Daily Archives: February 6, 2021

How Can I Pray This Psalm? A Response To Psalm 83

After the calm assurance of psalm 82, psalm 83 is, by contrast full of anger and enmity, a long rant calling down God’s vengeance on the enemies of Israel. How are we to pray it as Christians, knowing we are called on to love our enemies and to do good to those who persecute us?

In the end I felt it turned on the final verse which is about making known the name of God:

And they shall know that thou, whose Name is Jehovah: art only the most Highest over all the earth.

For the Christian the true name of God is not simply ‘Jehovah/Yahweh, but it is Jesus/Yeshuah which mean Yahweh Saves. Jesus absorbs all the wrath and righteous anger in this psalm and turns it into love, so that unlike the psalmist here we can proclaim peace, rather than war.

As always you can hear me read the poem by clicking on the play button or the title and you can find the other poems in this evolving series by putting the word ‘psalms’ into the search box on the right.

The full set of these poems has now been published as a book David’s Crown which you can buy from UK Amazon Here, or, in North America, it should soon be available from Amazon Here.

There is also going to be a launch event/webinar on Feb 11th at 7pm GMT it will be completely free and you can register for it Here.

LXXXIII Deus, quis similis?

As kindred in our father’s house at last

We will make peace with one another. Yet

We still make war; we still live in the past.


Even the psalmist here is filled with hate,

As gleefully he lists his enemies

And calls God’s wrath upon them: ‘let 


Them perish, let them burn in flame’ he cries,

And puts his curses in the mouth of God!

How can I pray this psalm? Give me the eyes


Of Jesus, help me see the iron rod

Which only crushes sin to free the sinful,

That I may know the holy name of God


Is not a name of wrath, but plentiful

Redemption: Jesus, Yeshuah

Yahweh saves, our God is merciful.


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