Lord of All
(14) Yahweh supports all who fall and raises up all who are bowed down. (15) The eyes of all wait upon you, and you give to them their food at just the right time. (16) You open your hand and satisfy the desire of every living thing. (17) Yahweh (is) righteous in all his ways and kind in all his works. (18) Yahweh (is) near to all who call on him, to all who call on him in truth. (19) He fulfills the desire of those who fear him. He also hears their cry for help and delivers them. (20) Yahweh preserves all who love him, but all the wicked he will destroy. (21) My mouth will speak the praise of Yahweh, and let all flesh bless his holy name forever and ever.
As we finish Psalm 145 with this segment, we should note the repetition of “all” which David uses a total of fifteen times (first in vs. 8 and then in vss. 10, 13, 14, 15, 16 (“every”), 17, 18, 20, and 21). This constant use of “all,” unique to this psalm, gives it a distinct flavor. Of these many occurrences, only one (vs. 20) refers to Yahweh’s enemies. All the others refer either to the kindness and mercy which Yahweh shows to all those he loves or to his gracious character. One other repetition is found in this segment. “Call on him” is used twice in one verse as a rhetorical device to give it emphasis (vs. 18).
OUTLINE (a question answered)
Why should all flesh praise Yahweh?
- He provides for the needs of all who look to him. (14-16)
- His righteousness and graciousness are seen in all his ways. (17)
- His love is shown to all who call on him. (18-21)
All who trust in Yahweh will be the beneficiaries of his loving care.
The English language contains a number of words that carry an all-inclusive or all-exclusive meaning. In the all-inclusive category we would list words like “everyone…infinite…endless…unlimited,” and the word used so frequently in this psalm, “all.” In the all-exclusive grouping, we would list words like “none…nothing…no one…unique…one of a kind…matchless.” In ordinary, everyday usage, many of these words fail to retain their precise meanings. For example, “unique” can mean “unusual,” “distinctive,” or “extraordinary” rather than the technically correct meaning “unequaled,” “unparalleled,” or “one of a kind.”
Whatever words we use to describe God and his works, we do well to make sure that we understand the precise meaning of the terms we use. When we say that God is “unique,” this should convey that there is no other being in the universe like him. When David used the word “all” fifteen times in Psalm 145, he really meant “all without exception.” Yahweh is a God without limits, without boundaries, infinitely good, uniquely perfect, and beyond our understanding. He truly is the God who defines the literal meaning of “all” in every possible way. That is why we, the beneficiaries of his grace, should do everything in our power, use all the resources at our disposal, to praise his matchless name.