A Reflection on Psalm 67

      1 May God be gracious to us and bless us
         and make his face shine on us— 
      2 so that your ways may be known on earth, 
         your salvation among all nations. 

      3 May the peoples praise you, God; 
         may all the peoples praise you. 
      4 May the nations be glad and sing for joy, 
         for you rule the peoples with equity
         and guide the nations of the earth. 
      5 May the peoples praise you, God; 
         may all the peoples praise you. 

      6 The land yields its harvest; 
         God, our God, blesses us. 
      7 May God bless us still, 
         so that all the ends of the earth will fear him. - Psalm 67:1-7 (NIV)

Within the next seven days, the United States of America will likely know it’s next President. Elections and the changing of government officials are traditionally tumultuous times in the life of any nation, and it seems especially true this year.

As I was drawn to write this short reflection upon the Word of God, I felt the Lord leading me to this psalm, Psalm 67 – and for good reason. It is through this psalm, originally a song to be sung, that our eyes, hearts, and hopes are re-set and fixed upon the right thing, God himself.

It is a psalm that does not allow us to become so myopic that we see our nation, our candidate, or our government as the final arbiter of our hope. It helps us see that our God is great and more powerful than any government or nation. This truth rings through this psalm, thought it may be a secondary implication.

Generally, for all biblical interpretation, the simplest reading of a text is almost always the correct one. The primary implication of Psalm 67 and the desire of the author to the original audience, those singing or reading it, is to be moved to a longing for every nation, people group, and person on this earth to know God and praise him for who he is.

The rule of the Living God – the God of Abraham, Isaac and Jacob, the God of the Bible, the Speaking God, the Alpha and Omega, the Beginning and the End, the Word made flesh, our God, Jesus Christ – is a sovereign one whose dominion is the earth. The psalmist desires for all nations to come back into full obedience and flourishing in him.

This psalm is not just a song, but a prayer and a promise rolled into one. It is the prayer of God’s people that his benevolent reign and rule will be established in the furthest corners of his universe, and our understanding that we, his people will be the means by which this blessing reaches the ends of the earth (v7).

No matter who is elected as the future leader of this country in the coming week, might we as God’s people sing this, pray this, and remember that our God reigns over all kings and rulers – he is and will ever be victorious! Might we look past the coming week to the mighty and beautiful day when we are united to Christ fully and completely; when we, along with every tribe, tongue, and nation on the earth will sing his praises and be filled with joy (Rev 7:9).

Be at peace Foundation Church,

In Christ

Pastor Ryan Williams