A Surprise In The Courtroom
A Psalm of Asaph.
1 The mighty God, even the Lord, hath spoken, and called the earth
From the rising of the sun unto the going down thereof.
2 Out of Zion, the perfection of beauty,
God hath shined.
3 Our God shall come, and shall not keep silence:
A fire shall devour before him,
And it shall be very tempestuous round about him.
4 He shall call to the heavens from above,
And to the earth, that he may judge his people.
5 Gather my saints together unto me;
Those that have made a covenant with me by sacrifice.
6 And the heavens shall declare his righteousness:
For God is judge himself. Selah.
The summons was sent forth to all. Come to the courtroom of the Creator. God himself will be the Judge.
Can you imagine the scene?
I have watched reruns of Perry Mason, Matlock and Law and Order. I am not a lawyer, but I have watched them on TV.
I imagine the courtroom before the trial. It is filled with lots of busyness and people talking. What are they saying? I suppose the big question on everyone’s mind is who is on the docket today? Who will it be? What have they done? I mean, God himself is judge.
The bailiff enters the room. In my mind he is really tall, very stern and has my haircut. I have my reasons. He commences by presenting the Judge. In his introduction he includes some of the Judge’s titles. That is what verse 1 does in our Psalm. Three separate titles for God are given.
“The mighty God, even the Lord…”
El, Elohim, Yahweh
The Mighty, The God of all the Earth, The Lord Jehovah
After the introduction is made and the Judge has entered the courtroom then he begins to talk.
Our God shall come, and shall not keep silence: A fire shall devour before him, And it shall be very tempestuous round about him. Psalm 50:3
Here it comes, the answer to the question we have all been asking, who is being tried? Will it be Satan? Will it be the one of his fallen angels? Will it be one of the wicked men that hate God? Could it be a persecutor of the Lord’s people?
Shh? We are about to find out.
4 He shall call to the heavens from above, And to the earth, that he may judge his people. 5 Gather my saints together unto me; Those that have made a covenant with me by sacrifice. Psalm 50:4–5
He is judging his saints? He has called his own covenant people to stand before him?
Yes, he does that. Listen to what the apostle Peter tells us.
For the time is come that judgment must begin at the house of God: and if it first begin at us, what shall the end be of them that obey not the gospel of God? 1 Peter 4:17
God judges his people but don’t worry, it is not about condemnation but correction.
There is therefore now no condemnation to them which are in Christ Jesus, who walk not after the flesh, but after the Spirit. Romans 8:1
The punishment for the sins of the saints was paid for by our Savior. We who have trusted Christ’s work have been declared not guilty, justified in the sight of God.
We are corrected, cleansed and purified here because he cares for his own and because he reaches out to those who have not yet trusted him showing that sin is serious business to him. Like Peter said, if he judges his own, then what shall happen to those that don’t obey the gospel of God?
The last word of our reading from Psalm 50 tells us Selah. It means to pause and reflect. So, let’s think on these things.