7 “O my people, listen as I speak. Here are my charges against you, O Israel: I am God, your God!8 I have no complaint about your sacrifices or the burnt offerings you constantly offer.9 But I do not need the bulls from your barns or the goats from your pens.10 For all the animals of the forest are mine, and I own the cattle on a thousand hills.11 I know every bird on the mountains, and all the animals of the field are mine.12 If I were hungry, I would not tell you, for all the world is mine and everything in it.13 Do I eat the meat of bulls? Do I drink the blood of goats?14 Make thankfulness your sacrifice to God, and keep the vows you made to the Most High.15 Then call on me when you are in trouble, and I will rescue you, and you will give me glory.”
16 But God says to the wicked: “Why bother reciting my decrees and pretending to obey my covenant?17 For you refuse my discipline and treat my words like trash.18 When you see thieves, you approve of them, and you spend your time with adulterers.19 Your mouth is filled with wickedness, and your tongue is full of lies.20 You sit around and slander your brother— your own mother’s son.21 While you did all this, I remained silent, and you thought I didn’t care. But now I will rebuke you, listing all my charges against you.22 Repent, all of you who forget me, or I will tear you apart, and no one will help you.23 But giving thanks is a sacrifice that truly honors me. If you keep to my path, I will reveal to you the salvation of God.”
Judgement Begins With The People Of God
Psalm 50 has two main themes, acceptable worship and social morality, which correspond to the two main divisions of the Ten Commandments (man’s relation to God in commandments 1 through 4, and man’s relation to man in commandments 6 through 10),
Exodus 20:1-17 (ESV)1 And God spoke all these words, saying,2 “I am the LORD your God, who brought you out of the land of Egypt, out of the house of slavery.3 “You shall have no other gods before me.4 “You shall not make for yourself a carved image, or any likeness of anything that is in heaven above, or that is in the earth beneath, or that is in the water under the earth.5 You shall not bow down to them or serve them, for I the LORD your God am a jealous God, visiting the iniquity of the fathers on the children to the third and the fourth generation of those who hate me,6 but showing steadfast love to thousands of those who love me and keep my commandments.7 “You shall not take the name of the LORD your God in vain, for the LORD will not hold him guiltless who takes his name in vain.8 “Remember the Sabbath day, to keep it holy.9 Six days you shall labor, and do all your work,10 but the seventh day is a Sabbath to the LORD your God. On it you shall not do any work, you, or your son, or your daughter, your male servant, or your female servant, or your livestock, or the sojourner who is within your gates.11 For in six days the LORD made heaven and earth, the sea, and all that is in them, and rested on the seventh day. Therefore the LORD blessed the Sabbath day and made it holy.12 “Honor your father and your mother, that your days may be long in the land that the LORD your God is giving you.13 “You shall not murder.14 “You shall not commit adultery.15 “You shall not steal.16 “You shall not bear false witness against your neighbor.17 “You shall not covet your neighbor’s house; you shall not covet your neighbor’s wife, or his male servant, or his female servant, or his ox, or his donkey, or anything that is your neighbor’s.”
The psalm is in 3 parts:
1. Verses 1 – 6: God calls everybody to his Court of Law.
God comes to gather and judge Israel. The judgment is to be on Israel although others are to listen. In fact, heaven and earth are to act as silent witnesses.
2. Verses 7-15. The Message to the Worshiper.
This section addresses to first four Commandments;
- You shall have no other gods before Me.
- You shall make no idols.
- You shall not take the name of the Lord your God in vain.
- Keep the Sabbath day holy.
God is speaking to the formal worshiper and the one who trusts ritual. The judgment is not on sacrifice as such but upon the wrong motives involved. The judgment is not on sacrifice but on the wrong motives. It is made clear that God is not dependent upon the sacrifice of his people. He wants heartfelt thanksgiving, proper payment of vows, and sincere prayer.
3. Verses 16-23. The Message of the Wicked.
This section addresses our relationship with other people in Commandments 6 through 10:
- Honor your father and your mother.
- You shall not murder.
- You shall not commit adultery.
- You shall not steal.
- You shall not bear false witness against your neighbor.
- You shall not covet.
This judgment is upon the hypocrites in Israel who claim to keep the law of God in outwardly, but use the keeping of the law as justification for their evil deeds.
Matthew 23:1-7, 13, 15-16, 23-30 (ESV)1 Then Jesus said to the crowds and to his disciples,2 “The scribes and the Pharisees sit on Moses’ seat,3 so do and observe whatever they tell you, but not the works they do. For they preach, but do not practice.4 They tie up heavy burdens, hard to bear, and lay them on people’s shoulders, but they themselves are not willing to move them with their finger.5 They do all their deeds to be seen by others. For they make their phylacteries broad and their fringes long,6 and they love the place of honor at feasts and the best seats in the synagogues7 and greetings in the marketplaces and being called rabbi by others. 13 “But woe to you, scribes and Pharisees, hypocrites! For you shut the kingdom of heaven in people’s faces. For you neither enter yourselves nor allow those who would enter to go in.15 Woe to you, scribes and Pharisees, hypocrites! For you travel across sea and land to make a single proselyte, and when he becomes a proselyte, you make him twice as much a child of hell as yourselves.16 “Woe to you, blind guides, who say, ‘If anyone swears by the temple, it is nothing, but if anyone swears by the gold of the temple, he is bound by his oath.’ 23 “Woe to you, scribes and Pharisees, hypocrites! For you tithe mint and dill and cumin, and have neglected the weightier matters of the law: justice and mercy and faithfulness. These you ought to have done, without neglecting the others.24 You blind guides, straining out a gnat and swallowing a camel!25 “Woe to you, scribes and Pharisees, hypocrites! For you clean the outside of the cup and the plate, but inside they are full of greed and self-indulgence.26 You blind Pharisee! First clean the inside of the cup and the plate, that the outside also may be clean.27 “Woe to you, scribes and Pharisees, hypocrites! For you are like whitewashed tombs, which outwardly appear beautiful, but within are full of dead people’s bones and all uncleanness.28 So you also outwardly appear righteous to others, but within you are full of hypocrisy and lawlessness.29 “Woe to you, scribes and Pharisees, hypocrites! For you build the tombs of the prophets and decorate the monuments of the righteous,30 saying, ‘If we had lived in the days of our fathers, we would not have taken part with them in shedding the blood of the prophets.’
Even though God has kept silence by delaying punishment, the time of reproof has come.