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Great Is the Lord 

Let me show you why the Lord is great

Psalm 99

Don Ruhl • Savage Street, Grants Pass, Oregon • September 28, In the year of our Lord, 2014

Song Leader and Song Suggestions: Larry Amberg – “Holy, Holy, Holy” (238)


  1. The Lord is our everything. 
    1. Psalm 90 – The Lord is our dwelling place.
    2. Psalm 91 – The Lord is our shade.
    3. Psalm 92 – The Lord is worthy of our thanksgiving.
    4. Psalm 93 – The Lord reigns.
    5. Psalm 94 – The Lord shines forth.
    6. Psalm 95 – The Lord is the Rock of our salvation.
    7. Psalm 96 – The Lord is above all gods.
    8. Psalm 97 – The Lord reigns.
    9. Psalm 98 – The Lord does marvelous things.
  2. Psalm 99 continues the theme of declaring wonderful things about the Lord. 


  1. Psalm 99.1–2 – The Lord Reigns

    1 The Lord reigns;
    Let the peoples tremble!
    He dwells between the cherubim;
    Let the earth be moved!
    2 The Lord is great in Zion,
    And He is high above all the peoples.

    1. Great is the Lord because He reigns!
      1. Therefore, let the peoples tremble.
        1. Why would they tremble?
        2. Should they not rejoice?
          1. The psalmist did not say, “people,” which would mean Israel, but
          2. “peoples,” meaning the rest of the world.
            1. They should fear greatly the Lord.
            2. He created them, even as He did Israel.
      2. The Lord reigns over each of us.
        1. Let us tremble with fear at the thought of contradicting Him.
        2. Let us tremble with excitement that He is the One ruling.
    2. Great is the Lord because He dwells between the cherubim!
      1. Therefore, let the Earth be moved.
        1. Regardless of what the peoples do,
        2. the Lord continues to dwell between the cherubim.
      2. That being so, let the Earth shake, let the Earth quake!
    3. Great is the Lord in Zion.
      1. What was ancient Zion to the great cities of the world back then?
      2. She was nothing,
        1. except that the Lord choose to dwell there.
        2. Therefore, it changed the world more than any other location on Earth.
          1. From there, the Lord used twelve men to change the world forever.
          2. And here we are today!
    4. Great is the Lord because He is high above all the peoples.
      1. Of all the places and peoples of the Earth,
      2. He chose Zion, and
        1. because of what He has done there over the centuries,
        2. we see that He is high above all the peoples of the Earth.
          1. He is high above all nations.
          2. He is high above the United States of America.
            1. Therefore, as Americans, we should submit to Him!
            2. As members of the church, let us recognize His exalted status.
    5. Listen to this magnificent declaration of Paul in Ephesians 1.
      1. This will show you that the Lord is above all, and
      2. He is above all through the church,
        1. the heavenly and true Zion.
        2. Everything is for the church,

          20 [God raised Jesus] from the dead and seated Him at His right hand in the heavenly places, 21 far above all principality and power and might and dominion, and every name that is named, not only in this age but also in that which is to come. 22 And He put all things under His feet, and gave Him to be head over all things to the church, 23 which is His body, the fullness of Him who fills all in all (Eph 1.20–23).
  2. Psalm 99.3 – The Lord Is Holy #1

    3 Let them praise Your great and awesome name—
    He is holy.

    1. Do you know the great and awesome name of the Lord?
      1. He is Yahweh.
      2. He is Jehovah.
        1. He is Jesus of Nazareth in human form.
        2. When He walked the Earth,
          1. people sensed His holiness,
          2. such as when Peter failed to believe Jesus,

            8 When Simon Peter saw it, he fell down at Jesus’ knees, saying, “Depart from me, for I am a sinful man, O Lord!” (Luke 5.8).
    2. John declared so plainly,

      5 This is the message which we have heard from Him and declare to you, that God is light and in Him is no darkness at all (1Jo 1.5).

      1. Can you say that there is no darkness in you at all?
      2. If the Lord has forgiven you,
        1. does that not imply
        2. that you have had darkness in you?
          1. Yet, He has always been light,
          2. He has always been holy.
    3. Great is the Lord: He has a great and awesome name.
    4. Great is the Lord: He is holy.
  3. Psalm 99.4 – The Lord Loves Justice

    4 The King’s strength also loves justice;
    You have established equity;
    You have executed justice and righteousness in Jacob.

    1. Who can declare the strength of the King of kings?
      1. He created the heavens and the Earth with His mere spoken word!
      2. With that same strength,
        1. He loves justice,
        2. something that we can do.
    2. With His strength He does not rule in wickedness.
      1. With His awesome strength He does not pervert justice.
      2. No, His strength loves justice,
        1. so that He does the just thing, and
        2. He loves it when we do justly.
    3. Great is the Lord because He loves justice.
      1. He has established equity.
      2. He has executed justice and righteousness in Jacob.
        1. Look at the history of Israel.
        2. Look at the history of the world.
        3. Look at the history of America.
        4. Look at the history of the church.
          1. If the Lord did not love justice, equity (fairness), and righteousness,
          2. our nation, and more importantly, the church
            1. would not be here right now, because
            2. through the centuries the enemies of the Lord
              1. have tried repeatedly to destroy everything He loves.
              2. Currently, the Freedom From Religion Foundation, and
                1. other misguided people
                2. falsely interpret the Constitution to silence the Lord.
                  1. It will not work.
                  2. He reigns. They do not.
  4. Psalm 99.5 – The Lord Is Holy #2

    5 Exalt the Lord our God,
    And worship at His footstool—
    He is holy.

    1. What shall we say and do about
      1. the Lord’s reign,
      2. His holiness, and
      3. His love of justice?
        1. First, exalt Him.
        2. Second, worship at His footstool.
    2. For a second time we hear great is the Lord because He is holy.
  5. Psalm 99.6–8 – The Lord Answers Prayer

    6 Moses and Aaron were among His priests,
    And Samuel was among those who called upon His name;
    They called upon the Lord, and He answered them.
    7 He spoke to them in the cloudy pillar;
    They kept His testimonies and the ordinance He gave them.
    8 You answered them, O Lord our God;
    You were to them God-who-forgives,
    Though You took vengeance on their deeds.

    1. Moses and Aaron were among the priests of the holy Lord God.
      1. Include Samuel in that magnificent group.
      2. What did Moses, Aaron, and Samuel do?
        1. They called upon the Lord.
        2. We are classed with these men, because
          1. everyone one of us Christians are priests.
          2. Jesus is our High Priest.
            1. We are His priests.
      3. When they called upon the Lord,
        1. He answered them.
        2. He answered them in the cloudy pillar.
    2. However,
      1. they kept His testimonies and
      2. the ordinance that He gave them.
        1. They wanted something from Him, and
        2. He gave it because they gave Him what He wanted.
    3. The Lord our God answered them, because
      1. He was to them, “God-who-forgives.”
      2. Yes, He took vengeance on the children of Israel, but
        1. he also forgave them repeatedly because
        2. Moses and Aaron, and Samuel, called upon Him.
    4. The Lord our God also answers our prayers
      1. from His cloudy throne,
      2. encircled with fire, lightning, thunder, and all the angels.
        1. He silences heaven to hear our prayers.
        2. Revelation 8 shows heaven quiet when the Lord’s people pray to Him,

          1 When He opened the seventh seal, there was silence in heaven for about half an hour. 2 And I saw the seven angels who stand before God, and to them were given seven trumpets. 3 Then another angel, having a golden censer, came and stood at the altar. He was given much incense, that he should offer it with the prayers of all the saints upon the golden altar which was before the throne. 4 And the smoke of the incense, with the prayers of the saints, ascended before God from the angel’s hand. 5 Then the angel took the censer, filled it with fire from the altar, and threw it to the earth. And there were noises, thunderings, lightnings, and an earthquake (Rev 8.1–5).
  6. Psalm 99.9 – The Lord Is Holy #3

    9 Exalt the Lord our God,
    And worship at His holy hill;
    For the Lord our God is holy.

    1. What can you say after what we have seen in the first eight verses?
    2. Yes, exalt the Lord our God!
      1. Yes, the psalmist already said in verse 3,
        1. to praise the Lord’s great and awesome name.
      2. Yes, the psalmist already said in verse 5,
        1. to exalt the Lord our God, and
        2. to worship at His footstool.
      3. However, three times the psalmist declared the holiness of the Lord,
        1. therefore, three times the psalmist exhorted us to exalt the Lord.
        2. How can we not after what we have seen in these nine verses?
    3. Verse 9 is what we will be doing in heaven.
      1. If you do not like it now,
      2. you will not like it then.
        1. If you want to do it then,
        2. start practicing now.


  1. Look at the Lord according to Psalm 99
    1. He reigns.
    2. He dwells between the cherubim.
    3. He is great.
    4. He is high above all people.
    5. He is holy.
    6. He loves justice.
    7. He establishes equity.
    8. He executes justice and righteousness.
    9. He is holy.
    10. He answers prayer.
    11. He forgives.
    12. He takes vengeance.
    13. He is holy.
  2. What should we do? 
    1. We tremble before Him.
    2. We quake in His presence.
    3. We praise His great and awesome name.
    4. We exalt Him.
    5. We worship Him.
    6. We pray to Him.
    7. We obey Him.
    8. We exalt Him.
    9. We worship Him.
  3. Three times Psalm 99 declared the holiness of the Lord. 
    1. Isaiah 6 records the seraphim declaring the holiness of the Lord three times,

      3 And one cried to another and said:

      “Holy, holy, holy is the Lord of hosts;
      The whole earth is full of His glory!”
      (Isa 6.3)

    2. Revelation 4 records the four living creatures declaring the holiness of the Lord three times,

      8 The four living creatures, each having six wings, were full of eyes around and within. And they do not rest day or night, saying:

      “Holy, holy, holy,
      Lord God Almighty,
      Who was and is and is to come!”
      (Rev 4.8)

  4. Seven times the psalmist referred to the Lord, 
    1. not just Lord, lower case, but
    2. Lord, upper case, representing God’s name in the Hebrew.
  5. We have three verses in Psalm 99, verses 6–8, devoted to showing 
    1. that the Lord answers prayer and
    2. that the Lord forgives,
      1. although if we do not repent,
      2. Psalm 99 teaches that He takes vengeance.
        1. Sin hinders our prayers.
        2. Listen to Isaiah 59,

          1 Behold, the Lord’s hand is not shortened,
          That it cannot save;
          Nor His ear heavy,
          That it cannot hear.
          2 But your iniquities have separated you from your God;
          And your sins have hidden His face from you,
          So that He will not hear.
          3 For your hands are defiled with blood,
          And your fingers with iniquity;
          Your lips have spoken lies,
          Your tongue has muttered perversity.
          (Isa 59.1–3)

          1. Have you hurt anyone with your hands?
          2. Have your fingers done anything they should not have done?
          3. Have your lips spoken lies?
          4. Has your tongue muttered perversity?
            1. If you answer yes to any of those questions,
            2. did you repent of the sin and receive the Lord’s forgiveness?
              1. If not, your sin separates you from God.
              2. He will not answer your prayers and you are lost.
  6. However, Jesus died to remove the wedge of sin, driven between you and God. 
    1. Sin has to be destroyed.
    2. What you see on the cross of Jesus
      1. is God destroying sin.
      2. He made it possible for the wedge of sin,
        1. that cuts you off from fellowship with God,
        2. to be removed.
  7. That is what He wants. 
    1. Is that what you want?
    2. Are you willing to turn from your sin?
    3. Are you ready to start over?
      1. Bury the past and live a new life.
      2. That is what you do in baptism.
        1. He will bury you, remove your sin, and then
        2. you can come up out of the water with a new life.