I’ll admit that as I’m writing this, the news is on in the background, and I’m hearing about all sorts of things that are going on in Grand Rapids, in West Michigan, in America, and around the world. The thing about the news that is too often true, is that it is the bad things that make the most news. Just as I’m listening this evening, the headlines are about a person that got hit by a car, the coming trial of George Zimmerman, the continuing scandals in the U.S. government, and more on the situation in Syria. I guess I just don’t understand why this is the news that we want to hear. If one was to simply watch the news all day, or even once a day, I can’t imagine how cynical and depressed they would be, if that was the picture of the world that was given.
But as I contrast this primarily negative view of the world with what we read today in the Psalms, we really get different and sometimes opposing views of the world. The news media would have us believe that things are going crazy in the world, the everything is out of control and that no one is safe ever. Obviously, they are decidedly secular in their views; hence the endless stream of bad news. Yet the Psalms that we read today and have been reading for the past several days communicate to us a wholly different worldview, one in which God is in control and is working towards the restoration of the world.
It can be very depressing to listen to the news, to look out into the world, to see the brokenness that is around us. Even Jesus knew this as He was talking to His disciples on the night before He was to be crucified.
“I have said these things to you, that in me you may have peace. In the world you will have tribulation. But take heart; I have overcome the world.” – John 16:33
The next time you hear something from the news about all of the bad that is going on, remember that we believe that God has been working and will continue to work to bring restoration to the world. And we can know this because of what we have seen Him do in the past… which is recounted for us in Psalm 111!
Praise the Lord!
I will give thanks to the Lord with my whole heart,
in the company of the upright, in the congregation.
Great are the works of the Lord,
studied by all who delight in them.
Full of splendor and majesty is his work,
and his righteousness endures forever.
He has caused his wondrous works to be remembered;
the Lord is gracious and merciful.
He provides food for those who fear him;
he remembers his covenant forever.
He has shown his people the power of his works,
in giving them the inheritance of the nations.
The works of his hands are faithful and just;
all his precepts are trustworthy;
they are established forever and ever,
to be performed with faithfulness and uprightness.
He sent redemption to his people;
he has commanded his covenant forever.
Holy and awesome is his name!
The fear of the Lord is the beginning of wisdom;
all those who practice it have a good understanding.
His praise endures forever!
PSALM 109 is a prayer of lament written by David. This psalm has many imprecatory qualities, as David talks about evil men and his enemies, but there is a clear turn towards hope, praise, and thanksgiving about halfway through the psalm.
PSALM 110 is a royal psalm written by David that is both prophetic and Messianic in nature. This Psalm is quoted in Hebrews 5-7 as the writer portrays Jesus as the “great high priest in the order of Melchizedek.”
PSALM 111 is a song of praise and thanksgiving that was written anonymously. This psalm is also didactic in nature.
PSALM 112 is a wisdom psalm that was also written anonymously. This psalm too is didactic and is also intercessional in nature.
PSALM 114 is also a song of praise that was written anonymously. This psalm is also an Egyptian Hallel, a song sung during Passover season.
PSALM 115 is a song of praise that also was written anonymously. This psalm too is an Egyptian Hallel, a song sung during Passover season.
- Psalms 111-118 (hisstillsmallvoice.wordpress.com)
- Father Boylan’s Introduction to Psalm 112 (stjoeofoblog.wordpress.com)
- Psalm 108, 109, 110 (hisstillsmallvoice.wordpress.com)
- Deuteronomy 21; Psalms 108,109; Isaiah 48; Revelation 18 (66books.wordpress.com)
- Psalms of Ascent (ccalachua.wordpress.com)
- Questions for Reflection – Psalm 115 – 119 (thisdaywithgod.wordpress.com)
- Benedict XVI reflects on Psalm 110, “a Psalm beloved by the ancient Church and by believers of all times” (insightscoop.typepad.com)
- Today’s Responsorial Psalm (psalm 110) (prayers4reparation.wordpress.com)
- Today’s Responsorial Psalm (psalm 111) (prayers4reparation.wordpress.com)
- Pope Benedict XVI’s Commentary/Meditation on Psalm 112 (stjoeofoblog.wordpress.com)