Pondering Psalm 67

Psalm 67

May God be gracious to us and bless us
and make his face shine upon us, 
that your ways may be known on earth,
your salvation among all nations.

May the peoples praise you, O God;
may all the peoples praise you.
May the nations be glad and sing for joy,
for you rule the peoples justly
and guide the nations of the earth. 
May the peoples praise you, O God;
may all the peoples praise you.

Then the land will yield its harvest,
and God, our God, will bless us.
God will bless us,
and all the ends of the earth will fear him.

Evidently David spent time reading the Scriptures. And evidently he was a fan of praying Scripture. Note what Numbers 6:22-27 says:

22 The Lord said to Moses, 23 “Tell Aaron and his sons, ‘This is how you are to bless the Israelites. Say to them:

24 “The Lord bless you
    and keep you;
25 the Lord make his face shine on you
    and be gracious to you;
26 the Lord turn his face toward you
    and give you peace.”’

27 “So they will put my name on the Israelites, and I will bless them.”

You can never go wrong when you pray the Word of God. Here are a few reasons why I am a fan:

1) Prayer is supposed to be more than talking at God. It should be a conversation. As we read God’s Word and ponder what it says we can pray based on what His Word is telling us. Our time with God then becomes more of a dialogue than a monologue. This is a good thing.

2) Sometimes our prayers can become very mundane. They can become overly “me-centered.” When we learn to pray Scripture we start praying things that are important to God. I especially like using some of the prayers that are recorded in Scripture as starting points for my prayer time.

3) Sometimes we pray robotically. We do it because we are supposed to do it not because we are emotionally engaged. The Psalms are a great example of prayers that were prayed where you can hear the emotion that is involved. We need to get our emotions involved in our praying – praying with passion for God and compassion for people – and praying Scripture helps me to do this.

Verse 1 is a great prayer to pray for ourselves and others:  “May God be gracious to us and bless us and make his face shine upon us”. But don’t pray it without verse 2: “that your ways may be known on earth your salvation among all nations.” Verse 1 alone is a selfish, me-centered prayer. But with verse 2 it becomes a God-exalting prayer. God blesses us not as an end in itself but in order that we might be a blessing to others and that we might make His great Name known.

I’m just sayin’!

Next Week: Psalm 84

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