This is again a psalm of praise, but we do find ourselves in our nation, at least, on a day that needs to be mentioned. We find ourselves on Memorial Day, a day that we remember those who died while they were in the line of duty. It was interesting that the speaker at the service today said that there is a real distinction between Memorial Day and Veteran’s Day. Today is a day that we remember all those who died while in the line of duty. It is not a day that we simply remember our service men and women. She made that distinction because she was then able to rattle off about a dozen or so people whom she knew, and with whom she had served, who had indeed paid the ultimate sacrifice. When you meet a soldier you know that you are meeting someone who knows comrades who have died while on duty. It is that simple. Meet a soldier and meet someone who has known death first hand of a friend and colleague.
This psalm praises the Lord but also asks for vindication and justice to be served in the form of violence against those who might go against the wishes of the author. It is interesting that we find this author say that the glory of the Lord also lies in meting out justice on the kings and rulers of other lands who do not follow the way of the Lord. This is a bit in contrast with what we hear in Isaiah 19:25 which states: “Blessed be Egypt my people, and Assyria the work of my hands, and Israel my heritage.” At least in this Scripture we don’t have the author taking glee in the massacre of the enemies of the Lord. Here, rather, the enemies of the Lord, of which Egypt and Assyria were, and continue to be, the habitual enemies of the people of Israel, are called blessed. This is more along the lines of what Jesus promises and what Jesus would have espoused as a theme for His people.