TODAY’S READING: Psalms 1 –2, 15, 22–24, 47, 68
Sometimes the evidence needs no explanation. If we compiled the word-for-word missionary citations just from the handful of Psalms in today’s reading into one collection, here is what that song would sing unadorned over the nations and over those who would lay down their lives to take up the glory of God among the nations:
Blessed is the man whose delight is in the law of the Lord. He shall be like a tree planted by the rivers of water that brings forth its fruit in its season, whose leaf also shall not wither, and whatever he does shall prosper.
Why do the nations rage, and the people plot a vain thing? The kings of the earth set themselves, and the rulers take counsel together, against the Lord and against His Anointed. He who sits in the heavens shall laugh; then He shall speak to them in His wrath: “Yet I have set My King on My holy hill of Zion. Ask of Me, and I will give You the nations for Your inheritance, and the ends of the earth for Your possession.” Now therefore, be wise, O kings; Be instructed, you judges of the earth. Serve the Lord with fear, and rejoice with trembling. Kiss the Son, lest He be angry, and you perish in the way.
Lord, who may abide in Your tabernacle? Who may dwell in Your holy hill? He who walks uprightly, works righteousness, speaks the truth in his heart, does not backbite with his tongue, does no evil to his neighbor, does not take up a reproach against his friend, despises evil, honors those who fear the Lord, swears to his own hurt and does not change, is generous and incorruptible. He who does these things shall never be moved.
They pierced My hands and My feet; they look and stare at Me. They divide My garments among them, and for My clothing they cast lots. But You, O Lord, do not be far from Me; O My Strength, hasten to Me! Save Me from the lion’s mouth. I will declare Your name to My brethren; in the midst of the assembly I will praise You. All the ends of the world shall remember and turn to the Lord, and all the families of the nations shall worship before You. For the kingdom is the Lord’s, and He rules over the nations. They will come and declare His righteousness to a people who will be born.
The Lord is my shepherd. He makes me to lie down. He leads me. He restores my soul. Yea, though I walk through the valley of the shadow of death, I will fear no evil; for You are with me. You comfort me. You prepare a table before me in the presence of my enemies; You anoint me. Surely goodness and mercy shall follow me all the days of my life; and I will dwell in the house of the Lord forever.
The earth is the Lord’s, and all its fullness, the world and those who dwell therein. For He has founded it upon the seas, and established it upon the waters. Lift up your heads, O you gates! And be lifted up, you everlasting doors! And the King of glory shall come in. Who is this King of glory? The Lord strong and mighty, the Lord mighty in battle. He is the King of glory.
Oh, clap your hands, all you peoples! Shout to God with the voice of triumph! For the Lord Most High is awesome; He is a great King over all the earth. He will subdue the peoples under us, and the nations under our feet. Sing praises to God, sing praises! For God is the King of all the earth. God reigns over the nations; God sits on His holy throne. The princes of the people have gathered together, the people of the God of Abraham. For the shields of the earth belong to God; He is greatly exalted.
Let God arise, let His enemies be scattered. The Lord gave the word; great was the company of those who proclaimed it: “Kings of armies flee” when the Almighty scattered kings. You have led captivity captive; you have received gifts among men. Blessed be the Lord, who daily loads us with benefits, the God of our salvation! Kings will bring presents to You. Envoys will come out of Egypt; Ethiopia will quickly stretch out her hands to God. Sing to God, you kingdoms of the earth.
God is a missionary God. We are His missionary people. The Bible is a missionary book. The Psalms are our missionary hymnal. How marvelous that Jesus on the cross quoted the Psalm that ends with: “All the ends of the world shall remember and turn to the Lord, and all the families of the nations shall worship before You. For the kingdom is the Lord’s, and He rules over the nations” (22:27–28). Jesus’ last breaths were spent singing a hymn about the nations. Sing on, O King of glory! Sing on, O people of God! Sing on, O saints and angels! Sing on!