Tell It

Praise the LORD, all you nations,
glorify him, all you peoples!

For steadfast is his kindness toward us,
and the fidelity of the LORD endures forever.

(Psalm 117:1-2)  

Scripture Study

117:1. The call made to all the nations to offer praise includes acknowledgment that the Lord is the God of all of them (cf. Ps 47:1–2; 67:2–4; etc.). Association of the Gentiles in praise of God, and God’s faithfulness to his promises are seen by St Paul as reaching fulfillment in Jesus Christ and in the Church, when he quotes this verse to show that Scripture confirms his teaching: “For I tell you that Christ became a servant to the circumcised to show God’s truthfulness, in order to confirm the promises given to the patriarchs, and in order that the Gentiles might glorify God for his mercy. As it is written, Therefore I will praise thee among the Gentiles, and sing to thy name; and again it is said, Rejoice, O Gentiles, with his people; and again, Praise the Lord, all Gentiles, and let all the peoples praise him” (Rom 15:8–11). These words encourage Christians to strive to bring all nations to acknowledge the Lord. Saints are noted for this zeal for souls: “The zealous man desires and seeks, by all the ways available to him, that God would always be more widely known and served in this life and in the next, because this holy love is boundless. He does the same for those close to him, and desires that all would be content in this life, and happy and blessed in the world to come; so that all may be saved, and no one lost for all eternity” (St Anthony Mary Claret, El egoismo vencido, 60).

117:2. The praise is offered on account of God’s steadfast love and faithfulness which he has shown the people of Israel. It is stronger than the people’s sin and means that God’s promises and the Covenant endure for ever.[1]

Reflection

“Go out to all the world, and tell the Good News.”

The line above comes from today’s responsorial psalm and joyfully encourages us to go and tell the world about the greatness of our Lord. Yet this core aspect of our baptismal commitment can challenge us. Many of us do not feel qualified or capable of being that missionary disciple we so often associate with this statement.

Are we using this as an excuse? Do we look at our own perceived shortcomings in the knowledge of our faith, in how we are living our faith, and allow it to prevent us from sharing it?

We need to realize that the world is our neighbor next door, our co-workers at work, and friends in the community; that we are all broken and doing the best we can; that all the Lord is asking us to do is tell “our story” about God – in all its messiness. Isn’t that something we can all do?   

 

May the virtues of faith, hope, and love go with you today – DV.

 

 

[1] James Gavigan, Brian McCarthy, and Thomas McGovern, eds., Psalms and the Song of Solomon, The Navarre Bible (Dublin; New York: Four Courts Press; Scepter Publishers, 2003), 389.