Psalm 50 Commentary

Psalm 50 Commentary

Another courtroom session. First in the dock is the saint. The ungodly will have his own turn but first, we have introductory remarks from the Judge.

His name is the Mighty One, God, and the LORD. His name is described at length. It relates to the task at hand: judging the people. He summons the earth and the heavens. He also summons individuals. God’s creation is called to account. Specifically, the Creator God is checking His creation.

Coming up first is the saint. God is fed up with men’s make-believe religion. Rituals are the means to an end. But saints have settled down and concluded they have worshipped the LORD by merely performing a couple of cold rituals. What makes them feel God is in need of a meal? Even if He did, will the Creator God depend on man’s generosity?

The word behind all of these rituals is obedience. Very important. Stick to it. You will have honored the LORD that way.

The thoughts here are quite advanced. What lies behind my action or lack of it; or what lies behind abstinence is what the LORD is interested in. Let’s forget the smoke. There is fire to be hard. Tools are important but they still remain as means to achieving the real thing: work. The church can miss God in the process of cleaning the church, painting it, or arranging the chairs. The LORD requires the person and not necessarily his services. Services should come as a consequence of fellowship with Heaven.

The saint stands in the dock for offering services to the LORD without having a relationship.

Up next is the ungodly. Why all the noise? God. God. God. Why talk about the God you don’t even know? Why pretend knowledge of the Almighty when you have no interest in obedience? And when the LORD keeps quiet you think all is well and your behavior is after all just right.

We are observers. We hear the Judge say these things about the saint and about the ungodly. We know the saint has to do better. And the ungodly? Well, we can see a couple of things from the Creator’s judgment. Silence from the Creator’s throne doesn’t mean acceptance. The misconception that the LORD is fine with the sinner’s wrongdoing leads to more sin.

The chapter ends with an important statement of hope to the saint. The blameless will see God’s salvation. Attached to this statement of hope is a naked warning that the Creator God will tear to pieces the ungodly. There will be no one to rescue them.

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Published by Joseph Malekani

Joseph Malekani is a born-again Christian with a strong PAOG/Baptist background. He is heavily involved in student ministry with ZAFES – an IFES movement with focus on student ministry in Zambia. He is married to Audrey and they have two lovely children.

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