# 323 A journey through the Psalms. Psalm 113. Who is like the Lord our God?

Comparing things/people can be both a positive or a negative activity. On the positive side, when out shopping it is a useful activity to compare both prices and functionality of the object you are wanting to spend you hard earned money on. Just buying the cheapest object without checking its quality could well be a complete waste of time and money. Also, at times, such as when deciding which candidate to choose for a particular job, it is necessary to compare.

On the negative side comparing people to each other in areas such as appearance, abilities, etc., can often be unfair and even very offensive and painful. I think it was my mother-in-law who used to quote Oscar Wilde, who is quoted as saying, “Comparisons are odious!”.

But, in the Bible we do actually read of a very significant comparison, and an example is in Psalm 113 where we read:

The Lord is exalted over all the nations,
    his glory above the heavens.
Who is like the Lord our God,
    the One who sits enthroned on high,
who stoops down to look
    on the heavens and the earth?

Other examples are as follows.

The question:

Who among the gods is like you, Lord? Who is like you— majestic in holiness, awesome in glory, working wonders?   (Exodus 15:11)

Your righteousness, God, reaches to the heavens, you who have done great things. Who is like you, God(Psalm 71:19)

Who is like you, Lord God Almighty? You, Lord, are mighty, and your faithfulness surrounds you.   (Psalm 89:8)

Who is a God like you, who pardons sin and forgives the transgression of the remnant of his inheritance? You do not stay angry forever but delight to show mercy(Micah 7:18)

The answer:

“Lord, the God of Israel, there is no God like you in heaven above or on earth below—you who keep your covenant of love with your servants who continue wholeheartedly in your way.  (1 Kings 8:23)

For an even lengthier discussion on this subject read Isaiah 40:12 -41;4 where even God himself asks the question, To whom will you compare me? Or who is my equal? (40:25)

So, in a word, our God is incomparable – there is no other!

Now re-read the verses above (underlined) and note the reasons why the authors give for the Lord being incomparable.

Today though let’s consider in greater depth the reasons given by our psalmist in Psalm 113, who says:

Who is like the Lord our God,
    the One who sits enthroned on high,
who stoops down to look
    on the heavens and the earth?

Consider the contrasting characteristics of God. Firstly, we note that he sits enthroned on high. In fact, the verse proceeding this states that He is exalted over all the nations, his glory above the heavens. This being a description of “the transcendent greatness of God.” (# 5)

Then there follows this remarkable truth that this same exalted God of Creation, stoops down to look on the heavens and the earth.

So, what does this mean? Well, the explanation follows in this Psalm. It says:

He raises the poor from the dust
    and lifts the needy from the ash heap;
he seats them with princes,
    with the princes of his people.
He settles the childless woman in her home
    as a happy mother of children.

Our great and wonderful Lord God enthroned on High, stoops down to our level and cares for the most vulnerable in life – the poor, the needy and the childless woman. As Kidner states, “He is anything but aloof”! (# 5)

Isaiah agrees as he quotes the words of the high and exalted One … who lives forever, whose name is holy. He says:
“I live in a high and holy place,
    but also with the one who is contrite and lowly in spirit,
to revive the spirit of the lowly
    and to revive the heart of the contrite. 
(Isaiah 57:15)

This amazing statement by God himself places him on the highest level we could ever imagine and yet He is willing to come down and to dwell with the lowly! The proof of this being in the incarnation as the Apostle John writes concerning Jesus:

In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God. He was with God in the beginning. Through him all things were made; without him nothing was made that has been made.  (John 1:1-3)

And yet:

14 The Word became flesh and made his dwelling among us. We have seen his glory, the glory of the one and only Son, who came from the Father, full of grace and truth.  (John 1:14)

Paul summarizes the wonder of this truth as follows:

For you know the grace of our Lord Jesus Christ, that though he was rich, yet for your sake he became poor, so that you through his poverty might become rich.  (2 Corinthians 8:9)

Considering all these things, with the psalmist we can ask Who is like the Lord our God? And of course, the answer is that there is no God like you in heaven above or on earth below.

Praise the Lord.

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