Tuesday, June 3, 2014


The assigned Psalm for the Seventh Sunday after Easter (Year A) was a portion of Psalm 68.  It’s first three verses in the Book of Common Prayer translation are:

“Let God arise, and let his enemies be scattered,
     let those who hate him flee before him.
Let them vanish like smoke when the wind drives it away;
     As the wax melts at the fire, so let the wicked perish at the presence of God.
But let the righteous be glad and rejoice before God;
     Let them also be merry and joyful.”

Aside from the archaic use of male pronouns for God, most of us, including me, find  those pleas echo our own sentiments whenever the “wicked” seem to have won yet another round in the ongoing struggle between good and evil.  In the moment, at least, it seems pretty clear who’s on the side of God and who’s not.

Yet over the years I’ve lost the easy certainty I had when I was younger, particularly the certainty that I was one of those on the side of God.  It’s easy to judge when you’re thinking about Hitler or Mother Theresa, but it seems to me it’s more complicated for those of us who have more ordinary lives.

So I’m wondering how it is for you.  How do you tell the good guys from the bad guys, and do you feel that you’re pretty much always on the right side of that line?