“O God, help the king to judge as you would, and help his son to walk in godliness. Help him to give justice to your people, even to the poor. May the mountains and hills flourish in prosperity because of his good reign. Help him to defend the poor and needy and to crush their oppressors. May the poor and needy revere you constantly, as long as sun and moon continue in the skies! Yes, forever! May the reign of this son of mine be as gentle and fruitful as the springtime rains upon the grass—like showers that water the earth! May all good men flourish in his reign with abundance of peace to the end of time.” (Psalm 72:1-7; The Living Bible)
Although this psalm was written for Solomon, it is included as one of the Epiphany readings in our Revised Common Lectionary. It describes the Kingdom by describing the King. Is justice a commodity that can be bought and traded? Who within our society today oppresses the poor? Do we expect government to be gentle and fruitful, or is it toxic rain?
“Kings along the Mediterranean coast—the kings of Tarshish and the islands—and those from Sheba and from Seba—all will bring their gifts.Yes, kings from everywhere! All will bow before him! All will serve him! He will take care of the helpless and poor when they cry to him; for they have no one else to defend them. He feels pity for the weak and needy and will rescue them. He will save them from oppression and from violence, for their lives are precious to him.” (Psalm 72:10-14)