Reading: Psalms 63-65
Click on the link for the reading to read the Psalms for this week. As we read, let us not do so in haste. Take time to read each Psalm at least three times: once to understand the content, once as a poem or song to feel the meaning, and once as a prayer to appropriate the Psalm into your life. There will often be a hymn attached at the bottom of the page that helps bring meaning to one of the Psalms for the week.
PSALM 63: Your Love Is Better Than Life
This psalm was highly valued in the early church. It was selected as the morning psalm to introduce the singing of the psalms in the Sunday service. It speaks of the thirst of the soul for God, the quenching of that thirst through the presence of God in the sanctuary and the response of praise as the expression of life itself. It is difficult for us, living in a self-centered culture, to understand the intimacy of relatedness to God described in Psalm 63. The psalmist serves as a model of those who, in Jesus’ words, “strive first for the kingdom of God” and find that “all these things (food, water, clothing) will be given . . . as well” (Matthew 6:33).
PSALM 64: What God Has Done
The talk of swords and arrows and snares and the portrayal of God taking direct action against the wicked makes Psalm 64 seem far removed from our contemporary world. But the psalm communicates a sense of anxiety and perplexity about the nature of human society that is at home in every generation. The supposed sophistication of modern society is not immune to a deep awareness of destructive forces which threaten to reduce our semi-ordered world to chaos. In fact, the affirmation of human capacity and autonomy in verses 5b-6 characterizes the way most people, including Christians, routinely operate. Individual decision making and public policy making rarely include consideration of anything beyond our own interests. Psalm 64 calls us t recognize and to confess the evil within ourselves and our society.
PSALM 65: A Psalm for Thanksgiving
Psalm 65v is a song of joyful praise. From beginning to end, it does not cease its grateful recital of God’s works and their benefits. The psalm shows the move from communal affirmation to individual appreciation, which is what we always do in biblical faith.
This is the Psalm in hymn form. Read or sing it through with melody to give the Psalm another dimension.
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