1:12 While the king was on his couch,... giggle, giggle, giggle!
my nard gave forth its fragrance.
13My beloved is to me a bag of myrrh
that lies between my breasts.
That image of the lover being "terrible as an army with banners", however you translate, speaks of the awesome fear that love involves, as well as warm trust... So I'll talk about the wondrous truth that God loves us, and so we can hurt the Almighty, for love hurts!
4 You are beautiful as Tirzah, my love,
comely as Jerusalem,
terrible as an army with banners.
5Turn away your eyes from me,
for they overwhelm me!
Every Hebrew word for wrath I know appears here: ap =nose flaring (90:7); hemah = heat (90:7); evrah = overflow (90:9). By the way, I have noticed that Hebrew words don’t come across in my blogging program; thus any attempt on my part to be accurate is in vain. These wrath words show up in spades in this psalm. Why? Because these lamenting people experience the presence of God in their world as wrath.
This is where many people who read the Old Testament leave off. But don’t stop here. We have to ask, “Why is God angry?” Is God angry because God is angry, because his nose flares, his back heats up, or his temper overflows? Psalm 90 does not teach this. It teaches that God is angry as a function of his steadfast love (the Hebrew word hesed, which appears in 90:14) in relation to our sin and evil. Hesed is the stick to it love associated with the covenant God makes with Israel. God is angry because God loves us and doesn't want us to destroy ourselves. Because God loves us through his anger, we petition.
Thus anger, here, and I would claim elsewhere in the Bible is always a function of love. This is true in families, and it is true in the biblical family.
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