I pray today Lord for those who work in game reserves, guarding and monitoring the dwindling numbers of endangered species. Inform them of the true inter-related nature of the earth and the creatures that inhabit it, and their role as stewards of your creation. Help us all to understand and to accept responsibility. In Christ’s name. AMEN
Lord God I thank you today for the marvels I see in nature and wild life. I marvel at the sight of an elephant with its huge bulk, its amazing memory and its ability to communicate with others of its kind. Guide humanity to preserve and cherish the wild animals that are part of the world’s ecology. Through Christ I ask it. AMEN
Lord, I am beginning to feel that my spiritual tank is becoming empty. Help me to understand why this is so and show me how to replenish and renew the work you do in me and through me. Develop a greater love for the Bible in me. Show me how to renew my love for Jesus and my approach to prayer. I ask in Jesus Christ’s name. AMEN
“Over Philistia I shout in triumph”.
Psalm 60:8 NIV
One of the perennial questions in human affairs is posed when we say, “Who’s in power?” In modern democracies that boils down to which party won the last election? Not all countries are democracies. Some are dictatorships and whoever is the “big man” rules the country. But democracies are relatively new. In the sixteenth century there were plenty of power struggles between the Pope and various kings. King Henry VIII of England and the Pope at the time tussled for supremacy. The religious power wielded plenty of secular power as well.
The Israelites held this deeply-entrenched conviction that their king was appointed by God, and therefore that he was superior to other kings, just as their God was superior to those of other nations. Philistia was the area to the south west of Israel which today is designated “The Gaza Strip”. The Philistines were strong warriors and gave the Israelites plenty of trouble. For the Israelites they were the embodiment of evil. So David “puts them in their place” by reminding them that his God is king over them and even shouts in triumph to celebrate his victory and his supremacy. For the Israelites God and their king were aligned together.
And Jesus spoke and thought much about “the kingdom of God” not referring to any geographical political area but to the rule of God. And he came riding into Jerusalem like a king upon a donkey. We prefer today to concentrate on the kindness, gentleness, graciousness and love of Jesus, but we would do well to honour this very strong biblical strand of emphasis on the kingly nature of God.
Lord, help me to understand the kingly role of Jesus as well as his friendliness.
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