Come Lord! Enter King of Glory!

Today, we look at Psalm 24. It is related to the previous Psalm 23 which speaks of the Shepherd who is also King. Psalm 24 addresses the return of the Davidic King to the temple!

PS 24:1-2, 3-4, 5-6

R. Let the Lord enter; he is king of glory.

The LORD’s are the earth and its fullness;

the world and those who dwell in it.

For he founded it upon the seas

and established it upon the rivers.

R. Let the Lord enter; he is king of glory.

Who can ascend the mountain of the LORD?

or who may stand in his holy place?

One whose hands are sinless, whose heart is clean,

who desires not what is vain.

R. Let the Lord enter; he is king of glory.

He shall receive a blessing from the LORD,

a reward from God his savior.

Such is the race that seeks for him,

that seeks the face of the God of Jacob.

R. Let the Lord enter; he is king of glory.

Psalm 24 is classified as an entrance liturgy and an enthronement psalm. It is considered too brief to be an elaborate enthronement psalm for liturgy, yet it may have been abstracted from such liturgies to serve the needs of prayer outside the Temple.

Before we look into Psalm 24, we have to orient ourselves to the combat myth in Mesopotamia, Canaan, and the Old Testament! Here’s a quick snapshot: A warrior god battles a monster who threatens the world, warrior god wins the battle and returns to the people to be crowned ultimate deity, and in some versions there is a building of the palace for this warrior god!

Psalm 24 attributes this idea to Yahweh who defeats the waters of destruction and chaos.

(v. 1) begins with praise to Yahweh for his creation. Yahweh is the victor.

(v. 3-6) speaks on who can be admitted into the house of God, more specifically, only those who have not worshipped other gods. The question, “Who may go up to the mountain of the Lord?” is not meant to be part of check list for cultic purity. Rather, it is a question befitting loyalty to God and who observes his commands.

(v. 4) clean hands and pure heart.  Hands express an outer disposition and  heart suggests an inner disposition. This points to the values of pure worship.

(v. 4) not devoted to idols points to honoring the 1st Commandment

(v. 4) not sworn falsely addresses honoring the 2nd Commandment to the sacred name of God, false refers to idol gods.

(v. 5) loyalty is essential to the people because the victor God desires to share the rewards of triumph with his people. These are the fruits of an orderly world. This is the absolute expression of Yahweh’s supremacy.

SO WHAT’S THE POINT? All throughout these four weeks, we have explored our pilgrimage with all God’s people, a king whose primary concern is for the poor, and the God who always sides for the poor. Today, we consider that from the beginning of creation, Yahweh is the supreme ruler of all. The people prepare a temple for him to enter and to share in his victory.

Now at the peak of the Advent Season, we turn to the one God has prepared for us: Mary. She is the temple that will receive the Word. We celebrate how God becomes Incarnate and battles the chaos of our lives and becomes the victor over sin. As Mary is the temple, the Ark of the new and eternal covenant, how can we prepare to be temples to welcome the Christ child?

There is an urgency to welcome him because in him, the poor have security, those bound by sin are free, the purpose and fulfillment of life is found in our communion with him.

In a sense, our whole life is not only a temple, it is a psalm to almighty God. We turn to the Sacrament of Reconciliation, so that our lives may perfectly sing a psalm of praise to welcome the Incarnate Word at Christmas.

About TheAspiringCatholic

Welcome and thank you for visiting this page! You’ll find my personal reflections on Christian Discipleship, insights on my adventures throughout the world, one day at a time, and musing everything Catholic and musical with a cup of coffee each morning.
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