Reflecting on Psalm 2, so many thoughts ... some comforting, others … more than a little disconcerting, bid for my attention.
Why do the nations conspire
and the peoples plot in vain?
The kings of the earth take their stand
and the rulers gather together
against the LORD
and against His Anointed One.
“Let us break their chains,” they say,
“and throw off their fetters.”
At first glance, these opening words provide a good summation of today's headlines ... a world continuing to align itself against the ways of God.
Not just nations against Israel, but at the core of what we call news these days is a prevailing attitude in obvious conflict with righteousness, godliness, sacrifice for others .... anything that could even pass as "Kingdom living."
How easily I can see 'the kings of the earth’ the ‘rulers’ gathering together to take a stand against anything of God ... including my own country in so many ways.
I can see the psalmist shaking his head in wonderment at the lack of understanding that God is sovereign ... that the earth and all in it belongs to Him ... and always will ... and that nothing, nothing formed against Him can stand.
I can shake my head at the world, but breath easier when it comes to me, personally.
Then I looked at Psalm 2:1 a little closer. In the NIV, the wording reads:
“Why do the nations conspire and the people plot in vain.”
I know what “plot” communicates in English, but I was curious as to what the psalmist had in mind, the picture his brush was painting.
I hadn't realized the beautiful comparison/contrast Psalm 2 provides Psalm 1.
“Plot “in Hebrew is multifaceted.
In English thinking, “plot ” communicates this huge 'putting of heads together’ to overthrow something or someone.
In Hebrew? The meaning differs: to moan, growl, utter, muse, mutter, meditate, devise, plot, speak.
And there, using the same word, I rediscover Psalm 1:
"But his delight is in the law of the LORD, and on His law he meditates day and night.
Two focuses. Two mindsets. Two contemplations … meditations.
Both on God, on His ways, but stemming from two completely different heart bents.
I don't know what words may strike a chord in others, but me? All it took to bring this psalm home to my own roost were the words mutter, moan … that negative meditation to which I so easily fall victim.
Over and over the LORD's love for me keeps front and foremost the truth: attitude is what it is all about.
The right words may fall from my mouth ... that 'outward appearance' that others see.
But GOD? He knows my heart. He knows where I mutter, moan ... even meditate against His ways.
He knows when I perceive His ways as 'chains' ... as 'fetters' from which I want to break free.
What amazes me, again, as I reflect on Psalm 2 is the LORD's amazing patience and grace.
Towards the world ... towards me.
Listen carefully to the psalmist revelation.
The One enthroned in heaven …
‘I have installed My King on Zion, My holy hill …
Ask of Me and I will make the nations Your inheritance,
the ends of the earth Your possession.
You will rule them with an iron scepter …
God has installed His King!
The LORD and His Anointed One, in their Sovereignty, endure much from their creation. They continue to hold back their wrath as they wash us in their mercy.
I, for one, never cease to be thankful for such grace ... and yearn for a heart that no longer mutters against the Lover of my soul ... even for a heartbeat.