The Freedom of Judgment
Heavenly Father, I want to know more of You, Your large purposes, Your goodness and mercy.
Read Psalm 75:1-10
 For the director of music. To the tune of “Do Not Destroy.” A psalm of Asaph. A song.
Scripture taken from the THE HOLY BIBLE, NEW INTERNATIONAL VERSION, NIV Copyright © 1973, 1978, 1984, 2011 by Biblica, Inc.® Used by permission. All rights reserved worldwide.
Where there is injustice in the world, celebrate God’s righteous judgment; pray for justice to be done.
This psalm continues our reading of the “Psalms of Asaph” (from Psalms 73 to 83) within Book III of the Psalms. There is good reason to think that these psalms were meant to be read together, so in considering each individual psalm we also need to be aware of what comes before and after it.
Psalm 75 is much simpler and more direct than Psalm 74. It focuses on God’s unique power and authority as judge, and does so using some vivid metaphors. God’s “Name” (1) means the fullness of his presence in holiness. The “horns” of the wicked (5,10) symbolize their strength; speaking with “outstretched neck” (5, TNIV) suggests arrogance and pride. In verse 6, the “desert” probably indicates direction rather than anything else: the mountains of Lebanon are in the north, and the desert of Negeb is in the south. The “cup” in God’s hand (8) is a common symbol for judgment, for that moment when the peoples of the world reap the consequences of their actions as a result of God’s justice.
God is the judge, and we can be confident in his righteous judgment. In common with other celebrations of God’s justice such as the Magnificat (Mary’s song), Luke 1:46-55, this will involve reversal (10). The proud will be humbled, and God’s humble, faithful servants, who have trusted him in dark times, will finally be vindicated. This hope is profoundly liberating. It frees us from the need to justify ourselves and judge others. It frees us from the anxiety that our cause is somehow forgotten or unknown. And it frees us to celebrate God’s goodness and faithfulness (“I will sing praise…,” 9) even while we still await its final revelation. It is just such freedom that Paul commends to us (Rom. 12:19; 14:10).
Are there areas of your life where you are bound by the need to justify yourself or make your cause known? How might the promise of God’s judgment release you?
Father, at times I feel this world is spinning crazy, out of control. I am waiting, watching, praying, knowing You control all spin, and Your truth and justice will one day prevail.
Click here to sign up to receive the EXTRAs via email each quarter.