Weds 10th June - Psalm 85
1 You, Lord, showed favour to your land;
you restored the fortunes of Jacob.
2 You forgave the iniquity of your people
and covered all their sins.
3 You set aside all your wrath
and turned from your fierce anger.
4 Restore us again, God our Saviour,
and put away your displeasure towards us.
5 Will you be angry with us for ever?
Will you prolong your anger through all generations?
6 Will you not revive us again,
that your people may rejoice in you?
7 Show us your unfailing love, Lord,
and grant us your salvation.
8 I will listen to what God the Lord says;
he promises peace to his people, his faithful servants –
but let them not turn to folly.
9 Surely his salvation is near those who fear him,
that his glory may dwell in our land.
10 Love and faithfulness meet together;
righteousness and peace kiss each other.
11 Faithfulness springs forth from the earth,
and righteousness looks down from heaven.
12 The Lord will indeed give what is good,
and our land will yield its harvest.
13 Righteousness goes before him
and prepares the way for his steps.
- - -
This is another Psalm from the ‘Sons of Korah’ – referring to the Levitical choir made up of the descendants of Korah appointed by David to serve in the temple worship.
Here is a prayer for the restoration of God’s mercy and a renewal of God’s promises.
There are many similarities with Psalm 44.
- REMEMBER verses 1-2
The people of God were encouraged to look back at how God had blessed them in the past.
- ‘you showed favour to your land.’ This was probably a reference to Canaan. Most commentators believe that this is a reference to the return from the Babylonian exile. Some think it could refer to the Exodus from Egypt.
- ‘you restored the fortunes of Jacob.’ Jacob is a synonym for Israel. In Psalm 44, the first eight verses are giving thanks for Israel being established in the land and kept secure in the land.
- ‘you forgave the iniquity of your people.’ Time and again, as we read the story of God’s people, we see how often God forgave them for their disobedience and rebellion.
- ‘you covered all their sins.’ Look again at Psalm 32:1, which Paul refers to in Romans 4. ‘Blessed is the one… whose sins are covered.’ Here the thought is that their sins are gone, never to be raised against them again.
- ‘you set aside all your wrath and turned from your fierce anger.’ Paul talks about the ‘wrath of God being revealed from heaven against all the godlessness and wickedness of people…’ (Romans 1:18)
We do well to remember our own journey and praise God for His favour and forgiveness, even though we deserve His wrath and anger.
But something has gone wrong between verses 3 and 4. (We also see this in Psalm 44 between verses 8 and 9)
We don’t know what has gone wrong but this leads the Psalmist to pray.
- RESTORATION verses 4-7
The people of God have stirred God’s displeasure and anger - verses 4 – 5.
They recognise that and plead with God for restoration and revival.
They long to be restored that ‘your people may rejoice in you.’
They long to be revived as they plead …
- to experience again the unfailing love of the LORD
- to experience again His salvation.
How often have we had to come back to God and confess our sins and plead with Him to experience again His love and salvation?
- RENEWAL verses 8-13
As we come before Him in penitence and faith, we experience His renewal.
- we listen
- we remind ourselves of His promises
- we remind ourselves of His salvation
- we long for His glory to be seen.
And as we wait and listen, we experience …
- His love and faithfulness
- His righteousness and peace
- His blessings and bounty
- His commitment to us as He leads us.
‘How great is our God, sing with me;
How great is our God, and all will see,
How great, how great is our God’
Thursday 11 June - Psalm 86
Friday 12 June - Psalm 87
Saturday 13 June- Psalm 88
Sunday 14 June - Psalm 89
Monday 15 June - Psalm 90
Tuesday 16 June - Psalm 91