Psalm 47

1 Clap your hands, all you nations;
    shout to God with cries of joy.
2 For the LORD Most High is awesome,
    the great King over all the earth.
3 He subdued nations under us,
    peoples under our feet.
4 He chose our inheritance for us,
    the pride of Jacob, whom he loved.
5 God has ascended amid shouts of joy,
    the LORD amid the sounding of trumpets.
6 Sing praises to God, sing praises;
    sing praises to our King, sing praises.
7 For God is the King of all the earth;
    sing to him a psalm of praise.
8 God reigns over the nations;
    God is seated on his holy throne.
9 The nobles of the nations assemble
    as the people of the God of Abraham,
for the kings of the earth belong to God;
    he is greatly exalted.

In recent weeks I have been reading the Psalms in a new version – The Passion Translation. This work aims to stay faithful to the original language of the psalms and to try and convey the passion that God has for his people that oozes from every word of scripture. In this translation, today’s psalm is subtitled, ‘…by the prophetic singers of Korah’s clan.’ And, as I read it, it does seem very much prophetic in that we definitely don’t currently live in a world where God is recognised as being on the throne at all. But this is the promise in which we hope. It’s the promise of the new beginning after the groaning of the labour pains mentioned in Romans 8. Mary waited for the birth of her baby with eager expectancy, knowing that he would rescue all mankind and we now also wait in eager expectancy for that moment of new creation, when all is restored and our God reigns over every nation. When peace shall come and ‘every warrior’s shield will be lowered’.

Questions for thought and discussion

  • The Passion Translation reads ‘Shout to God with raucous sounds of joy!’ How might you action that today?
  • How can we help our young people to live in eager expectation of what is to come?