92. How Good It Is to Thank the LORD

1 How good it is to thank the LORD,
to praise your name with tuneful chord,
to show your love with morning light
and tell your faithfulness each night.
Yes, it is good your praise to sing
and all our sweetest music bring.

2 O LORD, my song with joy expands
before the wonders of your hands.
How great the works that you have wrought;
how deep, O LORD, your every thought!
You make me glad; I sing your praise
for all your wondrous works and ways.

3 Though as the grass the wicked grow,
those evildoers do not know
the endless ruin they will see.
But God will reign eternally.
All foes will fall before his might;
the wicked shall be put to flight.

4 O LORD, you have exalted me
with royal strength and dignity.
With your anointing I am blest;
your grace and favor on me rest.
My eyes have seen the wicked die;
my ears have heard their hopeless cry.

5 The righteous all will flourish well
and in the house of God will dwell.
They will be planted like a tree,
will still in old age fruitful be.
The LORD our God is upright, just;
he is my Rock; in him I trust.

Text Information
First Line: How good it is to thank the LORD
Title: How Good It Is to Thank the LORD
Meter: 88 88 88
Scripture: Psalm 92
Topic: Brevity & Frailty of Life
Source: Psalter, 1912, alt.
Language: English
Tune Information
Name: MADRID (Matthews)
Composer: William Matthews, 1759-1830
Meter: 88 88 88
Key: A Major


Text Information:

Praise of God for unfailing protection of those who trust in him, and a word of wisdom about the folly of the wicked and the prosperity of the righteous.

Scripture References:
st. l =vv.I-3
st. 2 = vv. 4-5
st. 3 = vv. 6-9
st. 4 = vv. 10-11
st. 5 = vv. 12-15

A joyful celebration of God's righteous rule, Psalm 92 appears to rise out of an experience of God's deliverance from enemies who took no account of God's readiness and power to protect his own (st. 4). That experience moved the psalmist to note the appropriateness of praising God's love and faithfulness (st. 1) and all that the LORD has done (st. 2). The psalmist also uses the occasion to expound on the folly of the wicked, who defy God by their actions (st. 3), and on the flourishing of the righteous, who trust in God (st. 5). In the post-exilic liturgy of the temple, Psalm 92 was sung at the time of the morning sacrifice on the Sabbath. The versification (altered) is from the 1912 Psalter. Another setting of Psalm 92 is at 171.

Liturgical Use:
Jewish use prescribes this psalm for the Sabbath service. Stanzas 1 and 2 are very fitting for the beginning of worship. Stanzas 3 and 5 focus on wisdom teaching.

--Psalter Hymnal Handbook

Tune Information:

William Matthews (b. Ilkeston, Derbyshire, England, 1759; d. Nottingham, England, 1830) composed MADRID (not to be confused with another tune of that name associated with "Come, Christians, Join to Sing") early in the nineteenth century, but it is not clear how the tune acquired its name. Matthews was a stocking-maker at Nottingham and served as choirmaster and music teacher. He also owned a music shop in Houndsditch. Little else is known about his life.

This decorative tune consists of six lines, each of which has its own character. Sing MADRID in harmony, with joy, and with a sense for the half note as the main beat.

--Psalter Hymnal Handbook


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