Wise Love, Wise Justice
Spirit of God, renovate my life through Your tireless, gracious workings. May everything in me unworthy of You fall away.
Read Psalm 72:1-20
 Of Solomon.
Scripture taken from the Holy Bible, NEW INTERNATIONAL VERSION. Copyright © 1973, 1978, 1984 International Bible Society. All rights reserved throughout the world. Used by permission of International Bible Society.
“Jesus shall reign where ere the sun / Does his successive journeys run; / His kingdom stretch from shore to shore, / Till moons shall wax and wane no more” (Isaac Watts, 1674-1748).
Moses needed it. Our politicians need it. Parents need it. And so do us all—wisdom to rule well over the domain we have been given. This psalm ascribed to Solomon was possibly one he prayed for himself at an anniversary of his coronation, or for his son. Though his reign was a brief period of Israel’s glorious ascendency, and his wisdom great, yet the superlatives must surely point beyond kings of historical Israel to Christ himself. His eagerly anticipated glorious reign of justice and righteousness has been celebrated in many wonderful hymns which take their imagery from this psalm.
Christ’s reign is the kingdom of God. Kingdom values always unite power (8-11) with compassion (12-14), but in applying this in our everyday lives of service we especially need wisdom to perceive what kind of help is appropriate. A student of mine recently wrote: “The task of the church is to meet all the needs of its community.” Really? Do parents meet all the needs of their children? Or does God satisfy all our desires? We need Christ’s wisdom to know when to help those who are helpless and how to teach them to care for themselves. We cannot do everything, but this is not an excuse to do nothing. Solomon did not live up to the aspirations of this psalm. His people claimed he made their yoke heavy (1 Kings 12:10), and we can be paralyzed by laziness or indecision and not respond to “the needy who cry out” (12), as Jesus illustrated in his story of the Good Samaritan. Isaac Watts’ hymn says: “Blessings abound where ere He reigns; / The prisoner leaps to lose his chains.” May we join Jesus in his wise work of justice.
Read the psalm again and see how many references appear to be Messianic. Thank God for Jesus and his fulfillment of these prophecies.
Lord, I pray today for those who govern that they might seek to serve and not be served. May they be mindful of the disadvantaged and govern with justice.
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