Monday, November 10, 2008

Meditation on Psalm 31

Last Judgment Altar Piece
Rogier Van Der c. 1450
In thee, O LORD, do I put my trust; let me never be ashamed:
deliver me in thy righteousness.
Bow down thine ear to me; deliver me speedily:
be thou my strong rock, for an house of defence to save me.
For thou art my rock and my fortress;
therefore for thy name's sake lead me, and guide me.

Here David laments the penalty of sin and the guile and slander of those enemies around him. David fervidly makes pleas for deliverance to the Lord, having full confidence of his mercy and love, "Deliver me in Your righteousness" (v. 1). To fulfill this righteousness Jesus was born of the Virgin Mary, was baptized, and was led into the wilderness, where He endured temptation by Satan for 40 days. Let us remain steadfast as David in our fortress of defense. This fortress is the very Body of Christ, which we have been baptized into, receiving his very name (v. 2). Though we now live as broken vessels, where earthly strength fails us, our bones wasting away (v. 10), let us remain of good courage. Yet God has made children of us so that we might have the bold courage of sons who delight in a Father whose gifts have been graciously granted – that of eternal life and salvation. All this he does only out of fatherly, divine goodness and mercy, without any merit or worthiness in me. For all this it is my duty to thank and praise, serve and obey him. This is most certainly true.

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