Sunday, June 12, 2022

Monday prior to Proper 7


Psalm 71:20–24; antiphon, Psalm 71:3—Psalm 71 was likely written by King David toward the end of his life. Looking back over the events of a long life, he could see that, though he had experienced many troubles and calamities, the Lord would always deliver him, would revive him again.

David trusted in the Lord as a rock and a fortress, who cannot be moved or shaken, but provides refuge for His people. In response, the people of God shout for joy and sing praises to Him, and speak of His righteous help all the daylong.

Psalm 71 – Older in Years; Stronger in Faith

Many commentators believe this is a psalm of David and is his prayer and trust in God in his later years under the crisis of Absalom’s rebellion. Since there is no title and the text of the psalm does not say this, we will not speculate and treat Psalm 71 as if it were written under those circumstances. Instead, we regard it as an anonymous composition.

We have here THE PRAYER OF THE AGED BELIEVER, who in holy confidence of faith, strengthened by a long and remarkable experience, pleads against his enemies, and asks further blessings for himself.

Of interest in this psalm are the many references and allusions to other psalms.

Psalm 71:1-3 is quoted almost exactly from Psalm 31:1-3.

The thoughts of Psalm 71:5 seem to be suggested by Psalm 22:9-11.

Do not be far from me (Psalm 71:12a) echoes Psalm 22:11.

My God, make haste to help me! (Psalm 71:12b) takes the thought of Psalm 70:1.

Psalm 71:13 is similar to Psalm 35:26.

Psalm 71:18 carries the thoughts of Psalm 22:22 and 22:30-31.

Psalm 71:19 uses the phrasing of Exodus 15:11.

It is reasonable to think the author of Psalm 71 made study and meditation upon God’s word a priority through his life, and the result is that he naturally used the phrases and vocabulary of the Scriptures to pray and praise.

The Lord finds those who did not seek Him or ask for Him. He spreads out His hands “to a rebellious people” (Isaiah 65:2) and calls them to be His people and to dwell in peace upon His holy mountain (Isaiah 65:9). For wherever Jesus Christ enters in, Satan is cast out. Those who were enslaved and driven mad by the assaults and accusations of the devil, are set free by the Word of Christ. He drowns and destroys the old Adam in us with the waters of Holy Baptism and thereby brings us out of death into life. No longer naked in our shame, living “among the tombs” (Luke 8:27), we are brought into the Lord’s house, fully clothed by Christ. For He has come, in “the fullness of time” (Galatians 4:4) to fulfill the Law on our behalf and to redeem us from its every accusation. Therefore, having been justified by His grace through faith in His Gospel, “you are no longer a slave, but a son” (Galatians 4:7).[2]

Collect for Psalm 71: Lord God of the living, do not desert us in old age, but help us to follow your will in both good and bad times, so that forever we may praise your faithfulness; through your Son, Jesus Christ our Lord.

Prayer for Monday the week of Pentecost 2: Father in heaven, words cannot measure the boundaries of live for those born to new life in Christ Jesus. Raise us beyond the limits this world imposes, so that we may be free to love as Christ teaches and find our joy in your glory. We ask this through Christ our Lord. [3] -13 June 2022

[1] Luther’s Seal © Ed Riojas, Higher Things

[2] Lectionary Summary, LCMS commission on worship

[3] Collect for Psalm 71, Monday the week of Pentecost 2, For All the Saints, A Prayer Book For and By the Church, Vol. II © 1995 The American Lutheran Publicity Bureau, Delhi, NY

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