God over all the earth, Psalm 65

How was your Sunday? Did you enjoy it as a "festive day of rest"? Festive rest may seem like an oxymoron, but that's the wonderful way the Heidelberg Catechism describes Sunday in its comprehensive answer explaining God's will for us in the fourth commandment (Lord's Day 38, Q&A 103). My devotional A Month of Sundays: 31 Meditations on … Continue reading God over all the earth, Psalm 65

Complaint, Psalm 64

In the Literary Study Bible's introduction to Psalm 64, editors Leland Ryken and Philip Graham Ryken call it the "prototypical" lament psalm, the "specimen in which the conventional elements stand out highlighted" with "vivid poetic texture and memorable imagery" (p. 815). An awareness of this psalm's lament construction and literary techniques helps us derive more meaning from David's "complaint" … Continue reading Complaint, Psalm 64

Thirsty soul, Psalm 63

Iowa may not have mountain vistas or white beaches, but in summer its lush green fields and rolling tree-covered hills are beautiful. The land between the mighty Mississippi and the churning Missouri, creased by river valleys and meandering streams, displays more summer beauty than I-80 drivers realize. And it's a far cry from the arid wilderness … Continue reading Thirsty soul, Psalm 63

Silent soul, Psalm 62

What does it mean for the soul to wait for God in silence? The Psalms surge with emotional expressions, communicating deep feelings of joy or despair. They provide a pattern for expressing universal human emotions to a God who hears and answers prayer. But Psalm 62 speaks of waiting for God in silence. Why does … Continue reading Silent soul, Psalm 62

High Rock, Psalm 61

Word pictures create images in our minds that make our reading come alive. Enlivened writing is more easily internalized and becomes more personal. And Psalm 61 pulses with images that increase our awareness of God as our protector. The ESV title for the psalm is "Lead Me to the Rock" with a notation "To the choirmaster: … Continue reading High Rock, Psalm 61

Defeated foes, Psalm 60

David wrote Psalm 60 after his army commander, Joab, had won a great military victory over the Edomites, but that triumph had not overshadowed recent struggles in Israel. When David became king, the nation suffered from internal divisions and external enemies. But David recognizes all Israel's problems have ultimately come from God. O God, you have … Continue reading Defeated foes, Psalm 60

Howling dogs, Psalm 59

When one dog starts to howl, all the neighborhood dogs join in. If this happens late in the evening, roving coyotes may even begin howling. Psalm 59 brings that eerie chorus to mind by repeating an identical refrain. Verses 6 & 7 in the ESV say: Each evening they come back,    howling like dogs    and prowling about the city.There they … Continue reading Howling dogs, Psalm 59

Psalm 58

On Mondays for the last several years, I've been trying to post a meditation on a psalm and today's the day for Psalm 58. Interestingly, Bible Gateway's "Book of Common Prayer" reading plan for today (March 17, 2014) includes Psalm 58. Almost four years ago, I looked at Psalm 58 in a post titled "Broken Teeth & … Continue reading Psalm 58

Revisiting Psalm 57

Because I'm pressed for time this month as I try to prepare several speaking presentations, I'm posting a link to a previous meditation on Psalm 57 rather than writing an entirely new one. I wrote this post about "Lying Amid Lions" almost four years ago, but its scriptural truths are timeless.

In God We Trust, Psalm 56

Ever wonder where the phrase engraved on American coins comes from? Contrary to the prevailing national culture, money made in the United States still says: In God We Trust. Regardless of how many Americans actually put their trust in God, he cares for those who do. And despite the failure of many to acknowledge him, … Continue reading In God We Trust, Psalm 56