Many churches throughout the world use a Bible reading schedule called a "lectionary." It's just a fancy word meaning "selected readings." Posts like this reflect on the readings for an upcoming Sunday or other Church holiday, as found in the historic one-year lectionary.
What do you give someone who already has everything? Something to put it in. In our reading from Psalm 50 God presents himself as the one who does already have everything. His people have been making offerings before him, consistent with God’s command. In verse eight He doesn’t rebuke them for their offerings. But he doesn’t accept the offerings, either. At issue is the fact that the people seem to think they are giving God something He needs. We hear this idea all the time. It’s just as wrong now as it was back then.
Maybe if we give to God’s work more generously from our finances, He will open the floodgates of heaven and bless us with more money! If we gather enough people to pray, maybe God will actually listen! If we humble ourselves as well as Christ humbled himself, then we will be exalted like Christ was exalted! All these ideas suggest that God needs something, that he is not complete in himself.
The fact is, if God is not complete in himself, if he needs anything else to be complete, he is not the true God of all. He would be some sort of cheap imitation, like all the other gods of the world, who don’t possess their own cattle, know all the birds, and own all the beasts of the fields.
What is the real issue in this Psalm? God is calling his people to trust him, and reminding them that their offerings are to come from their love and trust in him. Our relationship with God is not based on what we can bring or give, but on who God is and what He has brought into the world - - - everything there is. For this reason we bring him offerings, we give him praise, we honor him in all. He shows himself to be the Lord of all. It’s because God is worthy, not because we have a gift worthy of him. We can’t even give God something to put it all in. We simply call on God in the day of trouble, then find that he knew about it and has taken care of it. He is the mighty and loving Lord of all.
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