Give justice to the weak and the orphan; maintain the right of the lowly and the destitute. Rescue the weak and the needy; deliver them from the hand of the wicked.” vss. 3-4Psalm 82
This psalmist imagines God sitting in the divine council and holding judgment. And from that throne God calls out, “Give justice to the weak…maintain the right of the lowly…rescue the needy.” The psalmist has no doubt about God’s priorities–indeed we hear this refrain throughout scripture, especially in the prophets and in the words of Jesus. It would seem that if believers are really interested about bringing in the Peaceable Kingdom, they would do everything in their power to provide assistance to the poor and needy all around the world. When possible, laws and decrees would be passed and proclaimed that recognized the rights of the poor and increased their chances of sharing in God’s bounty. Instead we’re told that those who live in poverty are lazy and shiftless, that they lack moral standards, and that they need to lift themselves up by their own bootstraps. As the tents of the homeless sprout up in our cities and refugees flood our borders, we have learned to blame the victims and offer minimal assistance. There is little interest in figuring out how to solve what has become a systemic problem–and it’s likely to grow even worse. Surely we cannot believe that God is pleased!
Thought for the Day: What are the rights of the lowly and the destitute?