Tuesday, November 12, 2013

Psalm for Sunday, November 17, 2013

Psalm 98:  5-6, 7-8, 9 (Read)

“The Lord comes to govern the world with justice
and the peoples with fairness.”

The Psalm is about the coming of God,
and the promise is made that when the Lord
comes, he will govern the earth with justice.

Scripture teaches us that we do not know when
the Lord will come, and we are warned to be ready
because it may happen like a thief in the night.
In this Sunday's Gospel, Jesus speaks about the
day of judgment, when awesome sights and mighty
signs will come from the sky and when the disciples
will be hated by all because of His name.

Although the Psalm is about the joy of the Lord’s
coming, there may be reason for anxiety on our part.
The Book of Malachi warns us that the day is coming
when evildoers will be set on fire and become stubble.

Should we be afraid of the Lord’s judgment?
One thing is sure—we need to be ready, to prepare
to face the arrival of God.   We do not know when that
day may come;  some in our generation doubt that
day will come at all.   For those who have put their
trust in the Lord, and attempted to apply His teachings
toward others they meet in the course of their day,
there will be rejoicing and praise.  For others who
have slacked off and found fault with their neighbors
and have not lifted a helping hand, shame and destruction
may be at hand.  After all, we are called to be caregivers;
we are indeed our brother’s keeper.

“The Lord comes to govern the earth.”
We may not always welcome someone who comes
to rule over us.  Or to judge us.  But the Lord brings
His “healing rays.”   He is after all the “sun of justice.”
The Book of Malachi assures us that if we fear the Lord,
“The sun of justice will arise with its healing rays.”

There is hope for us, as we struggle not to be idle,
and face those who hate us because of our faith.
Our Lord liberates us from whatever holds us back
or drags us down.  And we kick up our heels like
“calves being released from the stall.”

The Psalm repeatedly tells us to be joyful about
the Lord’s coming; to sing praise to the Lord;
to shout with joy to the Lord.  We join with our
surroundings, “Let the rivers clap their hands,
the mountains shout with them for joy.”


Discussion Questions for Reflection

1.  The Psalm speaks about the Day of the Lord,
when He will come to rule the earth with justice.
Are you ready for the Lord's coming?   Speak about
how you are preparing for it.

2.  Our psalmist writes about those who dwell
in the world shouting for joy before the Lord,
when He comes to rule the earth.   Explain how you
will sing praise to the Lord and sing joyfully before
the King, the Lord.


  1. I think very few people are ready for the Lord to show up today! Most of us would like a week, or ideally, a month to get ready. Storms are getting ever more horrific, and the leadership seems to be unable to deal with the major problems.......Actually, I think in many cases, it's the leadership that's causing the problems. What a blessing it would be for the Lord to come and govern the world with justice, and the peoples with fairness.

  2. Jesus came to save us from our sins. And He promised he'll come again to govern the earth in righteousness and rule the people with justice. All those who follow Him will be victorious with Him. But He overlooks no sin. At the same time He is merciful and trustworthy.

    In spite of all, whenever someone asks me this question, "Are you ready for the Lord's coming?" honestly, I'm afraid to say "Yes" for sure, so I want to say "No." Thinking about His coming, my heart fills with joy. No more crying, no more pain, no more death, and living forever with Him in His Kingdom. What more possibly do I want?

    When I look at my sins, I'm still unforgiving, unloving to my neighbors, and I'm reluctant to give myself totally to God. I'm guilty of being idle in many ways. I'm still at a stage where my heart and spirit are willing, but my body is weak. I have to prepare myself to look right in the eyes of God. I won't be scared of His sudden arrival to rule the earth with justice. Anyhow, my Spirit sings praise to the Lord joyfully.