Psalm 116 has much in common with other thanksgiving Psalms, but it also has an element that’s a bit unusual: the Psalmist identifies the specific reason for his thanksgiving. He was near death, he cried out to the Lord for rescue, and the God of covenant mercy, grace, and blessing rescued him. The Psalmist goes on to say that he will thank the Lord in worship.
Paul echoes this very Psalm when he tells the church at Corinth about the afflictions he’s endured in Asia:
…we were burdened excessively, beyond our strength, so that we despaired of life; indeed, we had the sentence of death within ourselves so that we would not trust in ourselves, but in God who raises the dead. (2 Corinthians 1:8-9)
Both Paul and the Psalmist speak of a near brush with death, and both tell how the Lord acted to rescue them. Continue reading