December 21, 2018
Emma Friesen ’22
PSALMS 130; ISAIAH 29:9-24; LUKE 1:26-38
In advent, the church assumes a posture of waiting, which appears throughout this psalm. The psalmist repeated the line “more than watchmen wait for the morning” (Psalm 130:6 NIV), and he stated, “my whole being waits” (130:5). In that time of waiting, I wonder if the psalmist may have been meditating on God’s “unfailing love,” their own sinfulness, and redemption still to come. This psalm reminds me of how at my church we kneel during confession; then we stand for the absolution which goes something like “receive the good news, your sins are forgiven; may the peace of Christ be with you”. My church includes confession in its liturgy most Sundays, and it is something I could come back to every week of my life. Martin Luther wrote a song based on Psalm 130 (I enjoy listening to Indelible Grace’s version); the lyrics read, “Our works, alas! are all in vain; in much the best life faileth; no man can glory in Thy sight, all must alike confess Thy might, and live alone by mercy.” The psalmist acknowledged God as the one as the one who makes people new, “But with you there is forgiveness, so that we can, with reverence, serve you” (130:4 NIV). This psalm, along with other passages from the Old Testament, looks forward to Jesus’s coming. At Christmas we celebrate the one who will “redeem Israel from all their sins” (130:8 NIV).