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A 7-11 Song

God intends for us to remember that the steadfast love of the Lord endures.

Introduction

Psalm 118 is a type of psalm this is what is known as an antiphonal psalm, which means it has echoes whereby God’s people respond to each other. You may remember there were times in Israel’s history where the people of God sang to each other from different mountains, responding to one another.

This particular psalm is one of six known as the Egyptian praises—psalms that were written to remind the people of God of his blessing of releasing them from slavery in Egypt. These six psalms—and this one in particular—are meant to be read antiphonally in families and in worship services at the Passover as the people of God reminded each other of God’s releasing them from slavery. What that means is that we are going to read this responsively with me, and as we do this you will be echoing Jesus and his apostles on the night before he was crucified, as he and his disciples also read responsively Psalm 118.

[Read Psalm 118]

Enduring Love

“His steadfast love endures forever.” We repeated it five times. Four times at the beginning and then again at the end of the psalm. Just be glad I didn’t choose Psalm 136. There it is repeated 26 times. Just a reminder that repetition in itself is not necessarily wrong; it may have a biblical purpose that God intends.

We may need to remember that repetition isn’t necessarily bad because of the way we tease each other sometimes. We tease each other about those 7-11 worship songs, right? 7 words, 11 times, as though there’s somehow something intrinsically wrong with that.

Yes, vacuous, shallow, empty repetition is actually something we’re commanded not to do in Scripture. But that doesn’t mean that all repetition is without ...

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Bryan Chapell is the senior pastor of Grace Presbyterian Church in Peoria, Illinois.

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