“Arise, O God, and defend your cause. Remember how the foolish scoff you all day.”
So this Psalm was an interesting all up to Psalm 73, which we prayed through yesterday. So Psalm 73 talked about the prosperity of the wicked and the Psalmist found a refuge, comfort in the fact that he could be near God, that we are near God. He loves us and leads us and guides us. And then when you get to Psalm 74 and you see a similar depiction of the injustice of the world, the prosperity of the wicked, and specifically, even the prosperity of those who scoff at God. The success, so to speak, in the world of people who mock God, who are enemies of God, and who hurt God’s people in different ways.
God, we pray that you would cause your name to be glorified.
And in this Psalm we hear this theme, it’s encapsulated really in verse 22. Arise, O God, defend your cause. Remember how the foolish scoff at you all the day. In other words, yes, it is right in a Psalm 73 kind of way, just to find refuge in God, personally, in a world where the wicked prosper in different ways and it is good to call out to God for him to show his justice and him to show his glory and him to show his righteous rule and reign in the world to bring an end to injustice, to bring an end to scoffing at his name, to bring an end, ultimately, to injustice in the world. And so we pray right now with the Psalmist in Psalm 74, and it feels bold to pray this, but this is what the Bible is teaching us to pray, how the Bible is teaching us to pray.
We pray right now, O God, arise. Arise, and defend your cause. Show your glory. We pray, O God, this is how Jesus who taught us to pray. Our Father in heaven. Hallowed be your name. Cause your name to be made known as holy. Your name that is scoffed and mocked. We pray that you would cause your name to be revered and feared, glorified among more and more people around us and the places where we live and work, in the cities where we are. God, we pray that you would cause your name to be glorified, honored, revered, feared, and not mocked. In Metro Washington, DC, where I live, in the country, where I live, the United States, and all the different places where we’re gathered right now, we’re just substituting those names of cities and communities, causes your name to be glorified we pray. And we pray for this among the Southern Oromo people in Somalia.
God, cause your name to be glorified, hallowed there, we pray. Arise, O God caused your name to be glorified in Somalia. We pray for that, O God. God, we pray that you would bring an end to injustice. God that you would stop it. And we think about injustice around the world, oppression around the world. God, we pray that you would stop it. That you would defend your cause, show your justice again. Jesus, this is how you taught us to pray. Our Father in heaven, hallowed, be your name, your kingdom come, your will be done on earth as it is in heaven. May it be so. Your justice be done. Your righteousness be made known. Your righteous rule be implemented.
God, we pray for this. We ask for this. And even as we pray for this, God, we’re reminded of your word to your people. What do you require of us? That we do justice and we love mercy and walk humbly with you. So God, help us to do that in our lives, to the extent with which we are able, God, to reflect your cause even as we pray. O God arise, rise up our God and defend your cause that the foolish who scoff at you would be silenced and that your glory would be made known. We pray Psalm 74 in Jesus’ name today. Amen.
View the 2021 McLean Bible Church Reading Plan here.