Wednesday, May 12, 2021

Psalm 16 — Faithfulness to the Lord

Psalm 16 reveals [the Savior's] resurrection from the dead.
Athanasius, On the Interpretation of the Psalms

Athanasius's statement above might seem surprising but the early Church Fathers (and many others since then) routinely read the psalms to see how Christ was revealed in them. In that sense, we go back to Jesus' appearance on the road to Emmaus where he describes to the two disciples everything that refers to him in the scriptures (Luke 24:13-35). This is possibly my favorite resurrection story. I love thinking of Jesus conducting that Bible study.

Taking their cue from Jesus himself, then, the early Church began looking at where scripture talked about the Messiah. They found a lot to talk about in the psalms. Read the psalm, thinking of Jesus speaking to God the Father.

A singing and dancing David leads the Ark of the Covenant, Pieter van Lint

This is surely the purest way to approach God, with complete trust. Can we do it? We have Jesus as our example so we know that even when things don't look like they are working out right, God has a bigger plan than we can imagine.

16:5. The Lord is a Chosen Portion

I Love You, Lord, St. Augustine: [The psalmist is saying] "O Lord, why give me some other inheritance? Whatever you give, it isn't worth much. You be my inheritance; I love you, I love you with all I am, with all my heart, with all my soul, with all my mind I love you. What can it mean to me, anything you give me apart from yourself?" That is to love God freely, to hope in God for God, to hasten to be filled with God, to be satisfied with him. He, after all, is enough for you: apart from him, nothing is enough for you. Sermon 334.3

Psalms 1-50 (Ancient Christian Commentary on Scripture)

Sources are here and an index of psalm posts is here

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