The Desire for Peace – Psalm 120

This short Psalm for our reading today is the first of a series of songs from 120-134 that are called Psalms of ascents. These are psalms of particular interest and use by the people of Israel as they made their regular pilgrimages to Jerusalem to worship and join with others of the nation at the Temple there.

It is a song where the writer speaks of being in distress against enemies—amongst whom he lived. He talks about desiring peace, though they wanted war.

The writer is certain that God will judge and that His punishment will prevail. The tree that is spoken of—the broom bush—is one that was especially long-burning and used for firewood.

When we read this song and understand that the two areas spoken of in the Psalm—Meshek and Kedar—were areas to the north and south of the land of Palestine, we cannot help but think of the ongoing struggles in this region. Like this Psalmist who lived near and among people who hated him and were enemies of God, so also does Israel face the same situation today. There is a lack of truth, and there exists rather the prevalence of complete lies that come out of these people who make claims that have no basis in fact or historical reality. These people simply want the destruction of the Jewish State.

God will prevail. God has a plan for this nation, and it is one that will come to final fruition in the last days.

Psalm 120

A song of ascents.

1 I call on the Lord in my distress, and he answers me.
2 Save me, Lord, from lying lips and from deceitful tongues.

3 What will he do to you, and what more besides, you deceitful tongue?
4 He will punish you with a warrior’s sharp arrows, with burning coals of the broom bush.

5 Woe to me that I dwell in Meshek, that I live among the tents of Kedar!
6 Too long have I lived among those who hate peace.
7 I am for peace; but when I speak, they are for war.