July 5, 2016

Psalm 74:12 But you, O God, are my king from of old;
you bring salvation upon the earth.

It is clear that the Psalms are not arranged in chronological sequence, because this one was obviously late, after the destruction of the temple. In that context it seems a little odd to me that the Levite who wrote this started off with “Why?” Israel and Judah had been flagrantly unfaithful to God, and God had been clear from the days of Moses what would happen if they did that. That said, the writer did turn to God, and that’s the best course in any situation. We don’t see the repentance here that was probably called for, but neither do we see rejection of God, spitting in His face because things happen to be rough. Sadly, that reaction is all too common! Humility before God is always a good idea, and indeed is essential. The Psalmist does make this personal, saying “my King.” Perhaps his personal devotion to God had blinded him to the rampant idolatry in the land. I think that is an issue in America today. Those who personally love God are unaware of how low the nation as a whole has sunk, morally and ethically. It is past time for the people of God to wake up, stand up, and speak up. One of the saddest things about the current political situation is that so many people who claim the name of Christian are actively supporting either a pathological liar who worships power or an immoral egotist who worships himself. Sad days indeed. Those who do know God and love Him need to be active participants in society, being salt and light and so bringing preservation and truth. (Matthew 5:13-16) There must be humility, but there must also be active faithfulness.

I was never particularly political until about nine years ago, when political options became really obvious. Things seem to have escalated rapidly since then, but the foundation for the decay was laid many years ago. Living in Japan, I don’t have many options for participation, but I am certainly to be active in prayer. In terms of speaking up, I am to proclaim God’s truth and righteousness rather than be on any particular political soap box, but I am not to shy away from stating God’s truth even if it might trigger rejection, even from people I care about. I wish I could say that all of my relatives, even, were active in their pursuit of God, but that’s not the case. I am to pray, and recognize the opportunities God provides for me to speak His truth in love, so that the Holy Spirit may take my words and use them to open eyes that are tight shut.

Father, looking back I can see how easily I was influenced by the filth in the world, so I have no place of moral superiority to talk down to anyone. Help me rather speak as a recipient of Your grace, not failing to speak truth because of my own need to apply that truth more consistently. May Your Name indeed be acknowledged as holy and Your kingdom come as Your children choose to do Your will in their daily lives, even as all do in heaven. Thank You. Hallelujah!


About jgarrott

Born and raised in Japan of missionary parents. Have been here as an adult missionary since 1981.
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