The Bible – Old Testament
A psalm of Asaph. 1 The LORD, the God of gods, has spoken and summoned the earth from the rising of the sun to its setting.
From Zion God shines forth. perfect in beauty.
Our God comes and will not be silent! Devouring fire precedes, storming fiercely round about.
God summons the heavens above and the earth to the judgment of his people:
“Gather my faithful ones before me, those who made a covenant with me by sacrifice.”
The heavens proclaim divine justice, for God alone is the judge. Selah
“Listen, my people, I will speak; Israel, I will testify against you; God, your God, am I.
Not for your sacrifices do I rebuke you, nor for your holocausts, set before me daily.
I need no bullock from your house, no goats from your fold.
For every animal of the forest is mine, beasts by the thousands on my mountains.
I know every bird of the heavens; the creatures of the field belong to me.
Were I hungry, I would not tell you, for mine is the world and all that fills it.
Do I eat the flesh of bulls or drink the blood of goats?
Offer praise as your sacrifice to God; fulfill your vows to the Most High.
Then call on me in time of distress; I will rescue you, and you shall honor me.”
But to the wicked God says: “Why do you recite my commandments and profess my covenant with your lips?
You hate discipline; you cast my words behind you!
When you see thieves, you befriend them; with adulterers you throw in your lot.
You give your mouth free rein for evil; you harness your tongue to deceit.
You sit maligning your own kin, slandering the child of your own mother.
When you do these things should I be silent? Or do you think that I am like you? I accuse you, I lay the charge before you.
“Understand this, you who forget God, lest I attack you with no one to rescue.
Those who offer praise as a sacrifice honor me; to the obedient I will show the salvation of God.”
1 [Psalm 50] A covenant lawsuit stating that the sacrifice God really wants is the sacrifice of praise accompanied by genuine obedience (cf ⇒ Micah 6:1-8). It begins with a theophany and the summoning of the court (⇒ Psalm 50:1-6). Then in direct address God explains what is required of the faithful (⇒ Psalm 50:7-15), rebukes the hypocritical worshiper (⇒ Psalm 50:16-21), and concludes with a threat and a promise (⇒ Psalm 50:22-23; cf ⇒ Isaiah 1:19-20).