1 Why are the nations so angry? Why do they waste their time with futile plans? 2 The kings of the earth prepare for battle; the rulers plot together against the Lord and against his anointed one. 3 “Let us break their chains,” they cry, “and free ourselves from slavery to God.”
4 But the one who rules in heaven laughs. The Lord scoffs at them. 5 Then in anger he rebukes them, terrifying them with his fierce fury. 6 For the Lord declares, “I have placed my chosen king on the throne in Jerusalem, on my holy mountain.” 7 The king proclaims the Lord’s decree: “The Lord said to me, ‘You are my son. Today I have become your Father.
8 Only ask, and I will give you the nations as your inheritance, the whole earth as your possession. 9 You will break them with an iron rod and smash them like clay pots.’” 10 Now then, you kings, act wisely! Be warned, you rulers of the earth! 11 Serve the Lord with reverent fear, and rejoice with trembling. 12 Submit to God’s royal son, or he will become angry, and you will be destroyed in the midst of all your activities— for his anger flares up in an instant. But what joy for all who take refuge in him!
How often do we find ourselves identifying with the theme of the beginning of this Psalm – feeling attacked, under pressure, marginalised? The reality is that, as God’s people, we can expect to feel like this until Jesus comes again in glory and every eye and heart recognises him as Lord of all. But the Psalm has some great encouragement for us in the midst of those times: God is in control – he is the ultimate victor. When we take our refuge in him, we are kept safe in eternity – even if in the moment it still feels pretty terrifying. Sometimes the schools that we work and serve in can feel like battlegrounds for us as followers of Jesus. Sometimes we are actually prevented from having an overt Christian presence on campus. Sometimes the great busy-ness of school life and numerous extra-curricular activities seems to block any possibility of helping our young people to engage in the SU Groups we would love to see thriving. The Psalmist reminds us that as children of the king and citizens of heaven, one day we will see the battle won and Jesus reigning from the throne of grace forever. Hang in there: the kingdom of God is closer than you think…
Questions for thought and discussion…
- What are the factors that battle against having an active Christian presence in your school?
- Where can you see evidence of the kingdom of God in your situation?