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Read Psalm 82

A psalm of Asaph.

God presides in the great assembly;
    he renders judgment among the “gods”:

“How long will you defend the unjust
    and show partiality to the wicked?

Defend the weak and the fatherless;
    uphold the cause of the poor and the oppressed.

Rescue the weak and the needy;
    deliver them from the hand of the wicked.

“The ‘gods’ know nothing, they understand nothing.
    They walk about in darkness;
    all the foundations of the earth are shaken.

“I said, ‘You are “gods”;
    you are all sons of the Most High.’

But you will die like mere mortals;
    you will fall like every other ruler.”

Rise up, O God, judge the earth,
    for all the nations are your inheritance.

Go Deeper

2 Timothy 3:16 states, “All scripture is God-breathed and useful for teaching, rebuking, correcting, and training in righteousness.” Psalm 82 is useful for us even though it seems to be written about a specific group of judges. We can look at this psalm and ask God to use it to teach, rebuke, correct, and train us.

First, it teaches us that God is sovereign and the judge over all. Then, verse 5 mentions the human judges walking in darkness and the foundations of the earth being shaken. In our world today, there is evidence of corrupt and unjust leadership. At times, it may feel like the world we live in is crumbling around us and the foundations of society⏤values or laws we think should be clear and firm⏤are shaking. It is comforting to know that God is sovereign and the judge over all. So, when we see injustice and corruption, we can be confident that, God presides as judge over all. The song is right⏤He’s got the whole world in His hands.

Secondly, let’s ask God if we need correction in our own lives regarding how we lead others. We may not be actual judges, but we make judgments all the time. Maybe we need God to point out ways in which we show “partiality to the wicked.” Do we “defend the weak and the needy?” Do we “uphold the cause of the poor and the oppressed?” May we allow God’s Word to pierce our hearts today (Hebrews 4:12) and show us our own depravity, remembering that “The Lord disciplines those He loves” (Hebrews 12:6).

Let’s praise God for being sovereign over all and thank Him for preparing a Kingdom that cannot be shaken (Hebrews 12:28).

Questions

  1. How does knowing that God is judge of the judges shape your view of leaders in our society?
  2. Can you think of any ways that you have defended the unjust or shown partiality to the wicked?
  3. How can you “defend the weak and the fatherless, and uphold the cause of the poor and the oppressed” where you live?

Keep Digging:

Read this article on gotquestions.org titled “What does the Bible mean by ‘you are gods’ in Psalm 82:6?”

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1 thought on “Psalm 82”

  1. Ella Snodgrass

    There is only one righteous judge who has ultimate authority in heaven and on earth. We, as his followers, are his representatives in this “crooked and perverse generation.” Every person we encounter is someone Christ died for, yes the needy, fatherless, oppressed & destitute. Proverbs 3:27 says “When it is in your power, don’t withhold good from the one to whom it is due.” Who am I called to invest in today, to provide justice, uphold rights & rescue? Mission Waco is a great place to start in our area. Lord, give us eyes to see the upside down of your kingdom, send us to humbly serve the least of these.

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