Friday, September 10, 2010

Psalm 67

May God be gracious to us and bless us
and make his face shine upon us

I've heard this verse many, many times, in many church services and on many wall plaques.

What you rarely hear is the next verse.

that your ways may be known on earth,
your salvation among all nations.


The craziness doesn't end there. It keeps going.

3 May the peoples praise you, O God;
may all the peoples praise you.

4 May the nations be glad and sing for joy,
for you rule the peoples justly
and guide the nations of the earth.

5 May the peoples praise you, O God;
may all the peoples praise you.

6 Then the land will yield its harvest,
and God, our God, will bless us.

7 God will bless us,
and all the ends of the earth will fear him.

You mean God's blessing isn't just about us? Since when? Genesis 12? What?

1 The LORD had said to Abram, "Leave your country, your people and your father's household and go to the land I will show you.

2 "I will make you into a great nation
and I will bless you;
I will make your name great,
and you will be a blessing.

3 I will bless those who bless you,
and whoever curses you I will curse;
and all peoples on earth
will be blessed through you."

Walter Kaiser points out that both these passages have the same format - three promises of blessing and a conditional requirement - bless the nations. God's blessing is never just about us. It is always bigger than that.

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