Psalm 72 verses 1-7,9-14
1 Give the king your justice, O God,
and your righteousness to a king’s son.
2 May he judge your people with righteousness,
and your poor with justice.
3 May the mountains yield prosperity for the people,
and the hills, in righteousness.
4 May he defend the cause of the poor of the people,
give deliverance to the needy,
and crush the oppressor.
5 May he live while the sun endures,
and as long as the moon, throughout all generations.
6 May he be like rain that falls on the mown grass,
like showers that water the earth.
7 In his days may righteousness flourish
and peace abound, until the moon is no more.
10 May the kings of Tarshish and of the isles
render him tribute,
may the kings of Sheba and Seba
11 May all kings fall down before him,
all nations give him service.
12 For he delivers the needy when they call,
the poor and those who have no helper.
13 He has pity on the weak and the needy,
and saves the lives of the needy.
14 From oppression and violence he redeems their life;
and precious is their blood in his sight.
Fair enough. A lot of stuff in there about a just king who loves the little guy and saves them from oppression. Nothing offensive there except maybe that part about "crushing" the oppressor. So what got left out?
Psalm 72 verses 8,9
8 May he have dominion from sea to sea,
and from the River to the ends of the earth.
9 May his foes bow down before him,
and his enemies lick the dust.
Is it that sea to sea dominion thing? It must be too imperialistic sounding for Sunday morning. Maybe the lectionary editors recalled the bad rap given to the notion of "manifest destiny?"
Maybe it was the "lick the dust" prayer that had to be editted. I believe that is a reference to the king killing his enemies in battle. Other synonyms within context found at Webster's Online include:
split upon a rock,
break one's back,
have the ground cut from under one,
come to grief,
go to the dogs,
go to pot,
bite the dust,
have the worst of it,
lose the day,
come off second best,
not have a leg to stand on,
and my personal favorite:
fall between two stools.
How does this sound?
May his foes bow down before him,
and his enemies fall between two stools.
Sounds like something that happened to a friend of mine at Pat O's one night.
Anybody out there have any better ideas? I got the worst of this one, and I don't have a leg to stand on after I fell between these two verses.