Psalm 72

In light of all this discussion about race and justice I was struck today during my morning prayers by the words of justice in Psalm 72, the assigned psalm for the Morning Office. Obviously, Christians read this song Christologically. And it made me think about what it means to pray "may your will be done on earth as it is in heaven":

Endow the king with your justice, O God,
the royal son with your righteousness.

He will judge your people in righteousness,
your afflicted ones with justice.

The mountains will bring prosperity to the people,
the hills the fruit of righteousness.

He will defend the afflicted among the people
and save the children of the needy;
he will crush the oppressor.

He will endure as long as the sun,
as long as the moon, through all generations.

He will be like rain falling on a mown field,
like showers watering the earth.

In his days the righteous will flourish;
prosperity will abound till the moon is no more.

He will rule from sea to sea
and from the River to the ends of the earth.

The desert tribes will bow before him
and his enemies will lick the dust.

The kings of Tarshish and of distant shores
will bring tribute to him;
the kings of Sheba and Seba
will present him gifts.

All kings will bow down to him
and all nations will serve him.

For he will deliver the needy who cry out,
the afflicted who have no one to help.

He will take pity on the weak and the needy
and save the needy from death.

He will rescue them from oppression and violence,
for precious is their blood in his sight.

Long may he live!
May gold from Sheba be given him.
May people ever pray for him
and bless him all day long.

Let grain abound throughout the land;
on the tops of the hills may it sway.
Let its fruit flourish like Lebanon;
let it thrive like the grass of the field.

May his name endure forever;
may it continue as long as the sun.
All nations will be blessed through him,
and they will call him blessed.

Praise be to the LORD God, the God of Israel,
who alone does marvelous deeds.

Praise be to his glorious name forever;
may the whole earth be filled with his glory.
Amen and Amen.

This is the line that stirred my heart:
He will rescue them from oppression and violence,
for precious is their blood in his sight.

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One thought on “Psalm 72”

  1. I've also been thinking about what it means to pray that "God's will be done on earth as it is in heaven." I appreciate this post as Psalm 72 seems to describe, in part, what the reign of God would look like. N.T. Wright's "putting the world to rights" makes a whole lot of sense

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