Monday, February 15, 2021

Tuesday prior to Lent 1

 Psalm 25:1-10 – In this psalm, David prays for God’s mercy when he is under attack by his enemies. He asks the Lord to remember His mercy and steadfast love, and not to look upon David’s sins. We do the same thing when we pray the Lord’s Prayer. We ask God to deliver us from evil, and in praying ‘Forgive us our trespasses,’ we pray that ‘our Father in heaven would not look upon our sins, nor on their account deny our prayer.’ (Small Catechism)

To you, O Lord, I lift up my soul” the psalmist prays.

This Psalm is a plea from the depth of a suffering soul to the God in whom the speaker trusts for deliverance and mercy. Yet despite this trust, the text is a cry of desperation. It points to our longing for God not only to deliver us from our troubles, but also for God to see us fully. As we about to enter our Lenten journey, we wait for God to see us through the darkness, and to bestow the mercy that we trust God alone to give.

The psalmist appeals to God’s character. He takes this complaint to God precisely because God is the one who can be trusted to provide deliverance. In verses 6-7, and also Vv. 11, and 18, the Psalmist calls on God to make known the steadfast love that characterizes the Divine Reality. Here we see another example of the brilliant weaving of this Psalm: the appeal to God’s character is interwoven with a particular plea for forgiveness. “Be mindful of your mercy, O Lord, and of your steadfast love . . . Do not remember the sins of my youth or my transgressions; according to your steadfast love remember me, for your goodness’ sake, O Lord!” (Verses 6-7).

It is as if the psalmist is saying, “Remember, God, both who you are and who I am, and forget the sin that seems to stand between us.” Is there something standing between you and God today? If so, take it to the LORD in prayer.

Collect for Psalm 25: LORD our God, you show us your ways of compassion and love and you spare sinners. Remember not our sins; relieve our misery;; satisfy the longing of your people; and fulfill all our hopes for eternal peace through your Son, Jesus Christ our LORD.[1]

[1] Collect for Psalm 25, For All the Saints, A Prayer Book for and by the Church, © 1995 The American Lutheran Publicity Bureau, Delhi, NY

The Temptation of Jesus copyright © Ed Riojas, Higher Things

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