The Two Comings of God: Psalm 62

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Today’s Sunday Psalms entry is written by Timothy Tennent.

Psalm 62 (NIV)

Truly my soul finds rest in God;
    my salvation comes from him.
Truly he is my rock and my salvation;
    he is my fortress, I will never be shaken.

How long will you assault me?
    Would all of you throw me down—
    this leaning wall, this tottering fence?
Surely they intend to topple me
    from my lofty place;
    they take delight in lies.
With their mouths they bless,
    but in their hearts they curse.

Yes, my soul, find rest in God;
    my hope comes from him.
Truly he is my rock and my salvation;
    he is my fortress, I will not be shaken.
My salvation and my honor depend on God;
    he is my mighty rock, my refuge.
Trust in him at all times, you people;
    pour out your hearts to him,
    for God is our refuge.

11 One thing God has spoken,
    two things I have heard:
“Power belongs to you, God,
12     and with you, Lord, is unfailing love”;
and, “You reward everyone
    according to what they have done.”

Sing this psalm with the Seedbed Psalter today! Visit the resource here.

CONSIDER THIS

One of the abiding qualities of the people of God is that we are called to wait. There is so much that we believe in and anticipate that is not yet fully present, but for which we eagerly await. Every year, during four Sundays before Christmas, Christians all over the world remember what it was like to await the coming of God’s Messiah. We remember the long wait of the prophets who prepared us for that long-expected Jesus. The incarnation was the first advent (or coming) of God into the world. Yet, even today, all Christians must live in the constant expectation and longing for the return of Christ, when he will bodily and visibly return to vindicate his people and judge the world. This is known as the second advent.

This psalm is a psalm about waiting. David waits upon the Lord to bring salvation. At the time this psalm was written, the Jewish people had different expectations as to what the Messiah would be like. Even today many people wonder what God is like. Some emphasize his power and might. Others emphasize his love and grace. Still others argue that, given the pain and suffering in the world, God must be either all-powerful or all-loving, but he surely cannot be both. This is sometimes known as the “problem of evil.” However, this psalm declares, “One thing God has spoken, two things have I heard: that you, O God, are strong, and that you, O Lord, are loving” (vv. 11–12). God is perfect in both his power and his love. Only eternity will reveal the way these great truths fully meet in the character and nature of God. However, we captured our first clear glimpse of this at the first advent, known as Christmas. God sent his Son to a stable in Bethlehem. It is an early sign that God shows his greatest strength through weakness and vulnerability. Jesus Christ came as God’s mighty warrior to defeat the powers of sin, death, and pain of this world. Yet, that victory came through the weakness and love of Jesus Christ as he, in meekness, was born in a stable, served in this world, and suffered on the cross. At his second advent, he will return in the full manifestation of his power and majesty. The psalm ends by declaring that he will “reward each person according to what he has done” (v. 12). This is precisely what Jesus declares will be fulfilled at his second coming: “For the Son of Man is going to come in his Father’s glory with his angels, and then he will reward each person according to what he has done” (Matt. 16:27). At that time the whole world will see him as he is, and “they will proclaim the works of God and ponder what he has done” (Ps. 64:9).

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Timothy C. Tennent is the President of Asbury Theological Seminary and a Professor of Global Christianity. His works include Invitation to World Missions: A Trinitarian Missiology for the Twenty-first Century and Theology in the Context of World Christianity: How the Global Church Is Influencing the Way We Think about and Discuss Theology. He blogs at timothytennent.com and can be followed on twitter @TimTennent.

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