For the Lord is good; his steadfast love endures forever, and his faithfulness to all generations. —Psalm 100:5
Today I want us to focus on another aspect of God’s goodness and one that is central to His character, His steadfast love — or my favorite translation from the NIV is unfailing love (some translations may also use the word mercy). In a fallen world marked by sin, it is encouraging for me to know God is unfailing in His love and faithfulness toward me. It gives me hope to know that even in my faithlessness and failings, God is still unfailing love towards me. And Jesus is the source of that hope!
In the original language the word is ḥeseḏ and it means kindness, lovingkindness, mercy, goodness, faithfulness, love, acts of kindness. The Complete Word Study Bible Dictionary gives us further insight on this word: “This aspect of God is one of several important features of His character:truth; faithfulness; mercy; steadfastness; justice; righteousness; goodness.” Heseḏ implies personal involvement with those God and those He has redeemed. It implies reciprocity but since God is ḥeseḏ, it will not be abandoned even when the human partner is unfaithful. We also find His unfailing love often tied to his faithfulness in Scripture.
Psalm 136 is a wonderful passage for understanding God’s steadfast/unfailing love/mercy (all three are the same word, ḥeseḏ, in the original language). The word is used 26 times in this passage.
Read through Psalm 136 in the sections shown below and note what you learn about this aspect of God’s character. What connections do you see to God’s unfailing love and His faithfulness? How does this encourage you today?
For Further Study: Download this list of Scriptures where we find the original word for unfailing or steadfast love used. Record all God does for us in His unfailing love!
Praise the Lord! Oh give thanks to the Lord, for he is good, for his steadfast love endures forever. —Psalm 106:1
Spend some time reflecting on the verses from today and on the unfailing love and faithfulness of God. Share with someone today how you have seen God’s unfailing love demonstrated in your life.
It’s my prayer that through this series we will, “from the rising of the sun to its setting”, focus on and praise our amazing God! We’ll take the Word for the day and think about it, ponder it, pray it and practice it. We’ll allow it to really SOAK into our hearts and lives. And then we’ll SHINE — boast, rave, praise and celebrate God’s presence in our lives, reflecting Jesus to those around us.
©2014 Susan Cady, susancady.com