Psalm 76

A psalm describing the golden period of Israel’s power, when other nations feared to arm against them because they knew God was on Israel’s side.

It recalls those battles where Israel had faith and the Lord granted them victory by simply bringing confusion on their enemies. These sorts of things inspired fear of Israel, and fear of God.

A peace based on the futility of fighting Israel reigned. For a while.

Of course that still was the true deeper power structure of the universe after Israel the nation became shattered and fell to the Assyrian and Babylonian empires. It remains so today.

But the psalm doesn’t go metaphysical, not explicitly. It’s literally a snapshot of the glory days.

The commentators drew out a verse that, now I think of it, did strike me, about God being more majestic than the mountains rich with game.

Creation is bigger than the squabbles of mankind, and God is bigger again, 2 steps beyond the fray.

They said this psalm has inspired Christians to be brave and true when marginalised or under attack, which made me feel a bit faithless.

I instantly thought: ‘this psalm describes a truth we hardly ever witness’ whereas others think: ‘this picture of man’s proper response to God’s power inspires me’


Maybe that response reflects how powerless I feel in world affairs generally.

Like that sense of pointlessness you feel when you hover over the wrong bin with a piece of rubbish. You know literally the environmental impact of putting one small bit of cardboard in the general waste bin is virtually nil.

I know the right way to live, I’ll live the right way as much as possible, but I’m not expecting to see my actions result in a significant shift towards an earthly recognition of the power of God any time soon.

Am I too old for this psalm? God is a lot older than me. Now, new years, is time to rekindle some crusading zeal, so I’ll pray about that.

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