“Up with God!”
Ps 68:1 EHP
Sports fans often develop a habit of singing or shouting slogans of encouragement to their teams. One crowd shout “Up the Reds!” Another chant “Up the Maties!” whilst a third scream “Up the City!” Eugene Peterson has used an imaginative translation to make the original text of the opening words of Psalm 68 understandable. It was in all likelihood an optional hymn with which to start worship in the temple in Jerusalem for the Jewish worshippers – rather in the way that we use a “Call to Worship” in our services. The New International Version gives us “May God arise”. That is what we want in a service of worship. We want God to arise, to come to meet us and greet us, to speak to us, address us and to draw near to inspire us – just as football fans want their teams to come “up with the goods”. And all adoration of him begins with the awareness that he is near, here and active.
Whilst few Christian believers would be likely to say “Up with Jesus” in so many words that is what they mean when they sing “Crown him with many crowns” or “Praise, my soul, the King of Heaven”. We lift up the name of Jesus and in doing so we ensure that he is the centre and soul of our worship and adoration.
It is even more important that our actions, habits, beliefs and lifestyles say “Up King Jesus”. And it is equally important that people who know us and see us recognize the witness that we are making and come themselves to declare in any of a variety of ways, “Lift up King Jesus! Lift him up for the world to see”.
Lord, help us always to glorify and praise your name.
PRAYER OF INTERCESSION
I pray for all newspaper editors. Guide them to focus on the truly important issues and not to be side-tracked by sensationalism. Help them to shun “throwing dirt” and provide them with things that are truthful, lovely and of good report. I ask it in Jesus’ name. AMEN