God’s Concern for the Powerless

25 May

Reading through psalm 82 brought Gustavo Gutierrez to mind.  Gutierrez is considered the founder of liberation theology.  In the 1960s, a Catholic priest teaching in Peru.  He was aware the the majority of the population lived in poverty and the Catholic Church’s theology did not address the pain and devastation of poverty.   He began the theological movement which did not just think about the nature of God, but who God is in the midst of the people and their reality.

Psalm 82 speaks to the disfranchised of Israel and brings into judgement those who abuse their power over the powerless.  They are under greater judgement since it was their job to defend them.

God calls the judges into his courtroom,

he puts all the judges in the dock.

2-4 “Enough! You’ve corrupted justice long enough,
you’ve let the wicked get away with murder.
You’re here to defend the defenseless,
to make sure that underdogs get a fair break;
Your job is to stand up for the powerless,
and prosecute all those who exploit them.”

Ignorant judges! Head-in-the-sand judges!
They haven’t a clue to what’s going on.
And now everything’s falling apart,
the world’s coming unglued.

6-7 “I commissioned you judges, each one of you,
deputies of the High God,
But you’ve betrayed your commission
and now you’re stripped of your rank, busted.”

O God, give them their just deserts!
You’ve got the whole world in your hands!

I think we forget how often God speaks for the poor and against the politics that oppose the powerless.  I hope we find ourselves on God’s side.


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