Each week we LIVESTREAM the Lord's Day Sabbath School at 10a, Lord's Day morning public worship at 11a, and Lord's Day p.m. singing (3p) and sermon (3:45), and the Midweek Sermon and Prayer Meeting at 6:30p on Wednesday

Tuesday, November 15, 2022

2022.11.15 Hopewell @Home ▫ Psalm 72:1–7

Read Psalm 72:1–7

Questions from the Scripture text: For whom was (cf. Psalm 72:20) this Psalm prayed and sung (superscript)? For what does the psalmist ask in Psalm 72:1a? For whom? For what does he ask in verse 1b? For whom? What will the king do with these gifts (Psalm 72:2)? For what group (verse 2a)? And who especially (verse 2b)? What will bring what to whom in Psalm 72:3a? What else will bring forth peace to them (verse 3b)? By what? What does Psalm 72:4a repeat? In this way, what will he do for whom, specifically (verse 4b)? And what will he do to whom else (verse 4c)? What will the people, the needy, and the oppressor all do (Psalm 72:5a) under the king’s reign? For how long (verse 5b)? Throughout what (verse 5c)? What will the King’s reign be like (Psalm 72:6)? Who will flourish when (Psalm 72:7a)? What else will flourish (verse 7b)? How much of it? Until when (verse 7c)?

How did David pray for His King-Son? Psalm 72:1–7 looks forward to the opening portion of morning public worship on the coming Lord’s Day. In these seven verses of Holy Scripture, the Holy Spirit teaches us that as David prayed for Solomon’s reign, his Spirit-inspired prayer applied especially to Christ’s everlasting reign.  

Psalm 72:20 helps us translate the superscript correctly. This Psalm was a prayer-song written by David for Solomon, perhaps on the occasion of his inauguration or with a view to it. As such, we will consider what sort of prayer it models for us before turning to our first lessons about Christ Himself from this psalm.

Praying for descendants. Throughout the Scripture, the Spirit models for us prayer and blessing for our children and further offspring. Now, David’s holy desire for his son Solomon becomes the occasion for one of the greatest Christ-prophecies in Scripture. He prays for his son’s righteousness, judgment, justice, compassion, causing others to fear the Lord, and being a blessing to others. All good fathers should pray such things for their children.

Praying for kings. These are equally good things to pray for kings and others in high position, both now and in times to come. What David prays here for Solomon and for Christ, Romans 13:3–6 and 1 Peter 2:13–14 teach us is the duty of all civil magistrates under God. And 1 Timothy 2:1–2 directly commands us to pray for them. 

What shall be prayed for authorities more than that they would be saved by faith in Christ and exhibit their repentance especially in their calling?

Praying the promises. Already by Psalm 72:5-7, the chronology of the prayer and praise makes it plain that someone greater than even Solomon is in view here. This is something we’ve seen before in the promise of the forever-King of 2 Samuel 7:122 Samuel 7:162 Samuel 7:252 Samuel 7:29. David isn’t just praying excellent things. He’s praying promised things. 

Praying God’s promises is an excellent way of having Jesus’s Word abide in us so that we ask according to it and receive according to it (cf. John 15:7). 

Perfect justice. When Christ judges in righteousness, this is especially seen in that even the poor receive it (Psalm 72:2b). Whether “mountains” and “little hills” in Psalm 72:3 is referring to geographical features or metaphorically of levels of authority, the point is that there will be justice everywhere and for all at every level.  What a refreshing contrast to the way things usually go in this world that it will be the oppressor who is broken into pieces and the children of the needy who are saved.

Fearing and Flourishing. But it won’t just be the King Who lives righteously before God. The people of such a king become righteous like He is. They come to fear the Lord (Psalm 72:5) from one generation to the next. 

And His reign is like the life-giving showers that make the earth burst forth with life. But what is it that flourishes from the “rain” of His reign? Righteous ones (Psalm 72:7a) and abundance of peace (verse 7b). Here is something that cannot come from the reign of a merely earthly magistrate. Christ’s kingship brings spiritual life!

What do your prayers for future generations look like? For kings? What do you hope for from Christ?

Sample prayer:  Lord, bring the reign of Christ to be known on the earth! Make us to fear You, and cause Christ Himself to come down upon us like rain upon the grass. Make us to flourish in righteousness and abundance of peace unto the praise of Your glory in Jesus the King, forever and ever, AMEN!

Suggested songs: ARP72A “God, Give Your Judgments to the King” or TPH72A “O God, Your Judgments Give the King”

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