An individual enters the templeThe Jerusalem temple, unlike the tabernacle, was a permanent structure, although (like the tabernacle) it was a place of worship and religious activity. On one occasion Jesus felt such activity was unacceptable and, as reported in all four Gospels, drove from the temple those engaged... More to give thanks for deliverance. It is a marvelous day!
PsalmA psalm is a song of praise. In the Old Testament 150 psalms comprise the psalter, although some of the psalms are laments and thanksgivings. In the New Testament early Christians gathered to sing psalms and hymns and spiritual songs. More 118 is a liturgy for a festival in the midst of which one person enters and gives thanks for God’s salvationSalvation can mean saved from something (deliverance) or for something (redemption). Paul preached that salvation comes through the death of Christ on the cross which redeemed sinners from death and for a grace-filled life. More. This gives occasion for all to sing and praise God. In the laments, pray-ers promise to come and tell of God’s deeds in the midst of the great congregation (the community at worship) once they are delivered. Now we see that happening. The gates open to admit the one giving thanks (vv. 19-21), and all are stirred to song because of his deliverance (vv. 22-24). The act is especially significant since the one God has restored had been held in little regard: “The stone that the builders rejected has become the chief cornerstone” (v. 22). Now the congregation provides its own blessingBlessing is the asking for or the giving of God's favor. Isaac was tricked into blessing Jacob instead of his firstborn Esau. At the Last Supper Jesus offered a blessing over bread and wine. To be blessed is to be favored by God. More for the one God has delivered (vv. 26-27).
This song of thanksgiving for God’s deliverance of one deemed unimportant–a deliverance that brought life and rejoicing to all–was picked up often in the New Testament to point to God’s work in Christ. JesusJesus is the Messiah whose life, death, and resurrection are God's saving act for humanity More, telling a parableA parable is a brief story with a setting, an action, and a result. A prominent aspect of Jesus' teaching was telling parables to illustrate something about the kingdom, or reign, of God. More, seemed to describe himself as “the stone that the builders rejected” and called this “the Lord’s doing” (MatthewA tax collector who became one of Jesus' 12 disciples More 21:42; Mark 12:10-11; LukeThe "beloved physician" and companion of Paul More 20:17), while later sermons also speak of Jesus as the rejected stone that is now exalted (Acts 4:11; 1 PeterThe disciple who denied Jesus during his trial but later became a leader in proclaiming Jesus More 2:7). “Blessed is the one who comes in the name of the Lord” is sung by the crowds on Palm Sunday (Matthew 21:9; Mark 11:9; Luke 19:38). This remarkable concentration of New Testament citations of these few verses suggests that they were well known to the Jewish people of that time and that they were seen to apply to Jesus with remarkable clarity. The rejected one was delivered, and in his deliverance all people find reason to praise and to hope for their own salvation (Psalm 118:25).