Today’s Post Specific Reading: Psalm 82
If you have seen any news in the US lately you know that President Barack Obama is getting an opportunity to exercise one of his balance of powers as the head of the executive branch. The president nominates candidates to hold lifetime positions as members of the highest office in the judicial branch – The Supreme Court. The nomination is reviewed and approved by the legislature branch (the Senate) in this situation.
President Obama’s nominee for this most hallowed panel of judges is Elena Kagan. To be honest I know very little about her. I do know that being nominated by a liberal Democratic President will mean that her nomination will be heavily challenged by conservative Republicans. and blindly defended by Democrats. Her positions on abortion, gun ownership, state’s rights and other hot topics will be intensely scrutinized during the coming days. Her personal life will come under heavy review. All sorts of media people will want to know every detail of every relationship she has had. There are already rumors that she may be a lesbian. All dirt will come out in the laundry – that is the media and senate confirmation of her as a valid occupant on the US Supreme Court.
In today’s reading we find a Psalm that could be great counsel to Ms. Kagan. It is a Psalm specifically written for the Judges of Israel during the time of King David. What can Ms. Kagan glean from this Psalm?
In Verse 1 we find that God is the ultimate Judge and presides over all courts, even the US Supreme Court.
Psalm 82:1 (NLT)
1 God presides over heaven’s court;
he pronounces judgment on the heavenly beings:
In verses 3 – 4 we find what Ms. Kagan’s duties will be as a judge:
3 “Give justice to the poor and the orphan;
uphold the rights of the oppressed and the destitute.
4 Rescue the poor and helpless;
deliver them from the grasp of evil people.
In verses 2 and 5 we see what happens when a court’s authority and honor is ruined by poor judges and judgments.
2 “How long will you hand down unjust decisions
by favoring the wicked?
5 But these oppressors know nothing;
they are so ignorant!
They wander about in darkness,
while the whole world is shaken to the core.
In verses 6 and 7 we read what is the real ultimate destiny of Judges. It places them, in their unique position of supreme authority, into perspective.
6 I say, ‘You are gods;
you are all children of the Most High.
7 But you will die like mere mortals
and fall like every other ruler.’”
Lastly verse 8 brings us to our final prayer for today. A prayer that will put all the noise and confusion about Ms. Kagan’s nomination into perspective.
8 Rise up, O God, and judge the earth,
for all the nations belong to you.
Finally, from this last Sunday’s sermon at my home church, these words from Peter’s first letter:
1 Peter 2:13 – 17 (NIV)
13Submit yourselves for the Lord’s sake to every authority instituted among men: whether to the king, as the supreme authority, 14or to governors, who are sent by him to punish those who do wrong and to commend those who do right. 15For it is God’s will that by doing good you should silence the ignorant talk of foolish men. 16Live as free men, but do not use your freedom as a cover-up for evil; live as servants of God. 17Show proper respect to everyone: Love the brotherhood of believers, fear God, honor the king.