In the final two stanzas of the psalm (vv. 13-15 and 16-20) the joyful tumultuous praise of the nations, including the praise of Israel, fades away and the individual psalmist himself remains standing on the stage. Then he speaks two times, first to God, then a second time to anyone who may be listening.

This brings us to the second major section of the psalm in which the specific nation of Israel is invited to praise God (vv. 8-12). The world should "shout with joy to God” and "sing to the glory of his name." But it usually does not, simply because it is not aware of the many great blessings for which it should be thankful. Even an official Thanksgiving holiday does not make it thankful. It is different for the people of God, since they have come to know God and are aware of the way he has kept them and blessed them even in the most difficult times.

Pursuing an entirely different line of thought at this point, it is also worth reflecting on what the opening verses of this psalm say about singing, praise and thanksgiving, and about their relationships.

Most Bible students know that later in its history, after the Babylonian captivity, the nation of Israel became religiously exclusive. The masses of Jews looked down on Gentiles, who were thought of as being excluded from any relationship to the true God, and deservedly so. It is somewhat surprising therefore to find many times a considerably broader and inclusive view in the psalms.

There is a link between the last verse of Psalm 65 and the first two verses of Psalm 66, which is probably why Psalm 66 is placed where it is in the Psalter. The last verse of Psalm 65 was about the meadows and valleys of the land, and it is said of them that “they shout for joy and sing.” The first verses of Psalm 66 call for this same response from the entire earth, that is, from human beings: “Shout with joy to God, all the earth! Sing to the glory of his name.”