Saturday Psalms

For the next several Saturdays, I’ll be posting Saturday Psalm devotionals. I’m so happy you’re here!

Psalm 120:1-7

In my distress I called to the Lord, and he answered me.

Lord, deliver me from lying lips and a deceitful tongue.

What will he give you, and what will he do to you, you deceitful tongue?

A warrior’s sharp arrows with burning charcoal!

What misery that I have stayed in Meshech, that I have lived among the tents of Kedar!

I have lived too long with those who hate peace.

I am for peace; but when I speak they are for war.

***

Psalm 120 is one of a collection of Psalms the Jews would sing and pray as they traveled to Jerusalem to observe the religious festivals.

This was the playlist for their road trip. It’s what they meditated on as they prepared to remember all that God had done for them. These are the Psalms they read to get their hearts ready.

What did it look like to read, remember and recite these words?

Why would they choose these words? There must be something here that uniquely prepares us for worship.

Sometimes the journey to worship begins with a cry for help.

In my distress I called to the Lord, and he answered me.

I think we’re in desperate need of some deliverance. We need a rescuer. The good news is that our rescuer is waiting for our cry for help. He hears and answers.

All that is good and true may feel far away.

We need rescuing from the lies that are ubiquitous around us. However, I wonder if the Psalmist was referring to a need for deliverance from his own personal deceit as well? Sometimes the lies we fight aren’t just on the outside- some of these lies are coming from our own mouths.

What will he give you, and what will he do to you, you deceitful tongue?

Part of preparing our hearts to remember God’s goodness is taking the time to call out for help and lament the distance between ourselves and our savior.

I have lived too long with those who hate peace.

Meshech and Kedar are the far corners of the lands the Israelites were living as foreigners. They couldn’t get any farther away from where they were supposed to be. They were in the wrong place, surrounded by the wrong people. That’s an exhausting place to live.

***

A prayer for those who need rescuing:

Lord, we need a rescuer.

Show us what is true. Help us to speak truth.

We’re tired of being far away. Draw us to you.

 

“There is good news for the captive
Good news for the shamed
There is good news for the one who walked away
There is good news for the doubter
The one religion failed
For the good Lord has come to seek and save

He’s our Rescuer
He’s our Rescuer
We are free from sin forevermore .”(Rescuer, Rend Collective)

(You can find the post for the second Psalm of Ascent here.)

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