Psalm 74:1-11 (JDV)
Psalm 74:1 Why have you rejected us perpetually, God? Why does your anger burn against the sheep of your pasture?
Psalm 74:2 Remember your congregation, which you purchased long ago and redeemed as the tribe for your own possession. Remember Mount Zion where you dwell.
Psalm 74:3 Lift your feet high to the perpetual ruins, to all that the enemy has destroyed within the sacred place.
Psalm 74:4 Your adversaries roar in the meeting place where you met with us. They set up their emblems as signs.
Psalm 74:5 It was like men in a forest of trees, wielding axes,
Psalm 74:6 then smashing all the carvings with hatchets and picks.
Psalm 74:7 They set your sanctuary on fire; they utterly desecrated the dwelling-place of your name.
Psalm 74:8 They said in their hearts, “Let us oppress them together.” They burned every place throughout the land where God met with us.
Psalm 74:9 There are no signs for us to see. There is no longer a prophet. And none of us knows how long this will go on.
Psalm 74:10 God, how long will the enemy mock? Will the foe insult your name perpetually?
Psalm 74:11 Why do you hold back your hand? Stretch out your right hand and destroy them!
These are the words of a believer who has seen his faith trampled and his God mocked, and cannot understand why God does not respond. The words resonate with believers today. We know God will bring about justice eventually, but long for justice immediately.
LORD, they have smashed — they have burned.
It sounds like a protest song, doesn’t it? Come to think of it, don’t many of our protest songs come from our religious heritage?
When we cannot make sense of the world’s wrongs, we look to another sphere for answers.
LORD, we know you are watching, and your truth is marching on.