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Give thanks to the Lord, for he is good;
his love endures forever.

Let Israel say:
“His love endures forever.”
Let the house of Aaron say:
“His love endures forever.”
Let those who fear the Lord say:
“His love endures forever.”

When hard pressed, I cried to the Lord;
he brought me into a spacious place.
The Lord is with me; I will not be afraid.
What can mere mortals do to me?
The Lord is with me; he is my helper.
I look in triumph on my enemies.

It is better to take refuge in the Lord
than to trust in humans.
It is better to take refuge in the Lord
than to trust in princes.
10 All the nations surrounded me,
but in the name of the Lord I cut them down.
11 They surrounded me on every side,
but in the name of the Lord I cut them down.
12 They swarmed around me like bees,
but they were consumed as quickly as burning thorns;
in the name of the Lord I cut them down.
13 I was pushed back and about to fall,
but the Lord helped me.
14 The Lord is my strength and my defense;
he has become my salvation.

15 Shouts of joy and victory
resound in the tents of the righteous:
“The Lord’s right hand has done mighty things!
16     The Lord’s right hand is lifted high;
the Lord’s right hand has done mighty things!”
17 I will not die but live,
and will proclaim what the Lord has done.
18 The Lord has chastened me severely,
but he has not given me over to death.
19 Open for me the gates of the righteous;
I will enter and give thanks to the Lord.
20 This is the gate of the Lord
through which the righteous may enter.
21 I will give you thanks, for you answered me;
you have become my salvation.

22 The stone the builders rejected
has become the cornerstone;
23 the Lord has done this,
and it is marvelous in our eyes.
24 The Lord has done it this very day;
let us rejoice today and be glad.

25 Lord, save us!
Lord, grant us success!

26 Blessed is he who comes in the name of the Lord.
From the house of the Lord we bless you.
27 The Lord is God,
and he has made his light shine on us.
With boughs in hand, join in the festal procession
up to the horns of the altar.

28 You are my God, and I will praise you;
you are my God, and I will exalt you.

29 Give thanks to the Lord, for he is good;
his love endures forever.


After weeks of anticipation, excitement built one early Brisbane morning, as the US President Barack Obama was about to arrive for the G20. Just before 6am, Air Force One landed at Amberley. Obama alighted and shook hands with the Federal Attorney-General, the Governor-General and the Queensland Premier. He was ushered onto the presidential helicopter, before completing his journey to the city centre in his armoured car known as “The Beast”. With crowds cheering on the President was delivered safely. Quite a journey.

Psalm 118 is fulfilled in Jesus’ extraordinary journey to the city centre of Jerusalem. It’s no mere story of personal deliverance. It’s a celebration of the victory and the vindication of an all-conquering king. Yet how does King Jesus choose to be transported to the city centre? On a little donkey. What a security risk! Jesus hasn’t come to Jerusalem for his security, but for ours.

As Jesus rides into town, a massive crowd gathers, spreading their cloaks and tree branches on the road, shouting the “Hosanna”, the “save us” from verse 25 and the blessing from verse 26 (see Matthew 21). If you knew Psalm 118 well, as Jesus did, all that shouting carries an ominous undertone. Just a few verses earlier the Psalm speaks of a “rejected” stone becoming a “cornerstone”. Yes, this is a victory procession, but the great new rule it ushers in will come at a massive cost.

Jesus rides into the city centre. In a symbolic act of what his death is about to achieve he overturns tables in the temple. The very next day he tells a story about those who will orchestrate his rejection, quoting verse 22 (see Matthew 21:33-46). The religious leaders will orchestrate the murder of the Son of God. This is a very different reception to the one we saw with President Obama, isn’t it? Shaking of hands gives way here to nailing of hands. Yet that very stone they rejected is about to crush them in its victory, and the people will finally have a leader who really loves them: King Jesus.


Head: What have you learnt about Jesus from Psalm 118? What have you learnt about yourself?

Heart: How does it make you feel that even as the people praised Jesus, cheering him into town, he knew that they would soon be shouting for his death?

Hands: Jesus’ journey took him to a cross, to a tomb, and then to the right hand of God. He had no security detail because his mission was to secure your place with him in heaven. His mission was to die. How might you live this day taking up the last verse of our Psalm, “Give thanks to the LORD…”?

Prayer: Heavenly Father, thank you that Jesus, though rejected, now rules as my loving King who secured my place with him, enjoying his love forever. Help me this day to give constant thanks for he is indeed good. In his Name, Amen.

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