Monday, January 25, 2016

Psalm for Sunday, January 31, 2016


Psalm 71: 1-2, 3-4, 5-6, 15-17  (Read) 

“O my God, rescue me from 

the hand of the wicked.”

This Psalm is known as a
prayer in the evening of life.
The psalmist looks back,
recalls how he has tried
to remain faithful to God,
his life’s companion.
“You are my hope, Lord;
my trust, O God, from my youth.
On you I depend since birth;
from my mother’s womb
you are my strength.”

In the difficult moments of
old age, the psalmist begs God
to come to his aid, and resolves
to praise God with all his might.
“My mouth shall proclaim your
just deeds, day after day your acts
of deliverance.”

The Psalm recalls for us the words
of the prophet Jeremiah, who says,
“Before I formed you in the womb
I dedicated you, a prophet
I appointed you.”   Jeremiah draws
strength from the Lord; God makes him
a “fortified city, a pillar of iron.”
(Jeremiah 1:5, 18)

And in the Psalm the writer pleads
with God, “Be my rock and refuge;
my stronghold to give me safety;
for you are my rock and fortress.”
In Jeremiah’s struggle against kings
and priests, he obtains assurances that
the Lord is with him to deliver him.
The Psalmist seeks the same guarantee
from God – “In your justice rescue and
deliver me.”

In today's Gospel, our Lord Jesus
was able to pass through the midst of 

the angry crowd that threatened him 
that day in Nazareth. (Luke 4:30)
Our psalmist too is threatened
by an adversary and petitions God,
“My God, rescue me from the power
of the wicked, from the clutches of the
evil and violent.”

And for us too, the source of our
ability to weather those spiritual trials
that we face in our own lives comes
from God our Father.  His works are mighty,
and His justice is available for the asking,
“I will speak of the mighty works of the Lord;
O God, I will tell of your singular justice.”


Discussion Questions for Reflection

1.  Our psalmist says that from his mother's womb God was his strength. 

Describe how you as a child of God derive strength and hope from the Lord.

2.  The psalmist cries out to God to rescue him 'from the hand of the wicked, 

from the clutches of the evil and violent.'  Speak of how you have been
delivered by the Lord from the clutches of the evil one.


  1. That’s the tremendous advantage we have with old age. We’ve been through years of life, we’ve been tempted, and for the most part, we’ve learned to deal with it. Our chances of having to make a life threatening “choose God or your life” are very slim to none. Thank God we live in this country that respects our faith beliefs. I’ve done a lot of traveling, and I am always glad to be back home in this country. Pick your wife and your friends wisely. I feel that I have been blessed.

  2. Rudy H6:18 PM

    We pray O Lord that we are never ashamed of our dependence upon you nor disappointed in our believing expectations from you.

    With this petition every true believer may come boldly to the throne of grace; for God will never disappoint our hope. We praise God, and we tell Him what an entire confidence we have in Him. He that was our help from our birth ought to be our hope from our youth. If we received so much mercy from God before we were capable of doing Him any service, we should lose no time when we are capable.

  3. Since Jesus is God's anointed one, He proclaims freedom to prisoners. I will get strength and hope from Him as a child of God, as the psalmist did.

    The psalmist remains faithful to God even though he faces spiritual trials. Whenever I go through life's hardships, physical pains, and broken relationships with my peers, I seek and petition God for my needs by praying. He delivers me from the clutches of evil hands. He eventually sets me free.

    My big problems seem to be getting smaller, and they don't bother me anymore. I am able to forgive and forget. Indeed God has rescued me from all the oppression of cruel men who tried to harm me. He is justice and righteousness.

    Our Lord is a constant help throughout my life. I want to remain faithful to God for the rest of my life. I thank him and praise him for His deliverance. Whenever I face a crisis, I recall this verse, "He proclaims freedom to prisoners."

  4. When my children ask me about events that occurred before they were born, I answer that they were "but a twinkle in my eye" when it happened. In other words, before I knew of them, I vaguely knew that I was going to be a mother and give birth to a unique creation (or two.)

    How awe-inspiring to think that God goes infinitely further in his heart and mind! The Creator of the universe, knew us specifically, before we were formed. He already planned a special life's journey for each of us. I am reminded of Psalm 139:13, "For you created my inmost being, you knit me together in my mother's womb." And the following verse, which I quote often for friends' birthdays: "I praise you because I am fearfully and wonderfully made; your works are wonderful, I know that full well." (Psalm 139:14)

    It seems that the Lord's concept of life goes even beyond what we call "fertilization" or "conception." It extends into the heavens where He thoughtfully, lovingly, knows each of his own and sends us to a specific mother. Indeed, we can draw strength from the mere fact that the Father's plan is so vast and perfect. And that each of us plays an integral role, no matter how insignificant we may sometimes feel.