WEEKEND FEAST LITURGY
Then Jesus told his disciples, “If anyone would come after me, let him deny himself and take up his cross and follow me. For whoever would save his life will lose it, but whoever loses his life for my sake will find it. For what will it profit a man if he gains the whole world and forfeits his soul? Or what shall a man give in return for his soul?
Engage with our Mission Partners
As you contemplate Psalm 123 and seek to bear the burdens of life and turn the other cheek to those who might harm you, consider praying for City Reformed's local and global mission partners. Pray for their long-suffering and for those they minister with. Pray for the global church as they bear the indignation of the world in the name of Christ.
Read Psalm 35
2nd Reading: Psalm 36
Psalm 35:27 “Let those who delight in my righteousness shout for joy and be glad and say evermore,
“Great is the Lord, who delights in the welfare of his servant!”
This is a psalm of David where David asks for justice from God against those who were once his allies. There is perhaps no sting so great as the betrayal of a friend. David’s words about these people are intimate:
But I, when they were sick--
I wore sackcloth;
I afflicted myself with fasting;
I prayed with head bowed on my chest.
I went about as though I grieved for my friend or my brother;
as one who laments his mother,
I bowed down in mourning.
To have an ally who you not only trust, but who you pray for, fast for, afflict yourself for, grieve for, and to have that friend turn against you produces a unique heartache. In the case of David these allies have turned against him in violence, so he asks the Lord to be his savior, deliverer, and avenger.
The imprecation (curses) on these enemies may be hard for us to hear today, especially since Jesus says, “Bless those who curse you” (Mt. 5:43). Yet we must draw some distinctions. First, David asks for vengeance from the Lord (v.24), rather than taking vengeance into his own hands. Second, David asks for the Lord to bring justice (vv.19-21). Third, David is in a different position than us as the potentate of the theocratic nation of Israel. David reigns as God’s appointed king, so it is clearer who his enemies are than our enemies.
Lastly, Jesus does shows us a different way of kingly rule and he does it through wearing a crown of thorns. The psalm ends, “Great is the Lord who delights in the welfare of his servant.” Even if your friend betrays you, the Lord delights in your welfare. You have one who will not leave you or forsake you. His not kind-of interested in your welfare, he delights in your good. More than this, we have Jesus who gave himself for us, who suffered the greatest injustice, who knows betrayal, and still he calls us friend.
City Reformed Presbyterian Church
The 90 Days project is a collaborative effort of many church leaders. Matt Koerber and Daniel Snoke have taken lead roles, with others helping to write daily devotionals.