Prayer for the day
O LORD, watch over us and save us from this generation for ever. The wicked prowl on every side, and that which is worthless is highly praised by everyone.
Scripture for the day
It was a great defence for Paul, and one that he didn’t use often. When he did use it, however, he used it to great effect.
He was being beaten, imprisoned, and was in danger for his life. He was in dire need. And so Paul asked the Roman centurion why he was shackling a Roman citizen. Immediately, the Roman is terrified. This citizenship gives Paul certain rights, and these rights are not being observed by the Romans or by the Jews who are persecuting Paul.
This is serious stuff. By appealing to his Roman citizenship, Paul was guaranteed a fair trial by a Roman court. In order to be treated well, in order to be protected, Paul called on the citizenship which would save him from their punishment.
The Psalmist calls on a similar citizenship in order to be saved when he is in trouble. No Roman citizen, the Psalmist (often David) is a citizen of the Kingdom of YHWH.
YHWH the Lord is the strength of his people, David says. The Lord, YHWH, is the salvation of his people, the fortress of his people. This kingdom is based on the character of its king, and its king is the Almighty.
Citizenship in the Kingdom of YHWH provides protection, provides safety, provides everything that the people of God need to be the people of God. And citizenship in the Kingdom is based not on birth, not on worthiness, nor on the ability to buy one’s way in. Citizenship in the Kingdom of YHWH is dependent upon the call of YHWH. To be a citizen is to be called by YHWH to be a citizen of His glorious kingdom.
Praise YHWH, you who have been called into the glorious kingdom of the light.