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Reading:                                         Psalm 89

Verses 38-45

But you have rejected, you have spurned,
you have been very angry with your anointed one.
You have renounced the covenant with your servant
and have defiled his crown in the dust.
You have broken through all his walls
and reduced his strongholds to ruins.
All who pass by have plundered him;
he has become the scorn of his neighbors.
You have exalted the right hand of his foes;
you have made all his enemies rejoice.

 Indeed, you have turned back the edge of his sword
and have not supported him in battle.
You have put an end to his splendor
and cast his throne to the ground.
You have cut short the days of his youth;
you have covered him with a mantle of shame
(NIV).

Reflection

Though we cannot be absolutely certain, it seems likely that Psalm 89 was written during the time of the Babylonian invasion of Judea. These were days of disaster brought on by idolatry as the people turned away from God. The rebellious King of Judah suffered a catastrophic defeat as the words of this psalm state: You have put an end to his splendor and cast his throne to the ground. You have cut short the days of his youth; you have covered him with a mantle of shame. 

GP2 2016-08-17

Gatineau Park picnic area — photo by David Kitz

In the last few decades the church in North America has also experienced a number of defeats or setbacks. Enemies of the Christian faith have risen up and become bold in their attacks. Just as ancient Jerusalem was attacked and laid low, so too Christian belief systems have been under constant assault. The walls and strongholds of our faith have been undermined.

Two unshakable biblical truths have come under relentless attack. The first is the truth of creation. Our God is the Creator of the universe—the source point of all matter and life. Since the days of Darwin, who incidentally believed in God, atheists have mounted a ferocious attack on this foundational truth. The Christian response has often been jingoistic or at best disjointed. A more coherent and scientifically sound defense is needed.

The second truth that has been under continual attack is the veracity of the Bible. God’s holy word is mocked and routinely discredited especially at our universities. The word of God is our stronghold. Over and over again it has been proven to be accurate, reliable and true. Archaeologists and scholars have marveled at the veracity and authenticity of God’s word. But the real proof of the inerrancy of God’s word does not come from scholarly research. It comes from the transformed lives of believers.

Response: LORD God, my trust is in you and your word. Creator God, I want my faith to be as secure for me as the earth beneath my feet and the air in my lungs. You are all around me. Thank you, Lord. Amen.

Your Turn: Have attacks on your faith caused doubt? How did you overcome?