray Zink has been intensely researching the Holy Word of God for the past 28 years. As a published author through article writings and blog posts, he now shares with others the deeper wisdom of the Scriptures that he has had the blessings to discover. More of his work can be seen at http://bible-mysteries.com/