Oct. 6: Psalm 90

Burk Parsons
A Prayer from Psalm 90

John Calvin: "Moses makes mention of the anger of God advisedly; for it is necessary that men be touched with the feeling of this, in order to their considering in good earnest, what experience constrains them to acknowledge, how soon they finish their course and pass away. He had, however, still another reason for joining together the brevity of human life and the anger of God. Whilst men are by nature so transitory, and, as it were, shadowy, the Israelites were afflicted by the hostile hand of God; and his anger is less supportable by our frail natures, which speedily vanish away, than it would be were we furnished with some tolerable degree of strength."

O Lord, the just and righteous God of all creation,

As Moses prayed so we come before you and acknowledge that you alone have been our dwelling place in all generations. Before the mountains were brought forth, or before you had formed the earth--from everlasting to everlasting, you are God and have been our only true and lasting dwelling place.

You return man to dust and say, "Return, O children of man!" For a thousand years in your sight are but as yesterday when it is past. You sweep away the years of our lives as with a flood. Our years are like a dream--like grass that is renewed in the morning--in the morning it flourishes and is renewed; then, in the evening it fades and withers and dies.

For we are brought to our end by your righteous anger; by your wrath we are dismayed. You have set our iniquities before your face, our secret sins in the light of your presence. For all our days pass away under your wrath, O Lord, and the years of our lives are soon gone, and we will fly away. So we confess to you all our sins, O Lord. Forgive us, we pray, as we forgive those who have sinned against us. Cleanse us from all unrighteousness for your name's sake.
For who in this world considers the power of your anger, Lord, and who considers your wrath according to their fear of you? Therefore, O Lord, teach us to number our days that we may gain hearts of wisdom--pure and peaceable wisdom that flows from you above and teaches us to depend daily upon you alone.

Return, O LORD! How long will it be before you return? Have pity on us your servants! For we long to be at home with you, our Father, our King, our God. Come, quickly, Lord Jesus, we pray, come quickly and make us eager for your return as we daily long for the peace, beauty, and freedom of your presence.

Satisfy us in the morning with your steadfast love that we may rejoice and be glad all our day. Make us glad, O Lord, for you have afflicted us many days, and we have seen evil for many years. Make us glad, and let your work be shown to your servants, and your glorious power to our children and our children's children. O Lord our God, let your favor rest and remain upon us, and establish the work of our hands. Oh yes, we pray, establish the work of our hands so that our work in your kingdom may not be in vain but that it might all serve to give you glory, forever and ever, amen.