8.25.2008

Psalm 82

I thought this was particularly applicable at the start of the Democratic National Convention. Here's a psalm about God calling a convention of his own, and being the only keynote speaker.
God presides in the great assembly;
he gives judgment among the "gods":
Can you picture it? The "principalities and powers" are being gathered, called together by the God of the Universe. All the ideologies and the religions and the governments people follow and put their trust in- their 'gods'. The 'Isms' are all invited- Materialism, Atheism, Communism, Socialism, Environmentalism, Hinduism, Buddhism- and yes, even Protestantism, Evangelicalism, and Catholicism. Nationalism. Conservatism. Liberalism. Capitalism. Humanism.

The crowd gathers. What is it God is judging them for? What could be the message to these 'gods'?
"How long will you defend the unjust
and show partiality to the wicked?"
There are a whole bunch of well-meaning ideologies here. What more can they do? Fingers get pointed, but all are guilty. No System or Ideology has cared for the downtrodden to God's liking. He continues:
"Defend the cause of the weak and fatherless;
maintain the rights of the poor and oppressed.
Rescue the weak and needy;
deliver them from the hand of the wicked."
These people, the forgotten ones that have fallen through the cracks of the world's Systems, are the ones closest to the heart of God. Neglecting them makes him angry. Finally, God makes an aside to his attendants:
"They know nothing, they understand nothing.
They walk about in darkness;
all the foundations of the earth are shaken.
He turns to the assembly once more, in a huff:
I said, 'You are "gods";
you are all sons of the Most High.'
But you will die like mere men;
you will fall like every other ruler."
These Systems, these 'Isms' are temporary. They will rise and fall and be no more. They are not as powerful as we would like to think, as many followers as they have now. 'The foundations of the earth are shaken'- any organization or construct we build here will not be perfect, and will fall short. The best we can, let's heed God's challenge. Defend the cause of the fatherless. Maintain the rights of the needy. Rescue the weak. With those goals, we can't go wrong.
"Rise up, O God, judge the earth,
for all the nations are your inheritance."
* Adapted from this week's sermon and Psalm 82
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1 comment:

beth@thenaturalmommy said...

I just read this psalm last week! Interesting take on it. I like how you made it applicable to today.

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