Summary: Psalm 67 is what could be called a “Missionary Song.” The truths in this song are what should be in the heart of those who either want to be a missionary or be involved in missions.
Turn your Bibles to Psalms 67:1-7
Title: A Missionary’s Song
Theme: A Prayer for God’s Blessings on His Work
Introduction: Psalm 67 is what could be called a “Missionary Song.” (The Expositors Bible Commentary; The Treasury of David; The Pulpit Commentary; Psalm 67:2) The truths in this song are what should be in the heart of those who either want to be a missionary or be involved in missions. Christians long to see peoples from all nations participating in the privileges that come to those who live a life of praise to Jesus Christ.
Listen as I read Psalm 67:1-7, “May God be gracious to us and bless us and make His face shine upon us, Ps 67:2 that your ways may be known on earth, your salvation among all nations. Ps 67:3 May the peoples praise you, O God; may all the peoples praise you. Ps 67:4 May the nations be glad and sing for joy, for you rule the peoples justly and guide the nations of the earth. Ps 67:5 May the peoples praise you, O God; may all the peoples praise you. Ps 67:6 Then the land will yield its harvest, and God, our God, will bless us. Ps 67:7 God will bless us, and all the ends of the earth will fear Him.” Pray!
Interrogative Sentence: Just what is requested in this song of prayer and why are they so beneficial to the lost and the Body of Christ?
Proposition: I would propose to you that Psalm 67 is from the heart of God, being expressed to His children to what has real importance in regard to eternity. This song is a prayer for God’s blessings, His Salvation to include all nations, His righteous rule and His declaration of blessings to the ends of the earth.
Transitional Sentence: The first heart cry of this missionary song is, “May God be gracious to us and bless us and make His face shine upon us,”
All Scripture is brought forth by the Holy Spirit and God wants us to grasp a truth here. God is the source of all benefits. The Holy Spirit moved the writer and is moving us to ask the Lord to be gracious, to bless and show his love upon us. It is the blessings of God that make life on this earth enjoyable. Jesus intervenes on the behalf of the child of God and enables him to accomplish God’s will in this sinned cursed world. God delights in those who seek Him. (The Expositors Bible Commentary)
The Bible has a truth that should be proclaimed often in the house of God, especially in the benediction. It is the speaking forth of a blessing found in Numbers 6:24-27. It is often called the “Priestly Blessing.” The Lord told Moses to tell Aaron to bless His people with these Words, “‘The LORD bless you and keep you; Nu 6:25 the LORD make His face shine upon you and be gracious to you; Nu 6:26 the LORD turn His face toward you and give you peace.’ Nu 6:27 So they will put My name on the Israelites, and I will bless them.”
The heart of the seeker that moves God is the Christian who ask the Lord to “be gracious.” “Gracious” (hanan) meaning to “have mercy on me!” (The Complete Word Dictionary, Old Testament) God’s forgiveness of sin is to be sought foremost and that brings a chain of blessings upon the repentant Christian. This heart reflects a death to legal works or claims of merit. It is a heart resting totally on the favor of God given in Christ’ Name.
Verse one of Psalm 67 holds a key truth of a missionary’s heart, may the Lord “make His face shine upon us.” Often in the Scriptures we read this phrase, which is a prayer or blessing spoken. What does it mean? It is an invocation of the Lord’s presence and favor. While those who live outside of the will of God seek to find their happiness in wealth, ambition, in this world’s pleasures and sensual delights – the child of God finds his happiness in service to the Lord and in friendship with God. (Barnes Notes) The psalmist is asking for God’s revelation and presence just as Moses received.
The heart of the missionary goes beyond earthly blessings to a hunger for God and a desiring for Christ-likeness. The apostle Paul said God’s goal for Christians is to “…become mature, attaining to the whole measure of the fullness of Christ.” (Ephesians 4:13; Dr. Jim Berg; Matthew Henry) The child of God will always be maturing down here on this earth, therefore he needs to be daily praying, “Lord mold me and make me what you want me to be.”
Lorica of Saint Patrick had a great prayer that reflects the heart of a missionary who wants to touch the lives of others for the sake of Christ. His heart’s desire was, “Christ with me, Christ before me, Christ behind me, Christ in me, Christ beneath me, Christ on my right, Christ on my left, Christ when I lie down, Christ when I sit down, Christ in the heart of every man who thinks of me, Christ in the mouth of every man who speaks of me, Christ in the eyes that see me and Christ in the ear that hears me.” (Sermon Central)